If you’re looking for an easy and delicious meal idea for dinner tonight, then look no further than Ham and Cheese Hash Brown Casserole!
This family-friendly casserole is made with simple ingredients including frozen hash browns, diced ham, and cheddar cheese, making it an affordable and quick option for busy weeknight dinners.
This recipe can be customized to fit your preferences by adding in extra vegetables or switching up the type of cheese used, and it also makes great leftovers, so you can enjoy it for lunch the next day or freeze it for later.
In this article, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to make this comforting casserole, along with tips and tricks for perfecting it every time.
So, whether you are a seasoned chef or a beginner in the kitchen, get ready to make the best-ever hash brown casserole!
Why Is This The Best-Ever Ham And Cheese Hash Brown Casserole?
Let us tell you something about the magical cheese hash brown casserole. It’s a comforting classic that satisfies both your stomach and your soul.
Picture this: a golden-brown crispy topping on a bed of soft and creamy potatoes. And let’s not forget the cheese!
The heartwarming combination of diced ham or bacon and ooey-gooey cheese is what makes it a true winner.
This dish is so versatile that you can mix and match the ingredients to suit your taste buds. The possibilities are endless!
You can add bell peppers, onions, or garlic to create a symphony of flavors that will make your tastebuds dance.
And the best part is that you can easily transform it into a healthier option for those who aim to lead a wholesome lifestyle.
So, let’s dive into the world of cheese hash brown casserole, where every bite takes you to a world of warmth and comfort.
Ham And Cheese Hash Brown Casserole Recipe
- Preparation Time: 20 minutes
- Cooking Time: 45 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour and 5 minutes
- Number of Servings: 8
- Calories per serving: 443 calories
- Level of Difficulty: Easy
- 1 (32-ounce) package of frozen hash browns
- 2 cups of diced ham or cooked, crumbled bacon
- 1 can of cream chicken soup
- 1 cup of sour cream
- 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup of chopped onions or bell peppers (optional)
- 2 tablespoons of melted butter
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1 teaspoon of black pepper
Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Set aside a 9×13-inch baking dish.
In a large mixing bowl, add a package of frozen hash browns. You can use either thawed or frozen hash browns for this recipe.
If you’re using thawed hash browns, squeeze out any excess water before mixing with the other ingredients.
Add 2 cups of diced ham or cooked, crumbled bacon to the hash browns. If you prefer a vegetarian version of the dish, you can skip the ham or bacon and add chopped vegetables instead. Mix well until the ham or bacon is evenly distributed.
Add 1 can of cream chicken soup into the bowl. It helps to bind the ingredients together and add creaminess to the dish. For a vegetarian version, use cream of mushroom soup.
Add 1 cup of sour cream to the mixture. This adds creaminess to the dish and helps to balance the salty flavor of the ham.
Add 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese to the mixture. Keep the other cup of cheese for later. Mix well until all ingredients are evenly combined.
You may opt to add chopped onions or bell peppers into the mixture to add some flavor and crunch.
Add in 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of black pepper. Stir the mixture to ensure everything is well combined.
Pour the hash brown mixture into the prepared 9×13-inch casserole dish. Use a spatula to spread the mixture evenly, ensuring the potatoes and toppings are layered evenly and level in the dish.
Sprinkle the remaining cup of shredded cheddar cheese over the top of the hash brown mixture.
Place the casserole dish into the preheated oven and bake it covered with foil for 30 minutes. This will help the cheese melt and combine with the ham and hash browns.
Remove the foil, return the casserole dish to the oven, and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes or until the cheese is golden brown and starts to bubble at the edges.
Remove the dish from the oven and let it rest for 10 minutes before serving. It’s best served hot and bubbly.
These simple steps will give you the perfect ham and cheese hash brown casserole, perfect for family gatherings, potlucks, and any occasion when you’re looking to satisfy a crowd.
Top Tips To Make The Perfect Ham And Cheese Hash Brown Casserole Every Time
Here are some top tips to make sure that your ham and cheese hash brown casserole is cooked and served to perfection every single time!
- Tip #1: Make sure to use frozen or thawed hash browns for the best results. If you’re using thawed hash browns, make sure to squeeze out any excess water before mixing them with the other ingredients.
- Tip #2: If you’re not a fan of ham or bacon, feel free to substitute with chopped vegetables like onions, bell peppers, and mushrooms.
- Tip #3: When adding salt and pepper, start with a small amount first and taste before adding more if needed.
- Tip #4: Sprinkle the cheese topping evenly over the casserole to ensure maximum cheesy goodness in every bite!
- Tip #5: Don’t forget to let the dish cool slightly before serving – this will help it maintain its shape when cutting into it!
Can I Make This Casserole Vegetarian-Friendly?
For those who are looking for an easy, vegetarian-friendly meal, ham, and cheese hash brown casserole is the perfect solution.
This delicious dish can easily be made vegetarian-friendly by swapping out some of the ingredients for meat-free alternatives.
Here’s how you can do it:
First off, when prepping the hash browns, make sure you use either frozen or thawed potatoes. If you’re using thawed potatoes, squeeze out any excess water before mixing with the other ingredients.
Next, instead of adding diced ham or cooked crumbled bacon to the mixture, opt for chopped vegetables like onions and bell peppers instead. They’ll add a nice crunch and flavor to the dish without any animal products!
Then comes the cream of chicken soup – this will help bind all the ingredients together and add some creaminess to the dish. For a vegetarian version of this casserole, swap it out with cream of mushroom soup instead.
The sour cream is what helps balance out the salty flavors from ham or bacon, so all you need to do here is substitute with vegan sour cream if desired – it will work just as well!
You can even opt to add in more vegetables like mushrooms and carrots if you want additional texture and flavor to your casserole.
Lastly, top your casserole off with a cup of shredded vegan cheese – this will give it that cheesy goodness we all love.
And there you have it: a delicious vegetarian-friendly hash brown casserole that’s perfect for any gathering or potluck!
With just these few simple substitutions, you can have an amazing main course in no time at all!
This delicious ham and cheese hash brown casserole is perfect for any special occasion or weeknight dinner.
It is made with tender potatoes, juicy ham, and gooey cheese, making it a crowd-pleaser that everyone will love.
Plus, you can easily make it vegetarian-friendly by swapping out the ingredients for meat-free alternatives.
So, whether you’re hosting a party or simply looking for an easy weeknight dinner idea, this ham and cheese hash brown casserole is sure to hit the spot, and with our simple instructions and the dish’s classic flavors, this dish is guaranteed to become a family favorite. Bon appetit!
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