If you’re on the hunt for a casserole that blows all other casseroles out of the water, you’ve come to the right place. Sure, mashed potatoes are fine on their own, but they couldn’t hold a candle to this Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole. Thick-cut, crispy bacon, melty Havarti cheese, flavorful Cheddar, and chopped green onions are speckled throughout a base of mashed potatoes, made über creamy thanks to the addition of butter and, the kicker, cream cheese.
Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole is perfect for Thanksgiving day and potluck dinners! It feeds a crowd and tastes just as good the next day as it did the first. Prepare yourself for rave reviews, seconds and thirds.
LOADED MASHED POTATO CASSEROLE INGREDIENTS
- Russet Potatoes – Russets are perfect for this recipe, but you could also use Yukon Golds if desired.
- Milk – This recipe calls for whole milk, but if you’d like to step up the decadence a notch, feel free to use half-and-half. On the other hand, you could take things in the opposite direction and use 2% milk as well.
- Butter – Preferably, use unsalted butter. If you only have salted butter, you’ll need to omit the salt from this recipe entirely and, rather, add salt to taste at the end.
- Cheese – This Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole is extra creamy and extra cheesy thanks to a trifecta of cheeses. You will need to have Cream Cheese, Havarti, and Cheddar cheese on hand.
- Bacon – The bacon is diced and then cooked in a skillet. For this reason, we recommend using thick-cut bacon — it’s easier to cut when raw!
- Green Onions – The green onions add a mild onion flavor to the casserole without overpowering it. However, if you’d like to leave them out altogether, go for it!
HOW TO MAKE LOADED MASHED POTATO CASSEROLE
- Cook the Bacon – In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, saute the cubed bacon until crispy. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and set aside until ready to use.
- Boil the Potatoes – Add potatoes to a large pot, and cover them with water by 1 inch. Place over high heat and allow them to come to a boil. Boil the potatoes until fork-tender This should take about 20 minutes.
- Make the Mashed Potatoes – Strain the potatoes and add them back to the pot. Add cream cheese, milk, butter, salt, and pepper to the potatoes. Using a handheld mixer on medium-low speed, mix until well-combined. Take care not to overmix or your Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole will end with rubbery, over-gluttonized potatoes!
- Add the Add-In’s – Using a sturdy spoon, stir in the Havarti cheese, 1/2 cup of Cheddar, half of the bacon, and about two-thirds of the green onions. Transfer to the prepared dish.
- Bake – Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove potatoes from the oven and sprinkle the top evenly with remaining the Cheddar, bacon, and green onions. Return to the oven, uncovered, and bake for 10 minutes more, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve and enjoy.
MAKE-AHEAD MASHED POTATO CASSEROLE
I used to make a stovetop version of this Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole years and years ago for holiday gatherings. The whole family would look forward to scooping up a generous portion to plop down beside their turkey or ham. However, what I didn’t like about the recipe was that it needed to be made at the last minute because, unfortunately, it just didn’t keep all that well. This is where the cream cheese comes in.
The cream cheese is an extremely important aspect of this recipe, as it keeps the potatoes from drying out, making this the perfect make-ahead potato casserole!
5 MORE POTATO SIDE DISHES YOU’LL LOVE
- Perfect Mashed Potatoes are easier than you think! These easy mashed potatoes are made extra smooth and creamy thanks to a couple of simple ingredients, plus, the trick to the lightest, fluffiest potatoes ever!
- Savory Mashed Sweet Potatoes boast the perfect balance of both flavor and texture! Featuring easy, roasted sweet potatoes, goat cheese, chopped sage, and honey walnuts.
- Cheesy Mashed Potatoes are extra creamy and crazy cheesy thanks to three kinds of cheeses! This side dish is baked until hot and bubbly and served up in casserole form!
- Sweet Potato Soufflé is a decadent show-stopper with a rich and creamy sweet potato base and a crunchy, buttery pecan streusel topping! A salty-sweet show-stopper that’ll have your Thanksgiving table swooning for more.
- Mashed Potatoes with Skin are smooth, creamy and buttery, with speckled bites of texture thanks to the peel. They’re perfect for a quick and easy weeknight side dish, but especially wonderful for large holiday gatherings when time is of the essence!
A recipe for loaded mashed potato casserole, featuring crispy thick-cut, bacon, freshly grated Cheddar cheese, and chopped green onions.
- 8 slices cold, thick-cut bacon cubed
- 3 pounds Russet potatoes rinsed, peeled, and cut into 1" cubes
- 8 ounces cream cheese room temperature
- 1/2 cup whole milk room temperature
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup freshly grated Havarti cheese
- 1 3/4 cup freshly grated Cheddar Cheese separated
- 4 green onions, chopped white and light green parts only
Preheat the oven to 350° and have ready a greased 8x8" baking dish.
In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, saute the cubed bacon 6-8 minutes, or until crispy. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and set aside until ready to use.
Add potatoes to a large pot, and cover with water by 1 inch. Place over high heat and allow to come to a boil. Boil the potatoes until fork tender, about 20 minutes.
Strain the potatoes and add them back to the pot. Add cream cheese, milk, butter, salt, and pepper to the potatoes. Using a handheld mixer on medium-low speed, mix until well-combined. Do not overmix.
Using a sturdy spoon, stir in the Havarti cheese, 1/2 cup of Cheddar, half of the bacon, and about two-thirds of the green onions. Transfer to the prepared dish.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove potatoes from the oven and sprinkle the top evenly with remaining Cheddar, bacon, and green onions. Return to the oven, uncovered, and bake for 10 minutes more, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve and enjoy.
Do not overmix the potatoes with the mixer, or they will be chewy.
You can prepare the casserole a day or two in advance. To do so, prepare the potatoes up until the point of baking, cover and refrigerate.
Set the potatoes out about 45 minutes before baking to remove the chill. Resume with the recipe, and bake as directed.
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