Celebrate Spring with Brunch Favorites

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(Family Features) Few things go together quite like fresh spring air, warm sunshine and a menu made up of delicious brunch bites. Whether you’re hosting a crowd or simply gathering your loved ones around the family table for quality time together, a menu of morning favorites can appease appetites of all kinds.

From sweet to savory and back again, you can turn your mid-morning meal into a full-blown feast with a menu made up of pleasing dishes such as this French Toast Casserole, which can serve as a make-ahead twist on the breakfast classic; customizable Breakfast Burritos that pack a protein punch; and a bite-sized treat like Double Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins for a sweet finishing touch to any brunch occasion.

Find more recipes to inspire your next brunch menu at Culinary.net.

Warm Up with a Fresh Casserole

An exciting twist on a breakfast classic, it’s hard to beat this French Toast Casserole when putting together your brunch spread. Crisp on top while soft and moist in the middle, it comes fresh out of the oven with the aroma of maple syrup and pecans that will have the whole house eager for a bite. It’s easy enough to make fresh in the morning but can also be prepared the night before so all you have to do is add the topping and pop it in the oven.

French Toast Casserole

  • 1 loaf French bread (about 1 1/2 pounds), cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened milk
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • maple syrup, for serving

Topping:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter or coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • confectioners' sugar, for dusting
  1. Grease 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Place bread cubes in baking dish. In large bowl, whisk eggs, milk, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Pour mixture evenly over bread cubes.
  2. If making casserole ahead, cover baking dish and refrigerate overnight. If baking immediately, let stand 30 minutes at room temperature to allow bread to soak up egg mixture.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  4. To make topping: Drizzle casserole with melted butter and sprinkle with brown sugar and pecans. Top with strawberries and blueberries.
  5. Cover and bake 35 minutes then uncover and bake 10-20 minutes, or until topping is browned and egg mixture has mostly set.
  6. Remove from oven, cover loosely with foil and let stand 10 minutes. Dust with confectioners' sugar. Serve with maple syrup.

Brunch with a Powerful Punch

When you’re craving something hearty and rich, switch up your brunch habits with wholesome and filling Breakfast Burritos. With protein to keep you full, veggies for a touch of added nutrition and hot sauce to pack a powerful punch of flavor in every bite, this hearty recipe will keep you full and bursting with energy until your next meal. Plus, they’re easy to make in a matter of minutes and totally customizable to accommodate every palate.

Breakfast Burritos

Servings: 4

  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 4 flour tortillas
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup salsa
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • hot sauce (optional)
  1. In large skillet, heat canola oil over medium heat. Add red onion and red bell pepper; cook 8 minutes. Add black beans and red pepper flakes; cook 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Transfer to dish.
  2. In medium bowl, whisk eggs and egg whites. Stir in cheese until combined. Heat large skillet over low heat, add egg mixture and scramble 3 minutes, or until cooked through.
  3. Spread sour cream over tortilla. Spread salsa over sour cream. Spoon 1/4 bean mixture over salsa. Spoon 1/4 scrambled eggs over bean mixture. Top with diced tomatoes and avocado. Drizzle with hot sauce, if desired. Roll-up burrito. Repeat three times with remaining ingredients and serve.

Bite-Sized Chocolate Delights

Flavorful French toast, filling breakfast burritos and favorite fruits make a feast to look forward to, but no brunch spread is complete without a chocolatey bite to cap off the meal. In fact, make it a double.

These Double Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins offer a combination of two kinds of rich chocolate complemented by the caramel notes of C&H Light Brown Sugar for an irresistible dessert in bite-sized form. Tiny, tasty treats are a perfect way to send guests off with one sweet final bite.

Visit chsugar.com to find more delectable dessert recipes.

Double Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins

Muffin Batter:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2  cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 package (10 ounces) mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup C&H Light Brown Sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup C&H Granulated Sugar
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon instant espresso (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons flaked sea salt (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line mini muffin pan with mini cupcake liners.
  2. In large mixing bowl, use whisk to combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Add chocolate chips and stir to ensure chocolate chips are coated in flour mixture.
  3. In separate large mixing bowl, use wire whisk to whisk eggs and sugars until ingredients are combined and sugars are dissolved. Add sour cream, oil and milk. Whisk again to combine. If using espresso powder, add to vanilla then add to wet ingredients. Whisk vanilla espresso mixture into other liquid ingredients.
  4. Pour liquid ingredients on top of dry ingredients. Using rubber spatula, mix until just combined, being careful to not overmix. Batter should be thick and shiny.
  5. Using tablespoon or two spoons, spoon muffin batter into liners. Batter should be filled almost to top of each liner. Top each muffin with flaked sea salt before baking, if desired.
  6. Bake muffins on center rack 6 minutes. Rotate pan and bake 6 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in muffin comes out clean. Once muffins finish baking, place muffin pan on cooling rack to cool completely.

 SOURCE:
C&H Sugar






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