There is a restaurant here called Cracker Barrel that I’d never gone to until my little sister, who had gone with a friend, told me about their uber-fabulous hashbrown casserole and convinced me if I died without trying it, it would have been a life not worth living. Seems her older sister’s penchant for drama & exaggeration might have rubbed off on her a bit! Anyway, I don’t know I’d go so far as to say that you absolutely positively must eat this before you die, but I did think it was very delicious when I finally tried it.
I think it has been ten years since I last had their hashbrown casserole, but when I saw a copycat recipe for it on Big Bear’s Wife, I knew I just HAD to have it again, and added it to my birthday brinner menu. It was the hit of the evening, and my personal favorite of everything I made! I seriously could have eaten it alone for my meal.
I don’t know how close it is to the original since it’s been so long since I had it, but without comparing the two I can tell you this is delicious in its own right. Creamy, cheesy, starchy goodness. It’s a perfect addition to an old-fashioned country or holiday breakfast. The bonus is that it’s so simple & quick to throw together!
1 (1 lb. 14 oz) bag frozen hash browns, thawed
1 (8 oz) tub sour cream
1 (10.75 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
1/3 cup diced onion
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 (8 oz) package cheddar cheese, shredded
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9×13 dish with oil and set aside. In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients, using only half the cheese, until well-combined. Spread into the prepared dish and sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top. Bake for 45 minutes. Serve hot.
Veronica’s notes: Angie’s recipe called for 1/2 tablespoon onion powder, but I was making the recipe at my parents’ house and they were out so I made do with fresh onion. We all loved the flavor, but the powder would certainly make the recipe a bit easier to prepare (no chopping). Her recipe only called for a pound of hashbrowns and 4 oz of sour cream, so if using the powder, you may need to increase it since my recipe is larger. Also, please shred your own cheese. There is a world of difference between the gooey melt you get from cheese you shredded yourself and the packaged pre-shredded kind that has been coated with powder to keep it from sticking together. You will thank me. :)
Recipe source: adapted from Big Bear’s Wife