If you are looking for a make-ahead breakfast casserole for Christmas morning, look no further. This Cranberry Apple Christmas Casserole will be a huge hit with the whole family and it can be assembled the day before. It’s made with vanilla Greek yogurt, fresh cranberries, sourdough bread, eggs and it’s topped with a crunchy nut streusel topping.
Last year, I shared my sausage apple breakfast strata with cheddar, and you all loved it so much, I knew I would have to share a sweet counterpart this holiday season. I originally made it with just cinnamon and apples but the recipe seemed a little… well, not worthy of Christmas morning, if you know what I mean. It was good- and easy- but not celebration worthy.
So I added in some fresh cranberries for a seasonal burst of cheer, and a crunchy and sweet streusel topping with oats and nuts and the whole casserole was transformed. Just Like That!
I love the fact that the casserole is assembled the day before, so that on Christmas morning, all you have to do it pop it in the oven. I even made the streusel the day before, and kept that in a separate container. Once the casserole is heated through, remove the foil, add on the topping and brown it a bit.
I used Vanilla Greek Yogurt in the custard like this Banana Maple Walnut Bread Pudding, and I love the tart note it adds to the custard.
It has the texture of bread pudding, dense and moist with a crunchy top. The streusel topping has the flavors of my Cranberry Apple Crumb Pie. And we poured maple syrup over it, so it’s also like a french toast casserole too. It’s like the best of all three things mashed-up into a Celebration-worthy Christmas Breakfast Casserole!
More Christmas Morning Recipes To Consider
Oh and if you haven’t already, make sure to check out my cookbook Maple: 100 Sweet and Savory Recipes Featuring Pure Maple Syrup. We sell signed copies over on our Maple Syrup website. It makes a Sweet gift for the holidays!
Make-ahead Cranberry Apple Christmas Breakfast Casserole. Make it the day before and refrigerate overnight. It has a crunchy nut streusel topping and is made with vanilla Greek yogurt.
- 2 tablespoons softened unsalted butter, divided
- 3 large firm sweet tart apples, such as honey crisp, Mutsu or gala peeled and diced
- 2/3 cup whole cranberries
- 8 large eggs
- 1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
- ½ cup milk
- ¼ cup maple syrup plus more for serving if desired
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 6 cups stale sourdough bread cubes, (no crusts) about 12 ounces
- 1/3 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
- ¼ cup rolled oats
- 3 tablespoons maple sugar or brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- pinch salt
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- ½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans
- Make Casserole: Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add apples and cook, stirring until the apples are starting to brown and become tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in cranberries.
- Butter a 9 by 13-inch casserole dish with the remaining butter.
- Whisk eggs in a large bowl. Add yogurt, milk, maple syrup and cinnamon and whisk to combine. Add bread and the apple mixture and stir with a silicone spatula until combined. Transfer to the prepared baking dish. Cover with foil and refrigerate up to 24 hours.
- Make Streusel Topping: Stir whole-wheat flour, oats, sugar, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl. Drizzle 3 tablespoons melted butter over the oat mixture, tossing with a fork. Sit until the crumbs are evenly moist. Add nuts and stir to completely combine. Refrigerate separately.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Remove casserole and topping from the refrigerator.
- Bake casserole, covered, until heated through and steaming, 35 to 40 minutes. The topping may still be cold and stuck together in large clumps- break up any large pieces if necessary. Remove casserole from the oven. Remove foil and sprinkle the top with the streusel topping. Continue baking until the topping is golden and the casserole is puffed, 25 to 30 minutes.
- Allow casserole to cool 10 minutes before cutting into squares to serve. Warm additional maple syrup and serve with the breakfast bake if desired.