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Cheesy Potatoes Au Gratin
Homemade cheesy scalloped potatoes with a rich cream sauce and melted cheddar cheese. The perfect potato side dish recipe!
Oh, cheesy potatoes are a staple and in my opinion, the best thing to put next to a steak. This scalloped potatoes recipe is perfectly creamy with tender, seasoned potatoes in a homemade white cream sauce and with toasted cheese on top. These are the best Au Gratin Potatoes ever!
I have come to the realization that making perfect cheesy potatoes au gratin isn’t as easy as one would think it would be. To make the best au gratin potatoes, it takes some special methods to get them to turn out just right. I have all of the tips and tricks for making perfect potatoes au gratin every single time!
The key with scalloped potatoes is to ensure the potatoes become fork-tender before the cream sauce dries out or curdles. I have a solution for that and it makes them turned out beautifully every single time.
I love America’s Test Kitchen and their two hosts came out with a wonderful cookbook called, Cooking at Home with Bridget and Julia, and this is an adaption of their scalloped potatoes recipe.
What type of potato should you use when making these Au Gratin Potatoes?
I am a huge fan of Yukon Gold or Yellow Potatoes. They have the creamiest texture and taste less starchy.
Another big tip to ensure the potatoes are fully cooked through is to parboil them in the cream before placing them in the oven. This gets a jump start of the cooking and creates melt-in-your-mouth scalloped potatoes.
CHEESE is a very important ingredient when making these scalloped au gratin potatoes. I love to reach for a sharp cheddar cheese because it is full of flavor. You want to use cheeses with a lot of flavor. I also love to use gruyere cheese with a touch of parmesan too. You can change up these potatoes by just changing up the cheese. You can even use pepper jack if you want them to be spicier.
How to make Potatoes Au Gratin:
- Start with a good-quality potato. I love to use Yukon Gold potatoes because of their creamy texture but you can use a russet potato as well. Peel the potatoes and cut into thin 1/8 inch slices.
- In a large pot with a lid (such as a dutch oven), saute onion with butter until it begins to become tender, about 5-6 minutes. Add the garlic but only saute for about 30 seconds as garlic can burn quickly.
- The cream, milk, spices, thinly sliced potatoes are added to the pot. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for about 15 minutes. THIS is the key tip to parboil the potatoes so they don’t need as much time in a hot oven.
- Transfer the potatoes to a baking dish and top with cheese. Bake until bubbling, about 20-25 minutes.
I love to spice up my cheesy potatoes au gratin by adding some roasted green chiles. This is how we do it here in Arizona. Since we love flavor all types of Mexican food, green chiles and jalapenos are a must to add. My brother lived in Mexico for two years and he came home and put jalapenos on everything — even spaghetti and lasagna! I won’t go THAT far but on these cheesy potatoes, it is perfect.
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Cheesy Potatoes Au Gratin
- 2 Tablespoons Butter
- 1 Small Onion (finely diced)
- 2 Garlic Cloves (minced)
- 4 lbs Yukon Gold or Russet Potatoes (peeled and thinly sliced, about 1/8")
- 3 cups Heavy Cream
- 1 cup Whole Milk
- 1 teaspoon Thyme
- 2 teaspoons Salt
- 1 teaspoon Pepper
- 2-3 cups Sharp Cheddar Cheese (grated)
- Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add butter and onion and let cook for 5-6 minutes, stirring often. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Meanwhile, peel and slice potatoes.
- Add heavy cream, milk, thyme, salt, pepper, and potatoes. Cover with a lid and reduce heat to low to keep a mild simmer. Parboil potatoes for about 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are almost tender. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Transfer potato mixture to 3-quart baking dish or gratin dish. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese. If you want the cheese to be melted throughout, carefully mix the cheese into the potatoes.
- Bake until bubbling around the edges and cheese is melted and golden, about 20-25 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
I hope you love these cheesy scalloped potatoes, my friends!