Scalloped Potatoes

December 19, 2018

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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 13 votes

Scalloped Potatoes

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
Prep25 minutes
Cook1 hour 15 minutes
Ready in: 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

  • 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.
  • Add flour and garlic and saute 1 minute.
  • While whisking pour in milk. Bring to a light boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Bake in preheated oven until potatoes are tender when pierced with a toothpick or fork, about 55 - 70 minutes*.
  • Garnish with parsley if desired and serve warm.

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.
Nutrition values are estimates only. See full disclaimer here.

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52 Comments

  • Michelle McCartney

    I followed exactly and sadly they were bland… Most definitely needs more flavor. I was disappointed as I made for Christmas dinner…

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Sorry about that! Are you sure it was adequately seasoned with salt? With issues of blandness that’s often a culprit. These scalloped potatoes should have more flavor than other recipes as it includes cheese and garlic for an extra boost in flavor. But you could add more cheese over the top if preferred.

  • lou

    Delish, but, I followed recipe, cooked for 2 hours but potatoes were not soft and tender. What went wrong?

      • lou

        Yes, I used a mandoline and seriously, I followed the recipe exactly. I’ve never had this happen before.

        I cooked them a further 20 minutes then served them, but after 2 1/2 hours they should have been like mashed. Anyhow, they were still cooked enough to enjoy.

          • lou

            Potatoes stored in my pantry and apartment runs warm (about 74 to 78F) so that’s not it. Cabbage rolls in the oven at same time were well done in same amount of time. Potatoes were okay a couple days prior (I made baked potatoes with them). Will just chock it up as an oddity. It’s still a delicious recipe … thank you. Will definitely make it again

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      I would increase butter, flour and milk by maybe an extra 1/3 just so there’s enough volume of sauce mixture.

  • Seasons01

    FYI: The naming convention of your potato dish is a bit off here. Whenever you add Cheese to Scalloped Potatoes they become Au gratin potatoes.

    Going to try them they are very highly rated! I will come back to rate once I get all my ingredients together.

  • Kristin Anderson

    This is fantastic. My family loved it.
    It took a bit of tine to make but it was well worth it. Served it with a spiral sliced ham and lemony garlic roasted asparagus.
    Yum!

  • Yolanda Caldwell

    These were the MOST amazing scalloped potatoes I’ve ever made. I cook a great deal, but I have stayed away from scalloped potatoes because they’re usually very bland. These were not. Thank you. They deserve more than 5 stars!