Make Ahead Christmas Morning Brekkie

The lead up to Christmas is busy. Christmas morning- especially with kids!- is even busier! Instead of rushing to organize a yummy breakfast in between unwrapping gifts, cooking dinner, or corralling the family to get to Grandma’s, why not whip up some make- ahead choices that you can prep in advance? No elves required. See below for 3 ideas for an easy & delicious Christmas morning menu.



Vanilla Chia Pudding 
A favourite from my friend Jessica over at North Shore Mama, we made this healthy pudding and LOVED it! It’s like having dessert for breakfast!

Ingredients:
1 cup black chia seeds
4 cups unsweetened almond or coconut milk
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
Toppings of choice, such as fresh berries, nuts, sliced bananas, etc

Directions:
1. In a medium bowl add the chia seeds, milk, & maple syrup & stir until combined.
2. Cover with plastic wrap and place in fridge overnight (or for a minimum of 2 hours).
3. To serve, scoop into bowl & add your toppings of choice (it would be cute to have a topping station!)
Tip: If the pudding seems a little thick, add a little bit extra milk or water until desired consistency is reached.


Breakfast Casserole
I came across a similar recipe on the Trader Joe’s website a few years ago and love this hearty brekkie that you can simply pop in the oven to warm on Christmas morning while you open pressies!

Ingredients:
1 loaf of your favourite bread* (swap out white or French for raisin or sourdough for a delicious twist!)
8 eggs
1/4 cup milk*
1 cup cooked sausage, bacon, and/ or ham
1 cup cheese, grated

*Or use your favourite gluten free version; for a dairy free casserole, I recommend unsweetened almond milk

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a casserole dish with oil or butter.
2. Cut or tear the bread into pieces approx. 1″ square & distribute evenly in the dish; cut the meat into desired pieces and do the same.
3. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and milk and pour over the bread & meat, making sure to coat everything.
4. Bake for 25 minutes (or until top starts to turn golden brown) and let stand to cool before placing in fridge (if eating right away, allow it to stand for a few minutes before serving).
5. In the morning, reheat oven to 350 degrees and warm for 10- 15 minutes.
Serve with ketchup or syrup depending if you prefer a sweet or savoury version.


Crockpot Apple Cider
What could be better than the smell of cider wafting through the house on Christmas morning? Add a shot of your favourite rum for an adult sippy.

Ingredients:

1L apple juice
1 cup cranberry juice (not cocktail!)
Rind or zest of 1 orange & lemon
2 cinnamon sticks
2 cloves
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
(you can also find pre- mixed mulling spices in most grocery stores, which are also delicious)
Optional: Fresh apples slices

Directions:
1. Place citrus zest & spices into a piece of cheesecloth and tie with food safe string (you can also use a coffee filter if you don’t have cheesecloth); it should look like a little bundle.
2. Pour juices into crockpot & pop you spice sachet into the liquid (add fresh apple slices if you’re including).
3. Set the crockpot on low & steep the cider over night for 8 hours or so. Check it occasionally to make sure the zests and spices don’t become too overpowering/ bitter. Remove spice sachet when cider has reached the flavour mix you like.
4. Set crockpot to ‘warm’ setting until ready to serve.

Image Sources:
Breakfast Casserole: Trader Joes
Vanilla Chia Pudding: North Shore Mama
Apple Cider: K Petrunia

December posts sponsored by Cutie Pie Boutique

Yummy Mummy Monday: Chicken A La King

Image  Source: http://stalkerville.net/recipe/chicken-la-king/
This is one of those dishes that was a go- to in my house growing up. It’s great in a pinch and is easily adapted for the ingredients you have on hand. You can even take it a step further & bake with parmesan for 15 minutes and enjoy it as a casserole (You could also skip the chicken all together and enjoy this as a vegetarian recipe). A yummy choice for this time of year.
Yummy Mummy Recipe: Chicken A La King
Serves 6+
Ingredients:
3 chicken breasts, cut into 1″ chunks
Olive oil
1 cup rice, uncooked
1 medium onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 can condensed mushroom soup
Worcestershire sauce 
Salt & pepper to taste
Other options: red pepper, celery, corn… choose veggies based on what your family likes

Directions:
1. First get the rice cooking; cook 1 cup rice in 2 cups liquid (I usually just use water, but chicken or veggie stock is nice for extra flavour). Bring to a boil; reduce, cover, & simmer for 15 minutes.
2. While rice is cooking, toss the chicken in a pan with some olive oil. Add onion & green pepper. Cook until chicken is cooked through & veggies are soft. 
3. Add the frozen peas & mushroom soup (if you would like, add an equal amount of milk for a thinner sauce). Stir until smooth; add a dash or two of worcestershire sauce & stir until blended.
4. Season with salt and pepper & serve over rice. 
Optional: If baking & eating as a casserole, combine rice with chicken & sauce mix in a casserole dish, top with parm, & bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

Yummy Mummy Recipe: Mexican Casserole

This week I accidentally made 2 Mexican dishes back to back. I usually try to have a variety, but the Hubby was happy with the menu options, so it wasn’t such a bad mistake to make. 😉

The first was my slow cooker veggie chilli, which I ended up using the next night as part of this recipe- I was quite impressed with myself. As per my usual routine, I checked out my Food & Recipe board on Pinterest for inspiration. I’d pinned this lil beauty from The Kitchen of a Navy Wife a while ago and was glad to have the chance to try it out. I’d say this was definitely a success- and major bonus: SUPER EASY.

Image Source: http://www.navywifecook.com/2013/01/mexican-casserole.html

Yummy Mummy Recipe: Mexican Casserole
Serves: 6

Ingredients:

1½ cup tortilla chips, crushed

½ pound ground beef
1½ cups salsa
1 can chili (with beans)- or use your own! 😉
8 oz sour cream
¾ cup canned diced tomatoes, drained (I skipped these)
Black olives (skipped these too- but could swap for jalapenos for an added kick)
½ cup cheddar cheese, shredded
Directions:
Preheat oven to 350.
Spread tortillas along base of baking dish.
Brown ground beef in pan. When cooked, add salsa & chilli; mix well.
Spread beef mixture over tortilla chips.
If using canned tomatoes, add on top of beef mixture.
Spread sour cream over top. Add olives and/ or jalapenos. Sprinkle with cheese.
Cook for 20- 30 minutes, or until cheese is nice & bubbly.
Serve with corn bread (recipe here) or tortilla chips. Ole!

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