Christmas Morning Wife Saver

Last modified on September 4th, 2019 at 10:42 am

Celebrate Christmas morning with the ultimate Canadian breakfast casserole. Christmas Morning Wife Saver is made with layers of bread, ham, cheese and topped with an egg, milk and veggie mixture, and cereal topping. Make it the night before, pop it in the oven in the morning and serve with a fruit salad or holiday panettone.

Close up photo of finished Christmas Morning Wife Saver on plaid napkin

The Holiday Season is more than adventuring the mall, knocking gifts off a list and opening perfectly wrapped presents under the tree. It’s a time where the magic of the season is honoured with traditions passed down through generations; special moments that we hold close, adding meaning to our celebrations.

For me and my family these traditions include Christmas morning brunch with tiny foods picked out by me and my sister including jalapeño poppers and mini quiches, and other traditions like my Dad’s pepper pot. And for Philip, his family holiday tradition comes by the little name of Christmas Morning Wife Saver.

A baked Christmas Morning Wife Saver on a table in front of mini tree ornaments

Growing up with five siblings, Philip’s mom Patricia needed a Christmas morning dish that could feed a large group, was easy to prepare, and even easier to serve. Enter Christmas Morning Wife Saver courtesy of the Best of Bridge cookbook. A true wife or mom saver, this Canadian classic was and still is the perfect Christmas morning meal to prepare for family.

What is Christmas Morning Wife Saver?

Christmas Morning Wife Saver is a breakfast casserole made with layers of bread, ham, cheese, bread and topped with an egg, milk and veggie mixture, and a cereal topping.

Other Holiday Brunch Recipes All Brunch Recipes

Hand holding a spatula removing a piece of Christmas Morning Wife Saver from the casserole dish

How to Make Our Christmas Morning Wife Saver

Putting a Chef Sous Chef spin on a 1980’s housewife secret, we passed on the traditional white bread of this dish for sourdough, swapped the ham for back bacon, added in jalapeños for flavour, old cheddar for sharpness and sweetened corn cereal to complement this savoury breakfast casserole

Ingredients for Christmas morning wife saver: Cornflakes, butter, egg, milk, Worcester sauce, onion, bread, cheese, jalapeño, peameal bacon, and dry mustard

Ingredients for Christmas Morning Wife Saver

Sharp cheddar, sourdough bread, peameal bacon, eggs, whole milk, jalapeno peppers, onion, Worcestershire sauce, dry mustard, butter, honey corn cereal flakes, salt and pepper.

Make a Breakfast Casserole Sandwich

Place 4 slices of bread, crusts removed, on the base of a buttered 9” x 9” oven safe casserole dish. Use an additional 2 slices of bread to fill in any gaps in the base. Layer slices of peameal bacon slices on top of the bread. Sprinkle 2 1/2 cups of grated cheese evenly on top of the bacon. Complete the “casserole sandwich” by covering the cheese with another 4 slices of bread.

Man's hand sprinkling cheese on breakfast casserole with Christmas tree in the background

Make the Eggs and Get Soaking

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 5 eggs, 2 1/2 cups of milk, 1 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce, 3/4 tsp dry mustard, pepper, salt, 1 diced jalapeño pepper, and 1/2 diced onion. Pour the mixture over the entire casserole, cover and let sit in the refrigerator overnight, or up to two days.

Top and Bake

When you get up the next morning, remove the wife saver from the fridge. Preheat your oven to 350° F. Melt 1/2 cup butter and pour over the strata, then top with 2 cups of crushed honey flake cereal. Bake, uncovered for 1 hour. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Finished Christmas Morning Wife Saver with slice removed

Helpful Tools and Ingredients to Make Christmas Morning Wife Saver

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Christmas Morning Wife Saver

A flat lay of the finished Christmas Morning Wife Saver in a square casserole dish with a plaid napkin and mini Christmas tree ornaments

A Christmas Morning tradition in our household, Christmas Morning Wife Saver is a Canadian classic dish with peameal bacon and melty Canadian cheese layered between bread and soaked overnight in milk and eggs. We slightly altered the original recipe, created by Best of Bridge, adding jalapeños for additional spice and topped the casserole with honey cereal flakes to provide a sweet crunch.

  • Author: Chef Sous Chef
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Food + Drink, Brunch, Main
  • Cuisine: Canadian
Scale

Ingredients

  • 200g Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded (about 2 1/2 cups)
  • 12 large slices sourdough bread, crusts removed
  • 8 slices peameal bacon
  • 5 large eggs
  • 2 ½ cups whole milk
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeds removed and diced (about ¼ cup)
  • ½ small onion, diced (about ¼ cup)
  • 1 ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • ¾ tsp dry mustard
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 2 cups honey cereal flakes, crushed

Instructions

No. 1 | Place 4 slices of bread on the based of a buttered 9” x 9” oven safe casserole dish. Use an additional 2 slices of bread to fill in any gaps in the base.

No. 2 | Layer the peameal bacon slices on top of the bread. Then sprinkle the grated cheese evenly on top of the bacon. Cover with the remaining bread to make a “casserole sandwich.”

No. 3 | In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, Worcestershire sauce, dry mustard, pepper, salt, jalapeño peppers, and onion. Pour the mixture over the entire casserole, cover and let sit in the refrigerator overnight, or up to two days.

No. 4 | In the morning, preheat your oven to 350°. Pour the melted butter over the casserole then cover with the crushed cereal.

No. 5 | Bake, uncovered for 1 hour. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Serving a slice of Christmas Morning Wife Saver

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    Jane A
    December 11, 2017 at 10:16 pm

    I grew up in Calgary and this was my favourite Christmas dish. You guys made it look so beautiful. Love the addition of Jalapeño peppers!

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