There is no such thing as too many make-ahead meals in my home, whether it’s a slow cooker chicken chili or an overnight French toast bake. Even before I became a mom, there just never seemed to be enough hours in the day to juggle it all. And now that I have a 4-month-old, I live in a constant state of Jessie Spano-ness. No time! There’s never any time! I’m so excited! I’m so … so … scared.
Scared is right. Scared of of getting breakfast on the table for hordes of holiday guests! Sound familiar?
Let this Make-Ahead Breakfast Casserole with Sausage come to your rescue. First and foremost, it can be prepared a day in advance and stored in the fridge until you’re ready to pop it into the oven. So that’s our first huge win. Second, it is packed with big ol’ flavors courtesy of Italian sausage, roasted butternut squash, fresh sage and sautéed onions.
Third, and perhaps most critical on my list, it’s totally customizable depending on your personal taste preferences and whatever you have in your fridge. No onions? Leave ’em out! Craving spice? Use spicy Italian sausage! Where’s the cheese? Stir in a cup of your favorite shredded variety!
Bottom line: We could all use a little more time and a lot less stress when it comes to whipping up the ultimate breakfast or brunch for a party of 2 or a crowd of 20. And a make-ahead breakfast casserole is always the answer to avoiding early morning chaos!
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- 1 pound butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
- Olive oil, as needed
- 1 pound Italian sausage, removed from casings
- 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups diced yellow onion
- 8 fresh sage leaves, roughly chopped
- 1/2 pound sourdough bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 8 large eggs
- 2 1/2 cups milk (whole or non-fat)
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Grease a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with unsalted butter. Set it aside.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Add the cubed butternut squash to a baking sheet. Drizzle the butternut squash with olive oil, and roast the squash until browned and tender, about 30 minutes.
- In a large nonstick pan set over medium heat, cook the sausage, using a spatula to break it apart into crumbles. Remove it to a paper towel-lined plate and drain any drippings from the pan.
- To the same pan the sausage was cooked in, add the butter. Over medium heat, melt the butter then add the diced onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until they are softened, 3 to 5 minutes.
- Transfer the cooked onions to a medium bowl then stir in the cooked sausage, roasted squash, fresh sage and cubed bread. Stir together the mixture then transfer it to the greased baking dish.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, salt and pepper.
- Pour the egg mixture over the layers of bread and sausage. Cover the dish securely with plastic wrap and refrigerate it overnight, or for about 8 hours. (See Kelly's Note.)
- Remove the strata from the fridge, discard the plastic wrap, and let it rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Place the strata on a baking sheet and bake it, uncovered, for 35 to 45 minutes, or until the eggs are fully cooked. Let the strata rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.
- In a rush? No need to let the casserole sit overnight! Simply prepare it according to the recipe directions then bake it immediately until the eggs are cooked through.
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Recipe by Just a Taste. Please do not reprint this recipe without my permission. If you'd like to feature this recipe on your site, please rewrite the method of preparation and link to this post as the original source.