I know that most of you probably have your Easter dinner menus all planned out and grocery-shopped already. But just in case there are any procrastinators out there (ahem, like me), I thought I’d sneak one more recipe in before the big day. Because somehow in five years of blogging, I still have never a recipe for one of my favorite holiday side dishes, and it’s about freaking time.
Yes. We’re finally talking scalloped potatoes today on Gimme Some Oven!
In my world, these spuds are a non-negotiable part of Easter dinner. You’ve gotta make a ham, devil up some eggs, bake some carrots into a cake, and — if you’re feeling fancy — maybe even decorate some truffles for dessert. But without fail, the dish that always has everyone coming back for seconds is that irresistibly creamy, cheesy, garlicky pan of scalloped potatoes. I’ve never met a person who doesn’t go crazy over this dish.
While I’m a traditionalist with serving scalloped potatoes on Easter, I don’t stick with the traditional recipe that’s usually overflowing with cups of heavy cream, gobs of butter, and pounds of starchy Russet potatoes. No offense to any traditionalists out there, but I can make a healthier version of this rich and creamy and cheesy dish with a few simple tweaks. Let me show you…
First off, the first step to making delicious and velvety scalloped potatoes in my book is to nix the Russet potatoes and replace them with my favorite spuds — Yukon golds. Grab a few pounds of those beauties, and slice them nice and thin so that they will cook through in a baking pan.
Then whip up your sauce. I forgot to snap a pic of the sauce, but let me tell you what’s in
- a few tablespoons of butter (instead of an entire stick)
- lots of garlic (a healthy flavor booster)
- one small onion (for even more flavor)
- a few tablespoons of flour (to make a roux and thicken things up)
- salt + pepper + fresh thyme (traditional seasonings)
- …and a mixture of chicken or veggie stock + low-fat milk (in place of heavy cream)
That last item is key for this recipe. The chicken stock adds extra flavor, the milk makes things nice and creamy, and the roux thickens things up without having to add in tons of heavy cream. Trust me, you won’t even notice the missing cream.
To assemble the casserole, just layer half of your potatoes in a greased baking dish. Pour half of the sauce on top of them, sprinkled with some Parmesan and sharp cheddar. Then layer on the second half of the potatoes, topped with the remaining sauce and cheddar. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake (covered) for 30 minutes. Then remove the foil and let the potatoes crisp up (uncovered) for the final 25-30 minutes until they’re soft and cooked through and crispy on top.
Perfect scalloped potatoes.
I stand by it. These guys are tender on the bottom, slightly crispy on top, bubbling over with creamy and cheesy deliciousness, and irresistibly GOOD. They still won’t win any awards qualifying as “healthy” per se, but hey, they’re still much healthier than many of the recipes that were part of our childhoods, amen?
The other bonus to this recipe? It only requires 15 or so minutes of prep time. So you can spend more of your time on Easter hanging out with your family and friends, and less time tucked away in a steamy kitchen.
Win = WIN.
Hope that you enjoy this recipe as much as I do, and have a meaningful time celebrating the hope of Easter together with those you love!
This classic scalloped potatoes recipe is made lighter with milk instead of heavy cream, delicious Yukon gold potatoes, and lots of garlic and Parmesan and cheddar to make them irresistibly delicious.
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 small white or yellow onion, peeled and thinly sliced
- 4 large garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 cups milk (I used 2% low-fat milk)
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, divided
- 4 pounds Yukon Gold Potatoes, sliced into 1/8-inch rounds (and peeled beforehand, if desired)
- 1 1/2 cups freshly-grated sharp cheddar cheese, divided
- 1/2 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Melt butter in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add onion, and saute for 4-5 minutes until soft and translucent. Add garlic and saute for an additional 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Stir in the flour until it is evenly combined and saute for an additional 1-minute. Pour in the stock, and whisk until combined. Add in the milk, salt, pepper, and 1 teaspoon thyme, and whisk until combined. Continue cooking for an additional 1-2 minutes until the sauce comes to a simmer (not a boil) and thickens. Then remove from heat and set aside.
Meanwhile, grease a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Then spread half of the sliced potatoes in an even layer on the bottom of the pan. Top evenly with half of the cream sauce, the sprinkle evenly with 1 cup of the shredded cheddar cheese, and all of the Parmesan cheese. Top evenly with the remaining sliced potatoes, the remaining half of the cream sauce, and the remaining 1/2 cup of cheddar cheese.
Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Then remove the foil and bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the potatoes are cooked through.
Remove and sprinkle with the remaining 1 teaspoon thyme. Serve warm.
If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!