Easy prep and it can bake while you open presents. This no-hassle casserole is hearty and delicious!
I know one of the last things I want to worry about on Christmas morning is what my kids are going to eat for breakfast before they disappear to play with all their new presents. I try to plan around the fact that we always do a family dinner at my mom-in-law’s house around 3pm or 4pm, so we have a small, snack-y lunch. This does put a little more pressure on me to make a filling breakfast.
At the same time, I don’t want to spend my morning in the kitchen away from the family. Most times I prep my breakfast the night before and then bake it in the morning while they open their presents, so that I don’t have to be slaving away in the kitchen and can enjoy watching their facial expressions as they open each gift and be very present (no pun intended) in those special moments. Making memories like those are so important, but I do have to feed my kids at some point – right?! That is why I absolutely adore recipes that can be made the day before and placed in the oven to bake the day of. It makes the morning less stressful for me knowing that I have something that is going to be filling for everyone and not need me to babysit while it cooks. Plus I already have cleaned up everything from prepping the day before, so the dirty dishes are going to be few and far between. That is a win all-around!
I have not made this recipe for Christmas (yet), but it is the perfect, no-hassle breakfast for a busy holiday morning like Christmas. If you use a mixture of red and green bell peppers, it can be very festive, too. The potatoes and sausage really add a heartiness to the casserole, so you don’t feel hungry all day long. Although, I’d be lying if I said all of us didn’t go back for seconds. It’s such a scrumptious recipe. The minute it comes out of the oven, your mouth is watering.
So if you are on the hunt for a Christmas morning dish that can feed the whole family, but you don’t have to slave over for an hour – this recipe is the recipe for you! There’s definitely room to make variations to appease different likes and dislikes. For example, we used spicy sausage because we love hot foods, but if your family doesn’t, sweet or mild sausage works just fine! For a richer, smokier casserole, substitute the cheddar cheese for gouda – which is something that I know I will be doing very soon because every recipe is made better with gouda. 🙂
What you need:
- 1 lb. Italian sausage (we used spicy, but mild or sweet work well, too)
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and diced
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 1 red bell pepper, cored and diced
- 6 large eggs
- 1/3 cup milk (we used whole)
- 1 bag frozen hash browns, thawed (Potatoes O’Brien would work perfectly!)
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
- green onions, sliced for garnish
- Brown and crumble Italian sausage in a skillet over medium-high heat. Set aside and reserve just enough of the sausage grease to cover the bottom of the pan.
- Saute onion and red pepper in the grease for about 5 minutes. Add garlic and stir until cooked, about 1 minute.
- In a large bowl, mix together onion mixture, cooked sausage, hash browns, and 1 1/2 cups cheese.
- In a separate bowl, beat eggs with milk and black pepper. Stir into the sausage and hash brown mixture.
- Pour into a greased 9×13-inch baking dish and top with the last 1/2 cup of cheese.
- Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes in a preheated 400-degree oven.
- Remove foil, sprinkle on green onions, and cook in 10 minute increments until eggs are set and potatoes brown.
- Tip: After covering with foil, you can place this in the refrigerator and bake the next day, if you want.
Recipe adapted from Gimme Some Oven.