Minnesota Tater Tot Hotdish

So we call this classic comfort food Tater Tot Hotdish while many of you may call it Tater Tot Casserole. Whatever the name you use, this is a family favorite and a classic comfort food here in Minnesota!

Like chili or chocolate chip cookies, every family has its “BEST” Tater Tot HotDish version. Today, I’m going to stick with the standard, BEST recipe and you can mix and match as you like!

Also called "tater tot casserole", tater tot hotdish is a traditional Minnesotan dish complete with a variety of veggies and tater tots on top.

Try our Sloppy Joe Tater Tot Hotdish or Chicken TaterTot Casserole for a tasty mix on the traditional recipe.

Is Tater Tot Hotdish a Minnesota thing?

Not to brag, but Tater Tot Hotdish was invented in Minnesota. At least, that’s what we claim and no one has tried to wrestle that prize from our hotdish-loving hands. But we’re happy to share this warm, comfort food with anyone and everyone wherever they live (even if you call it casserole) because, well, because we’re Minnesotans.

Is Tater Tot Hotdish or Casserole?

All hotdishes are casseroles, but not every casserole is hotdish. Need me to break it down for you? You betcha! A casserole can be anything cooked in a casserole dish and be served as a side, main dish, or even dessert. But a hot dish is always the main dish and must have a creamy soup base (or occasionally tomato), bite-sized veggies, a starch (think potatoes or pasta), a crispy topping, and often some cheese.

Can you freeze Tater Tot HotDish?

Yes! You can freeze Tater Tot HotDish. Prepare it in a freezer to the oven-safe pan (disposable aluminum pans work great, too!) and wrap it in aluminum foil after it is prepared (don’t bake it!). Simply thaw and bake when you are ready. Expect it to take an extra 30 minutes or so to bake.

How to reheat leftover tater tot hotdish?

When I have the time, I like to reheat the tater tot hotdish in the oven in its original pan. I sometimes add a tablespoon or two of water around the edges to keep it from drying, then cover and bake for about 20 minutes (until it’s heated through). When I’m short on time, I reheat individual portions in the microwave or the air fryer to get a little bit extra crispy.

Also called "tater tot casserole", Tater Tot hotDish is a traditional Minnesotan dish complete with a variety of veggies and tater tots on top.

TaterTot HotDish without soup?

You can also substitute cream of celery, cream of corn, or another cream of soup for the cream of mushroom or make homemade mushroom soup. Making the homemade soup is quite simple and tastes soooo good!

How can I make this a Cheesy Tater Tot Hotdish?

You may add about a cup of cheddar cheese in with the cream of mushroom soup if you would prefer, whether it is for another binder or simply because you like cheese (for good reason). The cheese can also go on top of the tater tots, just sprinkle it on about 5 minutes before the hotdish is done, giving it enough time to melt but not burn. You don’t even need to use cheddar cheese if you’d prefer! Pepper Jack, Colby, or other cheeses would also be delicious.

Though our Tater Tot Hotdish recipe calls for ground beef, substitutes like turkey, venison, or other similar types may be used instead. It depends on your preference.

For fun, you can substitute the tater tots for other similar products. For example, smiley fries can be great for kids (it might even make up for the veggies they will be eating!), sweet potato tater tots for a little more vitamin A, or just fun flavored tots like onion or cheddar to spice up your dish.

Tater Tot Hotdish (or casserole) is a Minnesota classic comfort food! This recipe is the easy, family-favorite recipe!

What to serve it with?

Technically, Tater Tot Hotdish is a one-pot meal, so you don’t have to serve it with a side dish Dontcha know. Unless ketchup counts as a side dish… But it does taste great with a side salad and some cornbread. Or a broccoli salad!

Minnesota Tater Tot Hotdish

| 8
Prep Time | 20 minutes
Cook Time | 45 minutes
Total Time | 55 minutes
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
Minnesota Tater Tot Hot dish (or casserole) is an easy family favorite! A great ground beef dinner idea.

Ingredients
 

  • 1 lbs ground beef
  • 2 cans cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 cup corn
  • 1 cup peas and carrots mixed veggies
  • 1 pkg tater tots
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese optional
Check out our Kitchen Reference Guide for help with unfamiliar terms.

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Put the diced onion in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and saute until ground beef is cooked and onions are translucent. 
  • Grease a 9×13 pan. 
  • Pour the cooked meat and onions into the 9×13 pan. Spread the veggies evenly over the top.  Add the cheddar cheese. Spread the cream of mushroom soup over the veggies. Some people mix it here, some people don’t. It’s up to you. 
  • Place the tater tots evenly on top of the mixture in straight lines. (It’s okay if you’re lazy and don’t put them in straight lines, just make sure they’re pretty even or they won’t cook properly)
  • Bake for 1 hour. Check. If tater tots are not golden brown and the veggies are still crunchy, put in over for another 20 minutes.
  • Let cool and enjoy!

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 283kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 18gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 59mgSodium: 682mgPotassium: 366mgFiber: 2gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 1854IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 124mgIron: 2mg

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Additional ground beef recipes your family might love:

easy ground beef wellington uses puff pastry to keep this easy for dinner!

easy Ground Beef Wellington

Goulash is a traditionally Minnesotan meal, perfect for nights when you don't have a ton of time!

Goulash Hot Dish

Venison Chili. This is an easy and basic chili recipe for the chili newbie. Very few ingredients and easy to follow directions. Venison is optional but tips for making your chili with dry ground meat (like venison) is included.

Venison Chili

Swedish meatballs. Traditional recipe with oats instead of bread to make this a gluten-free recipe.

Classic Swedish Meatballs

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12 thoughts on “Minnesota Tater Tot Hotdish”

  1. 4 stars
    Good dish that is outside what I normally would do, but not outside the comfort zone just yet. You could say it is that rest stop/servo just before getting out of town. Nevertheless, made this with a string of items that I had in the fridge and pantry before I was heading off overseas.

    Although Queensland weather is possibly as far different as you could get from Minnesota weather, I can perceive how hearty and welcoming the meal would be in the winter. Additionally, I have a number of nieces to think about when it comes to cooking. This might be one of the great tricks to have up my sleeve.

    For my take on the recipe, I made a cream of mushroom soup from scratch in advance – I just can’t with it from a can – and used a leftover a can of corn. It was done in a Dutch oven, and around five to ten minutes before serving time there was a generous sprinkling of cheese.

    When it comes to the crunch, this is little different to England’s cottage pie. Both are absolutely tasty, and my nieces will be seeing many turns over with those two and a lot more. Ya betcha, bro!

  2. 5 stars
    peas,carrots,corn,broccoli,onion&garlic . Few dashes of Worcestershire sauce. Garlic powder,onion powder,Italian seasoning & Seasoning salt. I make my own cream of chicken soup mix but had a can of cream of potato in the pantry to use up so I used that. Also had some homemade leftover queso cheese sauce to use up that went in omg 😱 so good! Put the tater tots in the air fryer to get them good and crispy I hate soggy soft tots mixed in crispy fried onions also. Cheddar & Colby Jack cheese. Yum!

  3. 5 stars
    I had no cream of mushroom soup I had cream of celery and cheddar cheese soup.
    I had a can of mushrooms. I drained the mushrooms put it in with the vegetables I did put a little cheese on top of the tots

  4. 5 stars
    Wonderful when you need more of a meal!
    I used Cream of Bacon soup and french style green beans in place of the peas. Also let it bake for over an hour.
    So good!

  5. 5 stars
    Thrilled to see this and thank you!
    My mom made it differently by using cream of celery, layered it the meat, cooked white rice, corn, tots on top topped with cheddar cheese!

  6. 5 stars
    My mom used to make this all the time when I was young growing up in ND. I’m a vegetarian now so I add “meatless “meat” (soy-based “meat”) and I’m intolerant to onions so I add Leeks and it is still so good. My mother makes it with Velveeta cheese but there is no way in H-E-double-hockey-sticks I’m spending $10 on fake cheese so the cheddar works fine :) Great recipe!

  7. Say now, ya got that kinda wrong there see. See now the hot dish, that there we make in a 9 x 13 pan, but that casserole, well ya gotta get out the 13 x 9 for that.

  8. 5 stars
    Great recipe. My husband doesn’t care for mushrooms so I used cream of chicken soup. Turned out delicious!

  9. 5 stars
    Tator tot hot dish is something that always reminds me of home! Living in a place that rarely eats hot dish (and calls it “casserole”), this comfort food is extra special.

    I tend to leave out the veggies, just because I think they mess everything up. But if you are looking for a traditional, honest Minnesota dish, this is perfect!!!!

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