Cooktop Cove: How to make slow cooker potato breakfast bake
I'm a breakfast lover and a firm believer that breakfast foods can be eaten any time of day, though that might have something to do with me also not being a morning person. But because I'm not a fan of jumping out of bed and cooking a big breakfast (even on the weekends) I've become a make-ahead breakfast convert, which is why this breakfast bake, that's essentially a Western omelette in a crock, is perfect for both a lazy morning and a relaxing evening meal.
By putting the dish together the night before and taking advantage of its seven hour cook time, you'll be able to wake up to a big breakfast with your family while still sipping your coffee. If you plan to sleep longer than seven hours (and I hope you do) but don't have a programmable slow cooker, you can pick up an inexpensive timer in the hardware section of your local superstore.
Slow cooker potato breakfast bake
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 7 hours
Total Time: 7 hours 20 minutes
26 ounce frozen shredded hashbrowns or 4 cups freshly grated potatoes
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 white onion, sliced
14.4 ounce frozen mixed pepper slices or 2 cups fresh sliced green, yellow, red, and orange peppers
8 ounce sliced mushrooms
8 ounce cubed ham
16 ounce jar cheddar cheese sauce, usually found alongside the spaghetti and alfredo sauce
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2 Tablespoon cornstarch
2 Tablespoon milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, optional
If you're using frozen hashbrowns and peppers to cut down on prep time, you'll need to microwave them for a minute or two to thaw and squeeze the water out of both using paper towels before assembling the dish. Failing to do so will result in breakfast soup.
1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, salt, and pepper before folding in the hashbrowns until coated throughout. Set aside one cup of the mixture then, using a flexible rubber spatula, press the remaining potatoes up the non-stick sprayed sides of your slow cooker, leaving the bottom of the crock bare.
2. In the same mixing bowl, stir together all of the filling ingredients except the cornstarch and milk. Pour the milk and cornstarch into the emptied jar of cheese and shake. This will get the otherwise wasted sauce from inside the jar with the slurry and save you from washing an extra dish. Stir your slurry into the filling and pour this mixture into the center of the slow cooker, taking care not to disturb the hashbrown crust. Top the casserole with the reserved potato mixture, spreading it evenly.
3. Cook the casserole on low for seven hours.
Optional: Top with shredded cheddar cheese 10 minutes before serving.
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