Make-Ahead Breakfast Casserole for Daylight-Saving Time
Ready to spring forward, everybody? Its daylight-saving time again (Surprised? Me, too!), which means that on Sunday we’ll loose and hour of sleep but gain an hour of daylight. Having a toddler in the house means sleep has become a very precious commodity (one we don’t seem to get enough of), so losing an hour makes a big difference. This season I’ve decided to give my husband the day-off from his Sunday Morning Waffles and prepare a savory breakfast casserole on Saturday night instead. This way, when daylight arrives earlier than we’d hoped for, I’ll simply transfer my casserole from the fridge to the oven then, go reclaim an extra hour of sleep while it cooks.
- ⅓ cup vegetable oil
- 1 30-oz. package of frozen shredded hash browns
- 12 oz. ground breakfast sausage
- 12 eggs
- 4 oz. diced ham
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
Add-Ins (Pick of few of the following to make your casserole more tasty – for this casserole I used leeks, mushrooms, and fresh oregano.)
- 1 leek, white and light green parts only, diced
- 1 cup mushrooms, diced
- 1 red pepper, diced
- 1 cup broccoli, diced
- 1 bunch of asparagus, tender parts only, cut into ½-inch pieces
- 1 Tbsp. fresh chopped herbs (added to eggs)
Lightly mist a 13×9-inch baking dish (2 quart dish) with cooking spray.
Set a large skillet over medium-high heat and heat oil until shimmering. Carefully add hash browns and spread evenly over the bottom of the pan (it helps if you break up any chunks before cooking). Cover and cook, undisturbed, for 4-7 minutes, then uncover and continue cooking, flipping occasionally, until browned, about 10-12 minutes. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
Transfer hash browns to baking dish and spread in an even layer, set aside. In the same skillet over medium-high heat, add ground sausage and any vegetables you’re using, and cook until sausage is brown and vegetables are soft, about 4-6 minutes. Transfer sausage mixture to baking dish and spread in an even layer over hash browns. Allow to cool slightly before proceeding.
In a large bowl, whisk eggs (and herbs if you’re using) with a dash of salt and pepper until combined. Mix in ham and 1 cup of cheese. Pour egg mixture into the baking dish, covering sausage and hash browns completely. Sprinkle the top with remaining cup of cheese.
At this point you can either cover and refrigerate overnight, or bake right away.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Place baking dish on a rack set in the center of the oven. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until eggs have set (no longer jiggly in the middle) and the cheese has melted and started to bubble. While it’s baking you can cut the fruit, make some coffee, and pour (or squeeze) a couple glasses of orange juice; or go back to bed for an hour — it’s your choice.
Allow to rest for 5-10 minutes before cutting and serving.
Don’t forget to set your clocks FORWARD and hour before hitting the pillow Saturday night!