Build a better brunch with bacon, whole grains, fruits, veggies


Bacon and eggs are the staples of most holiday brunches. Dietitian Kim Galeaz wants everyone to build an even BETTER brunch this year.

How? By adding more fruits, vegetables, whole-grains and lean breakfast meats. She has recipes to inspire you with all the right nutrition and even a festive, holiday-spin on that brunch favorite: bacon.

Potato Pear Breakfast Hash

Courtesy of Kim Galeaz
  • 1 ½ pounds red potatoes, unpeeled and cut into ¾-inch pieces (at least 4 ½ cups)
  • 1 ½ pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into ¾-inch pieces (at least 4 ½ cups)
  • 1 ¼ pounds green Anjou pears, unpeeled and cut into ¾ to 1-inch pieces (about 2 ½ cups)
  • 1 ½ cups coarsely chopped onion
  • 3 large garlic cloves, very finely minced
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 – 2 ½ tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper

Heat oven to 400⁰F. Oil two 18×13-inch sheet pans (or use parchment paper or foil). Combine both potatoes, pears, onion, garlic and olive oil in very large bowl; toss lightly. Add rosemary, salt and pepper and toss again. Divide between two sheet pans evenly. Cook 28 to 35 minutes, stirring at halfway point, until potatoes are desired doneness. Serve hot. Refrigerate leftovers in tightly covered container and use within 4 to 5 days. Makes about 9 ¾ cups total hash (8 to 10 servings)

Kim’s Candied Bacon

Courtesy of Kim Galeaz
  • 1 package (24 oz.) thick cut hickory-smoked bacon
  • 2/3 cup very firmly packed light brown sugar
  • ½ – ¾ teaspoon cayenne red pepper (depending on your preferred heat level)
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons ground black pepper

Heat oven to 350⁰F. Line two 18×13 sheet pans with foil. Set aside. Whisk brown sugar, cayenne pepper and black pepper together in a large bowl. Add bacon (either whole slices or half slices) and toss well with hands, thoroughly coating each piece of bacon. Divide and arrange bacon on both sheet pans. Cook 15 minutes, then flip all slices to other side. Return to oven and cook another 17 to 22 minutes, or until bacon is slightly crisp but not burnt. (Watch closely, as the sugar will cause bacon to darken too much and burn if over-cooked.) When done, place pans on wire cooling racks for just one minute. Then remove bacon slices to parchment paper or foil to cool completely. Enjoy immediately or store leftover bacon tightly covered container or zippered freezer bag. Refrigerate or freeze. Makes about 16 to 20 slices of bacon.

Cranberry Walnut Orange Pancakes

Courtesy of Kim Galeaz
  • 2 cups white whole wheat flour (such as King Arthur brand)
  • 2 cups Kroger quick cooking oats, uncooked
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup very firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ cups coarsely chopped fresh cranberries or dried cranberries*
  • 1 1/3 cups chopped walnuts
  • 3 ¾ to 4 cups full-fat whole buttermilk
  • 4 large eggs
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons orange zest

Preheat large griddle to 325⁰F (or a large skillet over medium to medium-high heat). In a large bowl, whisk flour, oats, brown sugar, baking powder and salt until well blended. Lightly stir in cranberries and walnuts. In a separate medium bowl, whisk buttermilk, eggs, oil, vanilla extract and orange zest. Lightly stir liquid mixture into dry mixture and stir only until all ingredients are wet. Avoid overbeating. Pour ¼-cup portions of batter on hot griddle or skillet. (Kim uses 325⁰F on her griddle.) Cook until bubbles form, then flip and cook until other side is brown and done. Enjoy immediately with favorite toppings. Leftover Timesaver tip: Wrap 2 or 3 pancakes together in plastic wrap, then place all portions in a zippered freezer bag. Freeze. Take out a portion when needed for a fast breakfast and microwave until heated thoroughly. Makes about 20 to 24 pancakes.

*If you like tarter fruits, using fresh cranberries will give you just that. Use the ½ cup sugar if using fresh cranberries.

*Use dried cranberries if you don’t care for tartness and 1/3 cup sugar.

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