Potatoes are one of my guilty pleasures… whether it’s a plate of crispy fries, or a huge serving of mashed potatoes, there is just something that is so irresistible about them! One absolutely magical way to enjoy potatoes is in a potato gratin, which is basically thinly sliced potatoes in a creamy sauce smothered in plenty of melted cheese! Yum!!! There are many variations of potato gratin with the central item being the cream sauce which is generally either full (heavy/whipping) cream sauce or a béchamel sauce which is a sauce made with butter and milk that is thickened with flour. The full cream sauce is more decadent and the bechamel is a little lighter and both are simply amazing! I like to season the sauce with onions, garlic, thyme and a pinch of nutmeg along with some cheese. Speaking of cheese, potato gratin has plenty of cheese, with some melted into the sauce and more sprinkled on top before baking! Gruyere is a great option for the cheese but any cheese that melts well will work including cheeses like: mozzarella, cheddar, havarti, swiss, etc. Feel free to choose your favourite cheese or even a combination of cheeses! It takes a bit of time to slice all of the potatoes (I like to use an mandoline) and arranging them all but once that’s done you just throw it into the oven and wait while all of the cream and cheese melts right into the potatoes
Classic melt in your mouth potatoes in a creamy cheese sauce!
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 small onion, finely diced
- 1 clove garlic, minced/grated
- 1 teaspoon thyme, chopped (or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme)
- 3 tablespoons flour (gluten-free for gluten-free)
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1 1/2 cups guyere cheese, shredded
- 1 pinch nutmeg (optional)
- salt and pepper to taste
- 4 pounds potatoes, thinly sliced
- Melt the butter in a pan over medium heat, add the onion and cook until tender, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the garlic and thyme and cook until fragrant, about a minute.
- Sprinkle in the flour, mix well and cook until it starts to turn lightly golden brown, about a minute.
- Add the milk and cook until the sauce thickens, about 1-2 minutes.
- Reduce the heat, add 1/2 cup of the cheese, mix and let it melt into the sauce before adding the nutmeg and seasoning with salt and pepper to taste.
- Spread some of the sauce over the bottom of a large baking dish (or cast iron pan) and place the potatoes in with sauce between each layer. (I like to dip each slice into the sauce as I place them into the pan.)
- Pour any remaining sauce over the potatoes in the pan, sprinkle on the remaining cheese.
- Bake in a preheated 350F/180C oven until the potatoes are tender, about 45-60 minutes.
Option: Use your favourite melting cheese, like swiss, mozzarella, havarti, cheddar, etc.
Option: Add another cheese like parmesan, asiago, pecorino romano, etc.
Option: Add bacon!
Note: When I arrange the potatoes in a more vertical fashion, such as the ones in the photos, I dip the slices of potato into the sauce as I place them in the pan. If I am going for a more horizontal version, I place a single layer of potatoes down in the baking dish, spread some sauce on top, followed by another layer of potatoes, sauce, etc.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts au Gratin
Broccoli au Gratin
White Cheddar and Garlic Mashed Potatoes
Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes
Pancetta and Porcini Potato Gratin
Creamy Asiago Bacon Wrapped Roasted Onions
Asiago Roasted Onions
Crispy Roast Potatoes
Ciao Chow Linda says
Kevin – I don’t think you even needed the bread crumbs. It looks scrumptious just as is. and perfect with the ham.
Susan Wisecup-Agbedzinu says
I see nothing in the recipe about bread crumbs. Maybe…
I must be honest, I have never tried my potatoes like this before. Thanks Kevin!
Love it! Huuummm…
Mmmm … looks great. I think I’d prefer it without the breadcrumbs. I love ham and potatoes! YUM!
Oh delicious, I love potato gratin. Such a classic French dish.
I have seen them..and now seems like having some..yum
Mmmm Yum – cheese and potatoes. Looks luverly!
this is something that’s gonna be my side dish pretty soon… 🙂
Eeek! my nemesis: potatoes! You are sorely tempting me to break my low-carb diet with this potato dish! I love this dish so much and you’ve hit my weak-spot right now…it looks so creamy delicious!
Looks so delicous! I love potato gratin. Your recipe looks wonderful I like the use of gruyere a lot. I’m sure it gave a wonderful taste. yum yum!
Rosa's Yummy Yums says
thta’s exactly my kind of gratin! it looks extremely good!
What a great looking gratin. I don’t often make it, but I always enjoy eating it.
I love my potatoes this way. Looks so good!
Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) says
Note to self: do not read recipes for cheese-y potatoes before breakfast….
Those are some gorgeous potatoes, and that cheese! Looks great.
Who doesn’t love warm, creamy, cheesy potatoes?
I’ve had scalloped potatoes on the brain for a while now, I definitely need to make some…
The last gratin I made used goat cheese intead of gruyere, but I think I may have to try this cheese and compare! Great side dish. And I really like that you’re putting the serving number now, it really helps me scale how much your recipes will make.
Kevin, Potatoe au Gratin is my favorite way to make potatoes. I just love the creamy and cheesy flavors. What a stunning photo!
Mmmm! My mom often made ham and potato scallop for Sunday dinners when I was little. I love the crunchy potato bits. Total comfort food.
Those look SO good! Please come cook at my house. I’ll bake you anything you want! 😉
Beautiful pictures Kevin and look so tasy! Gloria
Potatoes and cheese, what could be better!!!
Kevin, that looks delicious! truly amazing!
You really can’t go wrong with potatoes au gratin, they’re one of husband’s favorite dishes.
I would love to have a purse and shoes the color of that beautiful cheese! LOL
That gorgeous gratin certainly didn’t need any bread crumbs.
oMG..I saw these potatoes and it instantly brought me back to childhood! My mom used to make these all the time!!
We seem to be on similar taste wave lengths. I love scalloped potatoes and today I decided to make a combo of sweet and russet scalloped potatoes.
I totally love your meal, especially those potatoes Kevin.
I love potatoes au gratin so much that I have been known to have it for breakfast 🙂 Delicious looking pictures, I will have to make these very soon!
Running out of bread crumbs may have been a blessing — that burnt look is amazing! What a terrific recipe. Thanks!
ooh ur au gratin looks much like the best one i’ve ever had when I was in France two years ago.
I have to make these for my sister. She buys that gross box mix all the time, and I bet they don’t compare one bit to these. Thanks!
Manger La Ville says
These look like the perfect potatoes gratin. You would make the french proud. The top layer looks soooo good.
Cooking and the City says
yum I loove potato gratin! Kevin yours looks so good 🙂
Oh, man but that looks so goood. I’ve yet to meet a potato dish that I don’t love especially one with onions. It also helps to that I’m starving right now. Great photo!!!!
probably my most favorite food on earth! YUM!
nithya at hungrydesi says
You have some very yummy looking vegetarian dishes…just discovered you through Serious Eats.
Any foodie worth his salt won’t be able to resist your gratin!
Hmmm, adding bacon to the lot starts to sound like a tartiflette. Just add Brie on top. You know where to look for a recipe. 😉
Potatoes au Gratin… yum… such a classic
Cheesy potatoes are always a winner – this is a favourite in our house! Looks fab 🙂
and 4 years later someone is still benefiting from you sharing your art 🙂 thank you!
i searched through several recipes for au gratin potatoes and wanted to make it authentic with the cream. i didn't have gruyere, but used chedder/colby instead and it turned out sooooo tasty! we finished the whole dish and talked about how good it was the rest of the night!
a definite keeper in my recipe box!!!
btw- i had to bake it more like 45-1hr. for the potatoes to become tender. (i did slice them thinly by hand)
I am going to try this version instead of my normal one for Thanksgiving this week – it sounds amazing! Thanks for sharing, Kevin!
This looks amazing, you are such a good cook. Thank you so much for sharing with us.
Made this for Christmas lunch 2020. I made a couple of changes based on what I had. I used gouda cheese instead of gruyere and added some mustard powder and cayenne as I always do when making a cheese sauce. It was the best thing on the table. Delicious.
Do you think this could be made the day before needed?
You can make this ahead and then reheat it when ready!
Just prepared this dish and am about to place in the oven. The sauce is incredible! Can’t wait to dig into these for our Thanksgiving feast. Thanks for a great recipe!
If using a mandoline, what thickness did you use? This looks delicious!
Did anyone actually MAKE this recipe? People comment on how beautiful it looks, but I would like to know how it tastes.
This recipe calls for way too much flour. I would add about 2 tablespoons maybe not even. The sauce ended up being too thick making putting the dish together hard to manage. Also this doesn’t make enough sauce for a large cast iron skillet. I would say a medium sized cast iron.