I’ll let you all in on a little secret, I’ve never been into those fancy smoothie bowls for breakfast. You know those pinterest worthy smoothie bowls that are over the top and loaded with healthy stuff for you? I’m not a fan because how can that possibly be filling? I feel like I’d eat it and then 20 minutes later I’d be hungry again. That sounds like a personal problem though. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I’m not really into smoothies to begin with. I’ll tell you what bowls I am into though, and it’s these polenta breakfast bowls that are topped with crispy bacon, potatoes, kale, avocado and eggs. Basically everything a breakfast should be — hearty, filling and satisfying. Let’s make a promise to each other that we give these a try at least once this week? Let’s ditch those smoothie bowls, no one will know, and live our lives to the fullest. I think that sounds like a deal to end all deals. I also think that you’re going to love these breakfast bowls. I just feel it in my bones.
There are a few steps to this recipe, but don’t let that deter you from making it! They’re super easy to get through, I promise. The first thing we want to do is prepare the potatoes. I don’t know about you, but it wouldn’t be breakfast without potatoes. On a baking sheet, toss together the potatoes, olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and chili powder or paprika. Roast in a preheated 400 degree F oven until crispy and golden brown, about 20 minutes.
**Note: For even browning make sure to give the potatoes a toss halfway through baking. Also, give them a shake to make sure they’re in an even layer.**
Lay out the bacon (another breakfast staple) on a baking sheet lined with parchment or foil, for easy cleaning. Bake until the bacon is crispy, about 12 to 15 minutes.
**Note: I always use thick-cut black peppered bacon because it’s just so much for flavorful than regular. Also, if I teach you anything, let it be the fact that you should always buy your bacon from the butcher counter. I know it looks grey and it might be a bit intimidating but it’s so much better than the stuff you buy in the packet.**
Once the bacon is crispy, drain well and then place on a plate lined with paper towels to soak up any excess fat. Once cool enough to handle, transfer to a cutting board and give it a rough chop. Then set aside until ready to use later on for topping.
So here’s the deal. I don’t want to make you get a third baking sheet, because that’s one more thing to wash. So 10 minutes before the potatoes are done, remove the baking sheet from the oven and move them all to one side. Then place the kale on that empty side and drizzle with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper. Return to the oven and cook for the remaining 10 minutes until crispy.
For the polenta, this is my go-to recipe. It’s Alton Brown’s recipe from Good Eats and I love it. I’ve been making it forever. For a full in depth tutorial on how to make it, check out this recipe. Once the polenta is tender and thick, remove from the heat and stir in the butter, black pepper, and cheese. Stir until melted through.
Once you’re ready to assemble the bowls, divide the polenta among four large bowls. Then go crazy with your toppings. Anything is possible.
**Tip: If you want to kick up the polenta, you can stir in chopped pickled jalapeños for that little spicy kick in the end. I wouldn’t be mad at that.**
Sprinkle the top of the polenta with the crispy potatoes, kale, bacon, shredded cheese, avocado and a soft boiled egg. I love a good soft boiled egg because the yolk is runny and it’s awesome in these bowls.
**Note: If you don’t want to worry about boiling the eggs and peeling them, you can also poach the eggs and place that on top or you can fry an egg sunny side up.**
The last thing I do before serving is sprinkle the eggs with everything bagel seasoning mix. That is completely optional, but I think it adds a nice element to the dish. Plus everything bagels remind me of breakfast. If you can’t find it already mixed in a jar at the store, feel free to top them with just sesame seeds. Then drizzle with a little olive oil to finish things off.
The great thing about these breakfast bowls is that you can use the polenta as a base and then top them with whatever you enjoy. Try it with crumbled breakfast sausage instead of bacon if you like. Or add some roasted summer veggies to give it a more healthful element.
This would be a great dish to serve for brunch or gathering because you can lay it all out like buffet style and then have your guests add the toppings as they wish. It fun and interactive.
I wanted to take the time to thank everyone who nominated me for the Saveur Food Blog Awards. I know I kept going on and on about it in each post, but I am very appreciative of you all! We’ll see what happens! In other news big congrats are in order to the following people for winning the giveaway for my cookbook! (I finally got all the email confirmations back and so the books are in the mail and you should be getting them soon! Thank you to all who participated. More giveaways to come!
Congrats: Jennifer Lee, Alma Felix, Joanna Tay, Josiah Hersom, Angie, April Johnson, Amy Liu, Shelley Walton, Julie Lish, Stephanie Schlitz, and Natalie Brickson!
- 1 pound fingerling potatoes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 teaspoons salt, divided
- 3 teaspoons black pepper, divided
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon paprika or chili powder
- 6 slices thick-cut black peppered bacon
- 3 cups shredded kale
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 cup fine cornmeal
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
- 2 avocados, diced
- 4 soft boiled eggs, peeled and cut
- 2 tablespoons everything bagel seasoning (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Cut the fingerling potatoes in half, lengthwise, and toss together with the olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and paprika on a baking sheet. Spread out on an even layer and roast until the potatoes are crispy, about 20 minutes. Toss half way through cooking for even browning.
- Lay out the bacon slices on a separate baking sheet and bake until crispy, about 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, drain and place on a plate lined with paper towels. Give it a rough chop and set aside.
- minutes before the potatoes are finished, remove from the oven, and push them over to one side of the baking sheet. Place the kale on the free side and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Return to the oven for the remaining 10 minutes.
- To make the polenta, combine the water with the whole milk and 1 teaspoon salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer and then whisk in the cornmeal. Cook over medium-low heat until the polenta has thickened, and softened a bit, about 15 to 20 minutes. Make sure to stir often so that it doesn't stick. Remove from the heat and stir in butter, black pepper, and 1 cup Cheddar cheese. Stir until melted and well combined.
- To serve, divide the polenta among four large bowls, and then top with the crispy potatoes, kale, bacon, avocado, cheese, eggs and sprinkle with everything seasoning blend. Drizzle with a bit of olive oil to finish things off. Enjoy!