Now that we’ve told you how to set up and serve your brunch it’s time for the best part, the food. The beauty of a brunch is the balance of items both savory and sweet. In the essence of its name it draws its menu items from both breakfast and lunch. Traditionally you would serve the following:
- One meat dish ( or fish )
- An main course dish, typically with eggs
- An assortment of breads, muffins and breakfast pastries
- 1- 3 side dishes
- Coffee and other beverages
Your menu can vary depending on the amount of people, the occasion, and how casual or formal your brunch is. Unless you’re hiring a slew of servers, otherwise you’ll want to keep your dishes easy and manageable. Stick to items that you know, and items that are good for groups of people. The most important tip we can give you is to prepare anything you can the night before. Preparing most of your meals the night before helps immensely when you’re serving brunch on a holiday or after celebrating a holiday the night before. We’ve taken the list above and broken it down to help you figure out how to have the easiest and tastiest brunch.
The Meat Dish
The lunch part is brunch is generally represented in the meat dish. Ham is great for this dish because not only is it a great lunch meat but it also blends nicely with breakfast dishes. Glazed ham is also a traditional meat cooked for holidays like Easter and Christmas. For a more formal brunch you could also try a beef tenderloin or a prime rib. We recommend leaving your meat cooking for the day of. But what’s great about serving a meat like ham is that it is already cooked so you only have to pop it in the oven a few hours before. Glazing a ham is simple, and delicious and we highly recommend it. If you’re serving a vegetarian brunch or want a vegetarian main dish option, you can serve a fish dish like salmon (smoked, or baked would work well for brunch).
Here is a great recipe for an essential honey glazed ham
If you want to try something different with your ham try this brown sugar bourbon glazed ham
Read more about cooking and serving a traditional Easter ham here
You can also check out our Easter Recipes Pinterest board for more Ham recipes
You can buy delicious salmon that’s already smoked and ready to serve at your local grocery store. Lox, which today refers to any kind of salmon that is smoked in sliced thin, is popular for brunch because it pairs well with bagels, cheeses, eggs and much more.
If you want to try a main dish with salmon try this cedar planked salmon
Find more fish recipes for brunch on our Pinterest board
A Main Course Dish, With Eggs
Eggs are the quintessential brunch food. They are easy to prepare and you have countless options. The best part is that most egg recipes can prepared the night before. Typically, brunch eggs aren’t your basic scrambled eggs. A brunch egg dish is flavorful, satisfying and full of comfort. For an egg brunch dish you can try quiche, frittata strata or a breakfast casserole. These dishes are easy to prepare, serve and are great for groups of people. For a spring brunch you can try incorporating seasonal vegetable’s like asparagus into your egg dishes .
-Omelets are too time consuming for brunch ( unless you’re hiring a staff). Omelet rolls on the other hand are just as delicious and way easier to prepare. You can easily tailor them to what you or your company likes.
-This springtime quiche is light, seasonal and perfect for brunch! You can also make it ahead of time and freeze it.
-This rich and decadent brie and mushroom strata is a crowd pleaser. Its name may sound fancy but it’s an easy make ahead breakfast casserole that will make a delicious addition to your brunch menu
-This frittata recipe is simple and tasty. It can also easily be adjusted based on what vegetables you have in your kitchen.
Check out our Pinterest board for more of our favorite egg recipes for brunch and holidays.
Breads, muffins and pastries
Quick breads and muffins are great items for the sweet part of your brunch. Coffee cakes, tartes, scones and other pastries also make great brunch foods. They’re great because you can make or buy them in large batches and they’re easy to self-serve. You don’t have to overdo it with these. You may only need a basket of muffins and a loaf of banana bread depending on how many people are coming to your brunch. You can also bake or buy a lot of these items ahead of time. If you’re not a baker, or don’t have time to bake, try ordering items from your local bakery. Just make sure you remember to have someone pick them up the day before or the day of!
Bread, muffin and pastry recipes:
-This lemon-almond bread is quick and easy to prepare. It’s delicious sweet and tangy lemon glaze is perfect for a spring brunch
-These carrot cake muffins are perfect for spring and Easter brunches. They’re easy and you probably already have most of the ingredients in your pantry!
-This iced raspberry Danish braid is buttery, flaky, and goes perfect with coffee.
The number of side dishes you need depends on how many you’re feeding. Typically for a small to medium crowd you need 1- 3 side dishes. If you’re hosting a large or hungry bunch then you may want to add additional 1 or 2 sides. You can represent both lunch and breakfast in your side dishes. Bacon, sausage, and hash brown varieties are typical breakfast side dishes. Seasonal vegetables, potatoes, or pasta salads are popular side dishes that are used to represent lunch. If you’re celebrating a holiday then you also may want to incorporate traditional side dishes for that holiday.
Bacon and sausage
These are two things that should typically be made the day of. Thankfully, they’re easy to make on the stove or in the microwave so you don’t need to allot a large amount of time. You can also cook them in the morning and keep them in a warmer if you’re having a later brunch.
This maple- glazed sausage recipe is an easy way to add a little extra to your store bought breakfast links.
Asparagus is a great vegetable side dish for brunch. They can be prepared in various ways that are fast, easy, and great for crowds.
This grilled asparagus with a bacon vinaigrette would pair perfectly with any brunch menu.
Like asparagus potatoes can also be cooked in many ways that are fast, easy and delicious. You can simply roast them in herbs or try making a potato casserole ahead of time to save time.
This loaded scalloped sweet potato casserole makes a great savory and sweet dish for brunch. It’s hearty and healthy and pairs well with breakfast and lunch foods.
For a holiday brunch link Easter you may want to incorporate a traditional holiday dish. For many, a traditional side dish for Easter are deviled eggs.
This is an easy traditional recipe for deviled eggs
You can also check out our Pinterest board for more deviled eggs recipes with a twist.
Drinks, Dessert, and More
The two cocktail staples of brunch are typically mimosas and bloody mary’s.
Learn how to make the perfect Mimosa here
For some it’s about the kick, for some it’s about the garnishes. Learn how to create a classic Bloody Mary here and check out our Pinterest board for more recipes.
If you’re serving a lot of breakfast breads and pastries you may not need to serve desserts as well. For holidays you can also make seasonal cookies or other items.
This monkey bread with caramel sauce is a decadent delight. It’s a great breakfast/brunch dessert and perfect for company.
Remember it’s all about having a fun time with family and friends. Don’t overdo yourself, stick to items that you know you can cook.
Other great items for brunch include:
French toast casserole, baked brie, biscuits, salads, and coffee cake.
What are your favorite brunch recipes? Let us know in the comments!Continue reading