Loaded Cheesey Smash Potato Casserole

Potatoes are a holiday staple. So what does one do if you are not a fan? They find the perfect recipe to recreate and present to you a loaded cheesy smash potato casserole that is cheesy, creamy, and delicious. And it pairs perfectly with my Sweet Potato Casserole with Marshmallows.

I love food, and I try not to conclude my likes or dislikes for any dish. I will try any dish once. And I urge you to do the same because you can have the same dish made by three different people and it will taste different each time. I have fallen in love or, like, with a dish I was convinced I did not particularly appreciate because someone different made it.

Those who know me know that my love for French fries goes deep [any kind], but my favorite has got to be parmesan fries, and I enjoy a roasted to crisp fingerling potato with a fish filet. But I am not too fond of other potato dishes, including mashed and baked potatoes.

My family, on the other hand, loves potato dishes. So what does one do when French fries are not an appropriate thanksgiving side? You create a dish you love with that thing you do not like. And that is what I did.

I spent some quality time with Google and found this fantastic recipe at Dinner at the Zoo for “Loaded Mash Potato Casserole,” which I renamed Loaded Cheesy Smash Potato Casserole since I made it a bit differently.

I made this dish for the first time in 2019, and I made it six times before Thanksgiving to perfect it my way. As a result, it has become a staple on our Thanksgiving table, and everyone loves it. 

Loaded Cheesy Smash Potato Casserole

Here is a link to the original recipe, and here is my version of the Loaded Cheesy Smash Potato casserole with the adjustments. 

Ingredients

Four pounds of potatoes [Peeled and cut in halves]

Six tablespoons of unsalted butter melted 

¼ cup of sour cream [I’m not too fond of the stuff, but it adds flavor to the dish]

½ teaspoon of cumin

One teaspoon of smoked paprika

Salt and pepper to taste

One cup of freshly grated parmesan cheese

½ of grated pepper jack cheese

One cup of freshly grated mozzarella cheese

½ cup of finely chopped chives

One cup of bacon crumbled

Three tablespoons of finely chopped parsley 

Six jalapeños peppers chopped in ⅕ inch rings

¼ cup of oat milk

Six cloves of olive oil roasted garlic

I have tried this recipe several ways to perfect it to my liking. The original recipe is lovely the way it is—I still do make it using the original method for my mom. She loves it. 

The original recipe calls for a smoother finish of the potatoes, but I found that chunky works best for me, hence “smashed.” I’m not too fond of cheddar cheese, so I used three of my favorites instead.

There are so many things to like about this recipe. It is not a fussy dish, and the potatoes can be made ahead of time until you are ready to put into the oven. Sara from Dinner at the Zoo recommends you add bacon towards the end of cook time to prevent it from burning before the potatoes are cooked through [and she is right—I have tried other ways].

How to make it

  1. In a large pot of water, add two tablespoons of salt and boil. Add the potatoes to the pot and allow the potatoes to boil until tender.
  2. Drain the potatoes and mash them with a potato masher.
  3. Stir in the milk, butter, smoked paprika, cumin, sour cream, roasted garlic, and jalapeños, and then add salt and pepper to taste. Finally, stir in ½ of the cheese.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Add half of the potatoes into a nine-inch square pan coated with EVOO, then add half or whatever cheese is left,, then add the rest of the potatoes. Top with remaining cheese.
  5. Cover the pan with foil and place it into the oven—Bake for twenty minutes.
  6. Remove the foil and add the bacon; bake, uncovered, for an additional twenty minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and the potatoes are heated through.
  7. Sprinkle the chives and parsley over the top and serve.

Well, there you have it, my favorite potato dish is right up there with French Fries if you dislike a dish, try experimenting with it and see what happens.

Comment below: what is your favorite potato dish?

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