Start day with well-rounded breakfast

healthy: Make the night before, pop in oven in the a.m.

The Associated PressAugust 29, 2012 

When the kids are heading back to school, one of the best things you can do is start them off with a healthy breakfast.

But we know that sometimes the chaos of trying to get them out the door in the morning makes this a challenge. So we created this breakfast with that in mind.

Assembled entirely the night before, this warm and satisfying breakfast casserole has all the makings of a great start to the day — whole-grains, lean protein, even some fruit. All you have to do in the morning is turn on the oven and pop the casserole in for a few minutes. And consider saving a piece for yourself to rewarm for lunch with a salad.

Apple and Ham Breakfast Casserole

4 ounces deli ham, chopped

3 apples, peeled, cored, diced

6 slices whole-grain bread, cubed

1/2 cup low-fat shredded cheddar cheese

8 egg whites

3/4 cup fat-free half-and-half

1/4 cup grated Parmesan

The night before, in a medium casserole dish toss together the ham, apples, bread cubes and cheese. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, beat together the egg whites and fat-free half-and-half. Pour the egg mixture over the bread and meat. Use a fork to gently press the bread to help it absorb the liquid. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese over the casserole. Cover the dish with foil and refrigerate until morning.

When ready to bake, heat the oven to 375 degrees.

Bake casserole, covered, for 20 minutes, then uncover and bake for 10-15 more minutes, or until golden brown.

Nutrition information per serving (values are rounded to the nearest whole number): 160 calories, 30 calories from fat (19 percent of total calories), 3 g fat (1.5 g saturated, 0 g trans fats), 10 mg cholesterol, 21 g carbohydrate, 12 g protein, 2 g fiber, 440 mg sodium.

Requires overnight refrigeration | Servings: 8

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