Twice baked potato casserole with loaded mashed potatoes and a cheesy top has all the flavors of a twice baked potato in easy casserole form. Creamy mashed potatoes are loaded with thick-cut bacon, cheddar, roasted potato skins, sour cream, cream cheese and fresh green onions.
Today we’re making a twice baked potato casserole with loaded creamy mashed potatoes as a base topped with a cheesy layer of cheddar, bacon and green onions. All your favorite flavors of a loaded baked potato are repackaged into a convenient and sharable casserole that will be a family favorite.
It’s a great side dish to add to your menu for Thanksgiving or Christmas or for other days of the year when you feel like having some potatoes. This recipe is versatile enough for you to load up the mashed potatoes with other fillings to customize it to your tastes. With how hectic the holidays get, you can also prep it in advance and bake it the next day.
For more potato recipes, try this reader-favorite mashed potato puffs, crispy garlic Parmesan smashed potatoes, garlic Parmesan sweet potato stacks, loaded mashed potato balls, slow cooker mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, German potato salad, or a classic creamy potato salad.
Ingredients in Twice Baked Potato Casserole
TWICE BAKED POTATO CASSEROLE RECIPE TIPS
- Potatoes – Both russet and Yukon gold potatoes work for this recipe. Chop up some of the skins while mashing if you like mashed potatoes with skins, which I highly recommend. I used russet potatoes and used up all the roasted skins in my loaded mash.
Since it’s in the name of the recipe, we’ll be baking the potatoes in the oven first before mashing them and baking them again as a casserole. However, if you’re short on time or oven space, you can opt for the faster method of boiling the potatoes to mash them and make a regular baked potato casserole.
Why Bake Potatoes if Boiling Them is Faster?
For the skins! Go for the twice baked option if you want to add roasted potato skins to your loaded mash. They will taste better than the skins you get from boiling, which retain water. If you’re not a fan of skins in your mash though, skip the baking and just boil them instead. Note that it technically won’t be a twice baked potato casserole then, just a regular baked potato casserole. I’m including both ways to prepare the casserole for more flexibility.
- Salt – I like to use coarse sea salt because it’s more forgiving than your average table salt and you can be generous with the seasoning.
- Butter – I like using Land O Lakes half butter sticks which measure out the tablespoons for you.
- Take the butter, sour cream and cream cheese out of the fridge and bring them to room temperature to make mixing easier.
- Milk / heavy cream – Use whole-fat milk or heavy cream. Both of these will work but the main difference is that heavy cream will give you creamier mashed potatoes.
When mashing your potatoes, drizzle the milk in increments so it mashes evenly. You may think you won’t need a whole cup of milk (it depends on the size of your potatoes), but add in all the other fillings like butter, cream cheese, sour cream, skins, bacon, cheese and green onions and mix it up before determining if you need to add more milk. The mashed potatoes will thicken up significantly once loaded with everything. The consistency you are looking for is a chunky, thick mash and not so much creamy mashed potatoes. This chunky mix will soften up once baked in the oven.
- Bacon – I used 12 oz. of bacon, which is about 10 slices. Since this is a loaded baked potato casserole, you’ll want big chunks of bacon in there so thick-cut bacon is your best bet for maximum texture. You can cook it over the stovetop, bake it, or even take a shortcut by using store-bought packaged real bacon bits.
- Cheddar cheese – I used sharp pre-shredded cheddar in a bag and divided it to mix between the mashed potatoes and as a topping.
- Green onions – This adds some fresh bite to the mashed potatoes and casserole. If you’re not a fan of green onions, try substituting them with chopped fresh parsley instead.
- Garlic – I used garlic powder in this recipe but you can substitute it with freshly minced garlic.
- Skins – If you’re putting in the effort of baking the potatoes, you might as well use the roasted skins. I included all of the skins in the loaded mashed potatoes but feel free to adjust how much you add based on how much texture you want in your loaded mashed potato filling. Chop them up before adding them to the mashed potatoes so they are easier to bite into.
- Baking potatoes vs. boiling – It can’t legitimately be called a twice baked potato casserole unless the potatoes are baked in the oven twice. However, I’ve included a step in the recipe to make a regular baked potato casserole by boiling the potatoes instead for those short on time.
Some say making mashed potatoes from baked potatoes tastes better than boiling them. While I can’t say for certain that this is the case, I can say if you’re including the skins in the mash, the roasted potato skins will taste much better than boiled potato skins.
- Make ahead – Prep the casserole one day in advance, cover and refrigerate. Let it sit on the counter for about 30 minutes to come to room temperature before baking.
- Leftovers – The casserole will keep in the fridge covered for 3-4 days.
- Reheat – Reheat by baking the casserole at 350°F for 20-25 minutes or until warmed through. Microwave individual portions for about 3 minutes.
- Add more protein – Load it up even more with some chopped cooked ham.
- Swap cheeses – Try a different cheese such as Colby Jack, Pepper Jack, Monterey Jack, or a combination of cheddar and mozzarella for epic cheese strings.
What to Serve with Twice Baked Potato Casserole
Twice baked potato casserole goes great with almost any meal but will shine during the holidays as a flavor-packed side for Thanksgiving or Christmas. For regular everyday dinners, some pairing ideas would be meatloaf, Salisbury steak, oven-baked chicken, or steak bites.
And that’s about it. Enjoy your potato casserole! Let me know how you liked it, what substitutions you made or what you paired it with in the comments below.
MORE POTATO RECIPES TO TRY
- Mashed Potato Puffs (perfect for holiday leftover mashed potatoes)
- German Potato Salad
- Loaded Mashed Potato Balls
- Creamy Potato Salad
- Garlic Parmesan Sweet Potato Stacks
- Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes
- Crispy Garlic Parmesan Smashed Potatoes