Host a stress-free Easter brunch by preparing most of it ahead of time. Use our make-ahead menu to plan easy and delicious recipes your family will love.
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With the hurry-scurry of egg hunts and activities, Easter morning can be hectic. Bake, slow cook, and prep these Easter menu ideas in advance so you have more time for the fun—and to sleep! Featuring seasonal ingredients and Easter all-stars like carrots and ham, these make-ahead Easter brunch recipes including ideas for appetizers and desserts are sure to please. All you'll need to do on Easter morning is put on a pot of coffee and relax. 

pink gold table setting
Credit: Carson Downing

Make-Ahead Easter Brunch Menu

Build your Easter brunch menu with these easy make-ahead recipes for the easiest holiday meal you've ever made. No one will know you prepared the whole brunch ahead of time!

Appetizer: Bacon and Basil Deviled Eggs

Get crackin’ with this dressed-up deviled egg recipe that can be assembled up to 24 hours in advance and chilled until party time. Start with hard-boiled eggs his easy appetizer recipe can be prepared quicker than a batch of dyed eggs! The toppings help this savory recipe fit the brunch theme: bacon and tomato give it omelet vibes.

Test Kitchen Tip: Prepare a dozen hard-boiled eggs FAST by using your Instant Pot.

Appetizer: Peach-Prosciutto Cornmeal Muffins

Fresh or frozen peaches are the star of these salty-sweet make-ahead Easter brunch muffins. Stir together the cornmeal batter and mix in the peaches and chopped prosciutto before baking. You can make these the night before, or keep the baked muffins in the freezer for up to 3 months. If you're serving frozen muffins, thaw them overnight in the fridge, then all that’s left to do is warm them up and devour.

Kale, Cranberry, and Roasted Root Vegetable Salad

Side Dish: Kale, Cranberry, and Roasted Root Vegetable Salad

Balance out all the Easter candy with some kale in this make-ahead brunch recipe. Hearty late-winter/early-spring veggies including carrots and beets join the vitamin party, too, while ginger, garlic, and honey mustard zest things up. This is one Easter menu idea that gets better with time—the kale’s bitterness is tamed after chilling in the dressing for a couple of hours in the fridge.

Side Dish: Rosé Poached Peaches

Spring is the official start of rosé season, so why not get a jump on the refreshing drink trend with a side of stone fruit poached in pink wine? Simmer them up to three days before Sunday brunch, chill, then enjoy solo, over goat cheese-slathered crostini, or on a bowl of vanilla yogurt.

Get the Recipe:  Rosé Poached Peaches

Main Dish: Monte Cristo Breakfast Casserole

Monte Cristo, a mash-up of powdered sugar-dusted French toast and a ham and cheese sandwich, is the inspiration behind this make-ahead Easter brunch casserole recipe. If you don’t feel like baking a whole roast leg of lamb or spiral ham, this showy dish can more than handle the spotlight as a centerpiece. Build it the night before the holiday meal, refrigerate, then pop in the oven as you enjoy appetizers.

Main Dish: Cherry-Cola Ham

Here are the top three reasons we can’t get enough of this best make-ahead brunch recipe:

  • It requires just 20 minutes of prep time before an overnight shift in the slow cooker ($25, Target).
  • A splash of soda offers just enough sweetness to balance the salty pork.
  • It can feed a big crowd (like really big: our Cherry-Cola Ham makes 20-24 servings!).

Get the Recipe: Cherry-Cola Ham

Dessert: Coconut-Pecan Coffee Cake

With chocolate, cinnamon, coconut, and a moist sour cream crumb, we’re deeming this coffee cake more dessert than brunch bread. Regardless of what category you think this make-ahead Easter brunch recipe lands in, you’ll be convinced to add it to your meal when you see the scrumptious ingredient list—and the fact that it can be made up to a day before and cooled on a wire rack.

Test Kitchen Tip: Present the coconut coffee cake on a pretty round white platter ($17, Crate & Barrel) come dessert time, then dust with powdered sugar and cocoa powder at the table for a final flourish.

Dessert: Zucchini-Carrot Cake

No make-ahead Easter brunch feels complete without cake. And why not think spring with carrot cake? Our festive, honey-cream cheese-frosted version is hiding shredded zucchini and chopped pecans for more nutrition—and flavor. The result is a delicious confection that tastes like a mix of zucchini-nut bread and carrot cake. The adorable marzipan “carrots” with fresh mint leaves push this cake into must-make territory. Prepare and bake the cake on Saturday, then frost and “plant” the carrots Sunday morning before brunch attendees arrive.

Get the Recipe: Zucchini-Carrot Cake

Drink: Carrot Mexican Mule

While the kids sort through their Easter basket treats, the over-21 crowd can sip on carrot-infused mules. To mix up this cocktail a make-ahead punch for six, muddle a dozen rosemary springs and 12 fresh sliced jalapenos in a pitcher ($35, Pottery Barn). Pour in 1 ½ cups carrot juice, 1 ½ cups silver tequila, ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon lime juice. Stir well and refrigerate for up to a couple of hours. When cocktail-o-clock rolls around, strain into 6 ice-filled copper mugs ($30 for 4, Wayfair) and top off with ginger beer. Cheers to a picture-perfect Easter!

Get the Recipe: Carrot Mexican Mule


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