A new taste for your breakfast table

Overnight breakfast enchiladas easy and delicious

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My version of these tasty breakfast enchiladas includes breakfast sausage, mixed bell peppers, onions and cheddar cheese. Thanks to Fiestaware for the shiny new salsa bowl.
My version of these tasty breakfast enchiladas includes breakfast sausage, mixed bell peppers, onions and cheddar cheese. Thanks to Fiestaware for the shiny new salsa bowl.
Lisa Boykin Batts | Times

Yum, yum, yum! My family and I love this easy, make-ahead breakfast dish.

Sausage, onions, bell peppers and cheese fill these breakfast enchiladas that make the most delicious breakfast or brunch main dish.

I first made this dish for Christmas morning. There were five hungry adults at the house, so I wanted a second dish to serve along with a grits casserole and big platter of fresh fruit.

The breakfast enchilada is an easy concept that starts with a bag of 7- to 8-inch tortillas — I use whole wheat. The filling can be a variety of things but is usually a meat paired with peppers, onions and cheese. The tortillas are filled and rolled tightly and placed in a casserole dish. Then a mixture of egg and milk (or cream) is poured over the enchiladas. After an overnight milk bath, the enchiladas are baked while a hungry crowd stands around the oven — enjoying the tantalizing aroma.

Searching online, I saw a number of recipes for breakfast enchiladas. There are many versions, but most of the ones I saw used deli ham for the meat. I didn’t want to use ham for our Christmas morning breakfast because I was serving ham later in the day. Instead, I made mine with breakfast sausage.

I used a mix of sweet onions and chopped red, orange, yellow and green bell peppers in my filling. Other cooks choose green onions or green chili peppers.

In the egg mixture, I used fat-free milk instead of heavy cream, which most recipes call for. I have made this recipe twice and see no need for cream; I used lactose-free, fat-free milk.

I made this casserole again for Sunday brunch for my family, and we loved it just as much the second time. Several of my family members ate theirs with salsa. I am not a salsa fan, so I ate mine without.

This is a very adaptable recipe. You can vary the filling according to your family’s preferences.

I have made it with turkey sausage and pork sausage so far. I will probably make it with deli ham as a breakfast-for-supper casserole next time — at my daughter’s request.

I used whole wheat tortillas, but you can use corn or flour if you prefer.

For the peppers, I used some of the chopped mixed peppers I try to keep in my freezer. I buy red, orange and yellow peppers when they are on sale, chop them and put them in a freezer bag. I pull them out of the freezer and use them as needed to add color and flavor to many dishes. Green bell peppers are much cheaper, and I usually have at least one in my refrigerator as well as the freezer. I highly recommend adding some red bell pepper to this dish. The sweetness is especially good with the sausage.

As for cheese, I used a mixture of cheddar cheeses, but a Mexican blend would be nice as well.

I hope you’ll try this recipe. You’ll love the convenience of assembling the casserole the night before for an easy and special breakfast or brunch dish for your family. And your family will love you for making it!

Easy Breakfast Enchiladas

Assemble this casserole the night before for an easy and delicious breakfast the next day.

1 pound bulk breakfast sausage (pork or turkey), cooked and drained

1/2 cup (or more to taste) chopped bell peppers (I use a mixture of green, red, yellow and orange)

1/4 cup (or more to taste) chopped sweet onion

1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (divided)

1 package 7- to 8-inch whole wheat tortillas, at least 8-9

1 1/2 cups milk (I use fat-free milk; lactose-free is fine)

4 eggs, slightly beaten

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon flour

Spray 9X13-inch casserole dish with baking spray.

In a bowl, mix together enchilada filling, combining cooked sausage, peppers, onions and 1 cup of the shredded cheese.

Place a tortilla on a plate. Scoop about 1/3 cup of filling in the middle and spread across the middle length of the tortilla. Tuck one side under the filling and roll up tightly, then place tortilla, seam side down, at a short end of the casserole dish. Repeat, lining the filled tortillas in the dish. (The first time I made this, I had enough filling for 10 tortillas; the second time, I was able to fill only 9.)

For the egg mixture, whisk milk, eggs, salt and flour until smooth. Pour over tortillas.

Cover dish with foil and place in refrigerator overnight.

When you are ready to bake, remove casserole dish and preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Bake, covered, for 35 minutes. Remove casserole dish and sprinkle about a 1/2 cup of cheese on top, Bake an additional 5-10 minutes for the cheese to melt and for the tortillas to start browning.

Serve with salsa if desired.