I’m thrilled to have you join me on another culinary journey today. Comfort food holds a special place in my kitchen. I’m delighted to share with you one of my favorite recipes, the Cheesy Sausage and Potato Casserole. This recipe is also made in the slow cooker!
This recipe is a tempting combo of chunky potatoes, flavorful sausage, and dreamy cheese, all patiently simmered to a just right state. It’s the kind of dish that fills your house with a smell that’s downright homey and gives you a tummy full of pure coziness.
This isn’t just food! It’s love in a dish, a true classic that will take your taste buds on a savory adventure.
Without giving away the precise recipe, don’t worry, we’ve got a detailed card for that, I will guide you through the essence of this comforting casserole. Including the best potatoes to use, your protein choices, and the cheeses that lend that beautiful richness.
I’ll also talk about the magic of slow cooking, optional toppings you can consider, and even storage tips for any leftovers.
Choosing the Right Kind of Potatoes
Potatoes, my friends, are the very heart of this casserole. But not just any potato will do. In this recipe, we use Idahoan potatoes! A variety that brings a delightful texture and satisfying heartiness to our dish.
Why Idahoan potatoes, you ask? Well, these tubers are famous for their consistent baking qualities and buttery flavor, making them a stellar choice for casseroles. They hold their shape well during the slow-cooking process.
Their fluffy interior absorbs the creamy sauce beautifully, providing each bite with a burst of savory goodness.
When preparing your Idahoan potatoes for this casserole, remember to peel them and cube them into 2-inch pieces. This size is perfect! Not too small to become mushy, and not too big to remain undercooked.
Picking the Perfect Sausage for Your Dish
While our Idahoan potatoes provide the hearty base of our casserole, it’s the savory sausage that adds a delightful depth of flavor to every bite.
But let’s remember that not all sausages are created equal. The selection of sausage can profoundly influence the final taste of our dish.
For this dish, we want a banger that has just the right amount of sweetness and savoriness. A powerful, meaty sausage that doesn’t dominate our casserole’s more delicate flavours.
My preferred choice? A quality, well-seasoned sausage that’s been sliced into 1/4-inch-thick pieces for optimal flavor distribution.
But don’t feel limited! While I’ve used sausage here, feel free to make this dish your own. Other great protein options include chopped ham, kielbasa, or even cheesy bratwurst.
They each bring their own unique flavor profiles that can beautifully complement the potatoes and cheese in our casserole.
The Richness of the Cheese
Cheese! Glorious cheese! It’s the ingredient that transforms our casserole from good to outstanding. It’s the thread that binds our potatoes and sausage together, creating a creamy, indulgent feast that warms you from the inside out.
For our casserole, we’re going with a delightful duo of cheeses, Velveeta and cheddar. Now, before any cheese purists raise an eyebrow, let me assure you that Velveeta has its place in this casserole.
Its smooth texture and mild flavor make it an ideal choice to create a velvety, creamy sauce that wraps around every potato cube and sausage slice.
We’re not stopping at Velveeta, though. A generous sprinkle of shredded cheddar cheese on top of our casserole creates a beautiful golden crust. Adding another layer of flavor and a contrasting texture to the dish.
Depending on your preference, you can opt for mild, medium, or sharp cheddar. Each brings its own degree of tang and depth, but I personally lean towards medium cheddar for its well-balanced flavor profile.
Making the Casserole
When it comes to creating a truly heartwarming casserole, patience is indeed a virtue. While there are quicker ways to cook our dish, nothing quite compares to the results yielded by a slow cooker.
This magical kitchen appliance works wonders, allowing flavors to meld and enhance over several hours, yielding a result that’s incredibly rich and satisfying.
While the step-by-step directions for preparing our casserole are conveniently placed on your recipe card, let’s understand the essence of this slow-cooking process.
Essentially, all our previously discussed ingredients are combined in the slow cooker along with a carefully balanced milk and flour mixture.
Combining the Ingredients
The way we assemble our ingredients is no random act! It’s a purposeful process that impacts how the flavors meld and how the casserole ultimately turns out.
The Idahoan potatoes form the backbone of our casserole, with their hearty texture providing a robust base. These are generously smothered with the milk and flour mixture, which, during slow cooking, thickens into a creamy, flavorful sauce.
Next up is our star protein, the sliced sausage, which is carefully stirred into the mix, followed by our first cheese, the cubed Velveeta. This layering ensures that the sausage and cheese are well distributed throughout the dish, promising a balanced bite every time.
Finally, dabs of butter are scattered across the top, ultimately enriching the casserole and enhancing its flavor. The full and crowning glory, of course, is a layer of shredded cheddar, which melts into a delightful crust as the casserole cooks.
Variations and Topping Ideas
Toppings are the fun part of any casserole creation. They’re your chance to add a personal twist to the dish.
Our deliciously cheesy Sausage and Potato Casserole, a comforting crowd-pleaser as it stands, can be transformed into an Epicurean masterpiece with the right finishing touch.
Ever thought about the allure of a contrasting crunch against the casserole’s creamy softness? Just picture a fine dusting of fried onions, crisp and golden, or a scattering of breadcrumbs toasted in a hint of butter.
These elements could not only enhance the texture, but also add a layer of depth to its flavor.
And, let’s not forget the humble yet potent fresh herbs! An artist’s stroke of green over the cheesy landscape could lighten the casserole’s richness, giving it a vibrant freshness.
The sight itself would be as enticing as the flavor it imparts. A sprinkle of chopped chives or parsley just before serving can work wonders.
Perhaps you’re a fan of a little heat? A dusting of red chili flakes can add a warming kick to each bite.
Remember, these are just suggestions. The beauty of cooking lies in making each dish your own. So don’t be afraid to experiment with your favorite toppings.
Presentation can elevate a meal from merely delicious to truly memorable. Serving your Cheesy Sausage and Potato Casserole is more than just spooning it onto a plate! It’s about creating an experience that appeals to the senses.
A freshly cooked casserole is a beautiful sight, with its golden-brown cheese topping and the tempting aroma of cooked potatoes and sausage. Try serving your casserole in the dish you cooked it in to preserve its warmth and to showcase its layers.
The slow cooker can be placed right on your dining table, inviting your family or guests to scoop their own generous servings.
If you’re planning to pair the casserole with side dishes, consider options that balance the richness.
A crisp green salad, lightly dressed, can provide a refreshing contrast. A basket of warm, crusty bread can be perfect for mopping up the creamy sauce.
Storage and Reheating Tips
There’s something immensely satisfying about digging into leftover casserole the next day. The marriage of flavors gets even stronger when given a chance to mingle. A reheated Cheesy Sausage and Potato Casserole can do the trick.
Here’s the catch though, it’s all about the storage and reheating. Do it wrong, and you risk ruining the delectable taste and pleasing texture. The steps are simple.
Let it cool. Don’t rush to put the casserole away while it’s still hot. Let it settle down, calm and cool.
Once it’s no longer warm, slide it gently into a container, just make sure it’s airtight. In the cozy confines of your fridge, this delicious dish can stay fresh for three to four days. Time to relish those flavors, no sweat involved!
When you’re ready to reheat your casserole, you have a few options. If you’re not in a hurry, reheating it in the oven can yield the best results.
Preheat your oven to 350 °F, cover the casserole with foil to prevent it from drying out. Heat for about 20–25 minutes, or until warmed through.
For a quicker option, you can also reheat individual servings in the microwave. Be sure to cover the dish and stir the casserole halfway through to ensure even heating.
Cheesy Sausage and Potato Casserole
- Slow Cooker
- 10 Idahoan potatoes Peeled, cubed into 2 inch squares
- 4 Tbsp Butter
- 4 Tbsp Flour
- 4 Cups Milk
- 1/2 Tsp Salt
- 1/4 Tsp Pepper
- 1 Lb Velveeta cheese Cubed into 1 inch squares
- 1 Cup Cheddar cheese Shredded
- 2 Lbs Sausage Sliced
- Wash and peel potatoes. Cube into 2 inch pieces until you have 8 cups of cubed potatoes.
- Slice the 2 lbs of sausage, make them about 1/4 inch thick.
- Slice the Velveeta into 1 inch cubes.
- In a medium bowl, combine the milk, flour, salt and pepper. Mix together, combining completely.
- Add potatoes to slow cooker and pour milk mixture on top.
- Stir in sausage and cubed Velveeta cheese.
- Divide the butter and drop on top of mixture.
- Top with the shredded cheddar.
- Cook on low for 6 – 8 hours or high for 4 hours. When the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork, it is ready to eat.
More Slow Cooker Recipes
Here are more great recipes just for you and your slow cooker: