By: Allison Ritter, Dietetic Intern [University of Minnesota]
The holiday season is a time for coming together and celebrating with family and friends. For my family, Christmas morning always entailed racing down the stairs to see presents sparkling under a trimmed tree, followed by brunch filled with family, laughter and of course delicious breakfast favorites. Even as our traditions evolve, the spirit of togetherness always remains, as does my mom’s green chili egg bake.
This recipe is similar to the one always present on our brunch buffet, with a few healthy twists. Whole grain bread replaces white bread for added fiber to keep you full throughout the day. Another welcome addition is a variety of vegetables to add pops of seasonal colors. With the bright colors come vitamins: Spinach is a great source of iron, and bell peppers are full of immune-enhancing vitamin C which helps the body absorb iron more efficiently. Mushrooms also contain some Vitamin D, or the “sunshine vitamin,” which most of us do not get enough of during the winter months.
Green Chili Egg Bake
Recipe adapted from Taste of Home
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- ½ medium onion, chopped
- 2 bell peppers any color, diced
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 1 cup fresh spinach
- 8 large eggs
- 2 cups milk
- 1 tsp. ground black pepper
- 1 tsp. ground mustard
- 6 slices whole grain French bread, cut into ½-inch cubes
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- One 4-oz can chopped green chilies
- In a skillet over medium heat, add olive oil, onion, bell pepper and mushroom and cook until soft. Add the spinach to the skillet until just wilted. Allow vegetables to cool slightly.
- In a large bowl, beat the eggs and combine with milk, salt, pepper and ground mustard. Stir in bread cubes, cheese, chilies and cooked vegetables.
- Pour into a greased 9″x13″ baking dish and top with more shredded cheese if desired. Cover and place in refrigerator for 8 hours or overnight. Remove 30 minutes before baking.
- Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 40 minutes, or until knife inserted comes out clean.
- Add cooked sausage, bacon or ham for extra protein and flavor.
- Don’t have the vegetables listed? This is a framework recipe, meaning that any vegetable (fresh, frozen, or canned) will work! Just remember to drain and rinse canned vegetables.
Per serving: 380 calories, 11g total fat, 5 g saturated fat, 19 g protein, 50 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 690 mg sodium.