Savory Baked Potato and Sausage Casserole


1 pound sausage (breakfast sausage, Italian sausage, or your choice)
4 large potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Salt and pepper, to taste
Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)


Step 1: Prepare the Ingredients
Preheat Oven: Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish or a similar size casserole dish.

Cook the Sausage: In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the sausage until browned and fully cooked, breaking it into crumbles as it cooks. Remove the cooked sausage from the skillet and set it aside.

Step 2: Prepare the Cheese Sauce
Sauté Onions and Garlic: In the same skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and garlic and sauté until they are soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes.
Make the Roux: Sprinkle the flour over the onion and garlic mixture and stir well to combine. Cook for 1-2 minutes to eliminate the raw flour taste.
Add Cream and Milk: Gradually whisk in the heavy cream and milk, stirring constantly until the mixture is smooth and starts to thicken.
Add Cheese and Seasoning: Stir in the shredded cheddar cheese, grated Parmesan cheese, dried thyme, dried oregano, salt, and pepper. Continue stirring until the cheese is melted and the sauce is creamy. Remove from heat.

Step 3: Assemble the Casserole
Layer the Potatoes: In the prepared baking dish, arrange half of the sliced potatoes in an even layer. Sprinkle half of the cooked sausage over the potatoes.
Add Cheese Sauce: Pour half of the cheese sauce over the sausage and potatoes, spreading it evenly.
Repeat Layers: Repeat with the remaining potatoes, sausage, and cheese sauce, creating another layer.

Step 4: Bake
Cover and Bake: Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes.
Uncover and Finish Baking: Remove the foil and continue baking for an additional 20-25 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender and the top is golden and bubbly.

Tips for the Perfect Savory Baked Potato and Sausage Casserole:
Sausage Choice: Use your favorite type of sausage. Breakfast sausage adds a classic flavor, while Italian sausage can add a spicy kick.
Potato Slicing: For even cooking, slice the potatoes as uniformly thin as possible. A mandoline slicer can be very helpful.
Cheese Variations: Feel free to mix in other cheeses such as mozzarella, Gruyere, or Monterey Jack for different flavors.
Herbs and Spices: Adjust the herbs and spices to your liking. Fresh herbs can also be used in place of dried ones.
Make-Ahead: This casserole can be assembled a day in advance and stored in the refrigerator. Just add an extra 10-15 minutes to the baking time if baking from cold.
Enjoy this comforting and delicious casserole with a side salad or steamed vegetables for a complete meal!
Step 5: Serve
Garnish: Remove the casserole from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes. Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley for a pop of color and added flavor.
Serve Hot: Serve the savory baked potato and sausage casserole hot, directly from the baking dish.

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