It’s back-to-school season, and school is already back in session in some cities. Miami-Dade County Public Schools open on Monday, August 23rd. The time is now for getting organized, shopping, planning…the list goes on and on with what’s needed to prepare for the children to head back to school.
Scheduling crunch time is here, too. With school back in session, officially, there will be many more demands on each family member. Add in the time for commuting, before- and after-school activities, homework — oh, and things like play time, family time, and sleeping — and during the school year you’ll find that there are, officially, not enough hours in each day.
One great way to combat schedule overload, and to help everyone in the family by ensuring good nutrition, as well as to help the family budget, is to find some family-favorite meals that can be “cooked ahead” (also called “mega cooking”) and then served up in individual portion sizes as needed. (Refer to my first article in this series for a more detailed explanation.)
A new twist on an old-favorite breakfast
A favorite meal that pleases everyone — eggs, bacon and home-fried potatoes, can easily be adapted into a cook-ahead casserole. For those who have specific dietary restrictions or goals, further adaptations can be easily made while still allowing for a delicious end result.
Breakfast Casserole Recipe
- Cooking spray or butter for coating baking pan
- 1 dozen eggs
- 1 eight-ounce package shredded Colby-Jack cheese (or a cheese that you prefer)
- 1 package bacon (cooked and crumbled)
- 1 pound potatoes (washed, peeled if necessary, and cubed into uniform bite-sized pieces)
- In a large mixing bowl, scramble eggs. Add in cheese, bacon and potato. Add salt & pepper, if desired. Pour mixture into coated casserole or baking pan (large rectangular brownie-type baking dish works best).
- Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 50 minutes. Baking times will vary based upon oven and pan used. Be sure that the egg is thoroughly cooked before eating.
- Allow to cool slightly. Slice into portion-sized squares. (The squares are very dense, so one square-shaped serving goes farther than you’d expect.)
- Eat while hot and fresh, or allow to cool a while longer and then store the “squares” in the refrigerator or freezer for reheating and serving later.
Adaptations, substitutions and shortcuts — instead of the listed:
- eggs, use egg whites for half of the egg mixture (or use only egg whites).
- bacon, use less, or use lean bacon, turkey bacon, turkey sausage, or pre-cooked and crumbled bacon from the salad-toppings aisle.
- cheese, use less or low-fat cheese.
- raw potatoes, use frozen or refrigerated already-peeled and chopped or sliced potato pieces.
- quantities, increase or decrease according to your preference.
- conventional ingredients, use organic.
This is a very simple and flexible recipe. Whatever ingredients you prefer, you’re sure to find a variation of this cook-ahead breakfast recipe that is sure to please everyone in the family. For a quick, yummy breakfast any time, just pop a square of casserole into the toaster oven or microwave. Enjoy.
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