Feeding a group of people? Here’s an easy way to make everyone happy with their own tiny breakfast casseroles! It’s easy to adapt to almost all tastes and diet requirements. Using mini loaf pans or muffin tins will help expand breakfast casserole horizons even further. Creating individual casseroles for different appetites and tastes in mind is a great way to serve a variety of guests.
Tiny breakfast casseroles are also a wonderful way to feed kids with special diets, or even to make picky eaters happier. Using a muffin tin, you can fill each spot with ingredients that are pleasing to each person around your breakfast table.
When you plan your mini casseroles, think about mixing and matching the ingredients, starting with some basics and then building on those. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Eggs are a breakfast standard used in most breakfast casseroles. They are also the binding ingredient holding the casserole together. There are many ways to incorporate eggs in your breakfast casseroles, mini or full size. You can mix the egg in with the other ingredients, quiche style. Or you can crack the egg into a nest of ingredients and bake it, fried egg style. You can choose whole eggs, egg whites, or egg substitute.
This is the bread, biscuits, pastry, rice, pasta, potatoes, quinoa, or other bulk that is either laid in the dish to form the body of the casserole or is mixed with the eggs and other ingredients. Fiber can also be vegetables. Consider grating carrots, zucchini, or sweet potatoes. Or try spaghetti squash as an alternative. Your choice of fiber is very flexible. Whatever works, works. There are no rules when it comes to adding the fiber to your breakfast casserole.
Eggs alone offer plenty of protein, but you may want to expand your breakfast casserole with added meat, poultry, fish, or vegetarian options like tofu. Bacon and sausage are traditional breakfast ingredients, but don’t stop there. Albacore tuna, grilled salmon, shrimp, or that leftover piece of pork tenderloin might just be perfect. Again, there are no rules.
Soft cheese that melts well is definitely desirable. But, any good cheese will work if it’s grated well. Cheese can be mixed in, as you would with Ricotta or cottage cheese, or you can top your mini breakfast casseroles with shredded cheese to form a nice top ‘crust.’ In these individual casseroles, you don’t need a lot of cheese in each one, so use a cheese that has a lot of flavor to a punch in a tiny amount.
Fruits and Veggies
Some good basic choices for breakfast casseroles would be onions, celery, bell peppers, spinach, and tomatoes for the savory bunch, and apples, bananas, and peaches for the sweet bunch. But, when you’re making individual breakfast casseroles, you can personalize each one a bit more since you don’t have to please everyone’s taste buds in the same dish. Choose savory ingredients that make more of a flavor statement like asparagus, cranberries, olives, Brussels sprouts, fennel, rutabaga, and winter squash, or pineapple, guava, apricot, and mango.
Without the Eggs
What if you or your family doesn’t like or can’t eat eggs? You can replace the eggs in a tiny breakfast casserole with pancake or biscuit batter to hold the ingredients together. Line a muffin cup with a paper liner, and pour some batter in, then add your other ingredients, and fill the muffin cup up about 2/3 full with more batter. Your ingredients will cook inside the batter and you’ll have a nice hearty breakfast in a muffin.
Grated potatoes (hash browns) also work to hold a tiny casserole together. Make a thick white sauce out of flour, butter, and milk, or just use a canned cream of something soup. Mix in the shredded potatoes or thawed packaged hash browns until you get a gluey ball. Either mix in your other ingredients and press into your muffin cup, or form a crust out of the potato mixture and fill with the stuff you want. When you take it out of the oven you’ll have a nice muffin shaped potato breakfast casserole.
There is an infinite number of ways to build your own casserole. By making tiny individual breakfast casseroles, you can even have each guest pick out their own ingredients. Kids especially enjoy creating a personalized meal just for them. Also, we know that kids who help cook usually eat better. The key is to experiment with ingredients and cooking methods. And, making tiny individual serving size casseroles is the perfect way to do just that!
What ingredients would you use in your favorite tiny breakfast casserole?