Cheesy Egg Bake is an wonderful dish to have for weekend mornings or holiday mornings, but it's also easy to make ahead to have throughout the workweek, too. It's so easy to make ahead that when I take meals to friends after baby is born or a surgery, I take a dinner, but I also like to include a breakfast food. Sometimes it's granola or baked oatmeal, but often it's this Bake. All they have to do is set the coffee pot next morning!
I recently read an interview with my favorite chef, Jacques Pépin. One of the questions was, "What is your ideal day?" His answer started with, "I would wake up at the crack of 9 AM … " YES! I agree with him as I like to wake up slow, have a couple of cups of tea or coffee, then figure out what to eat. Sometimes, I sip while I make this dish.
So what should you do first?
I make this with potatoes, but you can make it without them. You can also use any vegetables you wish.
If you use any leafy greens, cook them in boiling water, cool them, then squeeze out as much water as you can. Be sure to cook any vegetable ahead of time so that the water in them isn't cooked out into your breakfast bake.
Cut red potatoes into ½-inch cubes, toss in oil, season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and oregano. Spread them out on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and roast in a 450°F oven for about 30 minutes. They should be well-browned and a bit crispy.
While the potatoes are roasting, brown the breakfast sausage. It will release some moisture first, but let it go, stirring it often, and try to get some crispy parts. Set it aside once it is done. If you aren't a fan of breakfast sausage, you could certainly use bacon, or chorizo, or Italian sausage. I've even made a Cheesy Egg Bake with leftover carnitas! You do your breakfast the way you like!
Once the potatoes (and/or other vegetables) are cooked, you can start layering in a baking pan. Start with greasing the pan, then put the meat in first. Since there's fat in the meat, it helps to be able to scoop it out. Follow with the potatoes (and/or other vegetables) in, top with some cheese, then the sausage, then the rest of the cheese.
In all honesty ...
It doesn't much matter how you put this all together! The layers you create are not really important. What's important is that you put stuff in a baking dish, baked it, and have breakfast at the ready!
For a 9x13 pan of this breakfast bake, I use about eight eggs, then add some whole milk, half-and-half, or cream. It's kind of like a quiche custard.
Pour the eggs over the meat, potatoes, (veggies), and cheese and bake at 350°F for about 30 minutes. My husband doesn't mind at all if I leave it a bit longer so the edges get a little crispy and the cheese poking out on top browns a bit. He especially likes it if I bake it in a slightly larger pan because it's thinner and crispier!
How to serve Cheesy Egg Bake
Of course, you can serve it straight out of the oven and it's a great crowd pleaser for brunch along with other favorite menu items. Personally, I love some fresh tomatoes and a green salad as an accompaniment! What would you eat with it?
Want more breakfast recipes?
Cheesy Egg Bake
- 3 fist-sized red potatoes cut into ½-inch cubes
- salt and pepper
- 1½ teaspoons garlic powder
- 1½ teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1½ teaspoons oregano
- 1 pound breakfast sausage
- 1 8- ounce block of cheddar cheese grated
- 8 eggs
- ¾ cup cream or whole milk or a combination of the two
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Grease a 9x13 baking dish and set aside.
- Toss the potato cubes with some oil, salt and pepper, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and oregano. Put on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes or until brown and a bit crispy. When you take them out, turn the oven down to 350°F.
- Brown the sausage in a skillet.
- Whisk the eggs with the cream or milk and season with salt.
- Layer the potatoes in the greased 9x13 baking dish and top with half of the cheese. Next spoon the sausage evenly over, then top with the rest of the cheese. Finally, pour the egg mixture over the whole baking dish making sure it is evenly distributed.
- Put the baking dish in the 350° oven and bake for about 30 minutes or until golden brown. Serve hot from the oven. Reheat leftovers at the same temperature for 15-20 minutes.