Bacon Cheddar Mashed Potato Casserole is the perfect side dish for special holiday meals! Baked in a casserole dish, this loaded mashed potato casserole is topped with shredded cheddar cheese and plenty of bacon. Sprinkle with chives or green onions for a pop of fresh color and flavor!
Cheesy Mashed Potatoes
When it comes to thanksgiving, I’m a sides girl through and through. Sure, pie is delicious! Cookies? Who doesn’t love them! And of course, turkey is great!
But at the end of the day… it’s all about the sides, baby! Give me a plate loaded with mash, green bean casserole, stuffing, biscuits, and big old pile of sweet potato casserole and I would happily call it a day.
Typically, I stick to classic mash & gravy. But this year (my first making dinner as a MOM!), I wanted to make a mashed potato recipe I could make ahead, store in the fridge, then pop it in the oven when I have time to cook.
The answer? Mashed potato casserole! You can assemble the whole thing, scrape it into a baking dish, then bake when you’re ready.
Ingredients you’ll Need:
- Bacon: Adds both flavor and a delightful crunchy texture! If you’re a meatless home, feel free to omit.
- Potatoes: Russets work best here. You’ll want to peel them and cut them into quarters
- Milk: Use whole milk aka full-fat milk.
- Heavy Cream: Do not swap this out for milk or even half and half.
- Butter: I prefer working with unsalted butter, but if all you have is salted, that’s ok. Simply cut back on the salt called for, then taste, and add more as needed.
- Sour Cream: In addition to butter, sour cream adds flavor and helps create the most incredible mashed potato texture. Use full-fat here!
- Salt and Pepper: I offer a starting amount to add, but you’ll likely want to add more to suit your unique tastebuds.
- Cheese: Unlike a lot of recipes that use cream cheese, I call for sharp cheddar, which adds flavor and a gorgeous orange hue. You can obviously use any color cheddar you prefer! But I love the pop of color from the orange blocks.
- Chives: Finely chopped FRESH chives add an essential pop of color and fresh taste. But scallions (aka green onions) make an excellent substitute if you cannot find fresh chives or don’y like them.
Let’a Make Mashed Potato Casserole
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees (F). It’s important to do this first so your oven has time to properly warm up.
- Fry the bacon! Make sure you get it nice and crispy.
- Cook the potatoes. Place the potatoes in a large pot and cook until tender, about 20 minutes. But start checking around 15! You don’t want to overcook your potatoes.
- Warm the milk, heavy cream, and butter. Adding cold ingredients into your warm potatoes is a major no-no!
- Drain the cooked potatoes. Pour in the warm milk mixture and mash. Just be sure you don’t over mash, which can cause gluey potatoes.
- Add some of the cheese and bacon (and resist the urge to dig in…) and mix until just combined. Again, you don’t want to overwork the potatoes here.
- Scrape the mashed potato mixture into a large baking dish, top with remaining bacon and shredded cheddar cheese on top, and bake! You won’t bake this for very long, just until cheese is melted and gooey.
- Sprinkle with chives or scallions and DIG THE HECK IN!
More Potato Recipes:
- Broccoli Cheddar Twice-Baked Potatoes
- Roasted Garlic and Caramelized Onion Mashed Potatoes
- Extra Crispy Garlic & Herb Baked Potato Wedges
- German Potato Salad
- Toasted Marshmallow Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes
- Extra Crispy Sweet Potato Wedges
Bacon Cheddar Mashed Potato Casserole
- 1 pound thick-cut bacon
- 5 pounds russet potatoes peeled and cut into quarters
- 1/2 cup (113ml) whole milk
- 1/2 cup (113ml) heavy cream
- 1 cup (227g) unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup (170g) full-fat sour cream
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt more to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 cups cheddar cheese shredded
- 1/4 cup fresh chives finely chopped
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F).
- In a large skillet over medium-heat, cook the bacon, turning frequently, until crispy, about 5 to 6 minutes. Drain on a paper towel lined plate, then transfer to a cutting board and chop into small bits. Set aside until needed.
- Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with cold water, so that it’s 1-inch higher than the potatoes. Place over high-heat and bring to a rolling boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are very tender.
- About 5 minutes before the potatoes are done cooking, combine the milk, heavy cream, and butter in a small saucepan. Place over low heat and warm until the butter is completely melted. Keep over low heat until needed.
- Drain the cooked potatoes, then return them to the hot pot. Pour in the warm milk mixture and sour cream. Using a potato masher, mash until smooth, being sure not to over mash, which can cause gluey potatoes.
- Add in 1 and ¼ cups of the cheddar cheese and three-quarters of the bacon and gently stir, just until combined.
- Scrape the mashed potato mixture into a large skillet or 9x13–inch baking dish. Sprinkle remaining bacon and cheddar cheese on top and bake for 10 minutes, or just until cheddar is melty but not crisp or burnt.
- Sprinkle with chives! Scoop and serve!