Perfect for your Easter brunch or dinner table (or great any time of year) these Scalloped Potatoes with Bacon and Cheese are my take on classic scalloped potatoes. They’re creamy and cheesy and stood up!
These potatoes are my take on classic scalloped potatoes, with a few modifications. First, the potatoes are sliced thinly and stood on their side – “stood up”. If you have a mandolin and aren’t afraid to use it, it would make quick work of the potato slicing. Me, I’m afraid of mine, so I resort to a sharp knife and a little patience. You’ll want to slice them as thinly as possible, while still getting a full slice. I won’t lie. It’s a bit of a labour of love, but trust me … it will all be worth it.
Once the potatoes are sliced and stood-up, sliced onions and cooked bacon are placed in between the slices and then a creamy sauce is poured over it all. Finally, a lovely aged white cheddar cheese goes on for the last part of baking.
The creamy sauce on this one is nice and thick and is made with only whole milk (no cream!) and chicken broth, thickened with flour and a bit of butter. I do recommend whole milk, as I mentioned, there is no cream so a higher fat milk is really needed to give this dish it’s “creamy” sauce. The sauce is also flavoured with a bit of mustard, Worcestershire and some thyme leaves. I loved the bit of chicken stock in the sauce. It adds great depth of flavour and stops it from becoming overly rich.
Look for a great aged white cheddar for your topping. I used a British cheddar called Coastal. Dubliner would be great, as well. Anything white, nutty and crumbly. As for the potatoes, I went with unpeeled Yukon Gold potatoes. If using a different type of potato, note that your cooking time may vary.
Get the Recipe: Scalloped Potatoes with Bacon and Aged Cheddar Cheese
- 2 slices bacon, diced
- 1/2 cup onion, thinly sliced, cut in to 1-inch long pieces and separated
- 6-7 large Yukon Gold or other yellow-fleshed potato
- 1/4 cup butter
- 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk, 3 or 3.5%
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- Splash of Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tsp fresh thyme leaves, optional
- 1 tsp fine sea salt, more as needed
- Freshly ground pepper
- 100 g Aged White Cheddar, 3.5oz, shredded
- Preheat oven to 375° F. and grease a rectangular, shallow baking pan approximately 8x10-inches (or 9x9 inches would work, as well)
- In a skillet, over medium heat, cook bacon until lightly browned. Remove to a paper-towel to drain and set aside.
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Add flour and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute (mixture will be crumbly). Add milk and chicken broth and whisk, until well combined. Cook until mixture is smooth and thickened. Remove from heat. Add mustard, Worcestershire, thyme leaves (if using), salt and pepper. Taste sauce. Sauce should be well-salted, so add more, if necessary. Put lid on saucepan and set aside.
- Cut ends off potatoes. Slice into thin rounds (as thin as you can while still getting a complete slice), using a sharp knife or a mandolin. Stand the potatoes up side-by-side in your prepared pan. Continue until you have about 3 rows that fill up 3/4 of the width of the pan (by the time we put onion and bacon in between, they will spread out to fill the entire width of the pan).
- Take your sliced onion and start inserting it in between every 3 or 4 potato slices or so. It doesn't need to be too precise. Just fit some in here and there. Repeat with the bacon bits, trying to insert in different spaces. Spread your potato slices out evenly across the entire width of the pan, ensuring they are still standing up-ish. Sprinkle with some salt and freshly ground pepper.
- Pour our sauce over top. Using the back of a spoon, push the sauce from the top of the potatoes down in between the potatoes and between the rows.
- Cover with foil. Bake on a baking sheet (in case of bubble overs) for 45 minutes covered. Remove foil. Sprinkle grated cheese evenly over top. Return to oven uncovered (still on baking sheet) and cook for an additional 20-30 minutes. Test potatoes for done-ness by sampling a potato slice from the centre of the dish and making sure it's cooked. If not, cook a bit longer.
This was the best scalloped potato recipe I have ever made! I used Balderson aged cheddar cheese. I am planning on making this again but I wondered whether the dish can be frozen, either before or after cooking.
So glad you enjoyed these potatoes, Kirstin :) As for freezing, it should freeze just fine. I would freeze after cooking myself. Thanks!
Made these lovely spuds to bring to our annual friends Christmas pot luck. Delicious! I was a bit rushed and maybe a bit lazy and layered the ingredients rather than stacking and stuffing them. Still delicious :) Thanks for sharing your kitchen with us Jennifer!
So glad you enjoyed them, Shareen :) Thanks so much!
Ive made this is the oven and its fantastic! Wondering if it could be done in a slow cooker?
Hi Natasha, I have never done it, but I suspect if you mimicked the oven method, you would be ok. So, you would cook covered in the slow cooker for some period of time (until potatoes are tender), then remove the lid from the slow cooker, add the cheese and continue cooking until sauce thickens etc. I’m not sure the topping will be as nice (crispy) as in the oven though, but it should work. All that said, unless you had a specific reason to want to do these in the slow cooker, I think the oven method would produce the best results.
I also use my food processor to slice potatoes. This looks delicious. I have a Balderson smoked white cheddar in my fridge. Do you think this cheese would be ok or would it compete too much with other flavours in the dish? Think I’m going to try this for Easter. Thanks for all the great recipes.
Hi Carolyn, If you (and everyone else) loves the flavour of smoked cheese, I think it would be fine. I am not a huge fan of smoked cheese myself, but my husband loves it, so I guess it just depends on who’s eating :)
Can I make this the day before and heat through on Easter?
Hi Christine and yes, you definitely can. Re-heat in a moderate oven covered with foil.
I completely agree that ham NEEDS creamy potatoes on the side! I can’t wait to try these “stood up” potatoes-such comfort food, eh! I am afraid of a mandolin as well but I use my food processor for slicing and might never go back to using a knife. :-)
Thanks Julia :) I never thought about using my food processor, although I have to say, I have always found chopping and cutting strangely therapeutic, so I don’t really mind using my knife.
I’ve always had a weakness for scalloped potatoes, these look simply irresistible!
Thanks Laura. Me, too :)
Hi Jennifer, potatoes are one of my favorite foods, this looks amazing! Beautiful pics!
Thanks so much, Cheri :)
Oh yum. All the potatoes…this looks incredible! Worth breaking out the mandoline!
Thanks so much and definitely a mandoline would make quick work of this one :)
Oh my goodness… These look SO good, I wish I could grab a huge forkful right now!
Thanks Meghan. They were so delicious. Nothing like creamy, cheesy potatoes :)