Easy Winter Breakfast Recipes

I think we can safely say winter has arrived. The chilly weather ushers in more opportunities to linger in our loungewear, add an extra log to the fire and settle in for a relaxing weekend breakfast.  Invite a few friends over, heck they can even come in their pajamas! Here are a few of our most favorite make-ahead (sweet and savory) breakfast items including: Impossible to Resist Quick Cinnamon Buns, Ultimate Breakfast Strata, and Cheddar Bacon Buttermilk Scones.

Impossible to Resist Quick Cinnamon Buns

These sweet gooey buns will have you rethinking your early morning trip to the donut store.  Our buns are ready in under 1½ hours, and can be made the night before then warmed briefly in the oven while you brew your first pot of coffee.

Filling:

1 C. brown sugar

1 Tbs. cinnamon

2 tbs. melted butter

1 tsp. vanilla extract

Pinch of salt

Dough: 

1¼ C. milk

4 tsp. instant or rapid- rise yeast

2 Tbs. granular sugar

3 C. all-purpose flour

3 tsp. baking powder

Pinch of salt

6 Tbs. melted butte

Glaze:

3 oz. cream cheese

2 Tbs. melted butter

2 Tbs. milk

½ tsp. vanilla extract

1 Tbs. cinnamon

1 C. confectioners’ sugar

Preheat oven to 350.  

For the filling:  Combine filling ingredients in a bowl and set aside.

For the glaze: Combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir until smooth.  Set aside until ready to use

For the dough: Spray a round cake pan or glass pyrex dish with nonstick cooking spray.  Warm milk in the microwave to 110 degrees (about 15-20 seconds). Stir in yeast and sugar, and let sit until mixture is bubbly about 5 minutes.

Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.  Stir in 2 tbs. of melted butter, and yeast mixture until dough forms into a mass. (Dough will be sticky).  Transfer dough to a well-floured surface and knead until a smooth ball forms; about 2 minutes.

Roll dough into a 12×9-inch rectangle.  Brush dough with 2 tbs. melted butter.  Sprinkle dough evenly with filling, pressing firmly into dough.  Roll dough into a tight log, and pinch the ends to seal.    Cut dough into 10 equal pieces. Place the buns, cut side down, starting with a bun in the center of the pan and adding the others around the perimeter.  Brush tops with the remaining butter, cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 30 minutes in a warm place.  Discard plastic wrap and bake until edges are browned, about 25 minutes.  Loosen buns from sides of pan and let cool for 5 minutes. Spread with the glaze and then use all of the will power that you can muster, not to eat them all, right on the spot! 

Ultimate Breakfast Strata

serves 8 – 10

This strata is chock full of “goodies;” goat cheese, veggies and prosciutto. It’s ideal for Christmas morning — assemble it a day ahead and bake before serving. Omit the prosciutto for an equally delicious vegetarian option.

3 C. whole milk

3 Tbs.  olive oil

8 C. 1-inch cubes sourdough bread, crusts trimmed

5 large eggs

1½ tsp. salt or try truffle salt

1 tsp. black pepper

12 oz. herbed goat cheese, crumbled (about 3 cups)

2 Tbs. chopped flat leaf parsley

1 Tbs. chopped fresh thyme

1 C. prosciutto(or crisp bacn), chopped

½ C. marinated artichoke hearts, drained and halved lengthwise

½ C. sun-dried tomatoes, cut in half

½ C. asparagus spears, cut into 2” pieces

½ C. grated onion

1 C. fresh baby spinach

1 C. grated Fontina cheese

1½ C. grated Parmesan

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter 13 x 9 x 2-inch glass baking dish. Whisk 2 C. of milk and oil in a large bowl. Stir in bread. Let stand until liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes. 

Add 1 C. milk and remaining ingredients in another bowl and stir to combine.

Place half of bread mixture in prepared dish. Top with half of the egg, vegetable and cheese mixture.   Repeat layering with remaining bread and egg mixture. (Can be assembled 1 day ahead, cover and refrigerate until ready to bake) 

Bake uncovered until firm in center and brown around edges, about 45-50 minutes. 

Eggs were never better!

Cheddar Bacon Buttermilk Scones

We love these scones because they’re delicious, just the way they are , or slice one  in half and add a fried egg for a tasty breakfast sandwich- yum!

3 C. all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking powder

3 tbs. cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

1 C. shredded cheddar cheese

½ C. grated Parmesan

2 C. chopped cooked extra thick slab bacon

1 tsp. hot pepper flakes

1¼ C. buttermilk

Heat oven to 400° F. Lightly coat a baking sheet with vegetable cooking spray.

In a food processor, combine flour, baking powder, and butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Transfer to a large bowl and add the 2 cheeses, hot pepper flakes, crumbled bacon and buttermilk. Stir until the mixture sticks together. (It will be slightly crumbly) 

Transfer the dough to a work surface and knead gently until it comes together, about 30 seconds. Shape the dough to form an even, flat round about 1 inch thick. Cut the dough into 12 wedges. Place them about 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. 

Bake until the scones are a light golden brown, 15-18 minutes. Remove with a metal spatula. To reheat, wrap in foil and warm in a 250° F oven for 10 minutes. 

These scones have it all!