Are you planning Christmas dinner yet? Since the holiday season is so busy with Christmas shopping, decorating the tree and enjoying time with friends and family, I like to set my menu ahead of time to avoid any added scrambling. My must-haves for dinner include baked ham, green bean casserole, fruit salad and a dinner roll. Oh, and the most important part: Cheesy Potatoes! This recipe is a lightened up version of the traditional, but it’s still super creamy, cheesy and ooey gooey. (I promise you won’t miss the creamed soup version!)
It starts with flavor-packed garlic and onions, shredded hash brown potatoes AND shredded carrots (for a little sweetness), and the sauce is a delicious, flavorful combination of milk, chicken broth, plain Greek yogurt and, of course, CHEESE! All topped off with crunchy cereal flakes.
Let’s get cookin’! Preheat the oven to 375°F. In a large non-stick skillet, heat oil to medium-high heat. Add diced onions and sauté for 3–4 minutes, until they start to soften. Add the minced garlic and cook for another 60 seconds. Add the shredded carrots, cover the skillet, reduce heat to medium, and cook for about 10 minutes. (The carrots take much longer to cook than the potatoes, so we want them to break down a little bit before adding the taters.) Once they have softened a bit, add the shredded hash brown potatoes and allow to cook 3–5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season veggies with ⅛ tsp. salt and ¼ tsp. black pepper, and transfer to a greased 9x13-inch casserole dish.
To make the ooey gooey sauce (my favorite part), heat the butter in the same non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. When melted, add the flour and whisk, making a roux (this will thicken the sauce). Allow to cook 30–60 seconds, stirring (careful not to burn it). Slowly whisk in the chicken broth, then the milk, and allow to cook 4–5 minutes, until a little thickened. Whisk in Greek yogurt until incorporated and stir in 1 ½ cups of shredded cheese (this will thicken the sauce a little more – if too thick, add a little more milk or broth). Taste and season with remaining salt and pepper.
Pour the sauce over the potato/carrot mixture and stir (making sure every last veggie shred is covered in cheesy goodness). Top with the remaining ½ cup cheese. Bake in preheated oven for 20–25 minutes, until cheese is bubbly.
Remove from the oven and top with crushed bran flakes. Evenly coat with cooking spray (so it’ll get nice and crunchy), and place back in the oven on low broil for 1–2 minutes (watching VERY carefully so they don’t burn}. You have officially made Cheesy Potatoes — from scratch — that the whole family will love (I promise they will all be asking for the recipe)! Cheers to that!
- 1 Tbsp. canola oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 5 cups All Natural Shredded Hash Browns
- ¼ tsp. salt, divided
- ½ tsp. black pepper, divided
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
- 1 ½ cups skim milk (or low fat evaporated milk)
- 6 oz. plain nonfat Greek yogurt
- 2 cups low fat shredded marble jack or cheddar cheese, divided
- ⅔ cup bran flakes, crushed
- Cooking spray
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Heat oil in large skillet to medium-high. When hot, add onion and sauté 3–4 minutes, until starting to soften. Add minced garlic and cook 60 seconds. Add shredded carrots, reduce heat to medium, cover and cook about 10 minutes, until starting to soften.
- Add hash brown potatoes and cook, uncovered, for 3–5 minutes. Season with ¼ tsp. salt and ¼ tsp. black pepper. Place potato/carrot mixture in greased 9x13 casserole dish.
- Heat butter in large skillet to medium-high. Once melted, add flour and whisk. Cook 30–60 seconds (do not let brown or burn). Slowly add chicken broth while whisking. Slowly add milk. Allow to cook 4–5 minutes, stirring, until thickened. Add Greek yogurt and whisk until incorporated. Whisk in 1 ½ cups cheese until melted. Season with remaining salt and pepper. Taste sauce and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
- Pour sauce over potato/carrot mixture and mix in until evenly incorporated. Top with remaining shredded cheese.
- Bake in oven for 20–25 minutes. Top with bran flakes and spray with cooking spray. Place back in the oven on low broil for 1–2 minutes, watching carefully so flakes do not burn.
Yield: 10 servings
Per Serving*: Calories 240, Total Fat 8g (Saturated 3.5g, Trans 0g), Cholesterol 20mg, Sodium 600mg, Total Carbohydrate 33g (Dietary Fiber 4, Sugars 5g), Protein 11g, Vitamin A 45%, Vitamin C 25%, Calcium 25%, Iron 15%
*Nutritional values are an approximation. Actual nutritional values may vary due to preparation techniques, variations related to suppliers, regional and seasonal differences, or rounding.
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