Scalloped Potatoes

December 19, 2018

My idea of the BEST Scalloped Potatoes! These are rich and creamy and have just the right amount of cheesy flavor. The sauce has the perfect consistency and the potatoes are perfectly baked. A staple side dish recipe that’s perfect for weekends and holiday dinners.

Scalloped Potatoes in a navy baking dish with one scoop removed to show creamy sauce and potato layers.

Tested and Perfected Scalloped Potatoes Recipe

We’ve all had our fair share of bad scalloped potatoes. You know the kind that are so bland you’d rather just have cold cereal instead.

Or there’s the kind that are so gluey and thick you’re thinking it’s a paste coating the potatoes instead of a sauce. Then there’s the kind that have hard undercooked potatoes and crisp, seemingly raw onions. No thanks to all of the above!

In this recipe you get a smooth and creamy sauce with sharp cheddar for a boost of flavor, it also has onions and garlic for fresh flavor – and those are sauteed before hand so they don’t end up crisp or adding harsh flavor.

Then the potatoes end up perfectly soft and tender since they’re thinly, evenly sliced. And the golden brown areas on the top of it all will leave you smitten!

Are you hungry yet? I know I’m ready for more!

Scalloped Potatoes in a navy 13 by 9 inch baking dish set over a marble surface.

Ingredients for Scalloped Potatoes

  • Butter – to make a roux and make the sauce rich.
  • All-purpose flour -to thicken the sauce.
  • Yellow onion – this livens up the bland potatoes.
  • Garlic – not so common in scalloped potatoes but I say it’s a must.
  • Salt and pepper – potatoes will need a fair amount of salt.
  • Whole milk – this creates a delicious creamy sauce.
  • Cheddar cheese – don’t use pre-shredded cheese, it won’t melt as smoothly.
  • Red potatoes – I like waxy less starchy potatoes here. Yukons gold will work great too.
  • Parsley (optional) – this just adds a nice contrasting vibrant color for garnish.

Ingredients for scalloped potatoes shown here including whole milk, butter, flour, onion, garlic, red potatoes, sharp white cheddar cheese, salt and pepper.

How to Make Scalloped Potatoes

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 13 by 9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and saute 3 minutes.

Showing how to make scalloped potatoes, starting with sauteing onion, garlic, and flour in butter in a medium saucepan.

  • Add flour and garlic and saute 1 minute.
  • While whisking pour in milk. Bring to a light boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently.

Adding milk to saucepan for scalloped potatoes.

  • Remove from heat. Stir in cheese.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste (you’ll need about 1 tsp salt). Cover pan with lid and set aside.

Pouring milk and cheese sauce over thinly sliced potatoes in a baking dish.

  • Peel potatoes and slice into 1/6-inch slices using a mandolin. Spread half of the potatoes into an even layer in prepared baking dish (be sure each slice is separated).
  • Pour half the sauce evenly over potatoes. Spread over remaining half of potatoes and finish by covering with remaining half of sauce.

Spreading a second layer of thinly sliced potatoes over sauce layer in baking dish for scalloped potatoes.

  • Bake in preheated oven until potatoes are tender when pierced with a toothpick, about 55 – 70 minutes.
  • Garnish with parsley if desired and serve warm.

Finishing scalloped potatoes by adding a final layer of sauce over thinly sliced potatoes in baking dish.

Made from Scratch Oven Baked Comfort Food!

This recipe is one of those homestyle dishes that will take you back home and remind you of the classic recipes mom and grandma made. I just love recipes like this.

And also I don’t know what it is about winter but I’m loving comfort food like this lately.

Scalloped Potatoes after baking in a dark baking dish set over marble surface. One scoop is removed to show sauce and thin sliced potatoes.

Tips for Scalloped Potatoes

  • Use a mandolin to slice the potatoes. That way the don’t end with various thicknesses which would leave some potatoes undercooked.
  • I like to wait to slice the potatoes until after I make the sauce so they don’t brown. Plus that way you can skip the bowl and water trick and another dirty dish.
  • Regular yellow/orange cheddar will work great too in place of white if that’s what you’ve got but stick with the sharp intensity for best flavor.
  • Create layers. Don’t just add potatoes then pour sauce. Layering the potatoes and sauce twice will leave the sauce evenly distributed.
  • If you like them extra cheesy feel free to sprinkle some cheese on top too. Cover with foil for half of the baking time if doing so so it doesn’t burn.
  • Broil at the end for some browning. It adds lots of flavor.

Scalloped Potatoes on a white single serving dish set over a dark blue plate that's resting on a marble surface.

Can I Make these Ahead of Time?

For best results I recommend baking and serving just after prepping. Reheated potatoes are never as good if you ask me.

What to Serve with Scalloped Potatoes?

Scalloped Potatoes on a white single serving dish set over a dark blue plate that's resting on a marble surface.

More Potato Recipes You’ll Love!

Scalloped Potatoes

5 from 5 votes
My idea of the BEST Scalloped Potatoes! These are rich and creamy and have just the right amount of cheesy flavor. The sauce has the perfect consistency and the potatoes are perfectly baked. A staple side dish recipe that's perfect for weekends and holiday dinners.
Servings: 7
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp (26g) butter
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 3 Tbsp (42g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 3/4 cups (650ml) whole milk
  • 1 1/4 cups (5 oz) shredded sharp white cheddar cheese
  • 2 3/4 lbs red potatoes
  • 1 Tbsp minced fresh parsley (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 13 by 9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.

  2. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and saute 3 minutes.

  3. Add flour and garlic and saute 1 minute.

  4. While whisking pour in milk. Bring to a light boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently.

  5. Remove from heat. Stir in cheese. 

  6. Season with salt and pepper to taste (you'll need about 1 tsp salt). Cover pan with lid and set aside.

  7. Peel potatoes and slice into 1/6-inch slices using a mandolin. Spread half of the potatoes into an even layer in prepared baking dish (be sure each slice is separated).

  8. Pour half the sauce evenly over potatoes. Spread over remaining half of potatoes and finish by covering with remaining half of sauce.

  9. Bake in preheated oven until potatoes are tender when pierced with a toothpick or fork, about 55 - 70 minutes*.

  10. Garnish with parsley if desired and serve warm.

Recipe Notes

  • *For further browning on top, move potatoes closer to broiler during last few minutes of baking.
Nutrition Facts
Scalloped Potatoes
Amount Per Serving
Calories 322 Calories from Fat 117
% Daily Value*
Fat 13g20%
Saturated Fat 7g44%
Cholesterol 38mg13%
Sodium 225mg10%
Potassium 993mg28%
Carbohydrates 40g13%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 8g9%
Protein 9g18%
Vitamin A 505IU10%
Vitamin C 18.1mg22%
Calcium 276mg28%
Iron 1.8mg10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Scalloped Potatoes
Author: Jaclyn

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18 Comments

  • Pamela Green

    Recipe was really easy (use a mandolin as directed) and the results were terrific! Everyone loved the flavor. I tasted the sauce before cooking and was thinking the onions were a little over powering, but I added the salt and pepper, baked as directed and BAM! I had made fabulous tasting scalloped potatoes just like mom use to make. (Hate when people do this, but here I go… I used 2 cups of whole milk but for the remaining 1/2 c, I used heavy whipping cream AND I couldn’t find SHARP white cheddar where I was shopping so I purchased Kerry Gold aged white cheddar. But that’s it on the changes. Sometimes you have to adapt to the ingredients you have available, but the base of the recipe is still there. I guess there wouldn’t be new recipes coming out all the time if no one experimented, right?!) Thanks for sharing this recipe!

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      That’s what keeps cooking fun is adding your own adaptation :). Glad you enjoyed them!

  • Bridgette

    Haven’t had this since my mother in law passed… hers were delicious… hoping it turns out well… Making this to go along with meatloaf for Sunday dinner… I’ll post how they turned out…