The Best Breakfast Casserole

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The Best Breakfast Casserole is a thick and creamy egg base with shredded potatoes, chunks of ham and flavorful cheese blends that bakes up in no time. Make ahead or enjoy the morning of during the holidays!

Breakfast for the holidays is a favorite for us! If you love breakfast casseroles as much as I do try this Slow Cooker Breakfast Casserole, Overnight Breakfast Casserole or Overnight Cinnamon Apple French Toast Casserole.

breakfast casserole in a dish baked

Amazing Breakfast Casserole

A delicious and hearty breakfast casserole that is the BEST that you will make! When I tell you that this is the BEST breakfast casserole it is no joke. I have made a few breakfast casseroles in my day and this one became an instant favorite! I especially love this casserole because it is so hearty and full of wonderful breakfast goodness.

It is a classic breakfast casserole with amazing flavor. It has hash browns packed right inside which is my favorite part. Simple ingredients for a simple egg base that is exploding with flavor. Your family will love this easy breakfast casserole this holiday season. It is perfect for baking ahead of time or making it the morning of. This breakfast casserole is sure to please your entire family this holiday season!

What you need to make a Breakfast Dish

This breakfast is perfect any time of the year but great for Christmas! Simple and easy recipe that bakes up perfectly and can feed a crowd. All the right ingredients that are simple and comes together quickly. It is packed and loaded with all the favors you will love. You take everything out the night before and throw it in the oven in the morning. It can feed a lot of people which is awesome. I have our traditional Sticky buns on the menu for Christmas along with this amazing casserole. When I made it last week for my hubby, we couldn’t seem to get enough of it! Luckily it makes a big casserole and is enough to feed a small army! Try it out for yourself! You will agree that it is amazing!

  • Shredded potatoes: frozen and they do not need to be thawed.
  • Salt and pepper: to taste
  • Eggs: whisked together
  • Half and half: adds creamy texture and thickness.
  • Season salt: more flavoring
  • Cheddar cheese: grated
  • Pepper jack cheese: grated
  • Ham: chopped to your liking. I prefer thicker pieces but go as little as you would like.

How to Make a Breakfast Casserole

This breakfast casserole is the BEST for so many reasons. One of which, is how simple this breakfast casserole recipe comes together quickly and is in the oven in minutes. There is not a lot of planning and prepping for this breakfast casserole recipe. It makes it simple and easy to throw together and place in the oven to bake. Make this ahead of time and when ready to bake simply take out of the refrigerator and bake. This tried and true breakfast casserole is so simple and everyone loves the blended flavoring. Try the BEST breakfast casserole with your family this holiday season!

  • Prepare pan and add ingredients: Grease a 9×13 inch pan. Add the frozen and shredded potatoes to the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Whisk eggs: In a large bowl, whisk the eggs together.
  • Add remaining ingredients: Then add half and half, season salt, cheddar cheese, pepper jack, and chopped ham.
  • Pour into pan and refrigerate: Pour over the top of the frozen potatoes. Cover with foil and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.
  • Bake your breakfast casserole: Bake covered in foil at 350 degrees for 90 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

process photos of steps being taken to make breakfast casserole

What to Serve with a Delicious Breakfast Casserole

Make this a complete meal by adding a little extra on the side. This breakfast casserole recipe has all the greatness inside it and can be a great breakfast all by itself. If you are looking for a more complete meal, add sides that will make this breakfast casserole recipe more complete. With these extra sides, this breakfast casserole will be one amazing meal all together. Here are some ideas of what can go along with this breakfast casserole recipe during the holiday season.

breakfast casserole baked in a pan

Mix It Up!

There are so many fun things to add into this casserole to make it even better and flavorful. Switch ingredients around or add in new ones that you prefer for your family. This breakfast recipe continues to get better and better. That is why it is the BEST! There are so many options with this breakfast casserole recipe that it makes it so fun to make often. Make this Tater Tot Breakfast Casserole by substituting the frozen hash browns for a layer of frozen tater tots. Adding and substituting ingredients makes this breakfast better every time you make it.

Try some of these fun variations in this breakfast casserole and find what you enjoy best!

  • Vegetables: bell peppers, spinach or kale, tomato (fresh or canned), broccoli, mushrooms or onions are great add ins.
  • Meat: bacon, variations of sausage, shredded chicken, ground beef or left over turkey.
  • Cream: not a fan of half and half, you can use whipping cream for a thicker, richer breakfast or simply use milk that you have on hand.
  • Cheese: Swiss cheese, Colby jack or mozzarella work well and melt perfectly when baked.
  • Spicy: red pepper flakes, green chilies or green onions are fun way to add a little heat.
  • Potatoes: rather than shredded potatoes, diced or flavorful frozen potatoes will work great.

Tips for Making the Perfect Breakfast Casserole

Here are some tips for making this breakfast casserole even better and easier on you. This recipe is fun to make different variations, make ahead or even the morning of. There are so many great things that make this casserole the BEST! These tips will help you better understand how to bake this breakfast for you to enjoy with your family.

  • Covering or Not Cover: This is an option. I recommend not covering it so the topping can have that nice crisp edge. If you prefer to cook it covered be sure to uncover 10 to 15 minutes remaining, cook uncovered for that crisp crust on top.
  • Keep your potatoes frozen: No, there is no need to thaw the potatoes. They will cook frozen.
  • How to know when breakfast is done: once the outside edges become golden brown and the egg mixture in the middle is firm ( check by rocking the pan). Use a toothpick or knife to check if it is completely cooked through. You can also use a thermometer to check to see if the breakfast casserole has reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Drain grease: if you are using any other meat in the breakfast casserole, be sure to drain the meat prior to adding it in the dish.
  • Gluten free: make this gluten free by keeping with this breakfast recipe. Check your labels on other ingredients to make sure.

A slice of breakfast casserole.

Storing Breakfast Casserole

Make this ahead of time the night before or morning of, this breakfast casserole recipe is sure to please! It makes it perfect for storing for the busy Christmas morning breakfast or weekend breakfast that you want to sleep in and wake up to it baking. This is just another reason why this breakfast casserole recipe is the BEST or the BEST!

So many options and plans for this breakfast casserole to make your holiday mornings even easier and better.

  • Making ahead: Simply follow the instructions until you are ready to bake. Cover with aluminum foil or lid and place in your refrigerator. When you are ready to bake, simply take it out of the refrigerator and bake it according to the instructions. This will sit in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
  • Can you freeze a casserole? Yes, this is perfect for freezing. Make and bake your breakfast casserole. Once it has completely cooled down, place in an airtight container or ziplock bag. Lay flat in your freezer for up to 1 month. When ready to warm up, place on baking sheet frozen and bake until warmed through about 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Warming up the casserole: To reheat breakfast casserole add it to the microwave or covered in the oven. Checking it occasionally until it has been warmed through.

A slice of breakfast casserole on a plate.

More delicious breakfast recipes

The Best Breakfast Casserole

4.5 from 54 votes
The Best Breakfast Casserole is a thick and creamy egg base with shredded potatoes, chunks of ham and flavorful cheese blends that bakes up in no time. Make ahead or enjoy the morning of during the holidays!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Author Alyssa Rivers
Servings: 12 people

Ingredients
  

  • 24 ounces frozen shredded potatoes
  • salt and pepper
  • 12 eggs
  • 2 cup half and half
  • 1 teaspoon season salt
  • 1 1/2 cup cheddar cheese grated
  • 1 1/2 cup pepper jack cheese grated
  • 2 cup chopped ham Or your preferred meat, sausage would also be great

Instructions
 

  • Grease a 9x13 inch pan. Add the frozen and shredded potatoes to the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • In a large bowl, whisk the eggs together. Then add half and half, season salt, cheddar cheese, pepper jack, and chopped ham.
  • Pour over the top of the frozen potatoes. Cover with foil and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.
  • Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 90 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Notes

Updated on December 7, 2019
Original Post on December 22, 2014

Nutrition

Serves: 12

Calories225kcal (11%)Carbohydrates2g (1%)Protein14g (28%)Fat18g (28%)Saturated Fat10g (50%)Cholesterol206mg (69%)Sodium436mg (18%)Potassium138mg (4%)Sugar1g (1%)Vitamin A630IU (13%)Vitamin C0.3mgCalcium274mg (27%)Iron1mg (6%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Keyword breakfast, casserole
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic

Breakfast casserole baked in a casserole dish.

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Alyssa Rivers

I am Alyssa and the blogger behind The Recipe Critic. I started my blog in June of 2012 as a place to share my passion for cooking. I love trying new things and testing them out with my family.

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  1. If it better to cook/crisp the shredded potatoes first? How do they come out in the finished product? Are they browned?

  2. I really want the potatoes to be crunchy like I fried them. Does this recipe give that affect or should I fry them first

    1. I make this all the time. Place thawed hash browns in greased 9×13 baking dish. Bake at 400 for 20 to 25 min. Let cool for a bit. Put rest of ingredients on top and bake at 350 for 35 to 40 min.

        1. I baked covered as the recipe stated. Then for the last 5 minutes or so, I uncovered it to get a little texture on top and lightly brown the cheese. It turned out moist (sorry for the use of that word, lol) and tender.

    1. 1 star
      I froze an egg casserole and it came out really runny. I wouldnt recommend freezing it. Better to make it a day before and reheat. My hint for bacon in anything – chop it up in pieces before you fry it. Makes life so much easier!

  3. 5 stars
    Meant to say this is a really good recipe! Cant wait to take it to church next week. I will add a little color with peppers.

  4. Hoping someone will respond to this thread even though it’s from a while ago! I’ve tried to make this twice now and every single time the middle of this casserole doesn’t cook. I cook it for the full 90 minutes and the center won’t cook. The outside cooks perfectly but the center always comes out soupy and watery. What am I doing wrong?

    1. Mine was the same. I baked it for 30 extra minutes, as someone else had mentioned they did, but the last 15 min I baked it with the foil off. Rested out of the oven 10 minutes. I had let it chill in the fridge overnight. Not sure if this was a contributing factor, but I’m guessing not.

      1. It states in the recipe to cover it only during the refrigeration, not during the actual cooking. It says “bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 90 minutes”. This is likely why the recipe didn’t work for you. I baked mine uncovered for about 15 minutes less even than the recipe stated and it was perfect.

    2. The frozen hash browns are why it gets soggy. I precious them about half way done so they are defrosted and won’t add water to casserole.

    3. I split this into 2 separate 9×13 pans. I personally think the batch is way too big for just 1 pan. It cooks much better separating them into 2.

    4. I would suggest you check the oven temperature for accuracy, perhaps your oven isn’t cooking at the correct temp.
      Also, make sure you are baking covered. You can always uncover to brown the last five or so minutes. Hope this helps.

  5. 5 stars
    Made this for a mother’s day brunch. Used ham, green onion, and tater tots. Tater tots were a great substitution. Everyone loved it! Keeping this one in my kitchen arsenal.

    1. That is awesome! I love to hear all your additions and adjustments to the recipe to make it your own! I am glad it tasted so great! Thanks for sharing! Xo

      Your Recipe Critic,
      Alyssa

      1. Hi Alyssa,

        There are just a few people in our house who would like eggs done this way and I’m anxious to try it but I was wondering how much of the ingredients would be needed to cut this recipe in half because health wise 12 eggs is too many. Hoping to hear from you soon because I really want to try this real soon.

    2. 5 stars
      Hi, did you put the tator tots frozen or you cooked them first? And, this you placed them on the bottom of the pan or did you mix them with the egg mixture. thanks

  6. 5 stars
    I made this last night and baked it up this morning!! Pretty good! I worried that it didn’t look quite done, but after it sits a bit with the foil on it – it finished cooking. I didn’t want to overcook & turn it rubbery – especially since it w/b reheated – my son w/use this dish for his breakfast before work dish! : ) I think next time I will brown the hash brown to give them some color, I know that this w/decrease the cooking time the next morning but w/give it more flavor & a better appearance. I also w/try the lawry’s salt and add some onions to the potatoes. This is a great recipe, easy too!! Thank you for sharing!!!

  7. Baked for 2 hours due to runny center. It was good but a little bland for my taste. Might add some onions/green peppers or green chiles next time. Or swap out ham for sausage. I like that it makes a lot so there are leftovers.

      1. My family makes this all the time you just put in what you like. It doesn’t really have 2 rest in fridge 2 be good. We use dry mustard in ours Makes it super yummy!

  8. I made this today! Just heaven in a pan. I followed recipe exactly. My husband ate with gusto!
    Thank you so much. This is one of my favorite keepers!

  9. Aaaahh…got everything ready to go. Then I read refrigerate 2 hours first! My fault for sure but I wish there was a big heads up! I don’t have the time! $@&%! Going for it.

    1. 5 stars
      I use obriens hash browns with red and green peppers. Gives it a little more flavor. Trying spinach and Italian sausage next.

  10. On the breakfast casserole did you have to to use half n half or can you use whole milk or 2% milk??

  11. 5 stars
    Tried this last night, it was so good! I didnt have enough hashbrowns on hand, maybe 14oz and put sausage and onions in it. So good!! My son loves eggs so I make him one every morning. This is so much easier and he loves it!! Definitely will be making this weekly! Thanks!

  12. 5 stars
    I have made this many times with some variations. Works really well for large family gatherings or holidays. I lost most of my cookbooks in a fire this past year, so I am trying to make up cookbook of favorites.

  13. 1 star
    I made this as written and found it to be very dry, crumbly and tasteless. It definitely needs something to make it more moist and flavorful–Mushrooms, maybe?

    1. We made it today. It wasn’t dry or crumbly but it was kind of bland. I topped it with siracha ketchup. It was much better. I think next time we will use the potatoes with onions and peppers and add some spices.

  14. I am going to use sausage. Do I need to cook the sausage first? (I am not much of a cook as you can tell by my question…LOL

  15. 5 stars
    Delicious and perfect brunch recipe. One recipe fed my adult crowd of 7 with extra large portions perfectly! Thank you!

  16. 5 stars
    Big hit with work breakfast club – used sausage, bacon, asparagus and sun dried tomatoes. Used cheddar and swiss cheeses. Recommend removing foil for last 10 mins to let the cheese crisp up.

  17. 5 stars
    Coming back for this recipe for Father’s Day brunch tomorrow. Wanted to pop in to say that I made this last summer for a family brunch after my parents’ 50th wedding anniversary party & everyone in the family raved about it! So good! Definitely keeping this on permanent rotation for big breakfast events!! P.S. I subbed sausage for the ham & it’s SO tasty!

  18. Made this recipe for breakfast on Sunday (actually made it Sat. nite), it is truly delicious.
    Since there are only two of us, I cut the recipe in half. We had it for breakfast, I gave a piece to a neighbor,, had some with dinner, and have two pieces left for today.

    Have made at least 10 of your recipes, all good! Thanks

  19. 5 stars
    I’ve had other egg bake type casseroles that I have used over the years, but none as soft and tender as this one. It was DELISH! Maybe it was the addition of the potatoes or the fact that this one baked covered, but this recipe will definitely replace my old ones! Ty for sharing!

  20. This turned out good,I halved the recipe, I added olives,garlic and onion added a extra egg,and used a little less half and half,cooked about an hour

  21. 5 stars
    This was so easy and so good!!!❤️? I added green onions, sliced black olives and green chili’s which just bumped it up a bit. Took it to work and was well liked. Would highly recommend this dish to anyone!

  22. Hi. So easy to put together and 90 minutes worked perfect. I felt the layer of hash browns was to thick. I would use less and add peppers, onions to give them more flavor. Will try again for sure. Thank you for sharing the recipe ?

    1. Yes, you will double the time. Be sure that it can all fit in one pan when doubling it. Usually you will need to bake in two pans. If that is the case, simply add about 5 more minutes to the cook time rather than doubling the time.

  23. 4 stars
    This was pretty good! I used cooked bacon instead of ham and added some sauteed onion and red pepper to it. Didn’t put it in the fridge before cooking and it cooked fully in about 1hr15. Would have liked it to be a bit more flavorful, but overall a solid breakfast casserole!

  24. The original recipe said to bake covered, this updated version says to cook uncovered. The covered version works so much better.

    1. Thank you for mentioning this. I made this once uncovered and it was clearly in need of being covered. This tine I searched the reviews to see what went wrong and I’m seeing people comment that they cooked covered per the recipe… very confusing. They must have changed the recipe, which I’m trying to understand why. Covering is the way to go.

  25. I’ve made this recipe a lot …..let me make this really simple for you …..get a very large bowl mix every thing together in this recipe..except the eggs and the half & half …..mix that together …..also hold back one cup of the cheese to top the dish 15min…at the end. 90min at 350. This recipe is the BEST!!!

  26. 5 stars
    This is my go to breakfast casserole. I use Potatoes O’Brien vs the hash browns and it adds extra flavor and texture with the added peppers and onions.

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