Breakfast Casserole

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Breakfast casserole with savory pieces of ham, potatoes, bell peppers, and onions –all baked into a deliciously cheesy, egg custard. The ultimate morning recipe to feed a hungry family or portion out each slice for meal prep during the week.

square slice of breakfast casserole on a plate with a fork

Starting the day off with a satisfying meal is essential. This breakfast casserole recipe consists of eggs, protein, vegetables, and cheese. It’s a tasty gluten-free meal that can be easily tailored to meet dietary needs. Just note, the ratio of filling-to-egg is key to balance the various taste and textures. After a few chops and stirs, watch the egg mixture transform into a big pan of savory souffle with a golden crust.

Baked eggs dishes tend to have issues with becoming too rubbery or watery after cooking. This is especially the case when high moisture vegetables or dense meats are in the mixture. Sautéing the potatoes and vegetables before baking helps to lightly dry the food and concentrate flavors. Adding in some cornstarch to the egg base also ensures that each bite stays light and custardy while keeping the filling suspended.

sautéing cubes of ham, potatoes, and peppers in a cast iron skillet

How to make a breakfast casserole

  • Chop ingredients into small pieces, about ⅛ to ¼-inch in size.
  • Sauté potatoes, onions, garlic, bell pepper, and ham.
  • Add sauteed mixture to a baking dish, sprinkle cheese on top.
  • Whisk together cornstarch, salt, half-and-half, eggs, and pepper.
  • Pour egg base into the casserole dish then add cheese on top.
  • Bake at 350ºF (177ºC) until the center is set and browned, 40 minutes.

Sauté the vegetables and meat

To ensure the vegetables are fully cooked before baking, each ingredient is sautéed first. The onions and garlic add aromatics, and the bell peppers add color and a slight crunch. I also use small peeled and diced Yukon gold potatoes that taste like mini hash browns for a sturdy yet creamy texture, although you can use any type of potato you like.

I use pre-cooked ham for the casserole, however, cooked breakfast sausage or bacon can be substituted. Cutting all the ingredients into smaller pieces before sautéing ensures even cooking and prevents denser ingredients from sinking to the bottom of the casserole.

liquid being poured into a casserole filled with vegetables, meat and cheese

Ingredients that help with texture

Using a ratio of 8 large eggs to 2 ½ cups of half and half ensures a velvety custard texture. If too many eggs are used, it can make the texture tough due to the increase in protein. Half and half adds a rich mouthfeel, without tasting gritty. I use cornstarch to ensure a consistent custard-like texture throughout the casserole. It’s a nice bit of food insurance, even with the plethora of fillings threatening to break the texture of the egg base.

How long does it take to bake?

This egg breakfast casserole bakes in just 40 minutes! To check for doneness use a toothpick inserted in the center of the pan, if it’s dry it’s ready. You can also gently jiggle the pan to see if the center moves, you want it to be firm. For my science geeks, grab an instant-read thermometer and test the center of the casserole. Whole eggs start to coagulate and set between 144 to 158°F (62 to 70°C). I found that between 180 to 190°F (82 to 88°C) yields the right finish, don’t overcook the casserole!

casserole dish filled with liquid mixture and cheese

How to reheat breakfast casserole

The glory of making this dish is that you can make it ahead of time. The easiest way to reheat the breakfast casserole is to slice it up into individual portions and microwave for about 1 minute. I got 12 generous portions in a 9 x 13-inch pan. This is a great method if you’re meal prepping for the week.

The entire pan can also be reheated in a 300°F (149°C) oven until the center is warm. Guess what, you can also make all the components, cover the tray with foil and refrigerate overnight so you can bake it fresh the next morning. A few more minutes may be required in the oven since all the ingredients are cold. This breakfast casserole will keep for up to 5 days once baked.

Other fillings to try

This easy breakfast casserole recipe has been a game-changer in our home. It makes a large serving of food to feed a crowd and it can be wrapped up and eaten as a quick meal solution. I plan on switching up the fillings next time with either sautéed mushrooms, spinach, zucchini, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, sun-dried tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, mozzarella, or feta. Just keep the amounts of the similar types of ingredients and the egg mixture the same.

top down view of a person taking a breakfast casserole out of the oven

More breakfast recipes

Starch keeps the eggs smooth and creamy

Adding in a small amount of cornstarch keeps the consistency of the egg base tender and glossy. Cornstarch is a thickening agent that can also stabilize fully cooked eggs. The carbohydrates in the cornstarch prevent the proteins in the eggs from binding too tightly together. All the while as the starches heat in the oven, it swells and thickens, creating a creamier mouthfeel.

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Breakfast Casserole

Breakfast casserole recipe with savory pieces of ham, potatoes, bell peppers, and onions --all baked into a deliciously cheesy, egg custard.
Pin Print Review
4.63 from 32 votes
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time55 mins
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Servings 12 servings
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ½ pounds Yukon gold potatoes, peeled, cut into ¼-inch cubes
  • 1 cup red onion, ⅛-inch dice
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 cup red bell pepper, ⅛-inch dice
  • 10 ounces ham, ¼-inch dice
  • 1 ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ cup sliced green onions
  • 6 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • 2 ½ cups half-and-half
  • 8 large eggs

Instructions 

  • Set the oven rack to the center position. Preheat to 350ºF (177ºC).
  • Grease a 9x13-inch baking dish with olive oil on the bottom and sides.
  • Heat a large saute pan or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil, once hot add in the potatoes.
  • Saute the potatoes until tender, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes. 
  • Turn the heat down to medium, add the onions and garlic, saute for 1 minute.
  • Add the bell peppers and saute for 2 minutes.
  • Add the ham and saute for 1 minute.
  • Turn off the heat and stir in ½ teaspoon salt, black pepper, and green onions. 
  • Transfer potato mixture to the greased baking dish and spread into an even layer. 
  • Evenly sprinkle half of the cheddar cheese on top of the potato mixture.
  • Whisk together the cornstarch and 1 teaspoon salt together in a large bowl.
  • Add half-and-half and eggs, whisk until thoroughly combined.
  • Pour the egg mixture over the potato mixture. Evenly sprinkle the remaining cheese on top.
  • Bake for 20 minutes. Rotate the pan and bake until the center is set, and a toothpick inserted comes about clean, about 20 minutes. The internal temperature should be around 180 to 190ºF (82 to 88ºC).
  • Cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

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Nutrition Facts
Breakfast Casserole
Amount Per Serving
Calories 300 Calories from Fat 180
% Daily Value*
Fat 20g31%
Saturated Fat 9g45%
Cholesterol 172mg57%
Sodium 734mg31%
Potassium 472mg13%
Carbohydrates 14g5%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 16g32%
Vitamin A 890IU18%
Vitamin C 23.8mg29%
Calcium 196mg20%
Iron 2.8mg16%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Jessica Gavin

I'm a culinary school graduate, cookbook author, and a mom who loves croissants! My passion is creating recipes and sharing the science behind cooking to help you gain confidence in the kitchen.

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Reader Interactions

51 Comments Leave a comment or review

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Hi Allison- It make be a little watery once you defrost and microwave, but if you are okay with that I would give it a try! It definitely holds up well in portions in the fridge from what I’ve tested and tasted.

      • Karen Duffield says

        I am very anxious to try this recipe. I have a breakfast casserole recipe with crescent roll dough which I would love to replace. My comment is that I freeze the individual squares of that recipe and then bake starting in a cold oven set at 350-375 for 20-25 minutes until warmed through. The dry method works very well and will be trying with this recipe. Not the convenience of a microwave but a little forethought yields great fresh baked results. Thanks for great recipes and tips.

    • Emilie Tribich says

      Hi, I’m on Weight Watchers and I’d like to know if I can substitute 0% yogurt for the cream. There is no fat 1/2 & 1/2 available but the amount
      in the ingredients is too calorie prohibitive. Any other ideas?
      Made your Baked Salmon and it was great! Thanks.

      • Jessica Gavin says

        I think you could give the 0% fat plain yogurt a try, however it might not be as tender of an egg casserole since there is less fat. But I think it would still be tasty! Please let me know if you make the recipe and how it turns out.

  1. Larry Vaught says

    Hey Jessica,
    I’m loving your recipes and the completeness of your instructions. One of the other things I REALLY like is that you include the nutritional information per serving. Many recipes do not have this.
    Thanks so much!
    Larry

  2. Kay Wakeham says

    Hi Jessica,

    This looks great. I had been thinking about something a I could prepare ahead of time so I could take to work instead of paying high dollars for an omelet in our cafe. I like the idea of switching it around from a kind of “Denver” casserole to an Italian, even Spanish one. I could see even wrapping it a corn or flour tortilla! I plan to try a version this weekend. I will let you know how it goes!

    • Jessica Gavin says

      I’m totally with you on saving money at the work cafe, I made a tray for breakfast and it was a lifesaver and money saver! Let me know what flavors you come up with 🙂

  3. mibs says

    Hi Jessica, this is timely as I’ve been looking for a hearty breakfast/light dinner high protein dish. I’m wondering what I might be able to successfully substitute for the half and half. Do you have suggestions for those of us who are lactose intolerant?

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Hi Mibs- I actually just saw some lactose free half-and-half that I used to make a recent batch. You could try that if you are comfortable. Other options could be almond, cashew or oat milk.

  4. Timothy Gist says

    I made this for a big feed at work and it was a big hit! I made some minor substitutions … I replaced the ham with some fresh country sausage (I’m not really a ham guy – rinsed the fat off the sausage before adding it in according to the recipe) and I left out the salt (I’m on a low-sodium diet for my heart). I also used red, green and orange peppers to vary the colors in the finished product. I also dropped a spoonful of homemade salsa as a topping. At the end of the day I took home a clean pan!
    I can see me making this again many times! I’m thinking of adding maybe 1/4 teaspoon of cumin to get a smokey, earthy flavor, and maybe a small amount of hot sauce to kick it up a notch!
    I shared the recipe around the office!
    Thanks for the inspiration!

  5. Sandy says

    Would this work to make in a electric roaster or maybe transfer to a slow cooker to keep warm for a large gathering? There will not be an oven available. Love your detailed instructions and tips. Also the nutritional info is very helpful.

  6. Sandy says

    I want to make this for a large gathering that does not have an oven available. Could this be baked in a roaster? This looks so good, cant wait to try it!

    • Sandy says

      Sorry Jessica I missed your first reply.

      Yes the roaster can be set at 350. I would like to cook it in the roaster so I wont need to transfer it. I’m worried the texture will be soggy.

  7. Darlene says

    Hi Jessica- I made this recipe as written. Perfect. The second time I made it with leftover bits from the fridge keeping the ratio of ingredients to eggs as you suggested. Perfect. The cornstarch is truly the secret ingredient. I love science…and your recipes. Thank you for doing the research and testing. All I need to do is cook!

  8. Robert Owens says

    Being diabetic, I have to watch my carb intake closely. Do you have any suggestions for a replacement for the potatoes in this recipe? This looks fantastic, but potatoes are one of the foods that my doctor has told me to avoid.
    Thanks!

  9. Elizabeth A Mitchell says

    Is there a nutritional reason that you peel the potatoes? I would rather use the bag of small Yukon Gold potatoes and just cube them. My sister in law fixed this for our Christmas Eve brunch. We LOVED it.

  10. Lisa says

    My son is on “taper” for swimming. This means he is actually eating healthy breakfasts. I am hoping he can see the benefit of a healthy breakfast. This is the perfect recipe because it is both healthy and tasty. Thanks for sharing

  11. Leslie says

    Hi Jessica!
    Have you tried spinach in this recipe yet? If so, how much and how did it turn out?
    P.S.
    I love your recipes!

  12. Deb says

    We had this for dinner last night. Instructions were straightforward and and ingredients readily available. Oh, and it was delish!

  13. Mike says

    Thank you for the great recipe! Adding the corn starch does noticably change the egg texture. I will try it with different ingredients next time-

  14. maggie says

    Jessica,
    I am a loyal follower of your website…love your recipes! This casserole is one of my favorites. I use hash browns from the grocery freezer section when Im short on time. My family devours this casserole in no time! Thank you! 🙂

  15. Donna says

    This recipe looks delish. What do you think about cottage cheese as a substitute for half and half? (I dont’ have any half and half right now, but do have cottage cheese. Thanks.)

    • Jessica Gavin says

      I think you could give cottage cheese a try, but it the texture of the casserole with be a lot more thick and firm with less moisture and extra protein. It will also be saltier, so I would remove some of the added salt in the recipe. Let me know how it goes!

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