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Tater Tot Casserole

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Tater tot casserole (or tater tot hotdish) is an easy dinner recipe the whole family will love. A ground beef and vegetable layer, cheese, and tater tots are baked until hot and bubbly. Comfort food heaven!

A serving spoon scooping tater tot casserole.

Why We Love It

Think shepherds pie, but even better. This classic comfort food uses crisp tater tots rather than mashed potatoes, and is about as ‘dump and go’ as it comes!

This is one of our favorite casserole recipes, we make it every couple of weeks! The flavor is a little different each time, thanks to changing up the soup you use in the casserole. It never gets boring.

It’s also the perfect way to use up any vegetables you have left over in the fridge, everything can just be added in.

Tater Tot Casserole Ingredients

All tater tot casserole recipes use a few key components:

Ground beef – ground beef and onions are sauteed together to add to the beef layer of hotdish.

Vegetables – frozen veggies are perfect in this dish, and they cook right in the casserole so you can add them in frozen.

Cheese – opt for sharp cheddar cheese, it creates a bubbly delicious layer in the casserole that’s arguably the best part.

Sauce – canned soups make quick work of the sauce in the beef layer.

Tater tots – frozen tater tots to top it off.

A fork digging into tater tot casserole on a plate.

How To Make Tater Tot Casserole

  1. Brown ground beef and yellow onion in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add to a large mixing bowl. Stir in veggies, cheese, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, worcestershire sauce, and cans of soup.
  3. Pour into a 9×13 baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheese, and tater tots.
  4. Bake for 45 minutes or until tots are crisp and casserole is hot and bubbly.
  5. Rest for 5 minutes before serving.

To Make Ahead Of Time

If you want to prepare this ahead of time and just pop it in the oven when dinner is ready:

  1. Prepare beef mixture as above, then add to a casserole dish.
  2. Top with cheese.
  3. Store in the fridge until ready to bake.
  4. Before baking, add the frozen tater tots to the casserole and pop it in the oven!

Process shots showing the casserole being layered.

Tips and Tricks For Tater Tot Casserole

  • We like to add most of the cheese underneath the tater tots to give them a chance to crisp up. Too much cheese on top will result in soggy tots!
  • If you prefer the tater tots to be nice and crispy, pre bake them for 10 minutes on a baking sheet before adding them to the hotdish.
  • Let the casserole rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. This will keep the sauce from being too runny.
  • If using lean beef, make sure you drain it well before adding to the mix.
  • Place a rimmed baking sheet underneath the casserole dish to avoid any spills.
  • We usually opt for low sodium or no salt added soups when making tater tot casserole.

Our Favorite Additions, Substitutions, and Variations

  • Use any soup you’d like in this recipe. Our favorites are broccoli cheddar and cream of chicken soup, but cream of mushroom soup and cheddar cheese soup work well too!
  • Try using ground turkey or pork in place of ground beef. It’s delicious!
  • Have fresh veggies to use up? We love adding chopped broccoli, green beans, and bell peppers.
  • For a kick, add a diced jalapeno to the vegetable layer.
  • To make taco tater tot casserole, add a package of taco seasoning to the ground beef while it sautees. Top it with fresh salsa or pico de gallo!
  • We love to top our hotdish with a heavy helping of sriracha.
  • Leftover tater tot casserole makes a delicious breakfast. Top it with a fried egg. It’s seriously delicious – I have this for breakfast every time I make this casserole!

Frozen tater tots arranged on a beef and vegetable layer.

What To Serve With Tater Tot Casserole

While this is an entire dinner on its own, a quick caesar salad or tossed salad adds a light side to an otherwise heavier casserole.

Some garlic bread, or some cheddar bay biscuits make great sides too. We love doing biscuits so we can sop up anything left in the bowl!

Storing and Freezing Instructions

Tater tot casserole can be frozen before baking to make on a later date. Prepare the casserole up until baking, then cover with plastic wrap and freeze for up to 8 months. Add about 15-20 minutes to the baking time.

Once cooked, store tater tot casserole in the fridge in an air tight container for up to 5 days. After 5 days, the textures may change.

To Reheat

Reheating tater tot casserole is easy! Either pop it in the oven for 10 minutes at 350°F (preferred method to keep the tots crispy.

Or, just microwave on high for 1-2 minutes depending on your microwave.

Tater tot casserole fresh from the oven topped with chives.

More Ground Beef Dinners

A serving spoon scooping tater tot casserole.
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Tater Tot Casserole

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 45 mins
Total Time: 1 hr
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Bailey
Tater tot casserole is made with a beef and vegetabel layer, cheese, and tater tots. Comfort food heaven!
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Tried this recipe?I'd love to hear what you think. Leave a comment and rating below!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 yellow onion diced
  • 2 cups frozen vegetables corn, green beans, peas
  • 1 ½ cups cheddar cheese divided
  • 1 can condensed cream of chicken soup low sodium, 10.5oz
  • 1 can condensed cream of broccoli cheddar soup low sodium, 10.5oz
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 2 pounds tater tots

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • In a skillet over medium heat, brown ground beef and onions until no pink remains. Drain, and place in a large mixing bowl.
  • Add both cans of soup, frozen vegetables, ½ cup of cheddar cheese, both cans of soup, garlic powder, worcestersire sauce, and Italian seasoning.
  • Pour beef mixture into a 9x13" baking dish. Top with remaining cup of cheese. Arrange tater tots on top of casserole, and sprinkle with additional cheese if desired.
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until tater tots are crisp and mixture is hot and bubbly.
  • Rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Notes

For crispy tater tots, bake for 10 minutes prior to adding.
You can use any soup you'd like, we prefer cream of chicken and broccoli cheddar. Cream of mushroom is delicious too.
Calories: 529kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 70mg | Sodium: 1149mg | Potassium: 661mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 2709IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 215mg | Iron: 3mg

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A tater tot casserole with text overlay.

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