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Tater Tot Casserole

Nothing says high class like a casserole topped with tater tots.

Am I right?

I’m choosing to believe your silence is an enthusiastic Heck yeah!

When I was 12 years old Tater Tot Casserole was my favorite dinner. This should surprise no one. What 12 year old wouldn’t go nuts for this? It’s like eating a cheeseburger, except instead of a bun you get crispy tater tots and some cream of mushroom soup.

Ok, so the cream of mushroom soup bit sounds a little funky, but don’t tell me you aren’t dreaming about a cheeseburger on a tater tot bun now. (note to self: figure out how to make tater tot buns. Sell them to Red Robin. Make millions of dollars. Move to the beach and spend the remainder of my life reading novels and eating tater tots. End note.)

Tater Tot Casserole

I was curious to see if this childhood favorite was still as delicious as I remembered it. I went to my most trusted source for the recipe–my mom–but I decided to do a little Internet research to see if there were other versions out there.

Turns out, people have some pretty strong feelings about their tater tot casserole. I read more than a few message boards filled with arguments about whether the casserole should have green beans or corn, cheese or french fried onions, tots on top or tots on bottom.

What did I learn from my research? Don’t mess with someone’s favorite casserole recipe. There will be hell to pay.

In the end I decided to stick with the tried and true recipe of my youth with only a few minor changes. We are firmly in the green bean and cheese camp, but I did decide to replace one can of condensed soup with sour cream. The recipe is very forgiving so use whatever condensed soup you have on hand and feel free to sub in different cheese as well. (I have visions of a spicy version with green chilies and pepper jack cheese…)

I served this to our community group and everyone loved it, including those who didn’t grow up on this hearty casserole. I also made a vegetarian version of this by subbing a pound of fresh sliced mushrooms sauteed in butter for the meat layer. The vegetarians (and non vegetarians) of our group all approved.

While I love cooking with fresh veggies and herbs, everyone needs a few recipes like this in their back pocket. With only a couple pantry items and 20 minutes of hands-on time, this dinner is a cinch to throw together. The recipe serves around 8, so if you have a small family, I recommend putting it in two 8 x 8 inch baking dishes and freezing one for later.

Tater tot casserole

I’m so thrilled to be sharing this recipe with the #SundaySupper Movement this week. The theme for this week was retro recipes. For a healthy dose of nostalgia, check out all the other great contributors below the recipe and join us at 7 PM on Twitter to share your favorite Retro Recipes as well! Do you have any childhood recipes you’d like to bring back?

Tater Tot Casserole for #SundaySupper
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe by:
Serves: 8
  • 2 lbs. ground beef
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 can cream of chicken or mushroom soup
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cans low sodium green beans (or 16 oz package frozen green beans)
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (I used a mixture of mild and sharp)
  • 1 large bag tater tots
  • **For a vegetarian version replace meat with a pound of fresh sliced mushrooms sauteed in 1 Tablespoon butter and 1 Tablespoon olive oil. Replace cream of chicken soup with cream of mushroom soup. Place mushrooms on the bottom followed by soup mixture, beans, cheese, and tots.
  1. In a large skillet brown beef and onions until no pink remains, about 10 minutes. Drain the fat. Season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Place meat mixture in the bottom of a 9 x 13 in pan.
  2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together cream soup, sour cream, and milk. Pour over hamburger.
  3. Scatter green beans over top of the soup mixture.
  4. Scatter shredded cheese over green beans.
  5. Refrigerate or freeze until ready to bake. Allow frozen casserole to thaw in the fridge overnight before baking. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange tater tots on top of the cheese. If you are taking it straight from the fridge, place the pan in the oven right away so it can warm up with the oven. Bake until mixture is bubbly and the tots are golden brown, about 45 minutes to an hour if coming from the fridge.

Sunday Supper Retro Appetizers:

Sunday Supper Retro Salads:

Sunday Supper Retro Breads and Sandwiches:

SundaySupper Main Dishes:

Sunday Supper Retro Sides and Veggies:

Sunday Supper Retro Desserts and Cocktails:

What fun to read the stories about the recipes! There’s lots of great food in the list. I admit I still make and enjoy many of them. Nice to see some updated versions too. Which one is your favorite?

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter each Sunday. We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET and you do not want to miss out on the fun. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here → Sunday Supper Movement.

Sunday Supper Movement

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