This Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole features chopped chunks of ham and melted Swiss cheese. It deconstructs the now classic sandwich and reassembles it in a baking dish making for an absolutely delicious, easy, all in one breakfast or brunch bake.
So now that we’re finished with crafting & planning our St. Patrick’s Day menus, we’re already moving on and thinking ahead to the next big hoo-rah, Easter.
Which is probably a good thing since it’s right around the dag on corner. In two weeks to be exact, and we’re out of town on a long weekend this coming weekend- so I need to be prepared.
While the main course for us is a very large dinner, built around a spiralized ham- brunch is still super important if we’re hosting guests.
No matter how early dinner is, nobody can ever seem to tide themselves over completely without some solid fare in the AM hours. So brunch it is!
At the same time, I’m already cooking and elbows deep in prep for the main event. So how am I going to make two major meals happen successfully and flawlessly?!
Again, this is why I love brunch so much. I can easily prep platters of eggs, sausages, even hash browns, etc with minimal effort. Throw in a fruit salad and once central casserole and I’m in business.
This Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole is the secret recipe in my hostess’ apron.
I imagine some of you might be wondering exactly what a Monte Cristo is exactly. Don’t worry, until about a year ago I had no idea either. Believe it or not, I’d never even heard of them which I now consider a personal travesty.
A Monte Cristo is a essentially a fried ham & cheese (typically Swiss) sandwich, and is a twist on the more traditional French croque-monsieur. This mostly savory sandwich is often lightly sprinkled with powdered sugar before serving, and plated with a side of raspberry fruit preserves.
In short, it’s the best breakfast grilled cheese you’re ever gonna eat, with or without the optional sugar and preserves. Although, I highly recommend them to really get the full experience.
This Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole deconstructs the now classic sandwich and reassembles it in a baking dish for an absolutely delicious all in one breakfast in a baking dish. It’s perfect for brunch, shoot even breakfast for dinner. Easy enough for everyday, it’s still yummy enough that you’ll be proud to serve it to your company. It’s also one of our favorite ways to use up ham leftovers, especially around Holidays like Easter or Christmas.
If you love this idea, make sure to check out these other yummy breakfast casseroles to bookmark for another hit meal: Three Cheese Grits Casserole, Breakfast Lasagna, and even (drum roll please) Breakfast Mac & Cheese.
Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups half & half, or fuller fat milk
- 1 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
- pinch of nutmeg
- salt & pepper, to taste
- 6 cups slightly stale, cubed French bread
- 2 cups diced ham
- 1 1/2 cups shredded Swiss cheese
- powdered sugar optional, for garnish
- raspberry preserves, warmed until stirrable optional, for garnish
- Add the eggs, half and half, mustard, nutmeg, and salt & pepper to a large bowl. Whisk together until the mixture's completely smooth.
- Add the bread, stirring until all of the bread is well coated with egg.
- Stir in the ham and half of the cheese until evenly incorporated.
- Lightly spray an 8x8" baking dish with non stick cooking spray. Pour the egg mixture out into the pan, evenly spreading it out. Sprinkle the remaining cheese evenly out over the dish.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes, or until golden brown on top and a butter knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Let the casserole rest 2 minutes before slicing and plating. If using, sprinkle each slice lightly with sifted powdered sugar. Drizzle with the warm raspberry preserves, and serve immediately.