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Florida Blueberry Breakfast Casserole

Ingredients

2 cups fresh Florida blueberries, rinsed and dried

1 lemon, zested

1 loaf bread or 6-8 small rolls (or your favorite, about 5-6 cups)

4 ounces low-fat cream cheese

6-8 large eggs, beaten

1 1/2  cups milk (whole, 2%, or plant-based)

1/4-1/2 cup maple syrup (depending on how sweet you want)

½ stick butter, melted

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Pinch of sea salt

Nonstick cooking spray

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut bread into 1-inch cubes. Cut cream cheese into small cubes. Lightly spray a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Place half of the bread cubes in the dish. Evenly place the cream cheese cubes and 1 cup of the blueberries over the bread. Add the remaining bread cubes and blueberries to the top of the casserole. In a medium bowl combine eggs, milk, maple syrup, vanilla extract, lemon zest, salt, and butter. Slowly pour this mixture over bread. Loosely cover with foil and bake for approximately 45-60 minutes. Uncover and finish baking until cooked throughout (center should be set) approximately 10 more minutes or until top appears golden brown. Let cool slightly and serve warm with extra maple syrup on the side.

Fresh tip: change with seasonal Florida fruit (like strawberries) and additional ingredients as desired (such as white chocolate chips, nuts, and seeds).

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