Funeral Potatoes A.K.A. Hashbrown Casserole

Feb 16, 13 • Recipes, Side Dishes16 Comments

Funeral Potatoes AKA Hashbrown Casserole 6

Funeral Potatoes, also known as Hashbrown Casserole, is one of my favorite side dishes and one that the family looks forward to at holiday dinners.  It is easy to make and I always have the ingredients on hand thanks to one of those little shortcuts I discovered – dehydrated hashbrown potatoes,  found at Costco…and other places, I’m sure!  I always used to bake or boil my potatoes to cook them first, but you run the risk of over-cooking the potatoes and when you are grating them, they end up more like mashed potatoes.  My sister-in-law Diane’s mom Barbara had mentioned one time that she used frozen hashbrown to make her Funeral Potatoes.  That sounded like a plan!  Then one time, I needed a side dish and didn’t have fresh potatoes or frozen hashbrowns, time was short and going to the grocery store was inconvenient.  I went out to my food shelves and stood, pondering what else to fix, when I spied boxes of dehydrated hashbrowns on the shelves.  Those were reserved for when Scott fixed Sunday breakfast or went on a campout.  But I thought, hey…why not try them? 

Golden Grill Russet Premium Hashbrown Potatoes

They worked perfectly!  I haven’t made them the original way ever since then. 

Work was having a potluck on Valentine’s Day.   I figured there would be a bunch of desserts so I thought I would take something savory.  I needed to make a big pot of something and it better be delicious…a girl has her reputation to keep.  Funeral Potatoes are a fabulous comfort food and would surely hit the spot!  Double this for a bigger group!

Funeral Potatoes

3 – 4.2 oz boxes of dehydrated hashbrown potatoes, hydrated

2 cans Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom and/or Campbell’s Cream of Chicken soup – I like it with one of each, but one of my kids doesn’t like mushrooms, so I usually just use the Cream of Chicken soup

1 1/2 cups sour cream

16 oz cheese – I used Aged Reserve Cracker Barrel Natural Extra Sharp Cheddar (white) and Kraft Monterey Jack this time, but I usually use a mixed mild cheddar/jack mix

3/4 – 1 cup potato chip crumbs – you know…all those little bits left in the bottom of the bag that need very little help from you to make them the perfect topping for the casserole

Salt and pepper to taste – I don’t usually add salt because the potato chips are salty, as is the soup and cheese, so I don’t really think it needs any more

If you want, you could add 1 cup of chopped and sauteed onions…I love the onions, but my picky eater doesn’t and onions are kind of hard to pick out.  This recipe is delicious without them!

Pre-heat oven to 350°.  Hydrate the potatoes following the directions on the box. Let them sit and soak while you are grating the cheese.  If you are using already grated cheese, let the potatoes soak for 5-10 minutes.  Make sure to drain any excess water out of the box.  Dump the potatoes into a large mixing bowl and add the soup, sour cream and cheese.  Mix well.  Put in a casserole dish or cake pan; spread the potato chip crumbles over the top. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until hot in the middle.  Serves 6 – 8.

Funeral Potatoes AKA Hashbrown Casserole 4

So I brought the whole casserole dish of potatoes upstairs to my little light tent to take pictures…that, along with a plate, fork and serving spoon helped to make the transition from photography to dinner a very tasty step!

Funeral Potatoes AKA Hashbrown Casserole 7

I went online to see what sorts of dehydrated shredded potatoes there were out there and there are all kinds, including LARGE boxes of these.  I will have to be on the look-out for those.  Regardless of the funny, or maybe odd name, this comfort food is a fabulous recipe to pull out for all happy occasions as well.


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16 Responses to Funeral Potatoes A.K.A. Hashbrown Casserole

  1. Sheri Jolly says:

    Restaurant hack put hash browns in microwave safe dish cover with water and heat maybe four or 5 minutes. Quick & easy.

    • Helen says:

      That works, too, but the less dishes I dirty, the easier the clean up. Although that would be a super idea if you were working with a bulk-size box and didn’t want to use the whole thing. Thanks for the comment!

  2. Maui Mack says:

    Hello, just wondering do you have to moisten the dehydrated patatos in water? Wouldn’t the soup, sour cream, onion be enough moisture to make potatoes moist w / o making them soggy like with water?thanks

    • Helen says:

      Talk about slow response time! So sorry. I moved, changed jobs, acquired 2 grandchildren and let blogging go way back on a top shelf in a spare bedroom.

      To answer your question…no. When I first started making funeral potatoes, I used fresh, cooked potatoes or frozen hash browns. I only tried the dehydrated ones because my husband was a Scout Master and had some leftover from a camp-out and I didn’t have any other potatoes available. I tried the dehydrated ones and they worked great. I adapted the recipe from then on. I will put hot water in the box and let it sit until it absorbs most of the water. If there’s any left, I dump it off. But dehydrated means the water has been removed, so you need to get it back in before it takes back its original consistency.

  3. Sara Cheek says:

    Can you make this ahead of time and freeze?

    • Helen says:

      I haven’t, but I don’t know why not. I would put it in the fridge the night before you want to bake it. Even when I prepare a casserole the day before, if I put it in the oven cold, I’ll reduce the heat and leave it in for longer. I would wait to add the chips until you put it in the oven.

  4. mia says:

    why are they called funeral potatos, just curious,they sound delicious

    • Helen says:

      I know, right? Funny name! Here’s the story. In the LDS (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints…the Mormons) culture, the Relief Society (the women’s organization) prepares a meal for after a funeral for the family and friends to come back and eat after the services…kinda like a wake. “Funeral potatoes” would be served as a side dish, usually to ham or some other meat. My family loves them, so why wait for a sad occasion to enjoy them? They’ve been called that since before I got married almost 40 years ago. There are as many variations of them as there are Mormon women cooking them. You can even include a recipe for the ladies to take and make and no two will come back the same – one reason could be that once you’ve developed your own signature dish, why mess with perfection? We’re not messing with anyone else’s Funeral Potatoes!

  5. Kelly Shilling says:

    Is this the small cans of soup or the family size?

  6. Earnie says:

    I added 1pound of bacon minced onion and miced garlic, and still used it as a side dish!! The bacon brings out the flavor

  7. Cortney says:

    Wow! I added cooked sausage to make it a main dish and this will be added to the rotation. My picky eater just polished off a bowl with mushrooms onions and sausage. I’m impressed. He hasn’t eaten that much all week.

    • Helen says:

      That sounds delicious! I have always served this as a sidedish, but I can definitely see how it would totally transform into maindish material with some meat. As a mother of more than one picky eater, it is always wonderful to have something to add to the menu line-up! Good idea!

  8. Lisa Gabriel says:

    Delicious! I used onion powder ( 1 tablespoon ) because I too have a picky eater.

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