Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole

Super creamy and cheesy, this Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole is a delicious, comforting make ahead side dish! Not only can you make this potato casserole in advance, it also feeds a crowd making it the perfect recipe for holidays and parties.

mashed potato casserole with bacon and cheese on top

Why We Love This Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole

Not only are we excited to share this Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole recipe with you, we have lots of helpful tips and details to make this recipe look and taste it’s best!

However, if you’re ready to dive right into making this potato side dish, scroll down to the recipe card or click the “jump to recipe” button above the first photo.

Ingredients You’ll Need

For a complete list of ingredients and amounts needed, scroll to the end of the post to the recipe card.

  • 5 pounds Russet, Idaho or Yukon Gold potatoes: All will work, Russet and Idaho yield a fluffier mashed potato whereas Yukon Gold will yield a creamier mashed potato.
  • 1 1/2 sticks butter: Salted butter.
  • 1 cup whole milk: Whole milk adds the best flavor and texture, but you can use low fat as well.
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream: Can also substitute half and half, but we prefer heavy cream for texture and flavor.
  • 6 ounces cream cheese: Regular or light cream cheese.
  • 1/2 cup sour cream: Regular or light sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese: For the best results, buy a block of cheese and grate it yourself instead of pre-grated cheese.
  • 1/2 cup cooked, chopped bacon: About 8 slices.

How To Make A Mashed Potato Casserole

We’ll go over the steps here with pictures, but for a complete list of instructions scroll to the end of the post to the recipe card.

  • STEP 1 – Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Wash and peel the potatoes, then cut them into large cubes, roughly the same size. Place the potatoes into a large pot and then fill the pot with just enough cold water to cover the potatoes and bring to a boil. Simmer for 12-15 minutes until the potatoes are fork tender. Drain and return the potatoes to the same pot.
  • STEP 2 – Add the butter to the potatoes and then mash the potatoes with a potato masher until you have the consistency that you like. Add the milk, cream, cream cheese, sour cream, garlic powder, salt, pepper and 1 cup of the shredded cheese to the potatoes and stir.
  • STEP 3 – Pour the potatoes into a buttered 9″ x 13″ baking dish, smoothing out into an even layer. Top the casserole with bacon and the remaining cup of shredded cheese and bake for 20 minutes until the potatoes are warm in the center and the cheese is melted.
mashed potato casserole with serving spoon

Variations

If bacon and cheese aren’t your flavor preferences, there are many other ways to top this mashed potato casserole. You can leave off the bacon and just top the casserole with cheese, or even use different cheese like gruyere or Monterey Jack.

A pat or two of butter on top is all you really need if you want to stick to a plain mashed potato casserole – not of the loaded variety. Try adding some fresh chives or parsley, some fresh ground black pepper or paprika.

To Make In Advance

Make the casserole completely and then wrap it in aluminum foil and place into the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Remove the dish from the refrigerator 30 minutes prior to baking to take the chill off.

Bake per the recipe card instructions, at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

loaded mashed potato casserole on serving spoon

What Main Courses Go Well With Mashed Potatoes?

If we’re talking holiday dinners, we’ve got lots of main course ideas for you, traditional and some not traditional. Or if you’re looking for regular, everyday main course dinners, we’ve got ideas here for you too.

Holiday Main Courses

Everyday Main Courses

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mashed potato casserole with serving spoon

Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole

  • Author: Dan
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x

This Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole is so hearty and delicious. A make ahead potato side dish that makes party planning and holidays so easy!

Scale

Ingredients

  • 5 pounds Russet, Idaho or Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 1 1/2 sticks butter
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Fresh black pepper to taste
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup cooked, chopped bacon (about 8 slices)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Wash and peel the potatoes, then cut them into large cubes, roughly the same size. Place the potatoes into a large pot and then fill the pot with just enough cold water to cover the potatoes. Cover the pot and bring the water to a boil. Once the water comes to a boil, add kosher salt to season the water and then turn the heat down the a simmer. Simmer for 12-15 minutes until the potatoes are fork tender. Drain and return the potatoes to the same pot.
  3. Add the butter to the potatoes and then mash the potatoes with a potato masher until you have the consistency that you like. Alternately, you can pass them through a potato ricer for completely smooth mashed potatoes.
  4. Now add the milk, cream, cream cheese, sour cream, garlic powder, salt, pepper and 1 cup of the shredded cheese to the potatoes. Stir to combine and then pour into a buttered 9″ x 13″ baking dish, smoothing out into an even layer.
  5. Top the casserole with bacon and the remaining cup of shredded cheese and bake for 20 minutes until the potatoes are warm in the center and the cheese is melted.

Recipe Notes

To Make In Advance: Make the mashed potato casserole following the directions up until the point of baking. Cover the baking dish with foil and store in the refrigerator. Remove the casserole from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking to take the chill off.

Store: Store leftover potatoes in a container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Reheat: Reheat leftover mashed potatoes in the microwave with a splash of milk, cream or chicken broth to loosen the potatoes again.

  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Stove Top / Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: mantitlement, mashed potato casserole, potato side dishes, make ahead mashed potatoes, casserole recipes, thanksgiving sides, holiday sides

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