Enjoy an easy make-ahead dish with this twice baked potato casserole. You can serve this as a side dish or as the main entree. The casserole is creamy, fluffy and packed with gooey cheese, salt bacon and fresh scallions. Look for starchy potatoes which are better for breaking apart or crisping up when frying. If you’re looking to make the casserole ahead of time, assemble it then wrap with plastic wrap. It’ll hold in the fridge for up to 5 days. Then, remove for 30 minutes and bake according to the recipe.
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 100 mins
Total time: 2 hrs
Servings: 8 servings
Yield: 1 (9×13-inch) casserole
- 3 pounds russet potatoes
- 12 ounces sliced bacon (about 12 slices)
- 1 cup sour cream
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 2 tablespoons salted butter, melted, plus more for greasing
- 2 1/2 cups grated Cheddar cheese, divided
- 1 1/2 cups sliced scallions (white and green parts), divided
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
- A few cracks freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Bake the potatoes: Prick each potato a few times with a fork and wrap them in a large foil packet. Bake the potatoes until they are fork tender, 40 to 60 minutes depending on the size. Once done, unwrap the potatoes to let them rest until cool enough to handle.
- Add bacon onto a lined baking sheet: Meanwhile, line a large, rimmed sheet pan with foil and top with a baking rack (if you have one). Arrange the bacon strips on the rack in a single layer, making sure not to overlap them.
- Cook and chop the bacon: Bake the bacon until it shrivels slightly and darkens in color (remember it will crisp once it’s cooled), about 15 to 20 minutes depending on thickness.
Use tongs to transfer the cooked bacon to a plate lined with a few pieces of paper towel to cool. Once cooled, chop the bacon into small bits. Set aside.
- Peel and mash the potatoes: Once they’re cool enough to handle (but still warm), slice the potatoes in half. Set the potatoes cut side down on the cutting board and, using a soup spoon, peel the skin and discard. Cut the potato flesh into chunks and place in a large mixing bowl.
- Add mix-ins to potatoes: Add the sour cream, cream cheese, milk, and melted butter to the bowl with the potatoes. Using a potato masher, mix and mash the potatoes until well combined, but not completely smooth (you want a few potato lumps still).
Add about half of the chopped bacon, 1 1/2 cups of the cheddar cheese, 1 cup of the scallions, plus the garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Use a rubber spatula to fold the mix-ins into the potato mixture. Taste and season with more salt and pepper, if needed.
- Reduce oven temperature and prepare baking dish: Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with butter.
- Assemble the casserole and bake: Add the potato mixture into the prepared casserole dish and smooth into an even layer using a rubber spatula. Scatter the remaining cheddar cheese over the potatoes. Cover the dish with foil, making sure not to press it tight against the cheese, and bake for 40 minutes.
Remove the foil and bake the casserole uncovered for another 20 minutes, until the cheese is browned and bubbling slightly at the sides.
- Garnish and serve: Top the casserole with the remaining bacon bits and scallions. Serve.
Source: Simply Recipes