It's been screamin' hot in St. Louis this summer. So, when I heated the oven to bake a couple of potatoes for a meal, I decided to bake the whole 5 lb bag while the oven was hot. (King-Man loves it when I'm efficient like that.) I'd planned on using the extra spuds for making twice-baked potatoes the usual way--cut them in half, scoop the innards out of the skins, mash and mix the potatoes with cheese, sour cream, and seasonings, return them to the potato skins, top with cheese, and bake again.
But then I got lazy. Didn't want to go to all of that trouble, and wanted to try to dial down the calories some. I ended up with this casserole that has many of the same ingredients, except I chopped the potatoes (skin and all for ease & nutrition, plus a rustic look and taste), stirred in some lower calorie ingredients, and baked it all together in a dish. The result was this scrumptious potato dish that tastes like a morph of twice-baked potatoes and scalloped potatoes and looks like breakfast cottage fries. This casserole can be served as a breakfast or brunch potato dish or an easy side with dinner. Very versatile. Super easy.
Potato Nutrition. I've personally never met a potato I didn't like. Love 'em fixed pretty much any way. Although they are not your friend if you're limiting carbs, they do have some great nutritional value and are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, especially when you eat the skin, too. One medium potato provides a healthy dose of magnesium, iron, potassium, fiber, vitamin C and niacin. Find more nutrition information here.
Dialed down calories & fat. I used a combo of Parmesan and sharp cheddar, because they have a strong taste; so you can get a bigger bang of flavor while using a smaller amount. (I'm not a big fan of reduced-fat cheeses--I'd rather use less of the real thing.) Greek yogurt replaces the sour cream normally used in twice-baked potatoes, resulting in fewer calories along with a protein and calcium boost. The skin is left on the potatoes to provide more fiber, nutrients and flavor. For a cheesy potato dish, this turns out to be relatively figure friendly. Here are the stats.
Recipe Nutritional Info (for a 2/3 cup serving of this casserole): 145 calories, 4.7g fat, 19.5g carbs, 2.9g fiber, 6.5g protein; Weight Watchers PtsPlus: 4
Step-by-step photos for making Rustic Twice-Baked Potato Casserole
Step 3. Stir the yogurt mixture into the potatoes and spread them out in a 3-quart (9x13") baking dish and sprinkle more shredded cheddar on top.
MAKE-AHEAD TIP! You can stop at this point, cover the dish and refrigerate it for up to 1 day in advance. Remove from the fridge a half-hour before you want to bake it, so it warms to room temperature first.
Step 4. Bake uncovered until lightly browned on top and well browned on the edges and bottom of the dish, 45-55 minutes. (A clear dish is recommended, so you can see when the edges and bottom have browned enough.)
Step 5. Remove from oven and sprinkle the top with more chopped green onions.
DONE! So easy.
Serve it up! Those browned edges are what make this so delicious, so be sure to bake it long enough.
Feeds a crowd. As a side dish, this will serve 18-20 people. (serving size=2/3 cup)
Leftovers? Put it back in the fridge and reheat it the next day in the oven or on the stove-top or grill. It's delish to reheat it in a skillet on the stove-top in order to restore those crispy, brown parts. Great with breakfast instead of hash browns. Or, wrap some in a foil packet and reheat it on the grill--it can also get brown and crispy that way.
Cheesy, brown, and crispy. Seriously tasty.
If you're a potato lover like me, I think you'll like this one.
1 cup chopped green onions, white and green parts, divided
TO BAKE WHOLE POTATOES: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Scrub potatoes under running water. Use a metal fork to poke a few holes in each potato. Place on rack in oven and bake for 50-60 minutes, until soft when squeezed. Remove and cool completely or refrigerate for assembling casserole later.
TO ASSEMBLE CASSEROLE: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Leaving skin on, chop baked, cooled potatoes into 3/4" cubes and add to large bowl. In separate small bowl, add yogurt, milk, Parmesan cheese, 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese, dry mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, cayenne (if using), and 3/4 cup green onions; stir until combined. Pour over potatoes and toss until mixed. Transfer mixture to an oiled or sprayed 3-quart (9x13") clear baking dish. Sprinkle remaining cheddar cheese on top.*** Bake uncovered 45-55 minutes, until lightly browned on top, and edges and bottom are visibly well browned. Remove from oven and sprinkle 1/4 cup chopped green onions on top.
***MAKE AHEAD TIP. You can stop at this point, cover the dish and refrigerate it for up to 1 day in advance. Remove from the fridge a half-hour before you want to bake it, so it warms to room temperature first.
LEFTOVERS? Keep them in the fridge and reheat in the oven, or on the stove top or grill. Try reheating in a skillet on the stove-top in order to restore those crispy, brown parts. Great with breakfast that way. Or, wrap it in a foil packet and reheat it on the grill--it can also get brown and crispy that way.
NUTRITIONAL INFO (for a 2/3 cup serving): 145 calories, 4.7g fat, 19.5g carbs, 2.9gfiber, 6.5g protein; Weight Watchers PtsPlus: 4
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