This Overnight Ham and Cheese Bake is perfect for serving guests over the holidays- or for a family brunch date.
This is a (prep the night before) breakfast casserole with a bread base. It’s topped with cheese, ham, mushrooms, chiles, Monterey Jack cheese, and an egg mixture packed with spices.
When do you serve an overnight breakfast casserole?
Picture this: a bunch of people (relatives, friends, whoever…) are staying at your house. Everyone wakes up in the morning and gathers around the coffee maker. They’re looking rather hungry. What are you serving all of them for breakfast? Sure you can order some bagels… or get out the cereal, pick up doughnuts or serve store-bought breakfast bread. It’s tough to decide what to do when you have a bunch of folks to feed. I don’t know about you, but my family has always been totally into serving brunch casseroles like this one. Serve a bowl of fruit and some pastries on the side, and everyone is usually pretty darn happy.
Why would you want to make a breakfast casserole the night before?
Prepping a breakfast casserole the night before makes it incredibly easy to make in the morning- especially if you have a busy/hectic morning planned! This one is easy because you get to prepare the whole dish the night before and just let it sit overnight in the refrigerator. In the morning, the first person who wakes up pops it into the oven for an hour. It really can’t get much easier than that.
What kind of bread should you use?
I like to use a thicker sandwich bread for this recipe. You can also use French bread, but it should be cut a similar thickness as thick sandwich bread.
Can you leave out the mushrooms?
Sure! If you’re not a fan of mushrooms, it’s okay to leave them out. You can also change things up by adding in different veggies and/or using cheddar in place of Monterey Jack cheese.
It turns out to be a cheesy egg casserole full of good things like ham and mushrooms. I confess that I like to eat leftovers for lunch and breakfast for a few days after making this one. It’s my kinda meal- obviously, at any time of day. And it’s always very popular when served to guests too.
Here are a few more breakfast casserole recipes you might like to try:
- Farmer’s Casserole
- Easy Breakfast Strata
- Holiday Breakfast Casserole
- Sausage, Egg and Cheese Biscuit Casserole
- Egg Mushroom Kielbasa Bake
- Green Chile Bacon and Cheese Egg Bake
- Veggie Loaded Breakfast Casserole
- Buffet Breakfast Casserole
Overnight Ham and Cheese Bake
- 6 slices bread (I like to use thick slices of bread)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese
- 12 ounces ham, chopped
- 8 ounces mushrooms (sliced and sauteed in a little butter until softened)
- One 7-ounce can diced green chiles, squeezed dry
- 1 1/2 cups grated Monterey Jack cheese
- 6 large eggs
- 2 cups 2% milk
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon onion salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Butter 6 slices of bread; place the bread butter-side-down in a 9x13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese. Place the ham on top of the cheese; then layer with mushrooms and chiles. Top with Monterey Jack cheese.
- In a bowl, beat the eggs and add milk, salt, paprika, basil, dry mustard, onion salt, and pepper. Pour over the ingredients in the dish. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
- To bake: Preheat the oven to 325°F. Uncover the casserole and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the eggs are set and no longer liquidy. Let stand for 10 minutes to set before serving.
- *Ham is pretty salty on its own, so go lightly if you choose to add salt to the recipe.
- *You can go a little lighter on the cheese if you prefer.
Will regular white bread work or should I use a sturdier bread like French?
I’d use French bread.
Great recipe! I made this for Valentine’s Day brunch yesterday and everyone raved about it! I made just a few minior adjustments to the recipe by using whole milk instead of 2%, extra-large eggs because that’s what I had on hand, and I omitted the basil just for our personal tastes. Absolutely delicious!!
All 3 of my Children and 1 grand daughter will be home for the first time in 7 years. This casserole is perfect just what I am looking for, for Christmas Morning.
Oooooh, this is such a great recipe for the holiday season. Such great flavors, such a classic dish. Thank you!
Made this last night – what a big hit at breakfast this cold morning! Thanks for sharing!
Thank you it is so delicious
Oooh leftover ham is gonna get it today! Can’t wait!
Wishing this was sitting in my fridge now! Tons of people in my house right now and I might just be making this tomorrow! great recipe! 🙂
Yum, Lori.. This could happen tomorrow…
Wishing I had this for breakfast today! Think I’ll go fry up some ham and eggs and pretend I’m eating this one. 😉