My mom’s famous cheesy potatoes are absolutely insane. Like a cozy, comforting potato casserole straight out of the 90s, these are a huge crowd pleaser and perfect for parties and holidays.

We’re throwing it waaaay back with a cheesy potato casserole today.

my mom's cheesy potatoes

Everyone has cheesy potatoes, and these are mine. These cheesy potatoes are the epitome of a party recipe. These are party potatoes. Or some people even call them funeral potatoes. They are everything potatoes – because you can make them for any gathering and they just WORK.

This recipe is totally out of the 90s. And since we now have to wear jeans like we’re back in the 90s, why not make potatoes like we’re back in the 90s too?

diced potatoes with sour cream

When I say that you guys have asked for this recipe for years, I mean yearsssss. Pretty sure I have shared photos of this dish over on my crumbs section about a billion times, at our family gatherings, holidays, and everything in between. I’ve exchanged the recipe with many of you in email after you saw a picture on my blog or instagram.

I never thought I’d post it on the blog because just WAIT until you see the ingredients. I mean, this is like, straight-out-of-the-90s good. This is the recipe you find in your old church cookbook or the one that’s battered in your mom’s recipe box.

cheddar on top of potatoes

My mom has made these potatoes hundred of times in my life. Hundreds! 

The other thing is that EVERYONE has a cheesy potato recipe. You know? I’m sure you have one, or your aunt does, or some family friend that brings them to every get together in the summer or around the holidays. There are so many versions and wow, wouldn’t it be interesting to figure out where they were first invented?

Pretty sure we can safely say they had to originate in the 80s or 90s given the ingredients. Oh yes.

potato chips

Wait. First I should probably tell you the cheesy potato ingredients. You might want to partially cover your eyes when you read them. I can’t help but laugh! We have: 

Frozen diced potatoes


Sour Cream

Cream of Chicken Soup

Cheddar Cheese

Potato Chips

I KNOW. Yes. Those are the ingredients. All nice and beige and white. I promise this makes for the best cheesy potatoes though. Swear.

Also side note: not only are these the ingredients but I’m pretty sure my mom used to only use margarine for it instead of butter. Don’t worry, she has since been converted. 

my mom's cheesy potatoes

So a few caveats.

This recipe uses super simple ingredients, but I wanted to post it EXACTLY how my mom has always made it because it is so popular with family and friends.

First, you can definitely add onions and even peppers to this. You use frozen potatoes, and there is a version that actually comes with onions and peppers. My mom never added any of these because my grandpa loathes onions with the fire of 1000 suns. I mean, there could not be an onion in sight!

My mom and I both agree that the addition of onions and/or peppers would be great. My sister-in-law has made them with the onion potato variety and says they are delicious.

The only bonus to zero onions is that these go over HUGE with all the populations: picky people and kids alike. 

my mom's cheesy potatoes

Second, the original (like way way way back original) recipe called for cream of mushroom soup, not cream of chicken. My dad loathes mushrooms, so my mom never used that. She uses cream of chicken instead.

It doesn’t make the potatoes taste like chicken and if there are any little chicken bits, no one is none the wiser! 

my mom's cheesy potatoes

So here’s how the potatoes happen! 

  • You want to use frozen potatoes. I’ve seen some people use hash brown style frozen potatoes – in fact, I think that’s what this original recipe called for a million years ago. My mom has always used diced potatoesthese exact ones – and we love them. They add more texture to the dish than the hash browns do. 
  • You melt the butter, then stir in the sour cream and can of soup. Then you fold in the potatoes.
  • The whole mixture goes into a baking dish. Then you cover it with cheddar. This is not where it ends.
  • Then, THEN, you cover it with crushed potato chips. I am not kidding! 
  • Finally, bake it for an hour or so. It gets so cheesy and creamy and melty, but the top is ridiculously crunchy and crispy. So savory. 

my mom's cheesy potatoes

Now here’s the thing. These are really the ingredients that you should use. I don’t suggest substituting anything, aside from what I mentioned above, like adding in onions or using cream of mushroom soup. 

This is one of those old school casseroles where the packaged products yield the best results. They have exactly the amount you need. This is totally not a recipe to lighten up. Either go big on the cheesy potatoes or go home! 

While this isn’t a recipe my mom ever made for dinner, she makes it for all sorts of parties and people lose their minds. It’s just SO good. So cozy, so comforting, so nostalgic. Tastes like casseroles from your childhood and makes for the best side dish at gatherings. It’s a must have for every recipe box.

my mom's cheesy potatoes

My Mom’s Cheesy Potatoes

My Mom’s Cheesy Potatoes

My mom's famous cheesy potatoes are absolutely insane. Like a cozy, comforting potato casserole straight out of the 90s, these are a huge crowd pleaser and perfect for parties and holidays.
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  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9x13 baking dish with nonstick spray. To thaw the potatoes, I just stick the bags in the fridge overnight. Be sure to drain any liquid from thawing.
  • Melt the butter in a large bowl - you can do this in the microwave or on the stovetop. Let it cool slightly.
  • Whisk the sour cream and the soup into the melted butter until combined. Add a big pinch of salt and pepper. You can also add a sprinkle of dried parsley if you wish.
  • Fold in the thawed potatoes. Fold and stir until the potatoes are completely incorporated and evenly distributed.
  • Spread the mixture in the baking dish. Top with the grated cheddar. At this point, you can stick the dish (covered) in the fridge until you’re ready to bake, or you can bake right away.
  • If baking right away, sprinkle the top with the crushed potato chips.
  • Bake for 60 minutes. Let stand for 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Scoop to serve!
  • This freezes great! Once you spread the mixture in the baking dish, seal it tightly with plastic wrap and foil, then freeze. To bake, let it thaw completely, then top with the cheddar and potato chips.
  • Leftovers of this are also delicious - maybe even better than when it’s freshly made!

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my mom's cheesy potatoes
Hello 1995!