totally customizable tater tot casserole

a recipe by
Lori Zimmer
Camp Hill, PA

This is a great recipe for families — kids love tater tots! It’s also a dish that you can truly make your own by varying the meat or vegetable base ingredients as well as the cheese and even the seasonings. I’ve provided three main choices — SPAM or ham, a mix of onions and mushrooms, or sausage — but you can experiment with others. Try leftover barbecue, or perhaps broccoli or spinach! How about swapping some Fontina for the cheddar and adding some dried basil to the egg mixture? Let your tastes and imagination be your guides!

serves 6 to 8
prep time 10 Min
cook time 35 Min
method Bake

Ingredients For totally customizable tater tot casserole

  • 12 oz
    spam or ham, diced
  • 1 1/2 c
    chopped onions and mushrooms
  • 12 oz
    ground breakfast sausage
  • 8
    eggs, large
  • 1/2 c
  • 1 tsp
  • 1/4 tsp
    black pepper
  • 1 tsp
    garlic powder
  • 2 c
    shredded cheddar cheese (8 ounces)
  • 1 bag
    (32 ounces) frozen tater tots
  • optional: additional shredded cheese
  • optional: chopped green onions or chives

How To Make totally customizable tater tot casserole

  • 1
    Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • 2
    Prepare a 12-inch, oven-safe nonstick or well-seasoned cast iron skillet: if using ham, SPAM, or onions and mushrooms, lightly spray pan with cooking oil. If using sausage, omit the oil.
  • 3
    If using ham or SPAM, no pre-cooking is necessary. If using onions and mushrooms, sauté the vegetables until tender but not mushy; remove from heat. If using sausage, cook until browned and cooked through (about 5 to 7 minutes); remove from heat but do not drain.
  • Base layer spread evenly in bottom of skillet.  Diced SPAM used in this photo.
    Spread meat or vegetables evenly across bottom of skillet.
  • Eggs, milk and seasonings being whisked together.
    In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, salt (omit salt if using ham or SPAM), black pepper, and garlic powder.
  • Base layer covered with cheese, then egg mixture poured over top.
    Sprinkle the shredded cheese in an even layer on top of the meat or vegetables. Pour the egg mixture evenly over the cheese.
  • First row of tater tots placed on top of casserole and second row started.
    Starting at the outer edge, place frozen tater tots in a circle on top of the mixture. When that circle is complete, begin another row inside the first.
  • Casserole fully assembled and ready for the oven.
    Continue placing tater tots in concentric circles until you have reached the center of the casserole. You will not use the entire bag; reserve any extra for future use.
  • Casserole after baking until eggs are fully set.
    Bake at 350 for 35 to 40 minutes or until eggs have set.
  • Finished casserole after being sprinkled with additional cheese and returned to the oven for 2 minutes.
    If desired, sprinkle with additional shredded cheese and return to oven until cheese melts (about 1 to 2 minutes).
  • 11
    Remove from oven and allow to sit for about 2 minutes. If desired, sprinkle with chopped green onions or chives. Cut into wedges and serve.

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