Your Guide To The Best Brunch!

Christmas brunch is one of my favorite meals of all time!!! First of all, I’m a brunch person in general. Given the option for a moonlight dinner or a lingering, day time brunch in the sun. I will ALWAYS choose brunch! Maybe it’s the champagne cocktails? Maybe its the wide variety of sweet OR savory meal options? Either way–I’m already giddy for our Christmas Brunch!

As a child my family had an annual tradition of celebrating Christmas brunch with my HUGE extended family at my Aunt’s home. She had a gorgeous, Martha Stewart worthy spread displayed for all 100 of our family members to enjoy.
Christmas brunch was just as visually pleasing as it was delicious!! The holiday schedule was the same every year. After you devoured your presents from Santa, it was time to head over to Aunt Cee Cee’s in our Christmas jammies, (It was mandatory for all ages!!!) ready to say Merry Christmas and celebrate!

As we enjoyed brunch in our cozy pajamas and spent time with family, time would stand still! LIKE MAGIC!! Christmas Day was focused on being together, and the morning would slowly fade into the late afternoon! The kids would run around and share their new toys {I have nearly 40 first cousins!!!} and the adults would get lost in conversation around the dining tables. It was my favorite part of Christmas as a child.
I’ve tried to recreate this experience and slow our pace on Christmas Day. To savor the moments and the meal times. My only wish is that we could share Christmas brunch with our extended family, now spread too far and wide! {Le Sigh!}.

Now that I’m adult, it’s funny how I’ve pretty much recreated the brunch menu I enjoyed as a child unconsciously! The only difference is that most of the recipes I make are Gluten Free and Dairy Free! EXCEPT for Challah French Toast…Because sadly there just isn’t a GF substitute that comes close to the the real thing! On to Christmas Brunch Menu!

Smoked Salmon Breakfast Casserole

When you're looking for a breakfast that is both elegant and easy this holiday season, our crowd-pleasing casserole is just the ticket. T...
Image Credit: Caitlin Bensel

When you can’t decide between lox or eggs, make this Smoked Salmon Casserole by Cooking Light! It’s elegant, delicious, only takes minutes to put together, and its full of healthy fat and protein! I make the casserole the night before, cover, refrigerate and simply oven heat for 45 minutes in the morning. Serve it over a fresh bed of arugula, with a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic glaze and a side of avocado for a melt in your mouth meal!!!
RECIPE EDITS***I use olive oil instead of canola oil, sweet potatoes instead of russet potatoes (personal preference) and I skip the goat cheese.

If you want to serve a bagel {And a Mimosa!!!} along side this casserole and you live in Austin, head over to Trianon Coffee. They have the VERY best bagels in ATX. {In my opinion!}. If you need gluten free bagels that don’t taste gluten free head to Gluten Free Yourself Kitchen! I also LOVE Kite Hill Dairy Free Cream Cheese for the smear!

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Best Challah French Toast

Challah French Toast Recipe | Ina Garten | Food Network

Challah French Toast is my hubby’s addition to Christmas Brunch! He literally makes the very best Challah French Toast EVER so I stay out of his way and let him do his thing! I always buy two loaves of Challah to make sure we don’t run out!!!

We pretty much follow this recipe by The Kitchn to the letter. Even the real {grass-fed} butter and heavy cream! If you need to adjust this recipe to be dairy free I love using Califia Farms Holiday Nog in our French Toast!!! It provides a the perfect creamy, “holidayesque” flavor!!!

While it’s open–whip up some spiked Holiday Nog by simply adding 1/4 Cup of rum + 1/2 Cup of vanilla liqueur and a dash of cinnamon to 3 Cups of the Holiday Nog. I also LOVE these Holiday Nog Scones. Great for gifts.

Holiday Nog Almond style- they'd better have this still when I get back to the States!

Paleo Broccoli Quiche with Bacon

This Paleo broccoli quiche is easy to make and perfect as a make ahead breakfast or to bring to brunch for Easter, Mother's Day or anything else! It's loaded with caramelized onions, savory sautéed broccoli and crisp bacon, plus has a secret "cheesy" ingredient while remaining dairy free! Grain free, gluten free, healthy.
Photo Credit

I love sharing this paleo quiche by Paleo Running Mama. It’s been one of my breakfast favorites for years. Healthy, easy, and delicious!!! During the holiday season I save time and buy store bought GF pie crust from Trader Joe’s! Just be sure to bake the crust solo first before you add in the ingredients!

Image result for gluten free pie crust trader joe's'

If you have more adults than children, this Spring Herb Frittata by Running With Forks is another great egg based recipe for mature audience! {And adventurous kiddos}. It’s easy on the eyes, healthy and has a great herby flavor profile!

Spring Herb Frittata

GF Cinnamon Rolls by Danielle Walker

Cinnamon Rolls | From the cookbook Danielle Walker’s Against all Grain Celebrations | PC Erin Kunkel
Against All Grain

I’ve made this Cinnamon Roll recipe by Against All Grain for the past two Christmas mornings! It’s a big hit, and your family will not believe it’s dairy free & grain free! I love my gooey cinnamon roll alongside a BIG cup of coffee with steamed oat milk!! {YUM!} The grain free cinnamon roll recipe lives in Danielle Walker’s Celebrations Cookbook. {Get a copy}! If you don’t own one, watch this amazing tutorial on YouTube detailing how to perfect her Cinnamon Roll recipe! I re-watch it every year before I begin!

the best cinnamon rolls in a baking pan

If gluten and dairy are not troublesome in your home and you are looking for an amazing classic cinnamon roll recipe, I also love The Best Cinnamon Roll Recipe by Ambitious Kitchen!!! They are soooo yummy!! Her blog post and recipe are extremely detailed and easy to follow. There is also an amazing video showcasing how to get your roll on!! Save time and make them the night before!

Best-Ever Fluffy Waffles By Lexi’s Clean Kitchen

If you need an amazing paleo waffle recipe, I’ve got you covered! This recipe is soooo delicious and perfect for Christmas Brunch… or really any old Sunday morning! If you don’t feel like slaving over the waffle iron on Christmas morning (I don’t blame you!). You can make these up to five days ahead of time! I also really love this apple cinnamon version.

Lexi's Clean Kitchen Cookbook Review: Best-Ever Fluffy Waffles
Photo Credit

Eggs Benedict Salad Recipe

Eggs Benedict Salad
Food & Wine

If you need a gorgeous salad on your spread, make this Eggs Benedict Salad Recipe by Food & Wine! It’s decadent, healthy and cannot be missed! Greens, fiber and protein all on one plate!!! Hollandaise is my least favorite flavor profile, so I love how the author has replaced hollandaise with a yogurt based version!
If you need another lunch like option I also really love this Potato Quinoa Cake Recipe!!

I hope you have the tools you need to start thinking about what you and your family will create for a Healthy & Delicious Christmas Brunch!

Wishing you a Very Merry Christmas filled with love, laughter and yummy food!

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Elena

    This all looks soooo good! Great menu! That eggs Benni salad is getting added to my brunch menu!

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Welcome to Happy Dinner! I’m Cortney, a Holistic Health Coach, wellness entrepreneur, wife and Mama of two, here to make holistic health simple and engaging!

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