CREAM CHEESE-SPINACH-HAM BREAKFAST CASSEROLE

Junior came home for fall break and, of course, I had to be sure he had three squares a day–and then some (cheesecake drenched in wild berries went over very well). Unfortunately, this casserole gets only three thumbs up since Junior Too wasn’t thrilled about breaking breakfast casserole tradition with my addition of cream cheese (hey, that rhymes!). Not that he didn’t chow down. His expression just didn’t reflect the enthusiasm of his table mates. And, of course, he turned archaeologist and undertook an excavation to find his way past the cream cheese. His loss 🙂

cooking spray (I used olive oil cooking spray)

4 cups cubed sourdough bread

3 cups chopped baby spinach

1/2 red bell pepper, diced

1 large tomato, diced

1/2 onion, diced

1-1/2 cups diced ham

4 oz cream cheese

8 eggs

1 cup half-and-half

1 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1/2 tsp paprika

1 cup finely grated cheddar cheese

1 tbsp minced parsley

1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees and oil a large casserole dish with cooking spray (I used a 12×12″ dish)

2) In large bowl, toss together bread, spinach, red bell pepper, tomato, onion, and ham; evenly spread mixture in casserole dish

3) In small bowl, microwave cream cheese approximately 30 seconds until softened; distribute dollops of cream cheese over casserole

4) In large bowl, beat eggs, half-and-half, salt, pepper, and paprika; pour egg mixture over casserole; bake in oven 50 minutes until casserole puffs up and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean; sprinkle cheddar cheese and parsley over casserole and cook additional 5 minutes until cheese melts; serve

Servings: 6 (although if not for the cream cheese, I believe Junior Too would have come close to turning it into 4 servings)

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3 thoughts on “CREAM CHEESE-SPINACH-HAM BREAKFAST CASSEROLE

  1. Becky Doughty says:

    Tamara – in the last few years, cream cheese has become a staple in my fridge because it does seem to beef up so many dishes. This sounds wonderful – I’ll have to try it!

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