Category Archives: Savory breakfast recipes

Spinach Bread Pudding with Lemon and Feta

I’ve been making sourdough bread quite a bit recently, and I needed to find some interesting things to do with the leftover bread. I’ve been making this recipe for years, and I knew the sourdough would work well. This is always a breakfast hit – whether we have overnight guests or not. Everything is prepped the night before, and I just pop it in the oven in the morning. And extra servings freeze and reheat well! Enjoy!

Spinach Bread Pudding with Lemon and Feta

Adapted from Heidi Swanson (101 Cookbooks), published in Food & Wine
Serves 6

2 Tbsp olive oil
8 oz sourdough bread, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
5 oz fresh baby spinach, chopped
1/2 cup reduced fat feta cheese (about 2 oz)
2 tsp dijon mustard
1/2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
6 large eggs, beaten
2 cups skim milk
kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper (1/4 tsp each)
1 tsp chopped fresh oregano

1.Preheat the oven to 350°. Spray non-stick spray on a medium baking dish. Spread the bread cubes on a baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes, until dry but not browned. Let cool, then transfer to a large bowl. Stir in the spinach and 1/4 cup of the feta.

2.In another bowl, whisk 1 tablespoon of the olive oil with the mustard, lemon zest and lemon juice. Add the eggs and beat until blended. Add the milk and season with salt and pepper. Pour the egg mixture over the bread cubes and stir until they are evenly moistened. Transfer the bread mixture to the baking dish and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours or refrigerate overnight.

3.Sprinkle the remaining feta on the bread pudding and bake at 350°in the center of the oven until risen and set, about 40 minutes. Turn on the broiler. Drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and broil until the bread pudding is golden and crispy on top, about 1-2 minutes. Scatter the oregano on top, cut into squares and serve.

Nutritional info:
Calories: 223.1
Total Fat: 10.2 g
Cholesterol: 186.6 mg
Sodium: 560.1 mg
Total Carbs: 19.9 g
Dietary Fiber: 3.1 g
Protein: 15.9 g


Scrambled Egg Muffins

In addition to all of the cookbooks I have and cooking magazines I subscribe to, I am also signed up for several food-related emails (shocking, I know!). Upon opening a recent food email, it led me down a rabbit-hole of links, which led me to the original recipe for these scrambled egg muffins. I liked most of the recipe, but decided to change a few things to suit our tastes a bit better. I wasn’t sure how these would turn out, and I was a little nervous, as I ended up filling 16 muffins-worth with the batter (that original recipe had only made 12, but I couldn’t fit the batter into 12 spots). Luckily, these turned out amazingly well! And because there were so many, I can safely say that they reheat well and even freeze well for eating later! Enjoy!

Scrambled Egg Muffins
Adapted from savorthis, Food52blog, Nov 2013
Makes 16 servings

8 oz lean ground pork
1/2 Tbsp breakfast sausage seasoning (I use Penzey’s)
1 Tbsp whipped butter, divided
1 cup red bell pepper, diced
1 Tbsp maple syrup
6 large eggs, divided
1 cup white whole wheat flour (I use Bob’s Red Mill Ivory Wheat Organic Flour)
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 cup fat free shredded cheddar
1 large roasted poblano chile, skins removed and diced
1 cup skim milk
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce

1. Preheat oven to 400° F. Cook ground pork with sausage seasoning in a skillet until browned, then crumble and set aside.

2. Melt a 1/2 tablespoon of butter in the same skillet over medium heat, add red pepper and cook until brown. Remove and to bowl with sausage, set aside. Stir syrup into sausage/peppers.

3. Add a 1/2 tablespoon of butter to pan and scramble 4 of the eggs with salt/pepper to taste until just barely cooked through. Add to bowl with sausage and peppers.

4. Mix flour, cornmeal, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and black pepper. In another bowl, whisk milk, remaining 2 eggs, and 1/4 cup applesauce.

5. Stir dry and wet mixtures together then fold in cheese, sausage, bell pepper, eggs, and poblano chiles. Spray muffin tins (or use liners) and add batter. Bake about 15 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

**Note** These freeze and reheat well.

Nutritional info:
Calories: 109.6
Total Fat: 2.7 g
Saturated Fat: 0.8 g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.7 g
Cholesterol: 71.0 mg
Sodium: 298.2 mg
Potassium: 117.2 mg
Total Carbohydrate: 13.1 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.7 g
Sugars: 2.2 g
Protein: 8.3 g

Crustless Smoked Salmon Quiche with Dill

This is one of my absolute favorite brunch recipes! We’ve been making this recipe for years, and it is always a hit. We even made these for a friend’s baby shower a few years ago, and the guests *loved* them! Enjoy!

Crustless Smoked Salmon Quiche with Dill
Adapted from Cooking Light, July 2002
Serves 12

1 1/4 cups fat-free half & half
1/4 cup fat-free sour cream (I use Lilly brand or Trader Joe’s brand)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 large eggs
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded Gouda cheese
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/4 cup thinly sliced wild smoked salmon, chopped (about 2 ounces)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Stir in cheese, onions, salmon, dill, and pepper. Pour egg mixture into a muffin tin (12) coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for about 25 minutes.

Nutritional info:
Calories: 66.6
Total Fat: 3.4 g
Saturated Fat: 1.6 g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.9 g
Cholesterol: 57.4 mg
Sodium: 159.0 mg
Potassium: 99.9 mg
Total Carbohydrate: 3.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.1 g
Sugars: 2.0 g
Protein: 4.9 g

Buttermilk Biscuits

I love buttermilk biscuits, and I finally came across this recipe a few years ago. This recipe is soooo simple, but absolutely fantastic! These biscuits are great for brunch with homemade jam, or just for a lazy weekend breakfast! Enjoy!

Buttermilk Biscuits

From Bon Appetit, Oct 2000
Makes 12 biscuits

3 cups all purpose flour (I use ultragrain all-purpose flour)
2 tablespoons sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 cup low-fat buttermilk

Preheat oven to 425°F. Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda in large bowl to blend. Using fingertips, rub 3/4 cup chilled butter into dry ingredients until mixture resembles coarse meal (or combine in food processor). Add buttermilk and stir until evenly moistened.

Pat dough into a rough square, using a rolling pin to even it out, then cut into 12 square biscuits.

Place on parchment-lined making sheet, spacing 2 inches apart. Bake until biscuits are golden brown on top, about 15 minutes. Cool slightly. Serve warm.

Nutritional info:
Calories: 232.5
Total Fat: 12.0 g
Saturated Fat: 7.3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.6 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 3.4 g
Cholesterol: 31.9 mg
Sodium: 484.9 mg
Potassium: 68.4 mg
Total Carbohydrate: 27.4 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.8 g
Sugars: 3.2 g
Protein: 4.0 g

Spicy Egg Breakfast Sandwiches

When I was thinking of how I should describe this recipe, the only thing I could think of was… Delicious! We first had this while we were visiting our friends Cheryl & Troy, and Troy whipped these up for breakfast one day. From then on, we’ve been hooked, and we obviously had to figure out how to make these at home. So, enjoy our version of Troy’s spicy breakfast sandwiches!

Spicy Egg Breakfast Sandwiches

Inspired by Troy
Serves 2

2 ciabatta rolls (we use the Trader Joe’s brand)
3 eggs
2 slices bacon, cooked
2 Tbsp light mayo
2 tsp sriracha or chile garlic sauce

Optional: cheese or avocado slices

Cook bacon until crisp, drain and set aside. Crumble when cool.

Mix mayo and sriracha or chile garlic sauce in a small dish. Set aside.

Slice ciabatta rolls, toast (in toaster or toaster oven). Meanwhile, whisk eggs and scramble in a skillet until cooked.

Spread mayo mixture on cut sides of toasted ciabatta rolls. On each half, add bacon crumbles, then add eggs to bottom halves. Top each with top half, and serve warm.

Optional (not included in nutritional info): Add cheese or sliced avocado before the top half.

Nutritional info:
Calories: 364.8
Total Fat: 11.2 g
Saturated Fat: 2.4 g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.5 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 2.7 g
Cholesterol: 279.0 mg
Sodium: 763.7 mg
Potassium: 103.5 mg
Total Carbohydrate: 3.6 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.0 g
Sugars: 1.3 g
Protein: 16.5 g

Eggs Benedict with Duck Bacon and Spinach

I’m a little late with this, but we had this as part of our Easter brunch this year. I found a similar recipe in Food and Wine, and I decided to give it a try using some amazing duck bacon that I had in the freezer. After one failed attempt at hollandaise, I got it the second time, and overall, this was amazing. Definitely worth making for special occasions! Enjoy!

Eggs benedict with bacon - done

Eggs Benedict with Duck Bacon and Spinach
Adapted from Food & Wine, Oct 2012
Serves 4

2 large egg yolks
1 tablespoons dry white wine
1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon Tabasco

8 slices of duck bacon, halved crosswise
8 large spinach leaves

8 large whole eggs
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
4 light whole grain English muffins, split and toasted

1. In a heatproof bowl set over a pot of barely simmering water (i.e. double-boiler), whisk the 2 egg yolks with the wine and a pinch of salt until doubled in volume and slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Gradually add the melted butter, whisking constantly, until a thick, creamy sauce forms, about 5 minutes. Whisk in the lemon juice and Tabasco and season the hollandaise with salt (can chill and refrigerate at this point – before serving, reheat over a double boiler until warm). Keep the hollandaise sauce warm, whisking occasionally.
Eggs benedict with bacon - hollandaise

2. In a skillet, cook the duck bacon over moderate heat, turning once, until crisp, 4-6 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate.

3. Bring a large, deep skillet of water to a simmer over moderate heat and add the vinegar. One at a time, break the eggs into a small bowl and pour them into the simmering water, leaving plenty of space between them. Poach the eggs until the whites are set and the yolks are still runny, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, carefully transfer the eggs to a paper towel-lined plate.

4. Arrange the toasted English muffin halves on plates and top with the bacon, poached eggs, spinach and hollandaise sauce. Serve immediately.

Nutritional info:
Calories: 456.8
Total Fat: 28.8 g
Cholesterol: 163.0 mg
Sodium: 721.8 mg
Total Carbs: 29.2 g
Dietary Fiber: 8.5 g
Protein: 13.1 g

Vegetable and Ham Fritatta

Sometimes on weekends, I really want to make something hearty and filling that uses lots of my random bits & pieces in the fridge & freezer. This concoction really did use quite a bit of random ingredients, and it tasted fantastic! It even reheated well the next day. Enjoy!

Veggie and ham fritatta - done

Vegetable and Ham Fritatta
A Karen original recipe
Serves 4

6 eggs, beaten
2 Tbsp skim milk
2 tsp safflower oil
1 1/2 sweet bell peppers (I used orange and yellow), diced
6 oz lean ham, cubed (I used ham from a spiral-cut ham)
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered if large
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
3 green onions, green parts only, chopped

Preheat the oven to 400. Beat eggs in a large bowl with milk. Set aside.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a 10-inch ovenproof skillet. Add bell peppers, and sauté until beginning to soften. Add ham and cherry tomatoes, and sauté for another 2 minutes. Pour egg mixture into pan, and stir around to distribute ham & veggies evenly.
Veggie and ham fritatta - saute Veggie and ham fritatta - pre bake

Remove from heat, and sprinkle surface with salt & pepper and green onions. Place skillet in oven, and bake for about 10 minutes, or until set.
Veggie and ham fritatta - baked

Remove from oven, and cut into 4 wedges. Serve hot.

Nutritional info:
Calories: 210.1
Total Fat: 13.1 g
Cholesterol: 297.9 mg
Sodium: 838.5 mg
Total Carbs: 7.4 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.1 g
Protein: 15.9 g

Spinach, Feta, and Tarragon Frittata

Almost forgot about this one! We made this last week – the morning we were leaving town (flight left in the afternoon). We were trying to use up the last of the fresh produce (spinach) and eggs. It was a tasty meal, and a great way to use everything before we left!

Spinach, Feta, & Tarragon Fritatta

Spinach, Feta, and Tarragon Frittata
Adapted from Food & Wine, Feb 2010
Serves 4

2 tablespoons butter (or sub canola or sunflower oil)
2 scallions including green tops, cut into thin slices
10 ounces spinach, stems removed, leaves washed and cut into thin strips
1 1/2 teaspoons dried tarragon, or 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
6 large eggs
4 large egg whites
3 ounces fat free feta

1. In a 12-inch ovenproof nonstick frying pan, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter over moderate heat. Add the scallions and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the spinach, dried tarragon, if using, and 1/8 teaspoon each of the salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the liquid evaporates, about 3 minutes. Remove the spinach mixture and let cool. Wipe out the pan.

2. In a large bowl, beat the eggs with the remaining 1/8 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Stir in the spinach mixture and fresh tarragon, if using.

3. Heat the broiler. In the same frying pan, melt the remaining 1 tablespoon butter over moderate heat. Pour in the egg mixture and reduce the heat to low. Sprinkle the feta over the top and cook until the bottom is golden brown and the top is almost set, 6 to 7 minutes. Broil the frittata 6 inches from the heat, if possible, until the eggs are set, 2 to 3 minutes.

4. Lift up the edge of the frittata with a spatula and slide the frittata onto a plate. Cut into wedges and serve.

Nutritional info (using butter):
Calories: 218.7
Total Fat: 13.3 g
Cholesterol: 294.5 mg
Sodium: 742.8 mg
Total Carbs: 5.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.8 g
Protein: 19.9 g

Nutritional info (sub oil):
Calories: 227.8
Total Fat: 14.4 g
Cholesterol: 279.0 mg
Sodium: 701.9 mg
Total Carbs: 5.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.8 g
Protein: 19.8 g

Garlic Cheese Crockpot Grits

When I was growing up, I was *not* a fan of grits. At all. Gluey, flavorless, and pasty are the adjectives that come to mind. It wasn’t until I was almost 30 and had started eating polenta that I thought about trying grits again. I figured – it was pretty much the same as polenta, but just white corn, right?

So, one Christmas, my now mother-in-law was making breakfast, and she was cooking some garlic cheese grits. Since I was a fan of polenta, I thought it might be tasty. And it was! However, her recipe used about a stick of butter, a container of processed cheese, and took about an hour to cook!

Now, I’m not much of a morning person (especially before I’ve had my coffee!), so I needed an easier (and slightly healthier) way to make grits! I knew they would be the perfect complement to eggs, but I just needed a way to make them.

So, I had ordered this cookbook – Gourmet Vegetarian Slow Cooker: Simple and Sophisticated Meals from Around the World by Lynn Alley – after trying her first cookbook (which actually made me *like* a crockpot recipe, for the first time ever!). In the cookbook was a recipe for crockpot grits. Aha! Now I could make the grits overnight in the crockpot and wake up to breakfast almost-ready. It was the perfect solution!

I slightly modified that recipe, and came up with this one. It is a HUGE hit in our house, and so much easier (and healthier!) than the stovetop version. Enjoy!

Crockpot grits - done

Garlic Cheese Crockpot Grits
Loosely adapted from the “Gourmet Vegetarian Slow Cooker”
Serves 6

1 cup stone-ground grits
4 cups water
1 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder

2 laughing cow light swiss wedges (added after cooking)

Place grits, water, salt, & garlic powder in small crockpot. Cook for 8 hours.

Crockpot grits - cooking

Before eating, stir in cheese until melted.

Nutritional info:
Calories: 56.5
Total Fat: 0.7 g
Cholesterol: 1.5 mg
Sodium: 460.8 mg
Total Carbs: 9.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.7 g
Protein: 3.7 g

Yukon Gold, Leek, and Feta Fritatta

Brunch! It’s so fun to have friends over for brunch, so – as usual – I made a bit too much food! But, I wanted to have a savory and a sweet option, so I opted for this frittata as a savory item and Ricotta Strawberry Pancakes as a sweet item. This was our first time making this recipe, but it worked out well, especially since I did the first step (the potato part) the night before, then just stored it in the fridge until we were prepping for brunch on Sunday morning. The verdict? It was a huge hit – everyone loved it! We will definitely be making this again!

Potato leek feta fritatta

Yukon Gold, Leek, and Feta Fritatta
Adapted from Food & Wine, Feb 2007
Serves 8

2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, unpeeled (3/4 pound)
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 leeks, white and tender green parts only, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
10 large eggs
3 ounces fat-free crumbled feta cheese (about 3/4 cup)

1. Preheat the oven to 375°. In a medium saucepan, cover the potatoes with water and bring to a boil. Boil the potatoes until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and let cool slightly, then cut into 1/2-inch dice. (This can be done the night before).

2. In a 10-inch nonstick ovenproof skillet, heat the oil. Add the leeks and cook over moderate heat until tender, about 4 minutes. Add the potatoes and cook for 3 minutes longer. Season with salt and pepper.

3. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and season with salt and pepper. Pour the eggs over the leeks and potatoes and evenly distribute all of the filling. Remove from heat. Sprinkle the feta cheese over the leeks and potatoes.

4. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the eggs are just set in the center, about 18 minutes. Slide the frittata onto a serving plate. Cut into wedges and serve.

Nutritional info:
Calories: 176.9
Total Fat: 9.6 g
Saturated Fat: 2.3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 2.3 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 4.3 g
Cholesterol: 232.5 mg
Sodium: 281.3 mg
Potassium: 303.2 mg
Total Carbohydrate: 4.4 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.0 g
Sugars: 1.4 g
Protein: 11.3 g