Last night, I had guests stay the night and needed a quick breakfast to serve in the morning before they headed out. In the afternoon I quickly whipped up this recipe and placed it in the refrigerator until morning. There are a ton of breakfast casserole recipes out there, but I combined a few recipes and made it healthier. I used chicken sausage links instead of pork sausage, added a veggie using sweet red peppers, cut the number of eggs and instead of using half-n-half or cream, substituted the combination of milk and plain yogurt.
Plus I used leftover bread and crusts for this recipe which I described in a prior post French Toast Casserole using Leftover Bread. I have been freezing leftover bread by cutting the crusts off of my kids sandwiches and saving the end slices of bread.
It turned out delicious!
Healthy Egg Breakfast Casserole
1 lb. chicken sausage, diced and browned
1 1/4 C shredded cheese (cheddar, mozzarella)
1/2 C sweet red pepper, diced
1 C milk
1 C plain yogurt
6-8 slices of bread, cubed note: I used my frozen leftover bread crusts
Layer the bread cubes, chicken sausage, red pepper and cheese in a 9 x 13 baking dish. Lightly beat the eggs, milk and yogurt until combined and pour the mixture over the bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Bake 350° for 45 minutes until an inserted knife comes out clean.
Do you have kids who don’t eat crust of their sandwich? I do…and honestly it drives me nuts to see all of the wasted bread! Funny thing is that my youngest at 12 months old was eating her entire sandwich and now at 18 months old she observes her older sisters leaving the crust on their plates. Of course she does the same thing now. I think they truly don’t mind eating it, it has just become a bad habit. So why not turn a bad habit into something good?
When I am making a PB&J sandwich for my kids, I start by cutting off the crust or using a cute little shaped sandwich cutter. The unused bread or crust gets placed into a gallon size freezer bag and thrown into my freezer. It took me exactly one week to fill it! Yikes…all of that was wasted?
Here is an idea for the leftover bread and crust…make an overnight French Toast Casserole! Here is a recipe that you can feel good about.
Healthy French Toast Casserole
- Leftover whole wheat bread, ends and crusts cut into 1 inch cubes (I used about 3/4 of the gallon size bag worth of bread)
- 8 eggs
- 3 cups lowfat plain yogurt
- 2 tablespoons maple-flavored syrup
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Grease 9 x 13 baking dish. Place bread cubes in the dish. Whisk eggs, yogurt, syrup, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl. Pour the mixture over the bread evenly until covered. Place plastic wrap over the dish and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat oven to 350°. Bake for 30 minutes until golden brown.
Top it with maple syrup, powdered sugar, fresh fruit or berries.