Recipe: Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole (like Cracker Barrel’s!)

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Welcome to the world of Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole goodness! I used to LOVE the Hash Brown Casserole at Cracker Barrel. That’s before I started asking questions about how they make their food (did you know almost all of their vegetable side dishes are made with sugar?). Then if you look at the copy cat recipes online, most of them call for a can of condensed soup – no thank you MSG and other unwanted additives! There has to be a better way, and thankfully there is, which I’ve detailed for you below. It’s hard to go wrong when it comes to potatoes and cheese and other wholesome ingredients. This is a tasty dish that you can enjoy with breakfast, lunch or dinner!

Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole from 100 Days of #RealFood

Sponsor Shoutout: Unconventional Kitchen

I’d also like to take a moment to tell you about our sponsor Unconventional Kitchen’s new online recipe organization tool! In addition to the helpful “real food” resources and videos (on their website), they are now also offering our readers a FREE Naturally Sweet Holiday Treats ebook that is viewable through their new online software called Cook’n.

Cook’n is the #1 best-selling recipe software app, and Unconventional Kitchen is sharing this ebook as a way for you to check out how you can use the software to create meal plans, generate shopping lists, sync recipes with all your devices, make cookbooks of your own, and much more. To get this free ebook just go to their website, enter your email address and name, and then you will be given instructions on how to download Cook’n to one of your devices so you can view the 14 recipes in the ebook.


4.6 from 12 reviews

Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole (like Cracker Barrel’s!)
Serves: 5 – 6
  • 6 tablespoons butter + extra for greasing the pan
  • ⅓ cup diced onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 4 tablespoons whole wheat flour
  • 1½ cups milk
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups freshly grated mild cheddar cheese
  • 1 pound frozen hash browns (no need to defrost), be sure to buy a brand with only 1 ingredient – potatoes
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a square baking dish with butter (8 x 8 or 9 x 9 inch) and set aside.
  2. In a large sauté pan over medium heat melt the butter. Cook the diced onion until it softens but does not brown, about 2 to 3 minutes. Throw in the minced garlic and cook while stirring for 1 more minute.
  3. Turn the heat down to medium low and whisk in the flour. Continuously stir until the flour darkens but is not burnt, about 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. Whisk in the milk, salt, and pepper until it slightly thickens, about 1 minute.
  5. Turn the heat off and, using a spatula or wooden spoon, stir in the grated cheese until it melts. Fold in the hash browns until evenly coated.
  6. Transfer to the baking dish being careful to push the thick mixture down on top into one even layer.
  7. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes uncovered, and then turn the heat up to broil for 3 to 4 minutes or until the top turns golden brown. Keep a close eye under the broiler so it doesn’t burn! Serve warm and enjoy.
We recommend organic ingredients when feasible.


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107 comments to Recipe: Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole (like Cracker Barrel’s!)

  • Cassandra

    This was good, but 6 tablespoons of butter made it greasy (to my family). I will cut in half next time.

  • Brandy

    I realized after the fact that a Pyrex shouldn’t go under a broiler, as I recall …. So didn’t try to broil it, wanted to not start Christmas morning that way ;) but still looks and smells delicious!

  • Anna

    I made this Christmas morning for my family, and it was awesome! The only change I made was adding panko bread crumbs before broiling. Thank you for this receipe!

  • Lynn C.

    I made this Christmas morning and my family loved it! I rarely rate recipes, but this was just so good I had to leave a remark. We love hashbrown casserole, but I refused to buy any canned creamed soups. Thank you so much for bringing this treat back to my kitchen!

  • Jill

    I made this for our Christmas brunch to rave reviews! Everyone wanted the recipe.

  • Lori

    I also made this for Christmas morning and everyone loved it. I agree that 6 tbsp of butter was too much for my taste, but that’s an easy change for next time. I made it ahead the night before, baked it most of the way and then finished it off in the morning – worked out fine.

  • Dawn

    I made this for Christmas and it was delicious!!!!

  • Andrea

    I made this last night for a gathering that was supposed to happen today. I doubled the recipe and was going to cook it this morning. Now the meeting has been cancelled due to weather. Can I freeze this? Should I cook it first before freezing? I would hate to waste all this food!

    • Assistant to 100 Days (Amy)

      Hi Andrea. I think I would cook it before freezing though it would likely work either way. ~Amy

    • I refridgerated mine for a few days (before Christmas) and it turned out fine! I just had to bake it for a few minutes longer. If it was frozen and you didn’t thaw it first, you may want to cover it in foil for the first part of baking until it thaws.

  • Holly

    Loved it! Had butter pooling in the bottom of the dish though and will use less next time. Still delish!

  • […] one would be more of a ‘Cracker Barrel’ style.  I had been inspired to make it by a post on 100 Days of Real Food, and if you eat dairy and gluten, her recipe would be excellent to hop over […]

  • Michele

    Thank you so much for this recipe! Was great for Christmas morning and for leftover meals with the dinner ham. Also have used it for homemade mac and cheese by just omitting the garlic and onion. Love it!

  • I successfully made this recipe with the following modifications. My family LOVED it!
    2 tbsp butter
    1 small onion, diced
    1 clove garlic, minced
    2 tbsp whole wheat flour
    1 cup skim milk
    1/2 tsp salt
    fresh ground pepper to taste
    1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (not pre-shredded)
    1 pound frozen shredded potatoes**

  • Shandra

    I can’t wait to try this. I wonder if it would be any good with an organic brand of corn flakes if such a thing exists. I have had this at my MIL’s but with the soup and corn flakes. Won’t make it for that reason. Now I can experiment with this as a starting point.

  • Hollie

    Do you know of a brand of potatoes that only has potatoes in it? I can’t seem to find one. Thanks!

  • Christy

    Has anyone tried this with regular potatoes shredded in a food processor?

  • amy

    I used colby-jack cheese and it was wonderful. Thank you for the recipe!

  • Elisabeth Paisley

    I plan to make this recipe using homemade hash brown potatoes. Can’t wait to try it!! :)

  • Stephanie

    This was DELICIOUS! I made a few substitutions to make it even more healthy. I used almond milk instead of cows milk, only used 1 cup of cheese, and used a little olive oil instead of 6tbspn of butter. It was still so good!

    I only gave it 4 out of 5 stars because I didn’t follow the original recipe, as it seemed a little too indulgent. But, another homerun recipe for 100daysofrealfood!

  • Erika

    Thanks for posting this recipe in addition your many others. Your blog is a great source of motivation and inspiration for my family and our efforts to eat real food! I am normally not that impressed with potato casseroles, but this was awesome, and so simple – an instant favorite that is immediately going into my rotation!

    As with some others, I cut the butter by 1/2, salt by 1/3 and flour by 1/4. I use regular whole wheat flour, and I believe you use white whole wheat flour, which I think is a little different in consistency.

    Thanks again for putting yourself out there and sharing your life. I look forward to reading your posts daily and love trying your recipes! You are really making an impact!

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