A meal can be elevated to a whole new level with a complex and rich side dish such as a creamy potato bake. This potato bake is very similar to an Au Gratin potatoes except slightly less runny.
Although there is a lot of slicing involved this is effectively a very simple dish with only four key ingredients, potato, onion, cheese, and cream. Additional ingredients come from flavorings such as garlic powder.
There is also a flavorsome topping included that creates a crust when cooked, but it can be skipped or simplified as circumstances prevail. This crust includes breadcrumbs which absorb any moisture that may come from the cheese to avoid an oily appearance.
Creamy Potato Bake Recipe
- 6 waxy style potatoes
- 1 brown onion
- 16 oz medium cheddar cheese (white cheddar if available)
- 16 oz cream
- garlic powder to taste
- salt to taste
- 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup bread crumbs
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika or to taste
- 10 inch Dutch oven
- Slowly and carefully thinly slice the potatoes and onions. The thinner you can get each level the better it tends to work out.
- Grate (shred) the cheddar cheese.
- Build the potato bake with as many layers as the preparation allow.Base Layer – sliced onion (helps the potato to not stick) First Layer – potato Second Layer – onion Third Layer – grated cheese Fourth Layer – very gently sprinkle with garlic powder and salt (remember this will happen multiple times throughout the dish).
- Repeat the four layers until all ingredients are used.
- Firmly push down on the top of the dish to compress the layers. Expect to hear the onion and potato cracking and compressing. The goal is to reduce the air pockets, otherwise, they will be filled with cream which will weaken the overall dish.
- Gently pour in the cream moving over the full surface of the potato layers to ensure it gets into all the gaps.
- Sprinkle half of the topping cheese evenly across the top of the bake.
- Sprinkle across the top of the bake all of the breadcrumbs. Tip: The breadcrumbs help absorb any moisture/grease that comes from the cheese.
- Sprinkle the remaining topping cheese evenly across the top of the bake.
- Gently sprinkle the top with the parsley, garlic powder, and smoked paprika. If camping and have limited ingredients, this can be substituted with your favorite rub.
- Bake for 120 minutes, or until cooked at 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Tip: Sometimes the potatoes may be very stubborn and can take longer until they are soft. Don’t be tempted to up the heat, otherwise, the outside will brown (possibly even burn) while the potatoes inside remain raw and hard.