Last weekend while I was in Gatlinburg for a conference, my mom and I wandered into the Paula Deen Store. The entire store was essentially a shrine to butter (butter-flavored lip balm, anyone?), but guess what else I found.
A veggie apron! I know the text is hard to read, but it says “Eatin my veggies, y’all.” If it hadn’t been child-sized I would have needed to buy it.
I can’t say this Cream Cheese Hashbrown Casserole recipe is a good representative of my usual veggie-heavy cooking, but hey, sometimes a pile of potatoes covered in a ridiculously unnecessary amount of cheese is exactly what the doctor ordered. *Correction: Sometimes a pile of potatoes covered in a ridiculously unnecessary amount of cheese is exactly what Paula Deen ordered.
This casserole ended up being one of those “pick your poison” situations because casserole isn’t exactly the type of food that provides a bounty of nutrients and good things to sustain you. That’s just not the point. The poison I chose was cream cheese, which I can identify the origins of, while the alternative for hashbrown casserole is typically cream of mushroom soup, which I most definitely cannot identify the origins of. Needless to say, I really think I came out on top in this round of “pick your poison” by choosing the cream cheese over the more common choices of things like cream of mushroom soup and Tide Pods. (P. S. To those of you who are still upset that I ended a sentence with a preposition earlier in this paragraph, make this casserole and you will feel better.)
If you try this Cream Cheese Hashbrown Casserole at home, I’d love to hear what you think! Share pictures with me on social media by tagging @thesavvyplate on Instagram or by mentioning my page The Savvy Plate Blog on Facebook!
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Cream Cheese Hashbrown Casserole
Creamy, cheesy comfort food at its best! This hashbrown casserole uses no "cream of anything" soup and instead replaces it with plenty of cheese, plus onions and mushrooms. Perfect for a weekend breakfast, this classic, Southern-inspired casserole is ready and on the table in less than an hour!
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 yellow onion (diced)
- 8 oz. white mushrooms (sliced)
- salt & pepper
- 12 oz. cream cheese (1 1/2 blocks)
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 26 oz. frozen hashbrowns (thawed)
- 1 heaping cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- chives (optional)
Heat olive oil in a large pot on the stovetop at medium-high. Add diced onion and sliced mushrooms, season with salt and pepper as desired, and cook until softened, about 10 minutes.
Stir in cream cheese and Worcestershire sauce and lower heat to medium. Stir until cream cheese is completely melted and smooth. Add thawed hashbrowns and cook for another 5 minutes.
Transfer to a greased 2-quart baking dish, top with shredded cheese, and bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Serve with chopped chives if desired.