This hearty casserole is perfect for holiday mornings, lazy weekends, busy weekdays, teacher appreciation breakfasts, play dates, Mom’s Group get-togethers, tailgates, “breakfast for dinner,” or any other occasion in which you want to serve breakfast food. It is incredibly easy to make, can be prepared in advance, and can feed a crowd. It also reheats nicely, which, in my opinion, is a requirement for breakfast casseroles. You could make it on Sunday morning, then eat it for breakfast for a few days following, depending on the number you are serving. Pair this with fresh fruit and a slice of your favorite quick bread for a truly satisfying meal.
1 lb bulk sausage or bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 Tbsp olive oil or rendered bacon fat
1 medium-sized yellow onion, diced
1/2 medium-sized red bell pepper, diced
4 cups shredded frozen hash browns, thawed
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
2 cups Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
1 cup cottage cheese
6 extra-large eggs, beaten
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp fresh chives, chopped (optional)
Hot sauce, optional
1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Heat the olive oil or bacon fat in a medium-sized skillet. Add the onion and red bell pepper to the pan and sauté until softened, about 5-7 minutes.
3. Combine the sausage or bacon, sautéed onion and red bell pepper, thawed hash browns, cheeses, eggs, salt, and pepper in a large mixing bowl. Stir to evenly distribute the ingredients.
4. Spray a 9×13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Spoon the mixture evenly into the prepared baking dish. Using the back of the spoon, smooth and level the surface of the casserole.
5. Place the casserole in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until bubbling and browned around the edges. Serve warm, sprinkled with chives and drizzled with hot sauce, if desired.