Scalloped Potatoes

My favorite recipe for cheesy, creamy, garlicky, crazy-delicious scalloped potatoes.

The Best Scalloped Potatoes Recipe

Anyone else out there still have yet to plan your menu for Easter Sunday this coming weekend?

Well, good news: 1) you’re not alone and 2) I’ve gotcha covered! ♡

We have all sorts of delicious recipes here on our Easter section of the blog that are sure to please a crowd.  If you’re feeling those brunch vibes, there’s everything from my favorite 1-hour cinnamon rolls, to the world’s best sour cream coffee cake, to a classic breakfast casserole, to nearly every way to prepare eggs, to mimosas and more.  Or, if you’re going more of the Easter dinner route, our family’s favorite salad, these perfectly roasted Brussels sprouts, an easy fruit salad, these quick 1-hour soft and buttery dinner rolls might be calling your name.  Of course, carrot cake (or this vegan, gluten-free carrot cake) is also a must around here every Easter.

But the other non-negotiable for me each Easter, Christmas, Thanksgiving and — let’s be real — any night of the year that I’m craving some creamy, garlicky, cheesy comfort food?

Scalloped potatoes.

Specifically, these scalloped potatoes.  In my humble opinion, they are simply the best.  And in the years since I originally posted this recipe here on the blog, thousands of you have also tried them and agreed!  So today, I thought I’d bump this recipe back to the top of the stack for those of you who might be new to the blog and looking for a tried and true recipe to make this weekend.  As someone who has made these dozens and dozens of times, I can vouch — they won’t let you down.

Scalloped Potatoes Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Scalloped Potatoes Ingredients:

The ingredients to make this classic scalloped potatoes recipe are pretty simple.  You’ll need:

  • Yukon gold potatoes: I prefer these to Russets because of their nice creamy texture and buttery flavor.
  • Shredded cheese: It’s important to have a good melty cheese for these.  I have always preferred a nice sharp cheddar (not one that has been aged, since those don’t melt as well).  But I have also made these with mozzarella, gouda, fontina and gruyere, and all have been delicious.  So feel free to pick your favorite, or use a mix!  Plus, some freshly-grated Parmesan is also a must.
  • Sliced onion: For extra flavor.  I always cook the onion in the sauce, and then strain it out and add it to the middle layer of the potatoes, so that there aren’t a bunch of onion slices sitting on the top layer.
  • Garlic: If you ask me, the more the merrier.  The recipe calls for 4 cloves, but I’ve used up to 8 before.  :)
  • Fresh thyme: I’ve always used this as my main seasoning for scalloped potatoes, but you could use just about any of your favorite fresh herbs or dried seasoning blends.  I also love occasionally adding some blackening seasoning to my sauce.
  • Creamy sauce: In lieu of heavy cream, my sauce for this recipe calls for a roux with butter and flour, milk and chicken (or veggie) stock.

Sliced Yukon gold potatoes

How To Make Scalloped Potatoes:

To make your scalloped potatoes, begin by chopping up your onions and garlic, and making your sauce on the stovetop.  Since we’re using milk instead of cream, it’s important not to let the sauce boil.  Just let it get warm enough that it barely comes to a simmer so that it can thicken.  (Otherwise the sauce will “break” and become watery when baked.)  Then remove it from the heat until it’s ready to be used.

Meanwhile, as your sauce cooks, slice up all of those potatoes.  The thinner they are, the quicker they will cook.  So I usually slice mine about 1/4-inch thick.

Once your sauce and potatoes are ready to go, it’s time to layer everything up!  I usually go in the following order:

  1. Half of the potatoes
  2. Half of the sauce (including the onions that I strain out and add with a slotted spoon)
  3. Half of the shredded cheese
  4. Parmesan
  5. Half of the potatoes
  6. Half of the sauce
  7. Half of the shredded cheese

Once everything is ready to go, cover the pan lightly with aluminum foil.  Then bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the sauce is nice and bubbly around the edges.  Remove the foil and bake for another 30 minutes or so, until the cheese is nice and golden on top and the potatoes are cooked through.  (If the cheese starts to get too brown on top, just lightly cover the top with a sheet of foil again until the potatoes are ready to go.)

How To Make Scalloped Potatoes

Then remove, sprinkle with some extra thyme and black pepper, and serve!

I mean, just look at that cheesy, creamy, golden crust. ♡♡♡

Who wants some??

 

Scalloped Potatoes

How To Make-Ahead Scalloped Potatoes:

Over the years, I’ve had lots of you ask if you can prep this scalloped potatoes recipe in advance, and the answer is yes!  Just bake the scalloped potatoes and let them cool completely to room temperature.  Then cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 3 days.  Then bake covered (with foil) at 350° for 30 minutes, or until warmed through.

Scalloped Potatoes

Other FAQ:

Can you freeze this recipe? Unfortunately, I don’t recommend it.  Neither the potatoes nor cream sauce freeze well.

Can I make this recipe gluten-free?  Sure thing!  Just use all certified-GF ingredients.  And instead of flour, you can either use gluten-free all-purpose flour.  Or, you can nix the flour and whisk 3 tablespoons of cornstarch into the cold milk before adding it to the sauce.

Can you add other seasonings? Absolutely!  Again, I just seasoned this classic recipe with garlic and thyme.  But feel free to stir your favorite seasoning mixes into the sauce or sprinkle on your favorite herbs.

Can you substitute other kinds of potatoes? Sure thing.  I’ve made this before with Russets and red potatoes, and also enjoy occasionally using a mix of Yukon golds and sweet potatoes.  But for the classic recipe, Yukon golds are my favorites.

Creamy Garlic Scalloped Potatoes

If you have any other questions, I’ll try to get to them below.  But otherwise, hope that you enjoy this one!  And I wish you all a lovely, hope-filled weekend ahead.  ♡

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Scalloped Potatoes

My favorite recipe for garlicky, cheesy, perfect scalloped potatoes — lightened up a tad with milk instead of heavy cream.

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 small white or yellow onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chicken stock or vegetable stock
  • 2 cups milk (I recommend 2% or whole milk)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, divided
  • 4 pounds Yukon Gold Potatoes, sliced into 1/8-inch rounds
  • 2 cups freshly-grated sharp cheddar cheese*, divided (feel free to add more cheese if you’d like)
  • 1/2 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.  Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. Melt butter in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.  Add onion, and sauté for 4-5 minutes until soft and translucent.  Add garlic and sauté for an additional 1-2 minutes until fragrant.  Stir in the flour until it is evenly combined, and cook for 1 more minute.  Gradually 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 just barely begins to simmer around the edges of the pan (avoid letting it come to a boil) and thickens.  Then remove from heat and set aside.
  3. Spread half of the sliced potatoes in an even layer on the bottom of the pan.  Top evenly with half of the cream sauce.  (I usually strain out all of the onions and add them here too.)  Then sprinkle evenly with 1 cup of the shredded cheddar cheese, and all of the Parmesan cheese.  Top evenly with the remaining sliced potatoes, the other half of the cream sauce, and the remaining 1 cup of cheddar cheese.
  4. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.  The sauce should be nice and bubbly around the edges.  Then remove the foil and bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes, or until the potatoes are cooked through.
  5. Transfer the pan to a cooling rack, and sprinkle with the remaining teaspoon of thyme and extra Parmesan.  Serve warm.

*I recommend not buying pre-grated cheese for this recipe, since it will not melt as well.  Instead, it’s best if you purchase a block of cheese and shred it yourself just before baking.  Over the years, I have also experimented with a variety of different cheeses here.  While I prefer the flavor of sharp cheddar, mozzarella, gouda, fontina and gruyere work great too!  (Or feel free to use a mix!)

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If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

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423 comments on “Scalloped Potatoes”

  1. Hi! If I wanted to make this in advance and freeze it until the day of the party, is it okay to assemble it already in the dish, freeze then bake it on the day I need it? Thanks.

    • Hi Rina! We wouldn’t recommend freezing this. You could try to freeze this but we wouldn’t recommend it because of the delicate potatoes and the high dairy content. Dishes with a lot of dairy typically don’t freeze very well and these potatoes would likely get mushy. Also, making it in advance will likely cause the potatoes to turn grey/brown, because they’ll oxidize. What you can do in advance though (if you want), is cut the potatoes up in advance, (they just need to be cooked first, otherwise they oxidize). We’d suggest parboiling them. We hope this makes sense!

  2. I don’t see it in the recipe but is that thyme I see in the photos? Looks very appetizing. How much did you use?

    • Hi Phil! That is thyme and it is included in the ingredient list, but we used 2 teaspoons (divided). We hope you enjoy the recipe!

  3. I am trying it today! I didn’t have the thyme and stock though but it’s working out :)

  4. i would use a diffeent cheese. regular milk instead of low fat.

  5. We are trying this tonight. But I am adding green pepper to the onion/garlic combo and sprinkling the top with bacon bits. Pretty much anything you would put on a baked potato will work with this. Awesome thanks for your hard work!

  6. Hi!  Made these last night for Sunday dinner. The flavor was very good but they were watery? Do you think my sauce was not thick enough? Is the sauce so thick that you spoon it over the potatoes or pour it. I layered everything earlier in the day and put them in the fridge. Maybe that was it??  But, still tasted great!  Thanks!

    • Hi Alice! We’re glad you enjoyed these but are sorry to hear they came out a bit watery. :( It sounds like maybe the potatoes got too soggy from sitting in the fridge with everything for so long. That’s the only thing we can really think of, as we haven’t had this happen before.

  7. You can’t classify this as vegetarian when you use chicken stock in your recipe.

    • Hi Jay — we state that you can use chicken or vegetable stock (using the vegetable stock would make this vegetarian). We hope you enjoy!

  8. good morning.  i was wondering if you have ever used buttery potatoes for this 

  9. Alice- the watery-ness was due to assembling it ahead of time and then refrigerating it. From the sound of it, your sauce “broke” which is a very common problem with dairy based sauces and is the same culprit to blame for dishes like this not being prime to freeze before cooking. If you want to make it ahead of time and avoid the sauce breaking, cook the dish completely and then bring to room temp (or close, just not hot from the oven) and then refrigerate. I still wouldn’t advise freezing, but who knows it could work out fine. You just want to sauce to bind together completely. It might be a good idea to make an extra 1/3 recipe of sauce or so if going this route because the potatoes could soak up some extra when you reheat/rebake it

  10. Didn’t have but one cup of milk! Still turned out great

  11. These were good. Been looking for recipes without all the fat laden sticks of butter, cartons of sour cream. Just discovered your site. I plan to save it and look forward to browsing the recipes.

  12. The thyme sounds wonderfully interesting, I’m trying them for Easter and hope the change up doesn’t throw anybody off.

  13. Can I make these scalloped potatoes in a crock pot and if so how long do you suggest to cook at low or high ?

    • Hey there! We haven’t tried these in the crock pot, but it can be done. We would cook everything on high for 4-5 hours, or until the potatoes are tender. Sprinkle the cheddar cheese on top, cover, and cook for about 5 minutes more (to melt the cheese). We hope you enjoy!

  14. Four pounds of potatoes is way too much for a 9 x 13 casserole. I’d suggest half that amount. I also added fresh nutmeg and used heavy cream. All in all, the recipe was very easy to follow. Looking forward to seeing how it turns out. It’s in the oven now.

  15. Hi , making this for tomoro Easter brunch . Can I assemble today and refrigerate overnite ? 

    • Hi Kathleen! We’re so sorry for just now getting to your comment! We don’t advise making these in advance — unfortunately the potatoes will oxidize and making them in advance will cause them to be soggy.

  16. Can I put this together tonight and bake the next day?

    • Hi Janice! We don’t advise making these in advance — unfortunately the potatoes will oxidize and making them in advance will cause them to be soggy.

  17. I have never made scalloped potatoes before, and after trying this recipe, I feel like I’ll make them more often.  The combo of the cheeses and thyme with onion and Yukon gold potatoes was amazing… and I’m kind of lukewarm about potatoes :-)

  18. I have made so many different scalloped potato recipes.  I make it every year for Easter.  I’ve tried more elaborate recipes with added ingredients. However, this recipe…was nothing short of amazing.  The balance of flavors, the tenderness of the potatoes, was absolutely perfect. In the past, I’ve tried different kinds of cheeses, less cheese, more cheese.  Nothing beats this recipe.  It is a keeper.  Yes I know it is simple, but sometimes simple is best. It was a big hit. Thank you so much!!

  19. I made these as a side dish for Easter Dinner yesterday. They were delicious and I got rave reviews from my family. Thank you for the recipe.

  20. The taste was good, however, If I were to make it again I would par boil the potatoes, the reason being that although they were sliced quite thin with my mandoline, and cooked per the instructions, they came out a bit too firm in texture.

    • Thanks for sharing, we appreciate your feedback. We’re sorry they weren’t cooked quite enough, but we’re glad you enjoyed the taste!

  21. Made it tonight. Turned out great. I used lactose-free cheese and milk. I didn’t have onions so had to sub in powder. Don’t think I’ll bother with store bought again.

    Rating: 4
    • Thanks for sharing with us, Jeannie, we’re so glad to hear that!

  22. I used this recipe for our church Mother Daughter banquet, and they turned out excellent. I will continue to use this recipe for family occasions. I did make some changes for gluten free needs: used the gravy thickener (rice starch) instead of flour to thicken it and didn’t use the chicken stock, substituted plain water.

  23. I made these tonight and they were the best scalloped/au gratin potatoes I’ve ever made. I had to sub Russet potatoes, mild cheddar cheese and dried thyme instead of the original ingredients but this dish still came out perfect and delicious. Even my husband sat up and took notice and he’s generally a “it was fine” kinda guy when handing out food compliments. I can’t wait to remake this recipe again but with all the ingredients as written.

    Rating: 5
    • That’s such a nice compliment, Jen, we’re so happy you loved them!

  24. This was easy to make. I did some modifications–I forgot to buy fresh Parmesan, so I used the shaker kind you buy for spaghetti. Worked fine. It took another 15 minutes after taking the foil off to get the potatoes completely done. I did use a mandoline to slice them thin–could just be my oven. Delicious! I wanted to post a pic, but didn’t see where to do that?

    Rating: 5
    • Thanks for sharing with us, Theresa — we’re glad you enjoyed it! And in the future, you can share a pic on Instagram or Twitter, and use the hashtag #gimmesomeoven! :)

  25. Made today to have with pork chops. Loved it! Did not have fresh thyme, but still used thyme herb spice and alstroemerias added flax kernels to recipe. We will definitely do this one again. Very tasty.

    Rating: 5
  26. Heey….am trying this out today hope it turns out well?

  27. Went by this , and it was awesome cooked par cooked the potatoes with skin, then cut them much easier. The taste was awesome, we like them very much, Thank You!!!!

  28. great side dish

    Rating: 5
  29. I love scalloped and always looking for new ideas. This is the best recipe I’ve ever made the layers made a big difference with the cheese I added California blend vegetables as one layer, cauliflower broccoli and carrots because it’s a way to get people to have a vegetable and in one dish.Ibstemmed veggies before adding and was done a lot faster. Thanks for sharing!🌵Rosemary

    Rating: 5
    • Wow, thank you so much for your sweet compliment, Rosemary! We’re so glad to hear you loved this!

  30. I made this last night for dinner. Very good. I cut the recipe in half and it made plenty for my family. I used oregano instead of the thyme, gruyere cheese instead of Parmesan and leaks along with the onions. There are so many possibilities… Jalapeños and cilantro. This recipe makes for a good base!

    Rating: 5
    • We’re so happy you enjoyed them, Donna! We love that you used gruyere and leeks in this! And yes, you’re right, there are so many possibilities with cheese and herb combos. :)

  31. A friend and I tried making it in half the serving size and with a smaller pan. When we baked it (following the directions for the full size), the potatoes didn’t come out as soft as we expected. Are the potatoes supposed to be that way?

    Rating: 5
  32. I haven’t read all the responses and replies, do if this question has already been asked forgive me. I have a lot to do in the morning getting ready for church. We are eating at church after morning worship. I am peeling the potatoes tonight, leaving them whole, and putting in water to place in fridge overnight. Is that a bad idea?

  33. I had to share with you how much we enjoyed the potatoes. I did cheat and replace the milk with half & half plus added extra cheese. I used chicken broth I had put in freezer and parboiled the potatoes … but still cooked them the entire 55 minutes. This will be served often from now on. Thank you for sharing the recipe!

    Rating: 5
  34. My picky 4 year old daughter and equally picky husband love these! Great recipe! 😊

    Rating: 5
  35. I use scallions and a wee bit of nutmeg

  36. Simply delicious

    Rating: 5
  37. I made this recipe tonight and it my favorite new potato recipe! It was quick to assemble and easy to make. Delicious

    Rating: 5
  38. very nice post thanku for sharing iwth us

    Rating: 5
  39. This was amazingly flavorful and very easy. I like using the Yukon Golds instead of Russets. A keeper for sure!

    Rating: 5
  40. This recipe is our family’s favorite!!!

    Rating: 5
  41. Yum!! We made this tonight with my two daughters helping because they couldn’t wait to try it – they weren’t disappointed :)

    Rating: 5
  42. This is our go-to recipe every year. Our family always looks forward to it!!

    Rating: 5
  43. I made this today instead of the traditional mashed potatoes with our Thanksgiving turkey. It was phenomenal!

    I followed the recipe exactly as written except I baked it about 15 minutes longer when it was covered because we like our potatoes softer. Everyone loved it. There were seconds (and some thirds) eaten.

    Thanks for a great slightly lighter version of these potatoes.

  44. Im making them right now , i added chopped cooked chicken breast in the middle layer. I hope it will turn out ok

  45. Delicious and easy. Best scalloped potato recipe I’ve ever made!

    Rating: 5
  46. I made these for Thanksgiving and they were delicious. Everybody loved them!

    Rating: 5
  47. Great recipe. I’ve been looking for a scalloped potatoes recipe that didn’t call for tons of cheese and cream. This recipe is it. Delicious and it’s true, you never miss the cream. The only change I made is I used Le Gruyere instead of the cheddar cheese. It’s a little more expensive but well worth it. Thank you, Hayley for posting a great and guilt free recipe!

    Rating: 5
  48. This is a delicious recipe. I added some ham off the bone and some hatch green chile which really put it over the top!

    Rating: 5
  49. These were truly delicious! I have tried other recipes, but none I’ve tried have compared to this!

    Rating: 5
  50. These look AMAZING! I am looking for the perfect accompaniment to our prime rib for Christmas dinner. However, the prime rib cooks at 325 and we only have one oven. Any suggestions for how we can still make these as a side – should we bake the night before then reheat, or cook longer alongside the prime rib at 325? Help!