Every year around early December I start searching Pinterest for the perfect Christmas morning breakfast. The last few years we have hosted Christmas morning at our house, and I love serving a delicious breakfast for our family. I like to find something different from what we normally eat, so when I came across multiple recipes for overnight french toasts I found them interesting. It would be so much easier to prep on Christmas Eve and then just have to bake in the morning! Plus, I wouldn’t have to make another big mess in my kitchen, and things would stay relatively clean because all the prep would be the night before! What a genius idea! I found a few different recipes that looked good, and I decided to try my hand at one and use blueberries. Another great part about this recipe is that you can use frozen blueberries…how convenient.
I also used neufatchel cheese (low fat cream cheese) because it’s a lot easier to spread, and coincidentally has lower fat and calories. Around the holidays, everyone can stand to save a few calories where they can. I was also a bit skeptical of putting chunks of bread on the top, but I went with it and I’m glad I did because it was delicious. Even my super super picky toddler liked this dish, which was shocking and made me really happy!
You may be wondering why I am sharing this ‘Christmas breakfast’ now, well, sometimes I run a little behind on posting things, but also, I think this recipe would be great anytime. It would be perfect for hosting Sunday brunch or breakfast, or to make anytime you have company in town. It’s really quick to fix, and then you just bake it in the morning! So easy! I served mine up with a cheesy au gratin potatoes– which were seriously the best breakfast potatoes I have EVER had. I also made those the night before and baked in the morning, which made this breakfast the easiest ever!
- 12 oz. Neufchatel cheese 1/3 less fat cream cheese
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla divided
- 2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries no thawing necessary if frozen
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 10 large eggs
- 2 cups milk I used 1%
- 5 TBS granulated sugar divided
- 1 loaf day old french bread
1. Cut 1/2-inch off both ends of bread and discard (or eat). Cut loaf into 1-inch slices then cut each slice into 1-inch cubes (I cut the loaf in half first then kept the cubes from each half separate so it would be easier to determine half). Spread half of the bread cubes into an even layer in a buttered 13 by 9-inch baking dish, set aside remaining bread cubes.
2. In a small bowl, using an electric hand mixer, blend together Neufchatel cheese, powdered sugar and 1/2 tsp vanilla.
3. In a separate bowl stir together lemon zest and 1 TBS sugar.
4. Using a rubber spatula and a clean fingertip, spread Neufchatel cheese mixture over bread cube layer in baking dish. Sprinkle blueberries over Neufchatel cheese layer then sprinkle lemon zest mixture evenly over blueberry layer. Spread remaining bread cubes into an even layer over top of blueberries.
5. In a blender, blend together eggs, milk, remaining 1/4 cup sugar and remaining 1 tsp vanilla on low speed until well blended, about 10 seconds. Slowly pour mixture evenly over top of bread cubes in baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 8 hours or overnight.
6. The following morning, remove baking dish from refrigerator and allow to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
7. Remove plastic wrap and cover baking dish with aluminium foil and bake for 30 minutes, then remove foil and continue to bake 25 - 35 minutes, until golden brown (if it is becoming too golden brown but isn't cooked through then you can cover with foil again during the last few minutes of baking). 8. Allow to rest 5 minutes, then cut into servings.
Serve with syrup if desired.
Recipe adapted from Cookingclassy.com
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