"No Work on Christmas Morning" Breakfast Ideas

Do you have a Christmas morning tradition? Growing up, we didn't really have one... other than waking up at the crack of dawn to open presents in a frenzy of flying wrapping paper. My husband grew up in a family of holiday traditions and since we wed, I have been introduced to the world of Christmas morning rituals.

Every year since I have known them, Jason's Dad, Jim, makes Cream Cheese Sausage Balls for breakfast and Jason's Grandmother Hallie picks up a Moravian Sugar Cake at the store. Coffee and hot tea is made, tiny serving dishes and napkins are brought out in a stack and placed on a coffee table in the center of the Christmas room. Jason usually plays a Christmas soundtrack from his iPhone. Then, the designated present sorter brings the presents around to each person and puts them beside each chair as the presents are opened and everyone ooo's and ahhh's at the thoughtfully procured gifts. Such a sweet and cherished tradition that they have shared with me and now with my three children.

What I have learned from the Foster/Pauls is that I like having a morning tradition! And I have also learned that it goes much more nicely if the food is already prepared and no one has to slave away in the kitchen on Christmas morning. So here are a few tried and true recipes that I love that can all be made ahead of time or at least prepped ahead of time so that you Moms can enjoy Christmas morning with your family! And, Merry Christmas from the Pauls!   

Cream Cheese Sausage Balls

Ingredients:

1 lb hot pork sausage (would work with mild, but the cream cheese dulls the heat so it's not so spicy)
1 block real cream cheese (8 oz)
2 cups Bisquick baking mix
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Directions: 

1. Mix sausage and cream cheese together with a mixer (or spoon or hands) until well combined. 
2. Add in Bisquick and combine. 
3. Mix in cheese. 
4. Use a tablespoon or small ice cream scoop to scoop out mixture and form 1-inch balls. Place on a baking sheet. 
5. Chill overnight or for at least 10 min. 
6. Bake at 350F for 25 min. (These are also great to make ahead and then reheat on Christmas morning)

Farmer's Casserole

Ingredients:

1 cup cooked ham (I use a ham steak and just cut it into cubes)
1/4 cup green onion, sliced
4 eggs
1 1/2 cup whole milk
3 cups frozen hashbrowns (or tater tots)
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (or pepper jack)

Directions:

1. Prepare a large casserole dish (13x9) with cooking spray. 
2. Create a layer of hashbrowns or tater tots on the bottom of the pan. 
3. Add chopped ham and green onions on top of the potatoes.
4. Top the layers with your cheese. 
5. In a separate bowl, mix eggs, milk, salt and pepper. 
6. Pour mixture over the casserole evenly.
7. Refrigerate overnight. 
8. Bake at 350F for 40-50 min until set. 
9. Allow to cool for about 10 min before serving. 

French Toast Casserole

Ingredients:

Casserole:

1 large loaf of french bread (or any large bakery bread)
1 cup frozen (or fresh) blueberries
8 large eggs
2 1/4 cup whole milk
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 Tbsp vanilla extract

Streusel Topping: 

1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
6 Tbsp cold butter, cubed

Directions:

1. Prepare large baking dish (13x9) with cooking spray.
2. Cut loaf of bread into 1 inch cubes. Form a even layer in casserole dish.
3. Add blueberries on top of bread and spread out evenly.
4. In a separate bowl, mix eggs, cinnamon, vanilla, brown sugar and milk. 
5. Pour mixture over over bread and blueberries. 
6. Cover and refrigerate overnight. 
7. Prepare streusel topping. Add all ingredients to a food processor and pulse to form a coarse mix. Set aside in storage container and refrigerate. 
8. In the morning, sprinkle streusel mix evenly over the top of the soaked bread. 
9. Bake at 350F for 45-55 min. 
10. Let rest for at least 10 min before serving. 
11. Serve alone or with maple syrup.

Quiche (Basic Recipe)

Ingredients:

1 frozen deep dish pie crust
5 eggs
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Flavor Suggestions:

Ham & Cheese - 3/4 cup cubed/chopped ham & 3/4 cup shredded cheese (cheddar/swiss/jack), 1/2 cup  diced yellow or green onion
Mushroom & Swiss - 3/4 cup chopped mushrooms & 3/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese, 1/2 cup diced yellow or green onion.  
Broccoli & Cheddar - 3/4 cup blanched & chopped broccoli & 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese, 1/2 cup diced yellow onion.

Directions:

1. Wrap pie pan with tin foil to prevent spill over while baking. Or, place a baking sheet on rack below cooking rack to catch spills. 
2. Mix eggs, cream and spices with a whisk until well combined. 
3. Place ingredients of choice (see flavor suggestions) in the bottom of the pie crust. 
4. Pour egg mixture over ingredients.
5. Heat oven to 350F.
6. Carefully transport quiche to oven and place on middle rack. Bake for 40-50 min - you will see the pie puff up as it cooks - the center should be slightly puffed when cooked. 
7. Allow to cool for at least 10 min. You can also refrigerate and serve when desired. 

Apple Oatmeal Crisp

Filling Ingredients:

5 cups peeled, sliced apples (Granny Smith/Pink Lady)
1/2 cup sugar
2 Tbsp flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 cup water

Topping Ingredients:

1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 melted butter

Directions: 

1. Mix all filling ingredients together in a bowl with your hands until they are well combined. 
2. Prepare a 9x9 baking dish with cooking spray.
3. Pour filling ingredients into baking dish.
4. Mix topping ingredients together in a separate bowl and then sprinkle over top of apple filling in the dish. 
5. Bake at 350F for one hour. 
6. Allow to cool for 10 min before serving. 

Easy Fun Ideas for Kids: 

Pigs in a Blanket: 

Roll Hillshire Farms Lil' Smokie sausages in crescent roll dough and bake as directed for the crescent rolls. (I usually cut the crescent triangles in half for the Lil' Smokies.)

Cinnamon Rolls: 

Easy as popping open a can of Pillsbury's Classic Cinnamon Rolls! Sure to please the kiddos :) 



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