Cheesy Potatoes for the Holidays

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Let’s talk about traditions.   Every family has them whether they occur on the holidays or not.   As a kid my brother and I would wake up early every year and sit at the top of the steps on Christmas Day.  Once my parents were up they would video us coming down the stairs and seeing our pile of presents.   Another Christmas tradition as a child was always going to the candlelight service at our church.  It was such a lovely and peaceful time and always a great service with family.

Delicius Cheesy Potatoes are a modern twist on my mother's classic holiday recipe

Fast forward to now.  My husband and I have started some traditions of our own.   One of our older traditions is setting up our Christmas tree the weekend after Thanksgiving.   One of our newer traditions is having a gourmet homemade meal on Christmas Eve.   It’s usually filet mignon and we enjoy it with a glass of champagne.

Betty Crocker Potatoes make it easy to bake up a holiday side dish.

Holiday traditions are fun and many of them revolve around food.   My mother makes a delicious cheesy potato casserole for Christmas and Easter every year.   She uses frozen hash browns, cheddar cheese, sour cream, butter, and cream of chicken soup.  I look forward to it every year because it’s so good and cheesy.

However, sometimes food traditions need to be updated.  I never use cream of chicken soup at home so I wouldn’t use it in my own cooking.   While I love sour cream and butter, I figured I could find a way to lighten up this recipe.  I wanted to put a spin on this family favorite and make it my own.

Cheesy Potatoes for the Holidays

To do that I started with Betty Crocker Au Gratin Potatoes and Betty Crocker Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes.   I used THIS coupon to get $.50 off 2 boxes of Betty Crocker Potatoes. I thought this would make a great base because the potatoes are thinly sliced and already have a cheesy, creamy sauce.  Of course I had to add a few ingredients to it to make it my own.

I substituted in low fat sour cream for half of the milk in the potatoes.  That would give the potatoes the richness I love in them.  Then I chopped up some onions and peppers, sauteed them, and stirred them into the dish.  I also added some black pepper and rosemary to the dish.  That’s it!   It was just a few simple additions and substitutions but I really thought this was going to be similar to my mom’s holiday potatoes.

Make these easy Cheesy Potatoes with Betty Crocker Potatoes!

I also made a topping for the potatoes because that’s part of what makes them so good.  Her original recipe calls for breadcrumbs, butter, and cheddar cheese.  Instead of breadcrumbs I used crushed up butter crackers because I like the bigger pieces on my topping.   I simply mixed that with butter, cheese, garlic, and pepper and sprinkled it on top.

After 25 minutes the potatoes smelled amazing.  I won’t lie, I wanted to take a big scoop of them as soon as they came out of the oven but I restrained myself so I wouldn’t burn my tongue.  That’s another difference in this recipe.  While my mom’s recipe takes an hour, this one cooks in less than 30 minutes.

The verdict?  These potatoes are super cheesy and delicious!   They are definitely reminiscent of my mom’s cheesy potato casserole but lightened up and faster to make.   These potatoes will definitely be a shining star on our holiday table this year.

Delicius Cheesy Potatoes are a modern twist on my mother's classic holiday recipe

Cheesy Potatoes for the Holidays

Yield: serves 10
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

A recipe update on my mom's hash brown casserole, this dish combines cheesy potatoes, peppers, and onions with a crunchy cracker topping.


For the potatoes:

  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 box Betty Crocker Au Gratin Potatoes
  • 1 box Betty Crocker Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes
  • 4 c. boiling water
  • 1/2 c. milk
  • 1/2 c. low fat sour cream
  • 3 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary

For the topping:

  • 1 c. buttery crackers, crushed
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 c. cheddar cheese, shredded


  1. Heat the olive oil in a small skillet.
  2. Add the onion and pepper and saute for 5 minutes or until just softened. Remove from heat.
  3. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  4. In a 9 x 13 baking dish, combine both boxes of potatoes, boiling water, milk, sour cream, butter, black pepper, and rosemary. Mix well.
  5. In a small dish combine the cracker crumbs, butter, and cheddar cheese. Sprinkle over top of the potatoes in the baking dish.
  6. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.


A Hezzi-D Original Recipe

Cheesy Potatoes for the Holidays using Betty Crocker Potatoes

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  1. We always look forward to our mashed potatoes that we make with cream cheese, butter & cream. we also serve the mashed potatoes with bacon pieces, sliced green onions & cheese! The whole family loves these potatoes & they stay hot in a crock pot all day if you have to travel to someone else’s house.

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  2. I love to make cheesy potato casserole! Cubed potatoes, cream of chicken soup, sour cream and shredded cheese! SO GOOD! My mom has made that for years, and it’s honestly the best stuff ever, it brings back great memories growing up, sometimes i put louisiana hot sauce in them, that’s good too!

  3. We always make a red skin garlic mashed potatoes. The more garlic the better! A little butter added on top…soooo good!

  4. One year my mother had over 20 people coming to her house for Thanksgiving dinner. She made two pots of potatoes, and one got burned. She panicked, because one pot was not enough. I mashed the potatoes, grabbed ranch dressing and bacon bits and mixed them in, and served them. The ranch covered the burnt taste, and the bacon bits made it seem natural that there was a bit of smoky flavor to them. Everyone raved about them! They were actually eaten first over the regular potatoes. Now that recipe is a staple at every big meal.

  5. I peel, boil and drain Yukon Gold potatoes. I mash them and stir in butter, sour cream, and buttermilk. I add no-salt seasoning to taste. These mashed potatoes are delicious!

  6. We like to make mashed garlic potatoes in the slow cooker. It’s easy and they have lots of flavor, and less fat.

  7. Whenever we have ham around the holidays, my best potatoes are actually Betty Crocker Au Gratin potatoes! My whole family loves them!

  8. Many years when I couldn’t afford to buy food.. I would make Potato soup, Not only is it delicious and good for you, but It is also very filling!

  9. I love mashed potaotoes. I add cream cheese or sour cream, a little big of warm milk & butter. I don’t like a lot of gravy though.

  10. One of our favorite things to do each year is to take the leftover ham and turkey and add them to a diced potato dish my husband makes. We eat it for breakfast and for dinner. With added peppers and onions, it is a great way to use the leftover meats.

  11. I love potatoes!! Mashed potatoes on the holidays are my favorite, add a little milk in with the water when you boil them to make them extra creamy, and then add cream cheese when you mash them. SO good. I’ve been craving my mom’s homemade potato soup lately though.

  12. My favorite holiday potato recipe is to layer sliced potatoes, cheese, cream of mushroom soup and leftover ham for a delicious casserole. My boss always gives us a ham for Christmas, and this is a great to use up the leftovers.

    1. COngratulations! You are the winner of the Betty Crocker Potatoes giveaway! I’ve sent you an e-mail to get your information.

  13. My best holiday potato recipe is scalloped potatoes, layers of thin sliced yellow gold potatoes, sprinkles of flour and slices of butter and light cream poured over them. My family loves these on the holidays.

  14. Well this is a little different but my favorite thing to do with patatoes around Christmas time is to make the old fashion potatoe candy. You use one medium potatoe and boil and mash it. You then add some powdered sugar. Spread that out on wax papaer and spread a thing layer of peanutbutter on top. Roll it up like a log. You then slice it and it’s so good to eat. My grandma used to always make that and now it’s a favorite of mine to make.

  15. I honestly don’t know the recipe but my 85 year old Grandma makes us hashbrown casserole and it takes amazing, it is just right! Just make sure you add a tiny bit of salt!

  16. I love garlic! Especially in the wintertime to ward away colds (and vampires). So My vote would be for garlic mashed potatoes or garlic potato soup. Yum!

  17. My husband actually makes the BEST mashed potatoes ever. He’s a mashed potatoes snob and takes a lot of pride in his work. Every year they are delish!

  18. I do a cheesey potato casserole with chicken breast and broccoli my kids never want to try veggies but this casserole they eat every drop of it….

  19. Our family LOVES ham and cheesy hashed brown potatoes the day after Christmas (using Christmas Dinner’s leftover ham!).
    We make it every year because it’s easy and can be ready quickly!

  20. My potato recipe is using au gratin potatoes and adding some bacon and cheddar cheese and butter to it. Yum. A potato story would be my forgetting to add milk to my boxed potato recipe. It came out dry and horrible.

  21. When I was a kid we had a pecan tree in our backyard, so my mom always came up with creative ways to use them in recipes. One thing she made every Christmas and Thanksgiving was a sweet potato casserole that had pecans in it.

  22. My favorite holiday potato recipe is twice baked potato casserole with cream cheese, sour cream, grated cheddar cheese, butter and topped with bacon, scallions and grated cheese. We have this every Thanksgiving and Christmas.

  23. I like to make Christmas cookies with my family and decorate them. I also attend the local tree lighting and events outdoors.

  24. My potato are a treat anytime….Simply bake some potatoes, cute them into chunks, add a generous amount of sharp cheddar cheese and bacon bits and then cover with homemade ranch dressing. Everyone always asks me to make this side dish!

  25. My favorite kind of potatoes are my moms mashed potatoes! She puts butter and two different types of milk. It’s so yummy!!!

  26. My sister and I were both living away from home (CA) in Michigan and we got together to celebrate Thanksgiving. We both love garlic like crazy so my sis made a batch of mashed potatoes but seriously used like 4 bulbs in it. Hand mashed the potatoes, tossed some melted butter in there, and of course the said 4 bulbs of garlic that had been cooked up. They were freakin’ delicious but we were seriously so gassy for like a week. It was awful. This past year we celebrated Thanksgiving together again but back home in CA and she told me she only used 4 cloves this time. 😉 Lesson learned!

  27. My best potato recipe is to make hasbrown potatoes as a casserole. You add habanero peppers, anaheim, cream of mushroom soup with sharp cheddar cheese on top and you bake it. It’s amazing!

  28. Our best family tradition is Christmas Eve at my house and every year we have leg of lamb with homemade gravy and mashed roasted garlic potatoes. I know it’s a pretty simple potato recipe but I look forward to it every year.

  29. I loved potatoes as a kid—honestly I still do, but a favorite was always my mom’s twice baked potatoes. Simple, delicious and I’m pretty sure they appeared at every family function and get together!

  30. We like to add sour cream, butter, and a little garlic to our mashed potatoes. Sometimes my husband will add in some bacon for the boys.

  31. Although it’s not a holiday tradition for us, we love to make hasselback potatoes – they’re delicious and somehow feel really fancy!

  32. We have a loaded mashed potato recipe that we indulge on some holidays. We don’t really measure, just add a dry ranch dressing packet, bacon or bacon bits, shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream and butter. So yummy!

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