Scalloped Potatoes are an easy classic recipe, perfect for your Easter dinner, Christmas, Thanksgiving or even just for Sunday dinner.
In this side dish, thinly sliced potatoes and onions are layered in an easy homemade cream sauce and baked until tender, golden, and bubbly. Potato perfection!
An Easy Classic
Of all the potato side dishes from Oven Roasted Potatoes to Perfect Baked Potatoes, nothing says comfort food like creamy side of scalloped potatoes (except maybe creamy buttery mashed potatoes).
So exactly what are Scalloped Potatoes? Thought to have originated in England, the word ‘scallop’ is basically a definition for how the potato is sliced. Thin and uniformly cut potatoes are layered in a casserole dish and then covered with a seasoned onion cream sauce and baked. The result is this savory scalloped potato recipe!
- Potatoes Yukon gold potatoes (or red potatoes) have tender skin and don’t require peeling (they hold their shape well). Russet potatoes or Idaho potatoes will work but tend to break apart more (but still taste good).
- Onions Onions add a lot of flavor to this recipe and are a classic ingredient.
- Cream Sauce A quick cream sauce made with flour, butter, milk and broth. If you’d like to add cheese, remove the sauce from the heat and stir in a handful or two of shredded cheese. It will melt from the heat of the sauce.
- Seasonings Simple seasonings in this recipe include salt, pepper, onion, garlic. Add in your own favorites including thyme, rosemary, parsley.
How to Make Scalloped Potatoes
Making scalloped potatoes from scratch takes time but it is easy. While true scalloped potatoes do not have cheese, we sometimes add a little bit in!
- Thinly slice potatoes & onions.
- Make homemade sauce (recipe below)
- Layer potatoes, onions and sauce. Cover and bake.
- Remove foil and bake a bit more, this step creates the delicious brown top on the scalloped potatoes
IMPORTANT Cool 20 minutes before serving to allow the sauce to thicken.
Tips for Perfect Scalloped Potatoes
- Slice the potatoes evenly to ensure the scalloped potatoes cook evenly
- Use a mandoline to make this job extra quick (a $25 mandoline like this one does a great job and will save you lots of time)
- A roux is the foundation for a creamy sauce. A roux just means to cook fat (in this case butter) and flour and add liquid to make a sauce!
- If you decide to add cheese to the sauce (which will actually make these into Potatoes Au Gratin) remove the sauce from the stove and stir in 1 1/2 to 2 cups of cheese (cheddar/gruyere are great choices).
- Season the potatoes with salt and pepper between layers.
- Cover with foil while it bakes, this allows it to steam and the potatoes will cook a bit faster.
To Make Scalloped Potatoes Ahead of Time
To make these ahead of time (and keep cooking fast on the day of serving) we have tested partially baking them with great results.
- Bake the dish covered for 50-60 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and cool completely on the counter (leave them covered, the steam will help to finish cooking).
- Cover well and refrigerate.
- On the day of serving, remove from the fridge at least 30 minutes before baking. Bake uncovered about 35 minutes or until heated through.
More Potato Recipes You’ll Love
- Twice Baked Potatoes – Make ahead & freeze!
- Easy Oven Roasted Potatoes
- Loaded Mashed Potato Cakes – Great for leftovers.
- Twice Baked Potato Casserole
- Cheesy Ham and Potato Casserole
- Baked Potato Soup – Easy weeknight meal
Scalloped Potatoes Recipe
- ¼ cup butter
- 1 large onion diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ cup flour
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup chicken broth
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 3 pounds white potatoes sliced about ⅛" thick
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350˚F.
- To make the sauce, melt butter, onion and garlic over medium low heat. Cook until onion is softened, about 3 minutes. Add flour and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Reduce heat to low. Combine milk and broth. Add a small amount at a time whisking to thicken. The mixture will become very thick, continue adding a little bit of liquid at a time whisking until smooth.
- Once all of the liquid has been added, bring to a boil over medium heat while continuing to whisk. Stir in salt and pepper and let boil 1 minute.
- Grease a 9"x13" baking dish. Place ⅓ of the potatoes in the bottom and season with salt and pepper. Pour ⅓ of the cream sauce sauce over top.
- Repeat layers ending with cream sauce. Cover and bake for 45 minutes.
- Uncover and bake for an additional 35-45 minutes or until golden brown and potatoes are tender. Broil for 3-4 minutes to obtain a golden top.
- Allow to rest for 15 minutes before serving.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.
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What is the Difference Between Scalloped and Au Gratin Potatoes?
Potatoes au Gratin are also called cheesy potatoes because the white sauce is actually a cheese sauce (and they often have cheese sprinkled between the layers and/or breadcrumb topping).
This scalloped potato recipe can (of course) be topped with cheese or have cheese added in but sometimes I love the simplicity in this recipe without cheese. The sweetness of the onions and milk is the perfect addition to these sliced potatoes!
Can You Freeze Scalloped Potatoes?
These potatoes will keep in the fridge for about 4 days and reheat well in the microwave, oven or in a frying pan! If you want to freeze them longer, yes, scalloped potatoes can be frozen!
Almost any casserole dish can be frozen perfectly with a little know-how. If making a freezer meal, the best way to freeze scalloped potatoes is to not fully cook them all way, but leave them a little undercooked. Then, once they are cooled in the fridge, portion them out the way you want to and wrap carefully before putting in the freezer. To reheat, simply thaw and finish the cooking until the potatoes are tender again!
While that’s a great option, most often we want to freeze leftovers. In this case, these scalloped potatoes freeze well, although I do find they sometimes break apart a bit when reheated but they still taste great!
REPIN this Fantastic Casserole
The best recipe for scalloped potatoes! I make this quite a few times every year and never have leftovers.
The taste was great. My husband loved that part of it. My sauce broke though. The whole dish was watery even after letting it sit. I don’t know if it was using all purpose einkorn flour versus regular AP flour? I’m going to try again with King Arthur AP flour. I used a mandolin that made slicing the potatoes quick work. My white sauce wasn’t terribly creamy. This being the second roux based dish I made today and both ended up on the thinner side of creamy.
I haven’t tried all-purpose einkorn flour so I can’t say for sure it would work the same. I am glad you enjoyed the flavor of this dish Jessica!
it is my go to recipe. everyone loves it.
I know it’s unlikely for you to see this right now but I’m having a bit of a wobble. Despite me giving instructions I don’t know how many times, my husband didn’t take the foil off for the last 35 mins. Now the timing of my dinner is all wrong and I don’t know how much longer to cook them for! What would you do?
An emotional newly postpartum mom trying to make a nice dinner for once
Oh Jay, I’m sorry I didn’t see this sooner. If the foil is on longer, it just may not brown as well on top but it should still cook just fine. Hopefully it all worked out ok for you and you had a lovely dinner ♥️
Can you make this gluten free by subbing the regular flour with a gluten free blend?
If you have gluten-free flour on hand that is what I prefer to use but I have made it with cornstarch in a pinch. To make a cornstarch slurry, bring the mixture to a boil (without flour), and in small bowl, combine equal parts cornstarch and water. Add to the boiling mixture while whisking until it thickens to the thickness desired. Let us know how it works out for you!
Can you make this with russet potatoes?
I have a question – if I wanted to add in a little thyme to the recipe, what stage of the preparing/cooking would I do this…. would I add it to the roux, or just sprinkle it in between layers before cooking, or sprinkle on top after cooking? Any advice would be appreciated – thanks!
I would suggest adding it to the roux so it is evenly distributed.
Do the potatoes need to be peeled or can you leave the skin on?
Love this recipe. Sautéing the onions and garlic in the butter before making the sauce gives a nice mellow flavour and distributes them nicely through the dish. I always cook them about 3/4 of the way through earlier in the day and finish them while the rest of the dinner is cooking. That way all the mess is cleaned up and my meal comes together easily. We like to add cheese and top with cheese to turn them into an au gratin dish but they are perfect both ways.
Could you halve the recipe and just use an 8×6 pyrex instead?
Cooking time will need to be adjusted. Half of a 9×13 is an 8×8 pan, so it might be pretty full if you’re using an 8×6. Let us know how it goes!
My mom is no longer with us but this recipe sounds just like what she used to make. I’m making them now for our Easter family lunch tomorrow. Thank you!
Hi! How many potatoes is three pounds of potatoes?
It will depend on the size of your potatoes Dawn. For medium potatoes you will need 3-4 a pound, so approximately 9-12 medium potatoes. Enjoy!
The family loved the Scalloped potatoes.
I used grated cheese between layers. Potatoes caramelized at the bottom of the dish. Oven was set at 375.
I also substituted for part milk with part half and half and used corn starch instead of flour.
Definitely a great recipe, thank you!!!
Trying recipe tonight, will post results
Thinking of making these for Easter, any make-ahead suggestions would be helpful!
Hi Johanna, you will find the make ahead information in the post.
Bake the dish covered for 50-60 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely on the counter. Cover well and refrigerate. On the day of serving, remove from the fridge at least 30 minutes before baking. Bake uncovered about 35 minutes or until heated through.
Enjoy the potatoes!
Thanks, I had only seen the tips, for freezing, that came after the recipe. Anything that keeps me from spending a holiday, holed up in the kitchen, is a great help!
No problem! Enjoy the scalloped potatoes!
Can you make this is the instapot?
I have not tried this in the Instant Pot so I can’t say for sure how it would work. I have made Scalloped Potatoes in the Crock Pot though if you are looking for an option not using your oven!
this is the best recipe!! Our favorite!
Awesome, best recipe!!
This is the best scalloped potato recipe ever! Most include cheese, which changes it to au gratin.
Thank you for keeping it real.
I made it just as instructed. After baking for an hour, the potatoes are hard and it’s full of water!! I’ve never had that happen with scalloped potatoes!
I have never had this issue in this recipe Lou so I can’t say for sure what happened. Did you add sour cream or another acidic component? This can cause the potatoes not to cook properly.
My potatoes cooked until tender , then I browned the top for an extra 15 or 20 minutes, but I too had watery liquid at the bottom.
If I wanted to double the servings in this recipe, would everything be doubled? And what about the baking time? Thanks for your help.
Hi Karen, this can be doubled and I would double everything but you might like to cook it in two 9×13 pans if possible to ensure the potatoes in the middle cook through without overcooking the outside. It may take a bit longer so I would suggest allowing extra time. If they’re done early they stay warm for quite a while. Let us know how it goes!