A Spicy Perspective

Fluffy Strata Recipe (Overnight Breakfast Casserole)

Fluffy Strata Recipe (Overnight Breakfast Casserole) – This easy make-ahead holiday breakfast is super quick to prep, then pop in the oven the next morning! It’s sure to become your go-to “special occasion” breakfast.

overnight breakfast casserole

Overnight Breakfast Casserole

No one wants to wake up an hour early on a holiday weekend to chop and prepare breakfast.

However, most of us would agree, a rich comforting breakfast makes every occasion seem special!

That’s why I love overnight breakfast casseroles. These easy breakfast bakes are meant to be assembled the night before a holiday or event.

I always make an overnight casserole for special occasions like:

  • Christmas
  • Valentine’s Day
  • Easter
  • Kid’s slumber parties
  • When friends or family comes in town

That way, I can sleep a little longer, pop the casserole dish in the oven, and casually sip my coffee as it bakes.

egg strata

Strata Recipe… The Ultimate Breakfast Bake

There are all sorts and sweet and savory breakfast casseroles you can make-ahead and bake in the morning. (We’ve listed links to our favorites below!)

Yet a classic Strata Recipe is my personal favorite breakfast bake. Why?

  • I generally prefer savory over sweet breakfasts.
  • Stratas are SO quick to put together.
  • They look extremely appealing with their crisp golden craggy top.
  • You can put almost anything you like in a Strata.
  • And best of all, the pillowy texture of each bite is ridiculously divine!

The crusty top and tender airy interior are created by adding one single ingredient… Bread.

Bread is used as a spongy base to absorb the eggs and dairy. When the Strata bakes, the bread stabilizes the eggs so they can rise into a souffle-like casserole that toasts brilliantly on the top.

A strata is truly a thing of beauty!

breakfast strata

Overnight Strata 

You’re wondering… Does a Strata Recipe have to set overnight? If you want to make one for dinner, do you have to start it in the morning?


You do need to allow some time for the bread to soak up the eggs. 

The bread should be fully saturated with liquid. This is faster when the bread is fresh. However, if you are repurposing a day-old (stale) loaf of bread, that is perfectly fine, but the Strata will need longer to soak.

As a general rule, you should allow the Strata to rest at least one hour before baking.

But, of course, it can rest for up to 18 hours, so it’s the perfect overnight breakfast casserole to make the night before a big family event!

egg mixture

What Is Strata Made Of?

The basic must-have ingredients for a strata include: Eggs, milk, bread, and salt.

However, to make an ultra-luxurious and flavor-packed Strata Breakfast Bake we’ve included a few more things in our recipe:

  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Sharp Cheddar Cheese 
  • Smoked Gouda Cheese
  • Deli Ham 
  • Scallions
  • Roasted Red Peppers 
  • Ground Mustard
  • Garlic Powder
  • French Bread

The blend of these two cheeses creates an intriguing richness that is balanced by the zesty notes of the scallions and roasted red peppers.

The ham can be swapped for cooked bacon or sausage. Or omitted for a vegetarian strata recipe.

French bread

How To Make Breakfast Strata (Overnight Breakfast Casserole)

It’s so easy, guys. You simply mix, fold, chill, and bake!

  1. Mix – Mix everything, except the bread, in a large mixing bowl. 
  2. Fold – Fold the egg mixture into torn-up chunks of bread.
  3. Chill – Cover and chill until ready to bake.
  4. Bake – Bake for 50+ minutes, until puffy and golden.

Get the Full (Printable) Strata Overnight Breakfast Casserole Recipe Below!

overnight egg bake

Breakfast Strata Swaps & Add-Ins

Of course, I’m sharing my favorite Strata variation. I feel these ingredients together produce a lovely balance of savory richness and perky notes.

However, feel free to experiment with your favorite add-ins. Here are some ideas…

  1. Meat: Ham, cooked bacon, turkey bacon, italian sausage, cooked breakfast sausage, prosciutto, pancetta, or chorizo.
  2. Cheese: Cheddar, gouda, muenster, swiss, fontina, pecorino, pepper jack, feta, chevre, or even cream cheese.
  3. Veggies: Scallions, roasted red peppers, sauteed mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, caramelized onions, roast garlic, asparagus tips, spinach, or kale. (Just make sure whatever you add isn’t going to release too much extra moisture into the Strata.)
  4. Herbs & Spices: Ground mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, celery salt, cracked black pepper, ground cumin, paprika, chili powder, cayenne pepper, thyme, rosemary, or basil.
egg bake with bread (overnight breakfast casserole)

What is the Difference Between a Frittata and a Strata?

These two egg recipes are actually quite different.

A Frittata is an Italian-style omelet that is started on the stovetop and usually finished in the oven. The eggs are vigorously swirled around the pan to form an eggy crust on the bottom, before the fillings are added in.

A Strata is a slow-baked egg casserole that always includes bread to stabilize the eggs as they bake. 

Frittatas are usually thin and dense, while a Strata is tall and fluffy.

strata recipe

What Do You Serve with Overnight Breakfast Casserole?

For brunch, a Strata can be served with…

For breakfast, a side of fresh-cut fruit and a fun beverage will do! We love… 

make ahead breakfast (overnight breakfast casserole)

Other Frequently Asked Questions

How well does this recipe last?

This Strata Recipe makes a marvelous leftover meal! Once baked, it will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week.

You can also wrap and freeze this overnight breakfast casserole for up to 3 months. Then thaw and reheat.

Can I use any other bread besides french bread?

Yes, any bread type will work with this recipe. You could even use a gluten free loaf if that is what your dietary restrictions allow!

More Breakfast Recipes You Can Make-Ahead

Fluffy Strata Recipe (Overnight Breakfast Casserole) + Video! #ASpicyPerspective #egg #ham #cheese #breakfast #strata #casserole #overnight
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Fluffy Strata Recipe (Overnight Breakfast Casserole)

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Overnight Breakfast Strata Recipe: This easy make-ahead holiday breakfast is super quick to prep, then pop in the oven the next morning!
Servings: 12


  • 12 large eggs
  • 3 cups whole milk (or half & half)
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese (off the block)
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded smoked gouda cheese (off the block)
  • 1 cup chopped deli ham
  • 1 cup chopped scallions
  • 3/4 cup chopped roasted red pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 12 ounce loaf french bread


  • Set out a large mixing bowl and a 9X13 inch (3 quart) baking dish. Grease the baking dish. Chop all necessary ingredients.
  • In the mixing bowl, add the eggs, milk, salt, ground mustard, and garlic powder. Whisk well to break up all the yolks. Then stir in the cheeses, ham, scallions, and roasted red pepper.
  • Tear the bread loaf into 1-2 inch chunks and place them in the baking dish.
  • Pour the egg mixture over the top of the bread. Use a spatula to fold the bread over, gently, to make sure the ingredients are evenly distributed. Cover and chill until ready to bake.
  • Let the strata recipe rest for at least one hour, so the bread soaks up all the eggs. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. (This is a fabulous make-ahead overnight recipe, so you can also preheat the oven in the morning.)
  • Bake, uncovered, for 50-60 minutes, until the top is golden-brown and puffy in the center. Insert a sharp knife into the center to check that the eggs are set. If not, bake another 5-10 minutes. Then cool for 5 minutes before cutting. Serve warm!



This Strata Recipe make a marvelous leftover meal! Once baked, it will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week.
You can also wrap and freeze it for up to 3 months. Then thaw and reheat.


Serving: 1piece, Calories: 356kcal, Carbohydrates: 21g, Protein: 23g, Fat: 20g, Saturated Fat: 11g, Cholesterol: 262mg, Sodium: 982mg, Potassium: 281mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 814IU, Vitamin C: 6mg, Calcium: 398mg, Iron: 2mg
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Author: Sommer Collier

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20 comments on “Fluffy Strata Recipe (Overnight Breakfast Casserole)”

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  2. Hi there, I would give this a 6 out of 5 if I could – it is incredibly delicious! I halved all of the ingredients because the full recipe would have been too much as we are retired and pandemicly isolated. I used a Challah bread instead of French which lent a subtle sweetness to the mixture and substituted a spicy pork chorizo for the ham. The roasted red pepper was a jar of Krinos red pepper which is ever so slightly marinated. The combination of the smokiness (cheese) , the spice from the chorizo, the sweetness from the bread and red pepper. the egg and dairy was just amazing. It rose to double its uncooked depth then sank a bit as it cooled down. Couldn’t stop eating it.

  3. Do not use anything smaller than 9×13, or if you do you MUST cook longer.

  4. 8 eggs and 2 cups of milk would have been better, as the amount in the recipe took so long to bake through that the cheese layer was overbaked and just a chewy mass instead of melt-goodness.

  5. I made this recipe exactly as written and it was scrumptious! Very easy to do but so impressive. When it came out of the oven, it was puffed up and golden, it was beautiful. Thank you for such a great recipe, everyone loved it and leftovers were equally yummy.

  6. The best Christmas breakfast item ever. Altered slightly using 6 strips of bacon and 3 sausage patties in place of ham.  

  7. This looks delicious! Question – could it be made a couple of days in advance (if kept in the fridge until time to pop in the oven)?

  8. I made it with cheese, turkey sausage, mushrooms and spinach and it was sooo good! 

  9. This turned out fabulous! I added bacon and maple sausage instead of ham. Everyone loved it and wanted the recipe.

  10. Made this today for Father’s Day brunch. It was really good. I made it with sausage, roasted red peppers, and asparagus. Will be making again in a couple weeks when the family gets together for the Fourth of July weekend! 

  11. So delicious! Made this so we could have an easy breakfast to reheat and eat this weekend!

  12. The perfect answer to serving my big family. It was delicious!

  13. This is delicious and love that I can make it ahead of time!

  14. This recipe makes the perfect breakfast for a group- it’s so delicious!

  15. Now that my crowd is home for awhile this was perfect for feeding them! So tasty and easy to make!

  16. WOW! What a breakfast! This was such a stunner in our brunch table last week. Being able to make it beforehand made it so much easier the next day. Thanks for all the detailed information.

  17. This is such a great day starter! Everyone at my house loved it!

  18. I love make ahead breakfast dishes. The Gouda in this makes it so delicious!!

  19. YUM! This is going to be my next go to breakfast casserole!