Tater Tot Casserole
Tater Tot Casserole is one of the most hearty comfort food dishes that I can think of. Casseroles scream childhood for many of us, and that is part of the joy. My favorite part is the fact it can be made with ingredients I already keep in my pantry and freezer.
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The only thing I had to pick up today was tater tots. Casseroles are never aesthetically pleasing, instead being very rustic. That is part of the appeal. There is no pretense to create the prettiest plate in the world.
Casseroles are always reminiscent of childhood. There is a rustic charm based on that alone. They are usually pretty simple to make, just by putting everything in a baking dish to heat up and marry all the flavors together.
Tater Tot Casserole Ingredients
1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 pound sausage, mild italian
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
½ of a small onion, chopped
3 mushrooms, chopped, or 1 small can
1 can green beans
1 teaspoon garlic salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon herbs de provence
2-3 cloves fresh garlic
32 ounce bag tater tots
Cheddar Cheese, shredded, amount optional
2 cups French fried onions (Nathan always calls these French fried eyeballs, and that always makes me laugh)
Tater Tot Casserole Directions
Divide the ground beef and sausage. Then chop up the onions, mushrooms, and garlic. Add the seasonings into the pan. I toss everything into the pan separately and then mix it all together there. This saves me dirtying up a mixing bowl.
Skip adding any oil!
Brown the meat. There will be plenty of grease coming out of the sausage. Because of that, there is no need to add any oil to the pan.
Drain the grease from the pan after the meat is browned. Add in the 2 cans of mushroom soup. Then add in one can of milk. I go with the two to one ratio of soup to milk on this. Drain the green beans and then add them in. Warm this up to combine everything.
Assembling Tater Tot Casserole
Put about half the bag of tater tots in the baking dish. Enough to cover the bottom, without overlapping. Sprinkle cheese over the tater tots. Add the meat and sauce mixture on top. Once that is done, add the remaining tater tots on top.
After adding the last of the tater tots on top, sprinkle with a little more cheese and it is ready for the oven! I baked this at 400 degrees for half an hour. At the 30 minute point, I add the french fried onions on top, and put back in the oven for another 15 minutes.
If you prefer to bake at 350 degrees, go for it. Leave it in for 45 minutes and then add the crispy onions in and bake for another 15 minutes. The goal is to make sure everything is heated all the way through, and the crispy onions are golden brown on top.
Once it is out of the oven, let it sit for 15 minutes and rest. Otherwise it will fall apart and make a huge hot mess. It will still fall apart, to some extent. By letting it rest, it won’t happen as much.
One of my favorite things about this recipe is it is simple to make, requiring few ingredients to make it amazing. These are all ingredients that I keep in the pantry and freezer.
Hearty and Comforting!
It is a perfect hearty winter casserole, on those long cold nights where nobody wants to go to the store. It is filling and a family favorite. Who doesn’t like tater tots and cheese? Lol. If you had kids, this is a perfect meal for them. Plus sneaking in the green beans into it. A great way to cut some of the richness of this dish is with a nice fresh salad. That is the perfect addition, in my opinion.
Nathan enjoys this one and always gets excited when I suggest it. He calls it “creamy yummy goodness.”
What is your favorite casserole to make? Have you tried this tater tot casserole recipe? Tell me about it in the comments! I am always interested in learning about your favorites. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do! If you’ve tried it, please feel free to leave me your feedback. I enjoy hearing about what others think of my recipes. Check out my other beef recipes!
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