A sausage strata is the kind of breakfast that leans into brunch, perfect for the weekend or holidays. A little bit sweet from figs, the savory strata is great for serving a crowd.
What is a Strata?
If you’ve never had a strata before, think of French toast, but take it savory and add in other ingredients for a breakfast casserole that gets baked. The basics are just layering all of the ingredients so that once they come out of the oven, every bite includes a little bit of everything in it.
The savory strata is also a great way to use leftover knobs and hunks of bread. We like a good sourdough cut into large chunks or French bread will work well too.
Sausage Strata Ideas
The recipe below uses chicken apple sausage, but you could opt instead for chicken mango sausage to give it a bit of tropical flair, or we’ve seen a habañero green chile sausage that would impart a bold and spicy taste. Alternatively, Italian sausage that’s browned would be a great swap instead—we love the flavors of California Figs with sausage, featured in another breakfast recipe that is our sausage fig biscuit bake.
We use goat cheese that’s extra creamy and soft, melting into the other ingredients for the strata. But, other swaps that would work well could be salty chunks of feta, or tangy cheddar shreds. Mozzarella and Monterey Jack shreds would also be a home run here too.
What to Serve with the Savory Strata
Brew a fresh pot of coffee. Mix together mimosas. Toss a simple salad of arugula.
Brunch Strata with California Figs, Sausage, and Sage
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 12 ounces chicken apple sausages cooked, halved lengthwise and cut diagonally into 1/2" slices
- 12 ounces French bread or Italian bread, with crusts, cut or torn into 3/4" pieces
- 2 cup Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Figs stems removed
- 4 ounces goat cheese fresh, crumbled
- 3 tbsp fresh sage leaves
- 7 eggs large
- 3 cups milk
- 3/4 tsp table salt
- 2 tbsp chopped pecans
- Maple syrup optional – for serving
- In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, warm the oil. Add the sausage and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 3 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat and set aside.
- Spray a 2 1/2- to 3-quart casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray. Arrange 1/3 of the bread in the dish. Top with 1/3 of the sausage, 1/3 of the figs, 1/3 of the cheese, and 1/3 of the sage. Repeat 2 times, making 3 layers. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk the eggs. Whisk in the milk and salt. Pour the egg mixture over the casserole and set aside at room temperature for 20 minutes or covered in the refrigerator for as long as overnight. (If refrigerated, return the casserole to room temperature before proceeding.)
- Meanwhile, heat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Cover the casserole loosely with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil, sprinkle the pecans on top, and continue baking until browned and a knife inserted in the center comes out only a little wet, 15 to 20 minutes.
- Let the strata stand 10 minutes. Serve warm, with maple syrup, if using, alongside.