anatomy of a tater tot casserole

It’s been cooler here lately, so I figured it was safe to turn on the oven. A few days ago I read about tater tot casserole on Stef‘s blog and have been wanting to make it ever since. It sounded kind of awful and yummy at the same time, and it apparently is an Alton Brown recipe. I don’t recommend this recipe if you’re on a low sodium diet.
tatertot casserole.JPG


Tater Tot Casserole from Stef
- Bacon (8-10 slices. I used 6 because I couldn’t remember how many slices to buy)
- 1 lb ground beef (you can use ground turkey or hey, how about tofu? Hmm)
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 cup chopped onion (I only used about a 1/4 of a small onion because I don’t like onions)
- 1 T olive oil
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 2 cans cream of mushroom soup (I used one can of low-sodium soup and one regular)
- 1/2 lb crumbled blue cheese
- 1 bag (32 oz) frozen tater tots
Preheat oven to 375F. Apply nonstick spray to a 9×13 glass casserole dish.
In a large frying pan or saucepan, cook the bacon over medium-high heat until crisp. Remove to a cooling rack set over a newspaper-lined sheet pan and let drain. Chop.
Using the same pan, brown the ground beef. Add thyme. Drain the beef in a colander. Still using the same pan, warm 1 T olive oil over medium heat and saute chopped onion and garlic until soft, about 10 minutes.
In a large bowl, mix together bacon, beef, onion mixture, and 2 cans cream of mushroom soup. Spread in a layer in the prepared dish. Crumble blue cheese over the goopy mixture then cover with a single layer of tater tots. Bake for one hour.
Peter thinks this would be yummy with eggs. I served it with a nice salad of organic greens, carrots, and cucumbers (you know, to balance the artery-clogging stuff).

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19 Responses to anatomy of a tater tot casserole

  1. Christine says:

    I’m so impressed that you tried one! I was once in a training class and a woman just raved about it! Hers doesn’t contain meat, instead it has a couple of bags of pre-cubed cheddar cheese. I was always too afraid to try it.

  2. ann says:

    that sounds wicked good!! perhaps a good dish for brunch?

  3. stef says:

    yeah, it’s wicked good :) we made it again last night for a friend’s birthday party. we used different cheeses – sharp cheddar and blue cheese instead of just blue cheese.
    yum!! each artery clogging spoonful was well worth it.

  4. Rachael says:

    I *have* to make that. Seriously. I love casseroles, tater tots, bacon, and blue cheese, so this sounds PERFECT. oh, yum…..
    Glad you had fun on your whirlwind trip! And you are cute as heck in your new dress.

  5. Silvia says:

    That sounds strangely compelling…though I’d keep the defibrillator paddles handy. May try it with though.

  6. Eklectika says:

    Oh man…that sounds good – I’m gonna have to try that…mmmm….tater tots…..

  7. Lora says:

    Ugh..sounds good but it looks awful. I tend to eat with my eyes so i might skip this one!

  8. claudia says:

    Wow. I say again. Wow. Those particular combinations had not previously occured to me. I’m filing this under, “Try Someday”.

  9. Nathania says:

    I come from Minnesota, Land of 10,000 Casseroles – no wait, make that Hot Dishes. This actually seems quite appealing to me and I’m frightened at the same time.

  10. rachel says:

    i don’t know how i feel about this.

  11. masami says:

    I’m a Japanese girl living in Minnesota, and I have to say that I’ve grown to like tater tot casserole. I consider a comfort food now. But the boy is a chef so he gets disgusted when I mention it.

  12. Em says:

    Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…tater tot hot dish. Taters are sort of a no-no for me right now, but I don’t think I’m going to be able to resist this.
    Props to the Minnesota gals out there!

  13. Marie says:

    Sounds intriguing but for those of us who don’t live in USA – what are tater tots? They look quite small from the pic and a little like croquette potatoes? Would love to know if they’re the same so I could try the recipe.

  14. Bonne Marie says:

    Thanks so much for the recipe!
    Now I can go armed and dangerous to my Mom’s Labor Day Potluck and throw down on those sauerkraut pork loin dishes the Church Ladies bring.
    There is something a little heathen about the bacon, beef and BLEU cheese, that I think will get them all riled up. Up north in Michigan, *Blue Cheese* is the equivalent of Cavier!
    I LOVE TATER TOTS!
    I am half Polish (mom) and half Irish (dad) and my DNA screams for P-O-T-A-T-O-E-S. Other people give up chocolate for Lent – I give up French Fries.

  15. greta says:

    oh, my clogging arteries….but YUM, potatoes bacon AND Blue cheese….wow!

  16. Stella says:

    I glad I’m not the only one who finds that recipe scary… :)))) And I’m from Germany vere ve eat ze potatoes every day!
    Just wanted to say, I love the dress you sewed a couple of days ago. You are inspiring me to drag out the old sewing machine…

  17. Evelyn says:

    I love Alton Brown and I love Tater Tots BUT this looks a little greasy and decadent to me! Have you seen his fried mac and cheese? Talk about instant heart attack food!

  18. becky says:

    The only word for something like that is, “grubbin’” which means delicious but you know it’s bad for you and you really don’t want to admit that you crave it!

  19. amy says:

    I HAVE to start jogging and get trim like you.. Tater Tots are a banned food in this house!! But the potato loving freak that I am I may just try this recipe. I am the kind of gal that goes out for breakfast for the hash browns… Tater Tots are FAB!

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