Funeral potatoes, also known as cheesy potato casserole or simply potato casserole, are a classic American comfort food that has been a staple in many households for decades. This hearty dish is often served at funerals, hence the name, but it's also a popular side dish for potlucks, holiday dinners, and any occasion that calls for a crowd-pleasing, easy-to-make recipe.
It was a typical Sunday afternoon and I found myself in the kitchen, searching for a recipe to make for dinner that night. As I scrolled through my Pinterest feed, a picture caught my eye: a bubbly, cheesy casserole with a crispy topping. I clicked on the link and discovered the recipe for funeral potatoes.
I had never heard of funeral potatoes before, but the name intrigued me. It sounded like a dish that was steeped in tradition and comfort. I scanned the list of ingredients and realized that I had everything I needed in my pantry and fridge.
I got to work, chopping onions and shredding cheese. As I mixed together the ingredients, the smell of butter and cream filled the air. I poured the mixture into a greased baking dish and topped it with a generous layer of crushed cornflakes.
As the dish was baked in the oven, the aroma grew stronger and more enticing. I couldn't wait to dig in. Finally, the timer beeped and I pulled the dish out of the oven. The top was golden brown and crispy, while the inside was creamy and cheesy.
I scooped a spoonful onto my plate and took a bite. The potatoes were perfectly tender, and the flavor was rich and satisfying. I couldn't believe how easy it was to make such a delicious dish.
From that moment on, funeral potatoes became a regular feature on my dinner table. They reminded me of the importance of comfort food and how a simple recipe can bring joy and comfort in difficult times.
- 1 package (30 oz) frozen shredded hash brown potatoes
- 1 can (10.5 oz) condensed cream of chicken soup
- 1 cup sour cream
- ½ cup butter, melted
- ½ cup chopped onion
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 2 cups corn flakes cereal, crushed
- Salt and pepper to taste
How to Make It
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
- In a large bowl, combine frozen hash brown potatoes, cream of chicken soup, sour cream, melted butter, chopped onion, shredded cheddar cheese, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Mix well until all the ingredients are evenly combined.
- Pour the mixture into a greased 9x13-inch baking dish.
- Sprinkle the crushed cornflakes over the top of the mixture.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 45-50 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender and the top is golden brown.
How to Store It
Funeral potatoes can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To freeze, cover the dish tightly with plastic wrap and aluminum foil and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
How to Reheat
To reheat funeral potatoes, preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Remove the dish from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until heated through.
Tips to Make It More Delicious
- Add diced ham, cooked bacon, or chopped green onions for extra flavor.
- Substitute cream of mushroom soup for cream of chicken soup.
- Use crushed Ritz crackers instead of cornflakes for a buttery topping.
Can I use fresh potatoes instead of frozen hash browns?
Yes, you can. However, using frozen hash browns saves time and effort.
Can I make funeral potatoes ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare the dish up to a day in advance and store it in the refrigerator until you're ready to bake it.
Can I make funeral potatoes in a slow cooker?
Yes, you can. Combine all the ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on low for 4-6 hours, or until the potatoes are tender and the top is crispy.
Can I make funeral potatoes without cream of chicken soup?
Yes, you can use cream of mushroom soup or cream of celery soup as a substitute. You can also make your own homemade cream soup by combining milk, flour, and butter in a saucepan and cooking until thickened.
Can I add vegetables to the dish?
Yes, you can add diced bell peppers, mushrooms, or broccoli to the mixture for extra nutrition and flavor.
How long does it take to cook funeral potatoes?
It takes about 45-50 minutes to bake funeral potatoes in the oven at 350°F (175°C). However, cooking time may vary depending on your oven and the thickness of the potato mixture.
Funeral potatoes are a comforting and easy-to-make dish that's perfect for feeding a crowd or bringing to a potluck. With a few simple ingredients, you can create a hearty and delicious casserole that's sure to please everyone. Whether you're mourning the loss of a loved one or celebrating a special occasion, funeral potatoes are a classic dish that brings comfort and joy to any meal.
- 32 bag shredded hash browns, thawed and patted dry
- 1 stick butter
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 cloves fresh garlic, diced
- 10.75 oz. cream of chicken soup
- 16 oz. sour cream, equal to 2 cups
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 1 dash hot sauce
- 2 cups cheddar cheese, separated (I use half mild half sharp)
- 2 cups ridged potato chips, slightly crushed
- 1 Tablespoon butter, melted
- ⅓ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- Chives, diced
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Soften onions and garlic
- Melt 3 Tablespoons butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the diced onions and cook for 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 additional minute.
- Add the remaining 5 tablespoons butter until melted. Remove from heat.
- Stir in cream of chicken soup, sour cream, salt/pepper, hot sauce. Set aside ½ cup of cheese and add the rest to the saucepan mixture.
- Use a silicone spatula to stir in the potatoes until well-combined.
- Transfer to a lightly greased 9 x 13 baking dish. Top with remaining ½ cup cheese.
Add Topping and Bake
- Combine the melted butter, potato chips, and Parmesan cheese. Spread evenly over the potatoes.
- Bake, uncovered, for 40 minutes. Let it sit for 5 minutes prior to serving. Garnish with chives if desired.
Using Fresh Potatoes:
- If using fresh potatoes, rinse them thoroughly with cold water and pat completely dry. You’ll need about 10 cups shredded potatoes.
Crock Pot Method:
- Assemble as indicated in recipe, reserving some of the cheese to top it with. Place in a lightly greased Crock Pot.
- Heat on low for 4-5 hours or high for 3+½.
- Top with Cheddar and Parmesan cheese, cover until melted.
- Sprinkle with slightly crushed potato chips. (No need to toss them with butter as that's more conducive for the oven.)