This is by far my favorite holiday recipe.

This easy overnight breakfast casserole has lots of bacon and cheese in an easy strata style dish.

It’s perfect for brunch, holiday mornings, or lazy Sundays!

taking a piece of Overnight Breakfast Casserole out of the dish

An Easy Overnight Breakfast Casserole

I have a hard time choosing between hashbrowns breakfast casserole and this one which my mom always made for Christmas morning!

  • This overnight breakfast casserole recipe preps fast the night before and bakes fresh and delicious in the morning!
  • This recipe reheats and freezes well for meals throughout the week.
  • Think beyond breakfast; it makes a great lunch or dinner, too.
  • Get a jumpstart on holiday meals, this recipe can be prepared up to 4 days ahead of time.
bread , mustard powder , salt and pepper , milk, green onions , red pepper , bacon , cheese and eggs with labels to make Overnight Breakfast Casserole

Ingredients in Overnight Breakfast Casserole

  • Eggs – Use large eggs or a carton of liquid eggs and any milk.
  • Bread – I use white sandwich bread, but you can use any leftover bread, dinner rolls, or hamburger buns!
  • Bacon – This casserole tastes best if you cook and drain a pound of bacon but to keep it easy, real bacon bits, pre-cooked bacon, or ham are all great too.
  • Vegetables – Bell peppers add flavor but you can add other veggies like cooked onions or mushrooms.
  • Cheese – I love sharp cheddar cheese in this breakfast casserole; pre-shredded cheese works just fine in this recipe. You can replace it with Monterey Jack or a cheese blend.

How to Make Overnight Breakfast Casserole

  1. For the custard, whisk eggs, milk, and seasonings.
  2. Layer the bread and other ingredients in a baking dish.
  3. Pour egg mixture over the top, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
  4. In the morning, bake (per recipe below) until a knife in the center comes out clean.

Tip for Crispy Topping: Place the casserole under the broiler for about 3 minutes until the topping is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly.

Make Ahead for Best Results

This is a make-ahead breakfast casserole and needs to reset at least 3 hours to let the bread soak up the egg mixture. Once assembled, this casserole can be refrigerated for up to 48 hours before baking.

Freeze the casserole, either cooked or uncooked, for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before baking or reheating.

piece of Overnight Breakfast Casserole on a plate

Short on Time?

  • Slice up cooked breakfast sausage links instead of frying bacon.
  • Use frozen peppers and/or onions instead of dicing up fresh!

Need to bake it now? Toss the prepared bread cubes with the egg mixture (Step 2) and let it soak while you prepare the rest of the casserole. Then very gently layer half the soaked bread cubes on the bottom of the casserole dish, half the ingredients, more soaked bread cubes, and the remaining half. Bake as directed.

More Make Ahead Favorites

Did your family love this Overnight Breakfast Casserole? Leave us a rating and a comment below!

piece of Overnight Breakfast Casserole on a plate
4.99 from 99 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Overnight Breakfast Casserole

Delicious overnight breakfast casserole is loaded with bacon, green onions, bell peppers, and cheese!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Chill Time 3 hours
Total Time 4 hours 15 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Author Holly Nilsson

Ingredients  

  • 12 slices thick sandwich bread cubed (about 14 cups)
  • 12 slices bacon cooked and crumbled (or 1 cup diced ham)
  • 3 green onions thinly sliced
  • ½ red bell pepper finely diced
  • 4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 6 large eggs
  • 3 cups milk
  • ½ teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • ½ teaspoon each salt & black pepper

Instructions 

  • Cube bread and leave it out overnight or place in the oven at 300°F for about 10 minutes to dry slightly. (Do not brown or toast it).
  • In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, mustard powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Grease a 9×13 baking dish. Layer half of the bread cubes in the prepared dish. Top with half of the bacon, green onions, red peppers and cheese. Repeat layers one more time.
  • Pour the egg custard mixture over top of the casserole, ensuring all of the bread is moistened. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
  • Remove from fridge and let sit at room temperature while preheating the oven to 350°F.
  • Bake the casserole covered with foil for 45 to 55 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. (If you are baking 2 pans, increase cooking time to 60-80 minutes).

Video

Notes

Store leftover breakfast casserole covered in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat in the oven or in the microwave until heated through. 
4.99 from 99 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 382 | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 0.04g | Cholesterol: 137mg | Sodium: 579mg | Potassium: 256mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 806IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 392mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Breakfast, Casserole
Cuisine American
baked Overnight Breakfast Casserole in a dish with a title
close up of Overnight Breakfast Casserole with writing
taking a piece of Overnight Breakfast Casserole out of the dish with a title
Overnight Breakfast Casserole baked in the dish and photo of taking out a slice with a title

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About the author

Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Comments

  1. Have you ever made this with croissants? I have a lot extra and I was thinking of using that to replace the bread. They are a pretty good size so I was thinking one large croissant would equal two slices of bread?

    1. Hi Sharon, we have only tried this recipe as written so I can’t say for sure. I don’t know if croissants would soak up the mixture as well as bread would, but let us know how it turns out if you decide to try it!

  2. I prepared this recipe to the letter and discovered that the baking temperature and time were incorrect. After baking an additional 15 min at 350, I increased the temp to 400 and an added 15 min of baking time. After letting the dish sit for 10min, we all enjoyed it.
    PS: my oven was not the issue. I haven’t had problems recently with other baked goods.4 stars

    1. Hi Mary, did you bake it in a 9×13 pan? We didn’t have any issues with the cooking time when testing this recipe but I am so glad you were able to adjust the cooking times so you could still enjoy the casserole!

  3. This was the first year I hosted a Christmas brunch at home for my family so I decided to give this recipe a try. I made the casserole for 12 servings since I was having 8 guests over. The whole thing was gone by the time we were done eating! This casserole was definitely a hit! I did add french onions over the top layer of cheese during the last 5 minutes of baking. It gave the casserole a nice crunch.5 stars

  4. Hi Holly!

    I am planning to make this tomorrow night and bake Saturday morning. I will have to leave out the red bell pepper to adapt it to my family’s preference, but don’t want to miss the flavor. I am considering adding paprika instead, how much would you recommend? My trick for subbing onions is to used tiny dried, minced onion and no one has complained so far! :-)

    1. I love the onion tip, thank you for sharing! I haven’t tried it but if it’s mild paprika, I would use between ¼ to ½ teaspoon. If it’s smoked paprika or a stronger variety, I would use a bit less.

  5. It was excellent. After halving it I took it out of the oven 10 minutes sooner, using your knife trick. It was perfect. Thank you and I’ll be making this a lot more.5 stars

  6. I’m having your casserole for Mother’s Day this year. I halved the recipe because there’s only two of us. I’m wondering if I should bake it the same length of time. If you don’t answer, because it’s Mother’s Day, I’ll keep an eye on it and give it my best guess.5 stars

    1. Happy Mother’s Day Sherry! I make a smaller strata that is similar to this and I bake about 30 minutes covered and about 10-15 uncovered. A butter knife in the center should come out clean and be hot to the touch.

      Enjoy, this is my favorite breakfast recipe of all time!

  7. I would like to make this for Dinner tonight….Can I mix together Put in fridge for 3 hrs. then bake it? I love all of your recipes & most are very simple. Thanks ☺️

    1. Yes, as long as the bread has time to soak up all of the egg mixture (I usually recommend at least 4hrs). You might like to toss or gently fold it once after a couple of hours so it helps to soak through.

  8. Holly, I followed your recipe to the T to serve 6 guests on Christmas morning. IT WAS A TOTAL FAILURE and an embarrassment to me! The bread was soggy/mushy, and the casserole had little taste with exception of the cheddar cheese. I will own that it was a mistake to prepare a new recipe for the first time on Christmas Eve. However, your promise “to provide simple, easy, and tested recipes that both work and taste great” assured me that little, if anything, could go wrong! A huge lesson learned on what should have been a special brunch.

    1. Oh no, how disappointing for you. I’m so sorry you didn’t enjoy this, it is hands down my favorite Christmas recipe (and the only recipe I “need” at Christmas). I have made this every year for as long as I can remember.

      The bread does get soft as this is a breakfast strata and it becomes ‘bread pudding’ like in texture.

      If it was really soggy or mushy, perhaps it needed more time to cook. Was your bread dried or slightly dried before adding the egg mixture? This recipe has really great reviews from other readers so I am not sure what went wrong for you.

      1. Holly,
        You should absolutely include in the description of this casserole that it has a “bread pudding” texture as I’m not sure anyone would expect that. As for the cubed bread slices, I let them dry out for 11 hours so they were not soft at all when included in the recipe. Also, after 55 minutes of cooking, I tested the casserole twice with a knife & a toothpick, and the tested area was completely dry. As mentioned, I followed your instructions to the “T”. I will never again try out a new recipe (especially on guests) until it has been tested first by me. Betty

      2. Hi Betty, yes, a strata is very much like a savory bread pudding. I’m really sorry to hear that you didn’t enjoy it. I have personally made this recipe, like Holly, about a couple hundred times (no joke, every Christmas, and whenever we have overnight company). It sounds to me that it turned out exactly as expected, but maybe you don’t prefer this type of breakfast dish. Perhaps you’d prefer a breakfast hash or shakshuka? These baked eggs are also great for serving company (and are easy to try out for one as well!). I love making Hollandaise Sauce to serve on them too :).

      1. This recipe was GREAT and a major hit with my family. I’m not sure what Betty expected from a strata? Holly, I appreciate the time and effort you put in to sharing these delicious, FREE recipes.5 stars

  9. Hello! I’m wondering if you could give me a little more direction on how much bread to use? Slices seem to vary so much in size! Do you think a standard French loaf would be of similar quantity? Or would you have an estimation of how many cups cubed? I want to make sure I have the right amount so it’s not mushy or dry! Thanks!!!