Jul 05, 2023, Updated Jul 19, 2023
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Easy, cheesy, deliciously crunchy and creamy hash brown and cornflake casserole, topped with crunchy corn flakes and perfect as a cookout, tailgate, or BBQ side!
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Crunchy Baked Hashbrown Casserole
Funeral potatoes are a traditional dish in the Intermountain West region of the United States, especially popular in Utah and Idaho. The dish is a type of casserole made with hash browns or cubed potatoes, cheese (usually cheddar or Colby), onions, cream soup (like cream of chicken or mushroom), and a topping of butter with either cornflakes or crushed potato chips. Some versions also include sour cream.
As the name suggests, funeral potatoes are traditionally served at after-funeral dinners, but they are also common at other social gatherings, church functions, and holidays.
Despite the somewhat macabre name, funeral potatoes are often enjoyed for their comfort-food qualities: they’re creamy, cheesy, savory, and have a satisfying crunch from the topping. It’s a dish that’s meant to be shared, which is why it often appears at communal gatherings.
How to Make Funeral Potatoes
To make this recipe, we will need the following ingredients:
- 28-ounce package frozen cubed hash browns, thawed (800 grams): The base of the dish. They provide the substance and a nice contrast in texture between their soft interior and crispy edges.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil: Used to sauté the hash browns, it enhances their flavor and helps them to crisp up.
- 1 10-ounce can cream of chicken soup: Acts as a binding agent for all the ingredients and provides a creamy, savory depth to the dish.
- 1 cup sour cream: Adds richness and creaminess to the dish. It also brings a slight tang which balances out the heavy, cheesy flavors.
- ¾ cup salted butter, divided and melted: Used for two purposes – mixed in with the potatoes for extra richness, and combined with the cornflakes for a crispy, flavorful topping.
- 2 ½ cups cheddar cheese, shredded: Brings a sharp, cheesy flavor to the dish. It melts into the other ingredients creating a gooey, creamy texture.
- 2 ½ cups Cornflakes: Coated in melted butter and then baked on top of the casserole, they provide a nice contrast with their light, crispy texture.
Once you’ve gathered your ingredients, we will use the following process:
- Prep. Preheat the oven to 350F. Place hash browns in a colander. Drizzle oil in a 9×13 casserole dish and evenly place thawed hashbrowns in and set aside. Add soup, sour cream, and ½ of the melted butter into a medium bowl and mix well. Add in shredded cheese and mix again then pour on top of hashbrowns and mix until fully incorporated.
- Bake. In a small bowl mix together cornflakes and the remaining melted butter, then layer over potatoes and bake for about 40-50 minutes until the top just starts to become golden.
- Enjoy. Allow it to cool slightly before serving.
Tips and Tricks to Perfect Funeral Potatoes
Thoroughly Thaw Hash Browns: Make sure your frozen hash browns are completely thawed before you begin the recipe. If they’re still frozen, they can make the dish watery and prevent it from baking evenly.
Don’t Skimp on Cheese: The more cheese, the merrier. While the recipe calls for a certain amount, adding a bit more can make the dish extra gooey and flavorful.
Use Fresh Ingredients: Using fresh onions, high-quality cheese, and homemade cream of chicken soup (if you have the time and inclination) can significantly enhance the taste.
Crush the Cornflakes Properly: Don’t pulverize them into dust. You want them to be crushed enough to spread evenly, but not so much that they lose their crunchiness.
Butter Your Cornflakes: Toss your cornflakes in melted butter before adding them to the top of the casserole. It gives them a rich flavor and helps them crisp up in the oven.
Bake Until Golden Brown: Every oven is different, so watch your casserole closely towards the end of the cooking time. You want your cornflakes to be a nice, toasty brown but not burnt.
Let it Rest: After taking the casserole out of the oven, let it rest for a few minutes. This allows the sauce to thicken up a bit, making the casserole easier to serve.
Yes, you can prepare Funeral Potatoes a day ahead. Assemble the dish as per the instructions but hold off on the cornflake topping. Cover and refrigerate the casserole. When ready to bake, add the cornflake topping and then bake. You may need to add a few extra minutes to the baking time.
Yes, you can use fresh potatoes. Peel and boil them until just cooked (not too soft), let them cool, and then dice them. Keep in mind that fresh potatoes may result in a different texture.
Funeral Potatoes can be frozen, either before or after baking. If freezing before, omit the cornflake topping until ready to bake. If freezing after baking, let the dish cool completely before freezing. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat in the oven.
You can use cream of mushroom, cream of celery, or even make a homemade white sauce as a substitute.
While cheddar is traditional, you can certainly use other types of cheese. Colby, Monterey Jack, or a Mexican blend would all work well.
Yes, you can make a vegetarian version by using cream of mushroom or cream of celery soup instead of cream of chicken soup.
Funeral Potatoes are often served as a side dish at potlucks or family dinners. They go well with roasted or grilled meats, salads, and other traditional comfort foods.
Yes, if you don’t have cornflakes, you can use crushed potato chips, breadcrumbs, or Ritz crackers for the topping. Each will provide a different kind of crunch and flavor.
What to Serve With Funeral Potatoes
Roasted or Grilled Meats: The creamy, cheesy flavors of funeral potatoes pair wonderfully with the savory notes of roasted or grilled meats. Whether it’s grilled chicken, roasted beef, or a pork tenderloin, these meats can complement the potatoes nicely.
Green Salad: A fresh, crunchy salad can provide a refreshing contrast to the richness of the funeral potatoes. Consider using a tangy vinaigrette to cut through the creaminess of the potatoes.
Roasted Vegetables: While funeral potatoes are quite hearty, they can still pair well with other vegetables. Consider serving them with roasted broccoli, Brussels sprouts, or a medley of seasonal veggies.
Fish: Grilled or baked fish, especially salmon or trout, can be a lighter protein option to pair with the potatoes.
Barbecue: Barbecued ribs or pulled pork with a tangy sauce can pair well with the creamy, cheesy potatoes.
Bread: A loaf of fresh, crusty bread can be great for sopping up any extra cheesy goodness left on your plate.
Funeral Potatoes Recipe
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- 28-ounce package frozen cubed hashbrowns, thawed (800 grams)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 10-ounce can cream of chicken soup
- 1 cup sour cream
- ¾ cup salted butter, divided and melted
- 2 ½ cups cheddar cheese, shredded
- 2 ½ cups Cornflakes
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Place hash browns in a colander. Drizzle oil in a 9x13 casserole dish and evenly place thawed hashbrowns in and set aside.
- Add soup, sour cream, and ½ of the melted butter into a medium bowl and mix well.
- Add in shredded cheese and mix again then pour on top of hashbrowns and mix until fully incorporated.
- In a small bowl mix together cornflakes and the remaining melted butter, then layer over potatoes and bake for about 40-50 minutes until the top just starts to become golden.
- Allow it to cool slightly before serving.
Nutrition InformationYield 10 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 560Total Fat 44gSaturated Fat 19gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 21gCholesterol 80mgSodium 1000mgCarbohydrates 33gFiber 2gSugar 2gProtein 10g
Nutrition is automatically calculated by Nutritionix - please verify all nutrition information independently and consult with a doctor or nutritionist for any and all medical and diet advice.