A hearty, cheesy, and comforting hash brown casserole is the perfect dish to enjoy for a cozy breakfast or brunch. Piping hot shredded potatoes are combined with savory sausage, eggs, and cheese for a complete meal in one delicious casserole – no canned soup needed!
Simply bake the casserole for less than an hour, until bubbly and golden. Not only is this eggs and sausage hash brown breakfast casserole recipe easy, but it also happens to be gluten free and fantastic to make ahead and freeze!
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The Best Hash Brown Breakfast Casserole
No holiday morning would be complete without the family digging into a savory breakfast casserole. Sitting around the table and enjoying a hearty meal with sausage, eggs, and potatoes really gets you fueled up for a day of celebrations!
I discovered this easy recipe years ago when I was looking for a make-ahead shredded potato casserole that is gluten-free and doesn’t use canned soup.
After multiple tests and tweaks over many holidays, I am so pleased to share with you this amazing hash brown breakfast casserole recipe!
It’s our favorite to serve on Christmas Eve morning and for Mother’s Day brunch. Although I do also make it a few more times throughout the year due to popular demand.
There are only a handful of simple ingredients that you know and love in this hash brown eggs and sausage casserole.
Thawed shredded potatoes are quickly baked as you cook sausage, onion, and bell pepper on the stovetop. (But feel free to change things up and customize the ingredients to your tastes!)
Everything is added to the casserole dish with a layer of beaten eggs, topped with shredded cheese, and baked for less than 30 minutes.
Bonus: This brunch or breakfast casserole recipe is terrific to make ahead or even freeze! See how below “Tips To Make Ahead Hash Brown Casserole.”
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Shredded hash browns – My favorites are Ore Ida frozen or Simply Potatoes fresh hash browns. If you can’t find pre-shredded hash browns, you can also shred your own using a food processor or grater.
- Breakfast sausage – Any type of sausage will work with this recipe. You can use ground sausage, spicy or sweet depending on your preference.
- Bell pepper – I suggest using chopped bell pepper. You can also use other vegetables such as mushrooms, zucchini, or broccoli if you don’t like the taste of bell pepper.
- Onion – Any type of onion will work as long as it’s finely chopped.
- Eggs – Use lightly beaten eggs for structure.
- Whole milk – You can also use half and half.
- Sharp cheddar cheese – I suggest using grated and divided cheese for layering.
- Salt and pepper to taste – to balance the flavors.
Kitchen Tools Needed
How to Thaw Frozen Hash Brown Potatoes
In my experience, the best way to thaw frozen shredded potatoes is to spread them out on baking sheets or a casserole dish and let them defrost at room temperature. This takes about 30-60 minutes.
To defrost the hash browns faster, you can bake on a baking sheet for 15 minutes in a 170°F preheated oven.
Or simply thaw them overnight in the fridge! Keep a plate or container under the shredded potatoes while they defrost.
Note: Whether you use fresh or frozen hash browns do not rinse the shredded potatoes. They’ll absorb the water and then make your casserole soggy.
Keep thawed shredded potatoes in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
How to Make Sausage and Egg Hash Brown Casserole
Preheat the oven to 375°F, and spray a 9×13 casserole dish with nonstick spray.
Add the thawed or fresh shredded potatoes to the casserole dish and top with 1/2 cup of the cheddar cheese.
Spread the shredded cheddar cheese evenly over the potatoes. Bake for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook the sausage, pepper, and onion in a large skillet on the stovetop. Keep the heat on medium and continue to stir and cook until the sausage is no longer pink. Drain the fat from the skillet.
Mix together the eggs and milk in a medium bowl.
Now remove the casserole dish with hash browns from the oven. Evenly spread the sausage, pepper, and onion mixture on top of the potatoes – do not stir!
Then pour the eggs and milk on top.
Lastly, top with the grated cheese.
Bake for 25 minutes until lightly browned on top. Let the casserole cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Tips To Make Ahead Hash Brown Casserole
I usually prepare two pans of sausage hash brown breakfast casserole at a time. Then I am able to serve one that day or the next morning, and I freeze the other to keep on hand.
It’s great having a ready-to-go hearty casserole for brunches, meal trains, last-minute potlucks – or any weekend when you don’t feel like cooking!
If you plan to freeze, I recommend that you prepare the hash brown breakfast casserole in a foil container. That way you can easily go from countertop to freezer to oven.
Do not bake the casserole if you are freezing it as a make ahead meal. After you top the shredded potatoes and cooked sausage with eggs and cheese, let it cool completely at room temperature.
Then cover the pan with a layer of heavy-duty foil, and freeze for up to 3 months.
Bake the brunch casserole from frozen for 45 minutes (which is 15 minutes more than the standard recipe).
This eggs and sausage hash brown breakfast casserole can also be made a day or ahead of baking and serving.
Do not bake, but cover the cooled pan with foil and keep it in the fridge for up to 3 days. Then bake per the recipe.
What to Serve with Savory Breakfast Casserole
Classic garnishes and condiments for a cheesy breakfast casserole with eggs and sausage include:
- Sour cream or Greek yogurt
- Sliced green onions
- White gravy
- Hot sauce
Frequently Asked Questions
Absolutely yes, ground turkey sausage breakfast casserole is delicious!
Feel free to use just about any meat you like in this easy baked dish. It’s great with cooked diced ham or shredded turkey.
No meat? No problem! Simply leave out the sausage. Alternatively, you can add more bell pepper or use your favorite plant-based veggie sausage.
There are 12 servings in this recipe prepared in a 9×13 pan. Halve the ingredients and make the casserole in an 8×8 dish for approximately 6 servings. You can easily double the recipe and make it in two pans! I suggest you do this to have one breakfast casserole now and freeze the other for your next holiday brunch gathering.
This casserole will keep well for up to 4 or 5 days. Transfer cooled leftovers to an airtight container before placing them in the refrigerator.
Get the Best Savory Breakfast Casserole Recipe here
Sausage Hash Brown Breakfast Casserole
- large 9 x 13" casserole dish
- 16-20 ounces shredded hash browns, fresh or frozen (thawed) (I prefer Ore Ida frozen or Simply Potatoes fresh)
- 1 pound breakfast sausage
- 1 bell pepper, chopped
- ½ cup onion finely chopped (1 small onion)
- 8 eggs, lightly beaten
- ¾ cup whole milk or half and half
- 2½ cups cheddar cheese, grated, divided (I prefer using sharp cheddar)
- salt and black pepper
- Preheat oven to 375° Fahrenheit. Prepare a 9"x13" casserole dish by spraying it with cooking oil spray.
- Add hash browns to the casserole dish. Spread 1/2 cup of shredded cheddar cheese evenly over the top of the potatoes. Bake at 375º for 15 minutes.
- While the hash brown and cheese are baking, add the sausage, onion, and bell pepper to a skillet. Cook on medium heat until sausage is no longer pink, and the onions and peppers are softened. Drain fat.
- In a medium bowl, mix together eggs and milk or half and half.
- Remove hash browns from the oven. Spread the sausage mixture evenly over the potatoes (don't stir, just layer). Pour eggs and milk over the sausage. Top with2 cups of remaining grated cheese.
- Bake at 375º for 25 minutes, until the hash brown breakfast casserole is golden on top and bubbly and the top is set. Let cool 5 minutes before serving.