Need a side dish for your Memorial Day grilling?
The ultimate in simplicity and taste, this recipe for Cheesy Bacon Ranch Potatoes makes a perfect accompaniment to your cookout or any occasion, for that matter.
This easy-to-make dish combines fork tender potatoes mixed with an irresistible combination of ranch dressing, crispy bacon, and melty cheese. Once you try these potatoes, you’ll keep coming back for more.
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Cheesy Bacon Ranch Potatoes involves minimal preparation and can be made in advance. In addition, leftovers are just as good the next day.
Customize these potatoes depending on your needs. For example, you can dress up this potato dish with tender shredded chicken to make it a meal.
Try adding broccoli florets and/or different cheese combinations for an awesome taste. If you’re a cheese lover, add more cheese.
If you’re a bacon lover, sprinkle additional cooked, drained and crumbled bacon on top.
However you make this pure comfort food, you’ll receive rave reviews.
Cheesy Bacon Ranch Potatoes
2 pounds unpeeled red potatoes cut into 1 to 1-½ inch pieces (about 6 cups)
6 slices bacon, cooked, drained and crumbled (about ½ cup)
½ cup ranch dressing
1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 ½ cups (6-ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray 2 ½ quart casserole dish with non-stick spray. Set aside.
Bring a large saucepan of water with 1 tablespoon of salt to a boil. Add potatoes; cook 10 minutes. Drain potatoes.
Rinse and dry pan used to boil potatoes. Return cooked potatoes to pan. Add ranch dressing, garlic powder, paprika, pepper, ¾ cup of shredded cheese and bacon. Stir to combine. Transfer potatoes to prepared casserole dish. May be prepared in advance up to this point.
Bake uncovered at 400°F for 40 minutes.
Remove potatoes from oven. Sprinkle on the remaining ¾ cup of shredded cheese. Return to 400°F oven for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly.
Yield: 8 servings.
- My favorite potato to use in this dish is the red potato. You could also use Yukon Gold potatoes. However, I would avoid using Russet potatoes because they don’t tend to hold their shape when cooked like the red or Yukon Potatoes do.
- I used Hidden Valley Original Ranch dressing. I’ve not tried this dish using low-fat ranch dressing, so unfortunately can’t comment on whether it would work as well or not.
- I would avoid using fresh garlic in this dish. The reason is that fresh garlic without being sautéed would tend to be over-powering.
- I used extra sharp Cheddar cheese because that’s what I consistently have on hand. You could also use regular or sharp Cheddar cheese, Colby cheese, Monterey Cheese or Colby Jack cheese.
- I always season potatoes by boiling them in water flavored with a tablespoon of salt. Even though a tablespoon of salt might seem like a lot, it produces the perfect amount of saltiness in the potatoes, at least for me – and I don’t like a lot of salt!
- When I boil potatoes, I always place a wooden fork or wooden spoon in the water to prevent the potatoes from boiling over. This is a trick that I learned from my daughter. I’m not sure why this works, but it does.
- Leftovers, if any reheat beautifully. Generally, I reheat the leftovers for several minutes in the microwave. You could also reheat the leftovers in a 350°F oven for 15 minutes or until heated through.
Chula King is the blogger behind PudgeFactor.com.
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