This post is sponsored by the American Dairy Association, although all of my opinions are my own.
White Cheddar Scalloped Potatoes are one of my favorite side dishes that is made with sharp white cheddar cheese, yellow Yukon potatoes, and chives baked to perfection. The potatoes are soft and the sauce is super creamy. This is a perfect side dish for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Growing up as a kid, scalloped potatoes were my absolute favorite side dish. It still is! Perhaps I am a bit biased though. I love just about anything “potato”. I actually just paused writing this blog post for a second to make sure that statement is true, and it is! I love just about anything! That’s why these White Cheddar Scalloped Potatoes are always going to be a winner at my dinner table.
Cheese, milk, and dairy in this recipe
What makes scalloped potatoes delicious is all of the dairy that goes into the potato recipe. I have made this recipe a few times to get it right and I have tried making this recipe with evaporated milk, heavy cream, half and half, and regular whole milk. Truth is, I failed a couple of times before this recipe came out just right. I honestly think I was just overdoing it.
When cooking with dairy, there are many things to consider when choosing which base you should create for the desired outcome. The first time I made this scalloped potato recipe, I decided to use evaporated milk and it came out pretty…goopy. I just didn’t like the consistency. It could’ve been my use of other ingredients as well.
The second time I made this recipe, I decided to do what I do best. I stuck to what I know. I started off making a roux, just like I do when I make my Baked Southern Macaroni and Cheese recipe. Then, I layered the potatoes with a little of the creamy roux mixture which I added white cheddar cheese and freshly grated white cheddar cheese. Perfect! When in doubt, stick to what you know.
I also think my choice in potatoes was key as well. The first time I made this recipe, I used russet potatoes, but I definitely recommend using yellow Yukon Gold Potatoes because they are creamier and softer.
Scalloped potatoes vs. Au Gratin potatoes
I have always wondered what is the difference between scalloped potatoes and au gratin potatoes. I can only answer this question based upon my experience trying the two side dishes. Au Gratin potatoes are more dense and cheesy scalloped potatoes are more creamy and cooked mostly in a heavy cream base. If there is a better and more sophisticated culinary answer for this question, I wouldn’t know it. I’m just thinking about the Loaded Potatoes Au Gratin at Pappaduex that is just heavenly.
For added flavor in this scalloped potato recipe, I added chopped chives. I love chives because it carries a soft and subtle onion flavor. It isn’t as strong as a regular yellow onion. For this recipe, chives or scallions will work just fine. You can also add bacon bits or chopped ham if you wish.
Whatever you do, you will enjoy this dish down to the very last bite. This is a great side dish for Thanksgiving or Christmas!
Commonly Asked Questions
The short answer is you probably aren’t allowing the potatoes to cook long enough or there isn’t enough liquid to help the potatoes cook. If these two answers are not the case, it could be that your oven isn’t reaching the temperature required to cook the potatoes in this dish.
First, let me say, I came to this issue a few times when creating this recipe. From my experience, you want to cook this side dish uncovered. The heat will help the potatoes cook through but some of the liquid that gives off in this recipe will also evaporate.
Do I need to peel the potatoes for this recipe?
Not really, but I did for presentation purposes. You can absolutely leave the skin on if you are going for a more rustic look.
If you like recipes like these, you will love the recipes below:
- Garli and Herb Grilled Potatoes
- Easy Mashed Potatoes
- Roasted Fingerling Potatoes
- Garlic and Tarragon Roasted Red Potatoes