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April 12, 2011

Recipe for egg and cheese casserole with leeks, red pepper and bacon

Brunch casserole

You can never have too many brunch-style dishes in your culinary repertoire. Even if you're not a brunch person, in ten minutes you can get an egg and cheese casserole into the oven for lunch or dinner (with a salad and some crusty bread), or make it in the evening and reheat for breakfast the next day. And, like vanilla ice cream, a basic egg and cheese casserole loves mix-ins: fresh or leftover cooked vegetables, sausage, fresh herbs, whatever you have on hand. In this version, I've used a bit of crumbled bacon, but if you'd prefer a vegetarian dish, omit the bacon or substitute some tofu scramble. Quick and easy egg and cheese casseroles are my go-to for any meal, at any time of day.

Brunch casserole

Egg and cheese casserole with leeks, red pepper and bacon

From the pantry, you'll need: eggs, grated or shredded cheese, bacon, thyme, fresh black pepper, kosher salt, cooking spray.

Inspired by the many breakfast casserole recipes on Kalyn's Kitchen, this dish serves 6.

Ingredients

Cooking spray (canola or olive oil)
4 strips bacon
10 large eggs
1 tsp olive oil
1 large leek, chopped and washed
1/2 red bell pepper, cut into small dice
2 cups grated or shredded cheese (I use Sargento reduced-fat shredded Cheddar, from the supermarket, or any leftover shredded cheese from my freezer.)
1/4 cup low-fat cottage cheese
2 Tbsp skim milk
1/2 tsp dried thyme leaf
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp fresh black pepper

Directions

Preheat oven to 375°F. Prepare a casserole dish by spraying with cooking spray.

In a nonstick frying pan, cook the bacon over low heat until it is just crisp but not burned. Drain on a plate covered with a paper towel, and set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, lightly beat the eggs.

In a small frying pan, heat the oil, and add the leeks and red pepper. Sauté 2-3 minutes, until the vegetables are soft but not yet starting to brown. Remove the pan from heat and set aside to cool for 2 minutes. Then, mix the vegetables into the eggs; crumble the bacon and add to the egg mixture along with all of the remaining ingredients. Pour the mixture into the casserole dish.

Bake for 35 minutes, until the casserole is lightly browned and a bit puffy. Remove from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes before eating.

(Can be made up to one day ahead. Cool, cover and refrigerate. To reheat, uncover and place in a 350F oven for 15-20 minutes.)

[Printer-friendly recipe.]


More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:
Corn, green chile, egg and cheese casserole
Asparagus, egg and cheese casserole
Egg and cheese breakfast muffins with mushrooms and thyme
Frittata with broccoli and garden herbs
Tortilla Española

Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Chorizo and eggs, from Simply Recipes
Curried egg salad, from 101 Cookbooks
Gluten-free pasta frittata with goat cheese, from Gluten-Free Goddess
Broccoli bacon frittata, from Cooking by the seat of my Pants!
Potato frittata, from Joy the Baker

Comments

Very funny -- I saw this and thought, "That sounds like Kalyn!" :-)

Love that you used leeks, Lydia. Fantastic flavor profile here, and bacon? I'm in. These kinds of dishes often save my skin on a busy day.

Alanna is right, that sounds just like my kind of dish!

Leeks are so good for you --- this would make an awesome dish with my chickens' eggs : )

This one looks fantastic - and now I want an oval dish like this to serve it in too!

Alanna, I look to Kalyn's blog frequently for inspiration -- and I know we are both egg lovers.

Aimee, leeks and bacon -- what's not to love?

Kalyn, I love the many variations of breakfast casserole on your blog.

Elizabeth, you have your own eggs? I'm green with envy!

Kathy, I've had this oval dish for at least ten years, and it's one of my favorites for egg and cheese casseroles.

I just came from Kalyn's so had to smile when I saw this yummy dish. Love the leek & red pepper in this one. Always love the bacon:). Looking forward to meeting you in Atlanta!

Kelly, we're going to have fun at BlogHer Food!

Mmmm love the bacon. Can never miss with bacon & eggs together!

Oh, that's a pretty one, Lydia!! And delish would follow pretty. ;-) Would be great for overnight guests to enjoy, too.

Shirley

I'm sort of addicted to the casserole recipe from a few weeks ago, so this one will be a nice change with the added ingredients......thanks

p.s. i use 12 eggs cause thats what comes in a carton haha ....the 10 eggs always baffles

Kalyn always makes such wonderful egg casseroles and it looks as though you have added a very tempting version of your own.

I never think of doing something like this - so easy... Much easier than omelets. Great for when the family is here in May.

Eggs, bacon, leeks, red peppers, cheese? Didn't we just have that for supper the other night? But no thyme or cottage cheese in that one. Looks like I'll just have to make another!! Thanx for a new way to gild this lily, Lydia! Sounds yummy.

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About The Perfect Pantry®

  • My name is Lydia Walshin. From my log house kitchen in rural northwest Rhode Island, I share recipes that use what we keep in our pantries, the usual and not-so-usual ingredients that spice up our lives.

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