Garlicky, cheesy scalloped potatoes! Scalloped potatoes are thinly sliced potatoes cooked in a casserole dish with melty cheese and a delicious garlic sauce!

oval baking dish with scalloped potatoes topped with fresh thyme

Easy and Cheesy!

Basically, two of my favorite words when it comes to food. There’s also a whole lot of garlic, so scalloped potatoes pretty much hit the mark on all of my favorite food groups – cheese and garlic. Nevermind the fact that I don’t really love potatoes, that can be overlooked when there’s garlic cream sauce and boatloads of cheeeeeese.

Scalloped potatoes. You’ve had them before, right? An easy casserole dish that feeds a crowd and requires only a little bit of work. It’s full of thinly sliced potatoes mingling in garlic sauce and cheddar cheese that’s bubbly and golden. 

Good grief!

side shot showing the texture and sauce inside the casserole dish

For someone that doesn’t really love potatoes, I’ve made a whole lot of them! I’ve got a 20-minute instant pot garlic mashed potatoes, the twice baked potato casserole, smashed potatoes, skillet breakfast potatoes and of course, the cheddar mashed ones! And so I thought, why not bring you my version of scalloped potatoes that you can use now for Easter, and again for all of the end-of-year holidays.

Honest! I don’t really love potatoes; I heart making them in a thousand different ways! 

What are scalloped potatoes?

Scalloped potatoes are somewhat similar to potatoes au gratin. Both have sliced potatoes and cheese, whether it’s hard cheese or soft. I like to consider scalloped potatoes to be a more rustic version of the potatoes au gratin as the potatoes are often sliced thicker, and there are no breadcrumbs, and more economical cheeses are commonly used to prepare this casserole dish. I like to think of it as an American take on a French classic!

Ingredients needed to make scalloped potatoes?

  • butter
  • garlic
  • flour
  • dairy
  • herbs
  • potatoes
  • cheese

thinly sliced potatoes in oval baking dish on gray surface

What are the best kind of potatoes to use for potato casserole?

The best potatoes for making scalloped potatoes are ones that have a high starch content. The starch helps make the sauce nice and thicken when it bakes. Therefore there are two good choices for this recipe.

  1. Yukon golds: yellow potatoes! They have a thin skin, so it’s easy to peel and super yellow flesh but also have a high starch content making them ideal for casserole bakes.
  2. Russet Potatoes: These little guys (or big guys I should say) are starch balls! This is what I like to use when making scalloped potatoes because they pair beautifully with cheddar. Russets are also commonly used when making baked potatoes or mashed because the higher starch content makes them really creamy.

How to make scalloped potatoes:

  1. Slice the potatoes. I peeled the skin and then sliced the potatoes on a mandolin. Be extra CAREFUL if you decide to use a mandolin. And make sure you use the guard, so you don’t slice off your fingers!
  2. Make the sauce. Melt the butter in your saucepan, and sauté that garlic until it’s fragrant. Then, we’ll add the flour and let it cook before adding the liquids to make a thick sauce, allow the sauce to thicken, then remove from heat.
  3. Layer. Add half the potatoes to your baking dish, followed by a handful of shredded cheese, then the rest of the potatoes and finally, pour the prepared sauce over the scalloped potatoes. 
  4. Bake. Cover the baking dish tightly with foil and let it bake. Halfway through we’ll add the cheese and allow it to finish baking uncovered, so it developed a golden bubbly crust!

wooden spoon used to scoop sliced potatoes in cheese sauce topped with cheese

Substitutes to make this recipe lighter:

If you want the scalloped potatoes to be on the lighter side, I suggest swapping the heavy cream for additional milk or half and half!

Can I use something other than cheddar cheese for this casserole?

Basically, anything that melts well! Here are my suggestions:

  • gruyere
  • mozzarella
  • fontina
  • Colby
  • gouda
  • monterey jack

I hope you’ll make a casserole dish full of this stuff to share with the fam this weekend! 🙂

sliced potatoes covered in bubbly cream and cheese sauced

Yield: 12-14 servings

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes

Garlicky, cheesy scalloped potatoes! Scalloped potatoes are thinly sliced potatoes cooked in a casserole dish with melty cheese and a delicious garlic sauce!

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4-8 cloves garlic, minced (less if you aren’t a fan)
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • ½ cup heavy cream (or additional milk/half and half to keep it light)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon granulated chicken bouillon (see notes)
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 ½ pounds russet/Yukon gold potatoes, sliced into ¼ - ⅛ inches thin rounds)
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar
  • 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese

Instructions

  1. PREP: Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 400ºF. Place 1 tablespoon of butter in a 9x13 baking dish and pop the dish into the oven and allow the butter to melt as the oven heats up. Remove the dish from the oven when the butter has melted.
  2. SAUCE: Melt the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter in a large saucepan. Add the garlic and allow it to sauté for 1-2 minutes or until fragrant. Whisk in the flour and allow it to cook for 1 minute or until it starts to brown, slightly. Gradually pour in the milk as you whisk. Then add the cream and the thyme, granulated bouillon, pepper and allow the mixture to slowly start heating through and bubbling (avoid boiling) and let it thicken. Taste and adjust salt as desired. Remove the sauce from the heat. 
  3. BAKE: Spread half the potatoes slices evenly in the baking dish over the melted butter. Then add 1/2 cup of shredded cheese, followed by the remaining potato slices. Pour the prepared sauce over the cheese and potatoes. Cover the baking dish with foil and allow the scalloped potatoes to bake for 35 minutes. After 35 minutes the sauce should be bubbly, and the potatoes should be halfway done. Remove the foil sprinkle with the remaining cheddar cheese and the parmesan and bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through and the cheese melts. You can check for doneness by inserting a knife in the potatoes, it should go straight through without resistance. Allow the scalloped potatoes to cool for about 10 minutes before serving. Top with chopped parsley or thyme if desired.

Notes

  • If you don’t have granulated chicken bouillon, feel free to use the equivalent in BTB. Vegetarians, the vegetarian or mushroom BTB works great too!

Have you made this recipe?

I’d LOVE it if you could take a second to rate this recipe and leave a comment below. You can also share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #LITTLESPICEJAR 🙂

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