I am so excited to be bringing you guys my first savory dish today. I hope this is the start of many. It is starting to act like winter here in Pennsylvania. The weather is finally getting cold. It is the perfect time to start making soups, stews, and casseroles. They are the ideal comfort foods to warm you up on a cold winter day. My loaded baked potato casserole will do just that. It’s a great addition to any main dish, but so good you could eat it as a meal on its own.
I’ve been making this casserole for Emery and me for a few years now. What I like about it is that it is so versatile. Depending on your palette, you can pretty much add or remove a few things based on your preference. The other thing I love about a casserole is usually you can make them ahead of time. This loaded baked potato casserole is no exception. You can easily make this a day earlier, refrigerate it, and then pop it in the oven right before dinner.
To prep for the casserole, start by baking six medium-sized potatoes. Once they have been cooked all the way through, peel off the skin and place in a large bowl, and mash with a fork.
While the potatoes are baking, you will need to prep the bacon or turkey bacon, onions, garlic, and broccoli. Cook eight pieces of bacon or turkey bacon, make sure they are well done, nice and crisp. Crumble the bacon into small pieces. Chop about ¼ cup of onion and 2 to 3 cloves of garlic, sauté until onions are translucent. Lastly, chop about a cup of broccoli into small pieces.
Here is where you can think about substitutions or leaving things out. If you don’t like garlic you can leave it out, or if you don’t have fresh garlic, add some garlic powder. Fresh chopped spinach would be a great switch out for broccoli. And, of course, the recipe calls for cheddar cheese, which could be any cheese that you prefer.
Once all the prep work has been done, it’s time to mix! Yay! Everything just gets combined into one big bowl. The only thing you may want to do is save some cheese and bacon crumble to garnish the top. But moving on… Add the crumbled bacon, cheese, onions and garlic, sour cream, butter, milk, salt, pepper, and broccoli. Phew…Did I miss anything?? After everything is mixed, taste to make sure it is seasoned properly, then place in your casserole dish. Bake at 375° for 45 minutes to 1 hour. If it is coming out of the refrigerator, it will be close to an hour. If not, it will be more like 45 minutes.
Once the loaded baked potato casserole is done, garnish with more cheese, bacon, chives, and a dollop of sour cream. Sit back and let everyone praise your culinary skills…ha.
- Bake six potatoes until soft
- Peel skins off and place potatoes in a large bowl and mash with a fork
- Cook 8 pieces of bacon until crisp and then crumble into pieces
- Saute 1/4 C of onions with chopped garlic until onions are translucent
- Chop broccoli into small pieces
- Set aside a little bacon and cheese to garnish the casserole once finished
- To large bowl with potatoes add, milk, butter, sour cream, cheese, bacon, onions and garlic, salt, pepper, and broccoli and mix.
- Place mixture into the casserole dish and bake covered at 375° for 45 to 1 hour.
- Garnish with crumbled bacon, cheese, chives, and sour cream