Easy Northumberland Pan Haggerty

Pan Haggerty

The Spruce

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 45 mins
Total: 55 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
302 Calories
22g Fat
21g Carbs
7g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 302
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 22g 28%
Saturated Fat 13g 66%
Cholesterol 59mg 20%
Sodium 231mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 21g 8%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Total Sugars 3g
Protein 7g
Vitamin C 9mg 47%
Calcium 161mg 12%
Iron 1mg 6%
Potassium 500mg 11%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Pan haggerty is also known as potato bake or casserole. It's a famous British dish from Northumberland, although it can be found across the whole of northeast Britain, and most of England, too.

Most will know it as a potato gratin, but a dauphinoise it is not, because there is no cream in the recipe. This pan haggerty recipe uses just potatoes, onions, and cheese, but sometimes it also includes a little bit of cabbage, which is an excellent way to sneak in some vegetables without the kids realizing it. A filling dish, pan haggerty is delicious on its own, but it is also excellent with sausages or other meat.


  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided

  • 9 ounces onions, peeled and thinly sliced

  • 1 pound large potatoes, such as russet or Idaho, peeled and thinly sliced, divided

  • 4 ounces grated aged cheddar cheese, divided

  • Sea salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. Heat the oven to 375 F/190 C.

    Ingredients for pan haggerty
    The Spruce 
  2. Over medium heat, melt 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) of the butter in a large frying pan and gently cook the sliced onions until soft but not browned. Set aside.

    Onions in pan
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  3. In an ovenproof frying pan or stovetop casserole, melt 1 1/2 ounces (3 tablespoons) of the butter.

    Butter melting
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  4. Remove the pan from the heat and then arrange a layer of potatoes in the pan.

    Arrange a layer of potatoes in the pan
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  5. Add a layer of onions.

    Adding a layer of onions
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  6. Sprinkle on a layer of cheese.

    Layer of cheese
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  7. Season with salt and pepper and repeat the layers ending with potatoes on top.

    Putting another layer of potatoes on
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  8. Place the pan over medium heat on the stovetop and cook for a few minutes, or until the bottom layer of potatoes is brown.

    Place pan on medium heat
    The Spruce
  9. Dot the surface of the potatoes with the remaining butter, then place in the heated oven and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven.

    Dotting potatoes with butter
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  10. Raise the oven temperature to 425 F/220 C and, when the oven has gotten up to temperature, return the pan to the oven and cook for 15 minutes.

    Crispy Pan Haggerty
    The Spruce
  11. To serve, loosen the edges of the potato cake from the frying pan with a spatula.

    Loosening potatoes with a spatula
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  12. Flip the pan over quickly onto a plate or cutting board.

    Flipped onto a plate
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  13. Cut into generous wedges and enjoy.

Recipe Variations

You can vary a pan haggerty in much the same way as any potato gratin (bearing in mind this will no longer be the classic dish).

  • Use slices of celeriac with the potatoes. Cut the celeriac to the same thickness as the potatoes.
  • Add cubed or sliced carrots to the dish. 
  • Replace the potatoes with slices of celeriac and/or carrots. 
  • Change the onions to shallots for a softer taste.

Serving Tips

  • Pan haggerty can be eaten cold or at room temperature. It's delicious as a snack or part of a lunch (wrap in foil and pop into a lunchbox). 
  • If you're a meat lover, pan haggerty is perfect with sausages, bacon, or cold cuts left from a Sunday lunch.
  • For vegetarians, serve with a fried egg on top or perhaps a dollop of wilted spinach or kale.