Southern Christmas Brunch Menu & Ideas

This post is sponsored by Smithfield. The opinions in this post and my love of their delicious products is all my own.

There's just something so special about breakfast on Christmas morning. Of course it isn't the star of the show; it never will be. The time with family and the magic of Christmas have that locked down. But a memorable Christmas breakfast or brunch is a great accessory to an already perfect morning.

Ever since Emmie was small, I've tried to go out of my way every year to make Christmas morning breakfast extra special for our family. We're going to be with extended family this year for Christmas morning, but I still wanted to give my kids a taste of home and keep that tradition alive even if we're away from our own place.

That's going to take a little bit of planning in advance. I wanted to make sure I kind of had all of my ducks in a row before we got to the big day, so a few days ago, I sat down and planned out what I wanted to do!

smithfield bacon in a mason jar with biscuits

When I was planning, I came across these pretty pictures from Smithfield Bacon…and that's really all the push I needed to do something similar. I absolutely loved the idea of doing a Smithfield Bacon Bar, but I wanted to put our own little spin on it. So, this year, we'll be having a Southern Brunch Bar for Christmas morning!

pinning label to mason jar of bacon

You've got to love a good breakfast/brunch bar. The idea is simple: throw out the ingredients and let everyone put their own breakfast together. Let your guests (or in my case, your hosts) customize their own breakfast. You don't have to sweat out what everybody loves and they get their favorites…it's a win/win!

Love this menu for a Southern Christmas Brunch!  Free menu and food label printables included.

I did a little bit of brainstorming and came up with our Christmas menu. It will include a few staples as the base of the dish (Garlic Cheese Grits, Bacon Cheddar Biscuits, and Crispy Ham & Hashbrown Baskets) and tons of yummy toppings to mix and match.

(And of course I had to make a printable out of this…you can click here to download a printable copy without my watermark!)

labels for bacon before attaching to jars

I was also totally inspired by these cute food labels. I thought it would be fun to do a few little labels that matched my menu.

You can click the links below the images to download these labels (without a watermark) for your next brunch! Just print on a heavier card stock and cut pages into fourths (kind of like I did for these).

Love this menu for a Southern Christmas Brunch!  Free menu and food label printables included.

Download blue page here.
Download blank copy here.

Love this menu for a Southern Christmas Brunch!  Free menu and food label printables included.

Download brown page here.
Download blank copy here.

Love this menu for a Southern Christmas Brunch!  Free menu and food label printables included.

Download red page here.
Download blank copy here.

southern Christmas brunch spread on a table

I am really big on making breakfast/brunch for Christmas morning extra special. I remember many of the delicious Christmas morning meals I had growing up, and many of those meals consisted of things I've included in this brunch. It's full of Southern specialties that my family has loved for years.

I also wanted to make sure I didn't make the meal too fussy. Pretty much everything in this meal can be made ahead of time and reheated on Christmas morning. I don't want to miss anything on Christmas morning because I'm stressing over prepping food. This menu is perfect for focusing on what's really important: time with family.

bowl of cheese grits.

One of these days, I'm going to be able to make cheese grits as well as my father-in-law. ? He's the family expert at it. I've watched him a few times, and I still can't quite get it right. But I'll share a little trick of his…want to know the secret ingredient to amazing cheese grits?

American Cheese.

Seriously.

A few slices makes your grits super creamy and cheesy. I boil chicken broth and pour in an equal amount of grits once the broth comes to a boil. Add 1 cup of cheddar cheese and 3-4 American cheese slices, along with a couple of teaspoons of garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Super easy!

basket of cheddar garlic biscuits.

I found this recipe for Bacon Cheddar Biscuits at the Smithfield Bacon Bar website when I was planning, and they definitely didn't disappoint. A certain 4-year-old swiped one while I was baking yesterday, and I believe her exact quote was, “I just can't believe how delicious these are!” They are perfect for this meal…so easy, so yummy, and perfect for a make-ahead brunch!

basket of crispy ham & hash brown baskets.

I've wanted to try a recipe for hash brown baskets for awhile, and they happened to fit perfectly into this brunch. I edited the recipe a little bit for the brunch though.

You know how you always have tons and tons of leftover ham from holiday meals? I thought this brunch was the perfect opportunity to use some of it in a few savory recipes! Smithfield Signature Spiral Sliced Hams works wonderfully when it's repurposed in meals for anytime of the day…breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner.

Here's the recipe I used for Crispy Ham & Hashbrown Baskets

Ingredients

3 cups frozen shredded hash browns
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
3 eggs, beaten
4oz (about 1/2 cup chopped) Smithfield Signature Spiral Sliced Ham
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tbsp olive oil

Directions

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl.

Coat a muffin tin well with cooking spray. Spoon mixture into each muffin tin (each cup should be full but not overflowing). With your hands or the back of a spoon, press mixture into tins until firmly packed. Make a small indention in the middle of each cup.

Bake at 400 degrees for 45-50 minutes, until the tops are browned and edges of each cup are crispy.

caramelized bourbon bacon in a bowl.

The Caramelized Bourbon Bacon recipe is another one I found at the Smithfield Bacon Bar site. Guys – it didn't disappoint. You might think the recipe is a little fussy from the name, but trust me, it was so easy! Just bake the bacon in the oven, coat it with your honey/bourbon mixture, bake for a few extra minutes, and enjoy crispy, sticky, caramelized goodness.

sausage gravy in an orange bowl.

Sausage Gravy is another classic in our family. I remember my grandmother making this for holiday meals when I was little. And it's another easy one – brown 8oz of hot sausage in a large pan (don't drain), stir in about 1/3 cup flour, cook for a minute or two (until flour starts to brown), and add milk until gravy is stirrable but not runny. Salt and pepper to taste.

cranberry glazed ham in a bowl.

This idea for cranberry-glazed ham is a new one for me. Chances are, you'll have everything you need for this recipe in your home on Christmas morning! We all have those leftovers that need to be repurposed after a huge Christmas Eve feast…this is the perfect way to fit them into a Christmas brunch. Just fry your leftover pieces of Smithfield Signature Spiral Sliced Ham in a hot pan for 3-4 minutes per side and add leftover whole-berry cranberry sauce. Cook on low heat for 5-10 minutes, until cranberry sauce thickens slightly.

green onions in a jar
spicy mustard in a jar with paper label.

And, just like any good bacon bar, we had to have a few yummy toppings and condiments for our brunch. I included jelly, spicy mustard, cheddar cheese, green onions, and garlic butter (super simple – just stir garlic powder and dried parsley into room-temperature whipped butter). The possibilities are endless for this though. This would be another great way to repurpose that Smithfield Signature Spiral Sliced Ham – chopped ham is wonderful in grits!

Now, this is just my take on a Bacon Bar – there are a million different possibilities depending on what your family loves for the holidays. I love that the Smithfield Bacon Bar site gives so many different recipes, printables, and decor ideas to work with. Give it your own personal touch by picking recipes and looks that your family & friends will love!

A huge thanks to Smithfield for giving tons of inspiration for making their Bacon Bar special for any family's holiday brunch! Click here to check out tons of Smithfield Bacon Bar ideas and inspiration.

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