Sometimes cooking for a crowd can be a bit overwhelming, but if you plan ahead – cooking for a dozen can be as easy as cooking for two if you just put a bit of thought and planning into it! Breakfast is one of those difficult meals because you want it to be delicious but at the same time easy (who wants to spend hours in the kitchen first thing in the morning, especially if you have guests).
One of my favorite quick/easy/amazing breakfast recipes I have made is my Crock Pot Breakfast Casserole (now a favorite at my school’s weekly breakfast club – even with the horrible photos I have here, people still make it and make it look much better). Recently though, Rich’s parents were up to visit. I had already made them the Crock Pot Breakfast and wanted to try something different. We had some hamburger buns leftover from grilling earlier in the week – so those became the base of this amazing hands-off breakfast!
This could not be easier… the night before you just throw it all together and place in the fridge. In the morning into a cold oven your dish goes and with no work about an hour later the house smells amazing and breakfast is served. In the time this is cooking you could even cook up some eggs or bacon or whatever else you want if you are feeling really motivated.
OR let us just say you have a whole bunch of crusts from peanut-butter & jelly sandwiches or something like that… use the PB&J leftovers as the bread base in this French Toast Casserole and you’ll be in heaven. Any bread product (besides Everything Bagels or something savory like that) would work wonders in this dish. It’s perfect for a crowd or a special treat for you and your loved ones you wake up with every morning – and it’s a great way to use up those extra hunks of bread you have laying around at the end of the week!
- 10 cups (1-inch) cubed sturdy white bread (or any raisin/white/etc bread)
- 1 (8-ounce) block (low-fat) cream cheese, softened
- 8 large eggs
- 2 cups milk
- ¼ cup half-and-half (or use more milk)
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Coat a 13x9 baking dish with cooking spray. Cube up your bread directly into the dish OR into a measuring bowl first.
- Beat cream cheese at medium speed of mixer until smooth (or if softened, mix well with a whisk). Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add milk, half-and-half, ½ cup maple syrup, and vanilla, and mix until smooth. Pour cream cheese mixture over top of bread; cover and refrigerate overnight.
- Place bread mixture directly into a cold oven. Heat your oven to 375°. Once the oven come to temp - set your timer for 30 minutes. Leave the top (foil) on the dish for at least the first 30 minutes. Uncover the dish at about 30 minutes. Bake at least a total of 50 minutes or until set.
- Optional delicious toppings: powdered sugar, and serve with maple syrup
Roughly adapted/inspired by My Recipes
One Year Ago – Jamaican Jerk Chicken – spicy enough to keep the spice-lovers in your life happy, but gentle enough to allow everyone to enjoy them (take the Caribbean home with you today)
Two Years Ago – Butterbeer Cupcakes – the kind of cupcakes that Harry Potter would have loved if he wanted to eat his Butterbeer instead of drink it!
And I leave you with this, Today’s Question of the Day… What is your favorite hands-off breakfast idea?