Easy Au Gratin Potatoes and Ham Recipe is a classic entrée, full of cheesy potato goodness and ham. It is comfort food at its finest, and it also solves the age-old question of what to do with leftover Easter ham.
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It’s also kid-friendly and impressive enough to serve guests. When my children were young, this was one of their most requested dinners, and I made it often. And I still do, especially around the holidays when we are likely to have leftover ham in the fridge.
I confessed in another recipe that I never met a mashed potato recipe I didn’t like. Well, the reality is, I never met a potato dish I didn’t like, and this recipe for au gratin potatoes and ham is no exception. Rich and heartwarming, this flavorful casserole is as easy to make as delicious!
- I use unsalted butter and have included one-half of a teaspoon of Kosher salt in the ingredients. However, ham and cheese are already salty, so only use one-fourth of a teaspoon if you use table salt. If you use salted butter, omit any additional salt.
- Feel free to change the cheese in this recipe and use your favorite or what you have on hand. Look for easy melting cheeses such as Gruyere, Gouda, Muenster, Fontina, or Havarti. I also frequently use an Italian or Mexican Blend instead of the Monterey Jack.
- If you have them, leftovers should be stored covered in the refrigerator for up to four days. To reheat, place them on a microwave-safe plate, sprinkle a few drops of water over the leftovers, and microwave them on high for about a minute.
- No leftover ham, don’t worry; you can purchase single ham slices at the grocery store, which will work just fine.
- I like to use russet potatoes in this recipe, but you can also use Yukon Gold or any other type of potato you have on hand. Because of the differences in the starch content, the texture will be a little different if you use a different variety of potatoes, but the dish will still be delicious.
- A mandolin or a food processor with a slicing blade will make short work out slicing your potatoes. I have a very inexpensive handheld mandolin, which I love, and it works great. The most important thing is to cut the potatoes as thinly and as uniformly as possible to ensure they all cook in the same amount of time. You can also use a sharp knife to slice your potatoes.
- I usually leave the peel on my potatoes, but feel free to peel yours if you prefer.
Au Gratin Potatoes and Ham Recipe
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
¼ yellow onion finely diced
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups of milk
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 pound of Russet potatoes washed and thinly sliced (about 3 medium baking potatoes)
1 ½ cups cooked cubed ham (about ½ of a pound)
1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese
Chopped fresh parsley for garnish (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onions and cook for about 10 minutes until they are soft and translucent.
When the onions are done, sprinkle flour over them and whisk to combine. Continue cooking the onion and flour mixture until the flour is golden brown, about two to three minutes.
Slowly add the milk and continue whisking to prevent lumps. Cook until the thickens sauce, which usually only takes a few minutes. Add salt and pepper, mix well and remove from the heat.
Spray a medium-size casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray or butter the dish. Add half of the sliced potatoes, then half of the cubed ham, and about half of both kinds of grated cheese.
Pour one half of the sauce. Repeat the next layer with the remaining potatoes and ham, for the remaining sauce over the top and sprinkle with the remaining cheeses.
Cover the baking dish tightly with aluminum foil or a cover and bake at 350 degrees F. for 40-60 minutes. How long it takes depends on the thickness of the potato slices.
Remove the cover and test to see if your potatoes are done by piercing them with a fork. The fork should slide through easily. If not done, continue cooking for another 10 minutes or so.
Sharon Rigsby is the blogger behind Grits and Pinecones, a cooking and hospitality blog Check out all of her recipes at gritsandpinecones.com.
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