Breakfast Casserole with Butternut Squash and Kale

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This breakfast casserole is the proper fall dish. Earthy sage balances butternut squash between layers of crusty bread, eggs, kale, and cheese. Assemble it the night time earlier than and bake the following day to serve for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner.

Images Credit score:
Rachael Narins

Breakfast casserole, also referred to as strata, is a baked egg dish in the identical household as bread pudding, however savory. You’ll be able to assemble it the night time earlier than and bake it the following day for breakfast, brunch, an off-the-cuff dinner, or a incredible vacation facet dish.

For this recipe, toasted items of bread are soaked in a sage and garlic egg-milk combination and layered between cubes of roasted butternut squash, kale, and cheese. The ensuing dish is wealthy and filling.

Utilizing turmeric brightens up the entire affair, however you’ll be able to go away it out if you happen to don’t have any available. There’s a variety of beta carotene in there, so it is going to be beautiful both method. A sunny-looking meal for the chilly, shorter days of fall and winter.


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TIPS, TRADE-OUTS, AND IDEAS

Breakfast casseroles are straightforward to adapt to private preferences and what you might have available. My model is vegetarian and filled with fall flavors, however you’ll be able to swap out some components and add in others to make it your personal. Listed below are just a few concepts.

  • As soon as it has been baked and cooled, pan fry the slices of strata with plenty of butter. It’s like a grilled cheese sandwich with a lot extra to like!
  • Add two cups of cooked and crumbled rooster, sausage, or vegetarian sausage to the kale layer.
  • Strive a Southwestern spin—add diced and roasted inexperienced chili peppers as an alternative of kale, and use Pepper Jack cheese. Sprinkle a bit of ancho chili powder or paprika on prime earlier than baking.
  • Change the herbs to rosemary, oregano, thyme, fennel seed, or coriander. Simply hold the quantity two tablespoons.
  • Embrace an enormous pinch of chili flakes to spice issues up.
  • For those who actually need to go wild, make it as a vacation facet dish and serve it with some heat turkey gravy or a crimson pool of cranberry sauce. It’s already half a Thanksgiving meal anyway.

Fall Breakfast Casserole with a sprig of fresh sage on top.

CARB QUESTIONS! WHAT BREAD WORKS BEST?

For this breakfast casserole, I used half a loaf every of sliced sourdough and entire wheat bread from Manhattan Seaside Bagel. You’ll be able to actually toast ANY kind of savory bread to vary issues up or combine and match. It’s a brilliant versatile recipe.

  • White sandwich bread
  • Baguette
  • Ciabatta
  • Challah
  • Brioche
  • Rye
  • Pumpernickel
  • Italian
  • Toasted cornbread would even be a head-turning choice

WHAT IS THE BEST CHEESE FOR BREAKFAST CASSEROLES?

I used the very handy pre-shredded Swiss from my native grocery retailer and then grated up all of the bits and ends I had within the fridge to make it a full cup. That included Monterey Jack, Provolone, and (I confess) a bit of piece of what I believe was Manchego.

So long as the cheese is sweet, it’ll work within the middle layer. Even some dollops of goat cheese, cream cheese, or ricotta can be scrumptious. Attempt to hold it at one cup complete and let your creativity movement. Non-dairy cheese works too if you wish to keep non-dairy.

NO KALE, NO PROBLEM

If you wish to embrace a little bit of inexperienced, however kale isn’t your factor, strive defrosted and very totally squeezed frozen spinach.

Nonetheless not your jam? How about chopped inexperienced scallions or some peeled and shredded kohlrabi? Mmmmm. Kohlrabi for the win!

Side view of the layers of a Pumpkin Sage Strata on a white plate with a casserole dish, cheese wedges and sage behind it.

DIFFERENT WAYS TO COOK EGG CASSEROLES

I’ve made this recipe in a single massive casserole dish to make it straightforward, however if you wish to gown it up a bit make particular person servings.

  • Make it fancy: Divide the bread into buttered 8-ounce ramekins, 4-ounce mason jars (you’ll want 16 of them) or quick, oven-safe espresso cups. The only-serving dimension will make the dish much more particular, and it cuts the cooking time by about 12 minutes.
  • Make it rustic: Bake this butternut squash casserole in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet. The outside will get a bit crispier, which provides an additional layer of texture and taste.
  • Sluggish Cooker Casserole: This positively works in a gradual cooker and an Prompt Pot. How nice is that? The outcomes shall be softer, nevertheless it’s a superb resolution if you happen to want the oven area for one thing else. Put all the pieces besides the Parmesan within the gradual cooker or Prompt Pot bowl in a single day. Proper earlier than cooking, prime with Parmesan and set it to medium for 2 to 3 1/2 hours for a gradual cooker and 12 minutes for an Prompt Pot.

MAKE BREAKFAST CASSEROLE AHEAD OF TIME

Breakfast casseroles are a simple make forward meal. Simply assemble the recipe the night time earlier than. Cowl and hold it within the fridge. The subsequent morning, bake it in keeping with the recipe directions.

MORE COZY, SAVORY BREAKFAST CASSEROLES!

  • Simple Breakfast Casserole
  • Zucchini Breakfast Casserole
  • Thanksgiving Stuffing Strata
  • Ham and Cheese Breakfast Casserole
  • Bagel Breakfast Casserole with Sausage, Egg, and Cheese
  • Biscuits and Gravy Casserole
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Breakfast Casserole with Butternut Squash and Kale Recipe

  • Prep time: 40 minutes
  • Cook dinner time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 10 to 12

Components

  • 16 ounces (12 cups) sourdough bread
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried floor sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, extra to style
  • 6 massive eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups entire milk
  • 1 can (15 ounce) pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric (non-obligatory)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound butternut squash, peeled and diced into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 bunch (2 cups shredded) kale
  • 1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Contemporary sage leaves for garnish (non-obligatory)

Technique

1 Preheat the oven and put together your baking sheets and casserole dish: Preheat your oven to 400°F and line two sheet pans with foil, and flippantly grease your 9×13 baking dish.

2 Prep the bread: Tear or reduce the bread into bite-size items and prepare in a largely single layer on the sheet pans. Flippantly coat the items of bread with olive oil, then season evenly with garlic powder, dried floor sage, and black pepper. The oil will assist it stick.

3 Toast the bread: Place the baking sheets within the oven, and toast till the bread is golden brown, with some dry edges, about 5 minutes. There isn’t any have to rotate the pans or toss the bread cubes.

Torn bread on baking sheets to make Pumpkin Sage Strata.

4 Whisk your custard: Whereas the bread is toasting, in a big bowl whisk collectively the eggs, milk, pumpkin puree, turmeric (if utilizing), and salt.

5 Take away the bread and let it cool: As soon as the bread is toasted, take away it from the oven, and let it cool for 5 minutes. As soon as the toasted bread has cooled, add 1/2 of it to the egg combination, stirring to coat. The bread will collapse barely, then you’ll be able to then add the remainder, stirring to coat.

Set that apart to soak. It gained’t be out too lengthy, so that you don’t want to fret about protecting it.

6 Bake the squash: Add the diced butternut squash to the identical foil-lined pan you toasted the bread on and place on the middle rack of your oven. Let it roast for 22 minutes, or till golden and tender.

Take away the squash from the oven to chill barely and assemble the strata.

Cubes of slightly roasted butternut squash to make a Savory Pumpkin Egg Bake.

7 Assemble the dish: Into the 9×13 baking dish, add half the soaked bread and press it down into the dish. Add the roasted butternut squash in a pleasant even layer, then the kale. Subsequent, add the shredded cheese. High that with the remaining soaked bread and any liquid within the bowl, urgent that down gently. Sprinkle grated Parmesan cheese evenly excessive. Cowl the entire dish with a sheet of foil.

You’ll be able to refrigerate or freeze the strata at this level and bake it the next day or bake it immediately.

Overhead view of a Pumpkin Sage Strata in a casserole dish.Grated cheese sprinkled over a Savory Pumpkin Egg Bake.

8 Bake the casserole: Place the casserole on a baking sheet, then place within the oven and bake for 25 minutes. Take away the foil and proceed to bake for 20 extra minutes, till the highest is crispy and golden.

Serve: When the strata is completed baking, let it cool on the counter for as much as 30 minutes, then reduce into squares and serve heat or at room temperature.

Leftovers! After it’s cooled, wrap and refrigerate the casserole for as much as three days.

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