Made-to-order omelets are a breakfast I always enjoy but rarely execute in my own home. The extensive prep and required attention over the stove so early in the morning means I reserve filling egg breakfasts for when I am the guest of honor.
That is, until I realized that with a bag of frozen potatoes, fresh spinach, pork sausage, and Swiss cheese at my side I can mix up a mean breakfast — and most of that cooking takes place while I sleep.
No diner-style breakfast is complete without a side of potatoes. While the buttery lace of hash brown potatoes has its place, I am partial to the crispy small dice of home fries. For this slow cooker casserole, take a helping hand from the freezer section and buy frozen diced potatoes. Without the fuss of peeling, dicing, and parcooking, this breakfast comes together quickly.
Breakfast casseroles are ideal for serving a large crowd or making breakfast ahead for the week. They're also a saving grace on nights when breakfast for dinner is on the menu. With the right proportion of egg and dairy to bind fluffy potatoes, richly browned sausage, and tender spinach, it's a hearty breakfast to carry you through lunch.
Whether you want to call it an overnight omelet or breakfast casserole, you should greet the day with a large scoop of it on your plate and a bottle of hot sauce on the table.
Wake Up to Slow Cooker Breakfast Casseroles
Slow Cooker Sausage and Spinach Breakfast Casserole
Serves 6 to 8
uncooked pork breakfast sausage, casings removed
small yellow onion, diced
1 1/2 teaspoons
baby spinach (about 5 packed cups)
frozen diced potatoes (do not thaw, about 4 cups)
1 1/4 cups
shredded Swiss cheese, divided
grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
whole or 2% milk
1 1/2 teaspoons
freshly ground black pepper
Red pepper flakes or hot sauce, for serving
Coat a 4 1/2-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add the sausage, onion, and oregano; use a stiff spatula to break the meat into small pieces; and cook until the sausage is browned and no longer pink, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the spinach and toss until wilted.
Transfer the sausage and spinach mixture to the slow cooker. Add the potatoes, 1 cup of the Swiss cheese, and the Parmesan cheese and stir to combine.
Place the eggs, milk, mustard, salt, and pepper in a large bowl and whisk until smooth. Pour the egg mixture into the slow cooker and stir until the egg is evenly distributed. Smooth the filling into an even layer.
Cover and cook on the LOW setting until the edges brown and the eggs are set, 6 to 8 hours. Turn off the slow cooker and sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup Swiss cheese over the top of the casserole. Cover and let sit until the cheese melts completely before serving with pepper flakes or hot sauce, about 5 minutes.
Storage: Transfer leftovers to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
Make ahead: The sausage can be cooked and refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days.