Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole

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.

Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole

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.

Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole

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!

Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole

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.

Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole

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.

Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole

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

A yummy all in one breakfast casserole, this Monte Cristo version features chopped ham and melted Swiss cheese.
4.12 from 9 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 6

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  • 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.

Notes

recipe adapted from Kraft

 

26 thoughts on “Monte Cristo Style Breakfast Casserole

  1. This is something completely new to me but I can see how it would make a great brunch dish. I’d never have thought of serving it with powdered sugar or preserves so I’m excited to see what my family think of that. Thanks for sharing at Fiesta Friday.

    1. Don’t knock it til ya try it, Karan! LOL, but really like I said in the recipe, it’s totally optional. It’s just as yummy without it 🙂

  2. I am going to try his. Sounds so good. Years ago, there was a gourmet restaurant in my town which served a dessert omelette – it was filled with preserves and sprinkled w/confectioners sugar….delish! So, I can totally picture it working in this recipe.

  3. Can you prepare and bake this recipe the night before, refrigerate and heat for breakfast in the morning? School mornings leave little time for baking but I can reheat something already baked. If so, what temperature to reheat and for how long?

    1. Definitely! I’d put it in the oven at 325 for 15-20 minutes, or until hot throughout. I totally can relate to busy school mornings. Meal prepping breakfasts is my saving grace!

    1. It easily could be! I’d do low for 6-8 hours, and start watching it/checking for done-ness at the 6 hour mark.

  4. I would think that you could do this in a crockpot. Since the author is so good at replying to questions in a timely manner, I thought Before replying I would see if the originator would comment. When I asked about “making ahead” I got a quick reply. It came out perfectly by the way. Hope you have the same luck as I did. Please let me know if it is adaptable to the crockpot.

    1. Sorry, Mary. I do really try to reply promptly, but sometimes my own life gets in the way and it takes some time. I did reply earlier to the original poster of the crockpot question (I’ll have to double check that it went through), and let her know that it should work just as well in the crockpot. I suggested cooking for 6-8 hours, on low- and begin checking at the 6 hour mark for ‘doneness’.


  5. This was really good! I didn’t have a whole loaf of French bread so I added a couple chopped up bagels. I think the bagels helped it not have a soggy texture or bread pudding texture. It was perfect and reheats really well. Don’t skip the powdered sugar and preserves. It totally makes the dish!!

    1. I love the idea of using bagels! And you’re so right, the powdered sugar & preserves are an essential part of the equation.


  6. Try some oysters & spinach in this, pinch of old bay, put oysters in later to not over cook, no sugar or preserves, top with french fried onions & parmesan cheese. Nice dinner meal

  7. Not a fan of ham, can anything else be used in its place? I know it kind of defeats the whole purpose of this recipe, since you mentioned the name of the recipe stands for ham & cheese, but no one in my family eats ham!

    1. You can definitely make it ahead of time, but I would also bake it before freezing. Then when you’re ready to use it, pop it in the oven until it’s heated through.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.