Spinach Strata

This spinach strata has a shortcut to pack a flavor punch – creamed spinach gives this so much a salty creaminess and keeps the ingredient list quite short. I made it as I would a bread pudding so while strata means layers, mine didn’t have to soak as long and came together so quickly. 

The Three Bite Rule - Spinach Strata

It poofs up like a souffle and then settles a bit. It is less eggy than a lot of breakfasts which was nice for variety. I loved it reheated too. I intended it to be a ready-made, savory breakfast but I needed a handheld one for en route to the bus stop. This became lunch and I was not mad about it. I microwaved on low (try a defrost or reheat setting) and thank me later. 

Spinach Strata
Ingredients: (for ~6 servings)

1 loaf bread (Italian or focaccia or sourdough)
1 package creamed spinach
3-4 eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
salt & pepper
1-2 cups fresh greens (I used baby arugula)
1/2-3/4 cup shredded cheese
3 tablespoons parmesan 

Directions: 
Slice and cube the bread – let it sit out for a few hours to get stale. 
Warm the creamed spinach according to the package. Then stir and cool. 

The Three Bite Rule - Spinach Strata

Mix up the eggs, milk, mustard, salt and pepper – go gentle on the salt since the creamed spinach will likely provide enough salt. 
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and spray a 9×9 baking dish. 
Gently mix together the bread cubes, creamed spinach, egg mixture, and fresh greens. Ensure it is all evenly coated. 

The Three Bite Rule - Spinach Strata

Spoon half into the baking dish, add a sprinkle of each cheese, top with remaining bread mix and finish with the remaining cheeses. 

The Three Bite Rule - Spinach Strata

Bake ~40 minutes. 
Enjoy!

The Three Bite Rule - Spinach Strata

Let me declare my love for creamed spinach as an ingredient as we never eat it as a side- I love it mixed into pasta to be a sauce, or in a calzone for some cheesiness, or into the ricotta mixture for stuffed shells or lasagna. Also, since it lives in the freezer, that makes it very handy. The salt content is up there, but that is usually based on 2-3 servings and I often use it as ~6 servings. 

Loaded Savory Waffle

The Three Bite Rule - Savory Waffle

These waffles have everything: sausage, eggs, cheese, hash browns, and everything bagel seasoning- all wafflized! They’re fluffy and filling with a nice crunch. I wake up first wanting coffee, then ready for a savory breakfast. I don’t usually want pastries … Continue reading 

Mocha Cinnamon Rolls

Breakfast upgrade with very minimal effort. I don’t mess with dough – especially first thing in the morning and a few touches made for a fun breakfast.

The Three Bite Rule - Mocha Cinnamon Rolls

Mocha Cinnamon Rolls:
Ingredients:

1 roll cinnamon rolls (with frosting)
1/4 cup chocolate chips
1 espresso shot (or 1-2 oz very strong instant coffee) cooled

Directions:
Separate out the cinnamon rolls into a baking pan sprayed with non-stick spray. Push the chocolate chips into the cinnamon coiled parts.

The Three Bite Rule - Mocha Cinnamon Rolls

Bake according to the package.
While the rolls are baking, Mix the espresso into the frosting.
Spread the frosting onto the baked rolls.

The Three Bite Rule - Mocha Cinnamon Rolls

Enjoy!

These were fun. I mixed up a double-y strong few tablespoons of instant coffee. It worked so well. Also, next time I’d go for full frosting- instead of the glaze that comes with it. That would be even better!

Nutella Chia Pudding with Strawberries

While I’d be most likely to head savory for breakfast – this idea stuck with me for ease of prepping in advance, and I love love nutella.

The Three Bite Rule - Chocolate Chia Pudding

I’m also into this because it wasn’t so so so sweet – and was something I could feel good about.

Nutella Chia Pudding with Strawberries
Ingredients: (serves 2)

1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 tablespoon Nutella
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup chia seeds
~1-2 cups strawberries (mine were frozen, defrosted, sliced)
Sprinkle of sugar & sprinkle of water
whipped cream

Directions:
Mix together the cocoa powder, nutella, vanilla extract, and a splash of milk to mix into a paste. Then add more milk until completely mixed.
Add in the chia seeds and stir well.

The Three Bite Rule - Chocolate Chia Pudding

Refrigerate overnight, or at least 3+ hours (give an additional stir after the first 30-minutes).
Slice the strawberries & add a sprinkle of sugar and water (can be done ahead).
Serve with strawberries & whipped cream.

The Three Bite Rule - Chocolate Chia Pudding

Enjoy!

The nutella provides the flavor and sweetness and the cocoa powder adds to the chocolate flavor without being sugary.

Let’s talk about the texture – it is slippery and cool. It wouldn’t be for everyone. I need some variety in texture – the strawberries help that for me. This would be good topped with something crunchy like granola, nuts, cereal, etc. Frozen dark cherries would be delightful too!

Two servings is ideal so you aren’t committed to eating this all week. It is so much easier than baked oatmeal or anything that requires any cooking!

Sweet Potato & Bacon Hash

Happy 2022! We started the new year with this fun breakfast after getting to sleep in and it was great – a bit decadent from the bacon and the maple aoli but a bit smartly balanced from the sweet potato and egg.

The Three Bite Rule - Sweet Potato & Bacon Hash

Both the bacon and sweet potato can be made ahead – or cooked a few ways. That would even turn it into a speedy weekday breakfast too!

Sweet Potato & Bacon Hash
Ingredients: (for 2)

1 sweet potato
4 strips of bacon
2 tablespoons mayo
2-3 teaspoons maple syrup
2-4 eggs

Directions:
Peal and chop the sweet potato into bite-sized pieces. Then cook (bake ~20 minutes or airfry ~10 minutes or pan fry ~ 10 minutes & bonus points if cooking them in the bacon fat!)
Fry the bacon – ~20 minutes in the oven or chop into small pieces and pan fry for ~7 minutes.
Mix together the mayo and syrup together. Start with some of the syrup and add more to taste.

The Three Bite Rule - Sweet Potato & Bacon Hash

Mix together the sweet potatoes and chopped bacon and divide onto plates. Drizzle half of the aoli on top.
Cook the eggs sunny-side or over easy with salt and pepper.
Put the eggs on top and drizzle remaining maple aoli on top.
Enjoy!

The Three Bite Rule - Sweet Potato & Bacon Hash

I loved this. The runny yolk is the best. The aoli could swap the maple with hot sauce instead! Add some onions and peppers. Add some garlic. Add in some black beans. Go for what you like! A shred of cheese would be delicious too.

Our bacon was leftover from NYE sliders. Sometimes I make it in the oven or anytime it is crumbled means pan frying in little pieces would be easy too. This would be ideal as breakfast-for-dinner too!

Lemonade Pancakes with Strawberries

These took a few tries to get real lemonade flavor but were so fun! They are lemony and sweeter than a regular pancake. Top with some strawberries for arguably one of the best combos out there!

The Three Bite Rule - Lemonade Pancakes

Lemonade Pancakes with Strawberries
Ingredients (for ~5 pancakes)

1 cup pancake mix
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
3/4 cup lemonade
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 drops yellow food coloring (optional)
~6 large strawberries
1/2 teaspoon sugar

Directions:
Mix together the pancake mix, lemon zest, and lemon juice until really well mixed.

The Three Bite Rule - Lemonade Pancakes

Add in the lemonade and yellow food coloring (if using).
Preheat a griddle or large skillet.
Spray with non-stick spray or butter and scoop the batter onto the pan.
Cook for ~3 minutes, once they bubble, flip and cook another few minutes.
While the pancakes cook, cut the strawberries into slices. Sprinkle in a little sugar and a tablespoon of water. Stir well.
Top the pancakes with the strawberries. Enjoy!

The Three Bite Rule - Lemonade Pancakes

I loved these! The yellow was just to further encourage the lemon-ness. We made them first with just lemonade and there was zero lemon flavor.

Alternatively, spread some lemon curd (often sold near jelly) on a pancake and top with some strawberries for a similar vibe!

Waffle Breakfast Burger

For the 10th year of a Birthday Burger, we had this breakfast burger on a waffle with sausage mixed into the patty, a maple aoli, and some goey gouda cheese. Happy birthday my love!

The Three Bite Rule - Waffle Breakfast Burger

Waffle Breakfast Burger
Ingredients: (serves ~4 with a smaller burgers like sliders)
1 Belgian waffle
~3/4 pound ground beef/pork/chicken
~1/4 pound breakfast sausage
2 tablespoons mayo
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
4 slices gouda cheese
1 small sliced tomato

Directions:
Prepare waffle (optional: I added some shredded cheddar into the batter) and let it cool. Slice into 4ths, and sliced in half width-wise for 4 ‘buns’. (2 ‘buns’ pictured). Toast them before serving if they were made in advance.

The Three Bite Rule - Waffle Breakfast Burger

Mix together the ground meat and breakfast sausage until incorporated but not overworked. Preheat the grill.
Grill the burgers until cooked through (depends on the ground meat and the pork). Top with cheese.
While the burgers cook, whisk together the mayo, maple syrup and hot sauce.

The Three Bite Rule - Waffle Breakfast Burger

Assemble the burgers with a spread of sauce on the insides of the waffles (since I halved mine) and add the burgers and sliced tomato.
Enjoy!

The Three Bite Rule - Waffle Breakfast Burger

These were so fun! I had ground pork with the breakfast sausage. I could definitely taste both flavors. Maple breakfast sausage might be very sweet but give it a go!

They would be so fun for a brunch. Using formed sausage patties on tiny waffles (with the cheese and tomato and sauce) would be a great finger food for a breakfast spread!

Adaptations:
Use frozen waffles (a standard one, like an Eggo waffle, would need a whole waffle as the top bun and a whole waffle as the bottom bun – those cannot be halved width-wise! They could be cut smaller to fit a slider-size burger too)
Swap any cheese!
Add a fried egg!
Use maple sausage!
Go for all the hot-sauce you’d like – for me, it was really to keep the sauce from being so so sweet.

The Historical Timeline of the Birthday Burgers:
2020 it was a BLT burger with ground bacon IN the burger and tomato jam
2019 it was a Manchego Burger with manchego, quince jam, and arugula
2018 it was a Garlic Lovers Burger with garlic butter, chips, garlic aoli and white cheddar.
2017 it was an Ultimate Mexican Burger with queso, guac, and beans.
2016 it was a Mac & Cheese Stuffed Burger topped with bacon, onions, and tomato.
2015 it was a Picnic Burger with slaw & potato sticks
2014 it was a German Burger with horseradish, caramelized onions, pickles and a pretzel roll
2013 it was a Vermont Burger with maple mayo, cheddar, bacon, and spinach
2012 it was a Bacon Wrapped Burger – enough said
2011 it was a Stuffed Burger stuffed with bacon & cheddar or bacon & blue cheese

Banana Pancakes with Nutella Whipped Cream

If nothing else, make this nutella whipped cream to even just eat by itself!

The Three Bite Rule - Banana Pancakes with Nutella Whipped Cream

These pancakes are ebelskivers or pancake balls and all this would be just as delightful as a regular pancake but these little dip-able balls are a fun treat. Dipping into nutella whipped cream was pure magic.

Banana Pancakes with Nutella Whipped Cream
Ingredients:

Pancake mix + water (according to the mix)
1 ripe banana
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons confectioners sugar
1 tablespoon nutella

Directions:
Put a metal mixing bowl and beaters into the freezer for at least 30 minutes before making the whipped cream.
Mix together the pancake batter according to the package (mine was 1 cup mix to 2/3 cup water but did 1:1 for a runnier mix which helps when making ebelskivers).
Chop the banana into slices for flat pancakes or dices for ebelskivers.
Add the pancake mix to the warm, sprayed pan and add in the banana.
Flip & keep warm when cooked.
For the nutella whipped cream, beat the heavy whipping cream, vanilla, and confectioners sugar into whipped cream. Then add the nutella and beat until mixed.
Serve the nutella whipped cream to dip & enjoy!

The Three Bite Rule - Banana Pancakes with Nutella Whipped Cream

These were so fun! I forgot how much I like ebelskivers – it is the pancake version of a doughnut! Pieces of fruit and any kind of chips are great. Jelly is like molten lava and messy to add so we don’t do that anymore! They take a tiny bit of patience and practice but the small batch size is so helpful and they don’t stick to eachother when kept warm (or to freeze) so they’re easy to make in advance or bring somewhere!

You just might find me eating nutella whipped cream as dessert on the regular over here!