Thinly sliced Red Potatoes in a rich and creamy cheese au gratin sauce, topped with more cheese and baked to a golden brown! Just like Grandma used to make!
When it comes to comforting side dishes everything else pales in comparison to Creamy Cheesy Au Gratin Potatoes! They pair beautifully with my Dr Pepper Glazed Ham or my Chili Rubbed Apricot Glazed Pork Tenderloin.
Grandma made Au Gratin potatoes with Russet potatoes that she scrubbed, peeled, and thinly sliced. It was one of Grandpa’s favorites.
I remember sitting by her stove watching her make a roux for the Au Gratin sauce. She’d bring out a big skillet, place a few slabs of butter in the pan, melt it, whisk in flour, and then add milk to create a rich white sauce. Then she’d toss in some shredded cheese until it melted. At that time in my life, watching Grandma cook, as only she could, with a pinch of this, and a dab of that, never using a recipe, was magical! Love was put into each dish!
Needless to say, like so many Grandmas, she didn’t write most of them down! To this day I wish I had her recipe for creamed spinach, rabbit, and vanilla ice cream! Just a few of the favorites Grandma made for her memory index! While I may not have her recipes, I can add just as much love into my dishes as she did hers.
How To Make Creamy Au Gratin Red Potatoes
Here’s a list of things you’ll need for this recipe:
- 5 large red potatoes, sliced into 1/4 inch slices, skins on
- 4 Tablespoons butter
- 4 Tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups milk, or half-and-half
- 1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar Cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Chives for garnish and additional shredded cheese (about 1 cup)
Preheat oven to 400° degrees F. Butter a medium casserole dish. I use a deep 9 x 13 dish.
Most Au Gratin Potato Recipes call for Russet potatoes. I prefer the creamy texture of red potatoes or Yukon Gold potatoes with their thinner skin it’s not necessary to peel them. I love saving steps!!
Layer half the potatoes in the bottom of a prepared casserole dish. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
TIP: To keep sliced potatoes from turning brown, place slices in a large bowl of ice water. Make sure potatoes are completely covered in water. Drain the potatoes right before using.
How To Make Cheesy Au Gratin Sauce
In a large-size saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Every good dish has BUTTAH!! It’s all about the flavor and butter is a fat high in flavor!
Mix in the flour and salt…stir with a wire whisk to prevent lumps.
Slowly add milk. Stir constantly with whisk for one minute, or until the mixture thickens.
TIPS: To avoid lumps in your sauce, add the milk just a little at a time as you stir the flour and butter mixture. While you add the milk slowly…you whip that whisk quickly. (Whip it! Whip it Good!…Showing my age with that song quote!) It’s all about keeping the fluids moving and not sticking to the bottom of the pan!
Cook until mixture has thickened and becomes smooth and creamy! Add garlic powder and onion powder. Stir until well combined.
Stir in cheese all at once, add pepper to taste, and continue stirring until melted, about 30-60 seconds.
TIP: Experiment with different cheeses. I love to add Gouda to my Au Gratin Potatoes. Pepper Jack would kick up the flavor for those who like things a little hot and spicy!
Cheese sauce should be smooth and creamy! (So should my skin…but let’s not open THAT can of worms!)
TIP: If the sauce is too thick, thin it with a little extra milk until you’ve achieved the desired consistency!
Finishing Potatoes Au Gratin
Pour half the cheese sauce over the bottom layer of sliced potatoes in the baking dish.
Add remaining sliced red potatoes. Pile’em high! Shuffle them around into the nooks and crannies of that casserole dish.
Pour remaining cheese sauce over the top layer of sliced potatoes. Sprinkle with an additional cup of shredded cheese and top with chopped chives for a little pop of color and flavor.
Baking Creamy Au Gratin Potatoes
Place baking dish with potatoes in preheated oven, on the center rack of the oven. Bake for 1 1/2 hours in the preheated oven, covered. Remove foil for the last 10 minutes of baking to brown the cheese on top. Potatoes should be “fork” tender when poked with a fork.
Remove potatoes from the oven and rest for 10 minutes to allow the cheese sauce to soak back down into the potatoes.
The cheese on top should be golden brown and crispy! Creating a stunning side dish that goes well with pork loin or beef tenderloin. It pairs beautifully with roasted chicken and ham. So many delicious options!
The creamy cheese sauce and the tender potatoes in this classic French dish combine for one of the BEST comfort dishes ever. I could eat the entire pan…which is why I serve this dish when company is coming!
Other favorite Potato Side Dish Recipes
- Rosemary Three Potato Au Gratin
- Baked Sweet Potato and Purple Potato Medley
- Savory Herbed Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes
- Loaded Mashed Potato Cakes
- Cheesy Party Potatoes
- Parmesan Garlic Butter Baby Red Potatoes
- Best Cheesy Funeral Potatoes
- Twice Baked Potatoes with Broccoli from A Red Spatula
Thanks for stopping by my Nest today and visiting with me. I hope you enjoy this Easy Simple Classic Potato Side Dish as much as we do! I can understand why these were Grandpa’s favorite and I hope you do too!
- 5 large red potatoes, sliced into 1/4 inch slices, skins on.
- salt and pepper to taste
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cup milk, or half and half
- 2 ½ cups shredded Cheddar Cheese, reserve 1 cup for garnish
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- chopped chives for garnish
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Butter a medium casserole dish. Place half the sliced potatoes in the bottom of baking dish.
- In a medium-size saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Mix in the flour and salt. Stir consistently with a wire whisk for one minute. Slowly stir in milk. Cook until mixture has thickened.
- Add cheese all at once. Stir cheese until cheese is completely incorporated and melted into the sauce. About 30-60 seconds. Pour half the cheese sauce over the bottom layer of potatoes.
- Add another layer of sliced red potatoes on top of the cheese and bottom layer of potatoes. Pour remaining cheese sauce over potatoes. Sprinkle with reserved shredded cheese and chopped chives. Bake covered. Remove foil the last 10 minutes of cooking time to brown the cheese.
- Bake for 1 1/2 hours in the preheated oven. Remove when potatoes are fork tender.
You can bake the potatoes covered if you prefer a melted cheese top rather than a crispy golden top.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 644Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 70mgSodium: 719mgCarbohydrates: 86gFiber: 7gSugar: 12gProtein: 20g