Crunchy, cheesy, and creamy funeral potatoes are the epitome of casseroles!
Serve them not just for funerals, but on holidays and joyous occasions as well.
This dish’s name might be a downer, but it definitely won’t disappoint in the flavor department.
It’s made with hash browns, cream sauce, cheese, and crunchy cornflakes on top.
It’s everything you can dream of in a casserole in that it’s rich, decadent, and loaded with ooey-gooey cheesy goodness.
Every forkful of this delight is worth every calorie.
As an added bonus, this casserole is a cinch to make!
The recipe is beginner-friendly, and the resulting dish is absolutely restaurant-quality.
Funeral potatoes are hearty, delicious, and easy to make. Let me show you how.
What Are Funeral Potatoes?
You might know funeral potatoes by a different name, depending on where you’re from.
They’re also known as hash brown casserole, cheesy potatoes, and Christmas potatoes.
Funeral potatoes are a baked casserole dish of hash browns, cream, and cheese topped with cornflakes.
The ingredients are enough to tell you how incredibly rich, cheesy, and delectable this casserole is.
No wonder it’s in demand on almost every special occasion you can think of: Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, you name it.
Why Are They Called Funeral Potatoes?
Because it’s delicious, affordable, and easy to make, this casserole has once become the go-to dish to bring and serve to funerals.
- Butter – For sauteeing the onions, browning the cornflakes, and adding richness and moisture to the casserole.
- Onion – For aromatics.
- Hash Browns – Classic funeral potatoes use frozen and thawed hash browns for convenience, but any pre-cooked potatoes will work well.
- Condensed Cream Of Chicken Soup – To add moisture and richness to the filling.
- Sour Cream – For added richness and a slightly tangy taste.
- Cheddar Cheese – I use sharp cheddar because I like the tanginess it adds to the dish. But any melted cheese will do! I highly recommend shredding your own cheese as it melts better, but I won’t judge if you use pre-shredded.
- Salt and Pepper – To season.
- Corn Flakes – Added to the top to create a crunchy golden crust.
How to Make Funeral Potatoes
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Saute the onions.
Melt the butter in a skillet and add the diced onions. Stir and cook until the onions are soft and translucent.
3. Make the casserole mixture.
In a large bowl, combine the onions, hash browns, melted butter, cream of chicken soup, sour cream, cheese, salt, and pepper.
The mixture will be thick and slightly compact.
4. Brown the cornflakes.
Crush the cornflakes slightly, if you haven’t done so. You can do this by placing them in a Ziploc bag and lightly pounding them with a meat mallet.
Melt the butter in a large skillet and add the crushed cornflakes. Stir it until lightly browned.
5. Assemble the casserole.
Scoop the mixture into a greased baking dish. Sprinkle the crushed brown cornflakes evenly on top.
6. Bake the funeral potatoes for 40 to 45 minutes.
Let it cool for a while before slicing. Enjoy!
Tips and Tricks
- Thaw the potatoes completely before mixing in the other ingredients. Frozen hash browns take longer to cook and they don’t brown as much.
- Drain out as much liquid as you can from the frozen hash browns. Otherwise, the potatoes won’t crisp up.
- Mix a beaten egg into the mixture for a firmer casserole that cuts nicely.
Additions and Variations
- Everything’s better with bacon. Throw some bacon bits into the hash brown mix.
- Add some heat to the casserole by mixing in some jalapenos.
- Cut the potatoes any way you want them. Funeral potatoes often call for hash browns for convenience, but you can use whole potatoes and slice them yourself, too.
- Instead of crushed cornflakes, try potato chips or French-fried onions.
- You can use any kind of creamed soup, not just chicken. I’ve tried cheddar and mushroom and they’ve both worked well. Since the recipe calls for 2 cans, you can also try 2 different kinds.
- Use whatever melty cheese you have on hand! Cheddar, gouda, mozzarella, anything goes.
What to Serve with Funeral Potatoes
Funeral potatoes are already so hearty that I don’t mind eating the dish as a meal on its own.
But, in case you want to make an even heartier meal out of it, these dishes make for the perfect accompaniment to funeral potatoes.
- The thing missing in this casserole is meat, so serve it with meat entrees such as pot roast, corned beef, or glazed ham.
- If you’re feeding a hungry crowd, pair the casserole with another carb-loaded dish, such as biscuits.
- Find the casserole way too rich? Have something light on the side like a broccoli salad to balance out its decadence.
How to Store and Reheat Funeral Potatoes
Cover the casserole with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for up to 4 days.
Reheat small portions in the microwave for a few seconds up to a minute.
For larger portions, reheat them in the oven at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 to 20 minutes.
Can I Freeze Funeral Potatoes?
Definitely. That’s what makes funeral potatoes a fantastic make-ahead dish!
You can either freeze the casserole pre- or post-baking. Here’s how.
Freezing Before Baking:
1. Spoon the casserole mixture into a greased baking dish. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and aluminum foil and freeze for up to 3 months. You can also refrigerate overnight.
2. Let the casserole thaw in the fridge overnight before baking. Top with browned crushed cornflakes and bake as instructed.
You may need to add 1 to 2 minutes to the total bake time, depending on how cold the casserole is when you start baking.
Tip: use a disposable dish pan if you plan on freezing the casserole for a while.
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