It’s not Easter at my house without a honey-baked ham. It’s a must! And it’s not a perfect ham without a slew of the tastiest side dishes ever... and trust me, I have a full repertoire. I love a good ham with a generous helping of candied sweet potatoes, but even better than that is a potato casserole au gratin.

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This Potatoes Au Gratin Casserole is the perfect side dish for Easter (or any occasion).


No wonder potatoes au gratin are a French classic. They make a perfect side for almost any main dish—pork, chicken, beef, and of course, the Easter ham. And my Au Gratin Potato Casserole is the absolute créme de la créme of potatoes. It’s got layers on earthy layers of finely sliced potatoes, cream, butter, and cheese. It’s luxurious, indulgent, and so satisfying—the perfect dish for your holiday spread.


Au gratin potatoes are pure comfort with a touch of elegance.


Were you following me in March? If you were, you know that we Irish love potatoes. To us they’re a staple, like rice in so many Asian cuisines or chiles in traditional Mexican food. And even though mashed potatoes are the side that makes it to the table on so many occasions, sometimes you have to mix things up. An Au Gratin Potato Casserole is just a little more special. It’s kind of fancy—it brings elegance and comfort food together. It’s the perfect dish to break out for your favorite dinner guests.


Inspired by Bud, this simple au gratin potato casserole recipe is now one of my go-to side dishes.


Since I inherited so many of my recipes from my family, you might be surprised to hear that I’m the only one who makes potatoes au gratin. We didn’t grow up eating these, and I discovered the dish while eating out at restaurants. My friend Bud makes them, too—and when Bud appeared in my life, he upped my potato game. After I tried Bud’s potato casserole, I decided to “give it a go” and developed my own recipe. Thank you for the inspiration, my friend!

I like to add herbes de Provence for flavor and bread crumbs on top for that extra crunch. You can even assemble the dish ahead of time and pop it in the oven before dinner. By the way, “au gratin” has nothing to do with cheese—it just means browned on top!

herbs

Pro tip: use a mandoline slicer for evenly cut spuds.


If you don’t have a mandoline slicer, I highly recommend you pick one up. You’ll be effortlessly slicing potatoes as thin as coins. No tedious knife work, plus evenly cooked potatoes all the way through. You really can’t go wrong!

Yield: Serves 6
Author:
Mary’s Herb au Gratin Potato Casserole Recipe

Mary’s Herb au Gratin Potato Casserole Recipe

This Au Gratin Potato Casserole recipe is a perfect potato side dish that’s one step up from plain old cheesy potatoes or mashed potatoes (though I wouldn’t say no to those either). Serve yourself a generous scoop of these potatoes au gratin to complement your honey-baked ham for the perfect Easter spread. They make a great snack, too!

Ingredients

For the Potatoes:
  • 3 to 4 pounds Yukon Gold or russet potatoes, peeled
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt and white pepper
  • 2 to 3 cups heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon herbes de Provence
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
For the Crumb Topping:
  • ¼ cup grated Gruyère cheese
  • 1¼ cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Thinly slice the peeled potatoes. I like to use a mandoline slicer. Place the sliced potatoes in a mixing bowl and toss lightly with the salt, white pepper, and the garlic. Layer the potatoes in a 10-inch ovenproof skillet. A cast-iron skillet works great for this recipe if you have a big one.
  2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together 2 cups of the cream, herbs de Provence, and the nutmeg.. Pour the cream mixture over the potatoes. If the potatoes are not covered, add the remaining cream as needed until the potatoes are covered.
  3. Place the skillet over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and cook for about 15 more minutes to reduce the cream.
  4. In a mixing bowl, combine the Gruyère cheese, breadcrumbs, and melted butter. Scatter evenly over the potatoes.
  5. Carefully transfer the skillet to the oven. To prevent a mess from the dish bubbling over, set the skillet on a baking sheet pan first. Bake for 20 minutes.
  6. Reduce the heat to 325 degrees and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes. Insert a paring knife into the potatoes to make sure they are tender. If they’re not tender yet, return to the oven for another 5 minutes.
  7. Remove the skillet from the oven and let your potatoes au gratin rest for 15 minutes before serving.
  8. Can you still make these if you don’t have an oven-proof skillet? You bet! Just use a saucepan for step 3. After the cream is reduced, transfer the potato mixture into a lightly buttered casserole dish, then top with the crumb topping and bake as directed.
Did you make this recipe?
Tag @blameitonbiscotti on instagram and hashtag it # PotatoCasseroleRecipe
March 28, 2022 — Mary DiSomma