My parents worked on a Cracker Barrel training video (which they use to train the chefs) and got this recipe a few years ago. Cracker Barrel's recipe seems to have changed a bit over these few years but not for the best. This is their recipe though and has become a family favorite. We usually have it now for Easter and Thanksgiving and its also great for a brunch. Happy Cooking!
- Preheat oven to 350*F.
- Mix potatoes, onion, celery and mushroom soups, and 1/2 of the cheese.
- Coat a 9" x 13" baking dish with spray oil.
- Spread mixture into dish.
- Sprinkle other 1/2 of cheese evenly over top.
- Dot margarine evenly over the cheese.
- Bake at 350*F for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until cheese starts to brown at peaks.
I made this casserole tonight and it was fantastic! My family and I love it. Per some reviewer suggestions, I lightly sauteed the onions along with 2 tsp fresh minced garlic before combining it in the unbaked hashbrown mixture. I found a 30oz bag of O'Reida hashbrowns(I guess the present economy motivated O'Reida to downsize a couple of ounces)at my local Walmart. I used the colby cheese as the recipe calls for and I highly recommend others do so instead of subbing cheddar cheese as some of the reviewers on here had done. I folded all the cheese in instead of reserving a portion for the top--just my preference. I also added a 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper which wasn't too salty for me but I am known for liking the salt! I baked at 350 and when it was done I put it under the broiler for 5 minutes to give it crispy exterior. Oh, and my casserole didn't turn out soupy--it really helps to let it sit about 5 minutes before dishing it out. Also, some reviewers didn't follow the instructions and used 1 small bag of hashbrowns which of course made their casserole a soggy mess. Why they even reviewed it is beyond me.
Warning Warning Warning Warning !
Double the recipe!!!
I haven't tried this particular recipe, however, I used to know a lady who worked at Cracker Barrel years ago, and she gave me the recipe for Hashbrown Casserole - shredded colby cheese is the secret ingredient! Most people think that cheddar cheese is what is used, but it's not. Also, the recipe that I have does not have mushroom or celery soup, but it does call for a can of cream of chicken soup and butter along with onions. All of this gets mixed up while the potatoes are frozen and takes about 1 1/2 hours to bake. Remember, COLBY is the key.