Tater Tot Hotdish

tater tot hotdish

 Leah Maroney

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 35 mins
Total: 50 mins
Servings: 6 to 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
751 Calories
50g Fat
45g Carbs
32g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 751
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 50g 64%
Saturated Fat 20g 102%
Cholesterol 128mg 43%
Sodium 1592mg 69%
Total Carbohydrate 45g 16%
Dietary Fiber 4g 13%
Total Sugars 7g
Protein 32g
Vitamin C 80mg 399%
Calcium 235mg 18%
Iron 3mg 19%
Potassium 979mg 21%
*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.)

If you're not from the northern Midwest, you might not have heard of tater tot hotdish until recently. It's commonly served at potlucks, funeral lunches, and church picnics, but after you try this iconic American recipe, you will want it on the daily. It's creamy, salty, crunchy, and oh-so-craveable.

The formula for a tater tot hotdish—which can be made entirely in a cast-iron skillet—is actually quite simple. It contains a variation of the following:

  • Meat (usually ground beef, but you can also use chicken, pork, or a blend)
  • Condensed soup (usually cream of mushroom)
  • Vegetables (often a blend, like a pea, corn, and carrot mix)
  • And, of course, tater tots

This tater tot hotdish has a classic base with a spicy kick. You can leave out the ingredients with a kick by replacing the peppers with other veggies and swapping pepper jack with cheddar, but it really takes the casserole up a notch.


  • 1 pound ground beef

  • 1/2 pound chorizo sausage

  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped, some reserved for topping

  • 1 yellow bell pepper, chopped, some reserved for topping

  • 1 poblano pepper, chopped

  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  • 1 cup whole milk

  • 1 (10.5-ounce) can cream of mushroom soup

  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce

  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce

  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 1/2 cup sour cream

  • 4 ounces cream cheese

  • 1/2 cup pepper jack cheese, divided

  • 1 (32-ounce) bag frozen tater tots

  • 1 scallion, chopped

  • 1 teaspoon cilantro, minced

  • 1 to 2 jalapeño peppers, sliced, optional

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    tater tot hotdish
     Leah Maroney
  2. Heat a heavy-bottomed pan on high. Add the ground beef and chorizo and brown the meat until completely cooked through. Preheat the oven to 350 F.

    tater tot hotdish
    Leah Maroney 
  3. Drain the meat from the pan and place it in a bowl. Leave some of the excess fat in the pan. Add the diced onion, minced garlic, chopped peppers, seasoned salt, and ground black pepper to the pan and sauté on medium-low heat until the vegetables are slightly softened. Do not overcook them—you want them to retain their shape and some of their texture.

    tater tot hotdish
     Leah Maroney
  4. Add the heavy cream, whole milk, and cream of mushroom soup to the pot. Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes.

    tater tot hotdish
     Leah Maroney
  5. Add the hot sauce, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, sour cream, and cream cheese to the pot and stir until combined completely. It should be thick and creamy. Add the meat and stir. Cook for another minute or two, then remove from the heat.

    tater tot hotdish
     Leah Maroney
  6. Add the mixture to a large cast-iron skillet or casserole dish.

    tater tot hotdish
     Leah Maroney
  7. Sprinkle half of the shredded pepper jack over the top of the casserole dish and begin arranging the tater tots on top of the casserole. You can make a pretty pattern or just cover the top of the casserole as best as you can.

    tater tot hotdish
     Leah Maroney
  8. Add the rest of the cheese to the top of the casserole and place it in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until the tater tots are golden brown and the casserole is heated through.

    tater tot hotdish
    Leah Maroney 
  9. Top the casserole with more diced bell peppers, chopped cilantro, and sliced jalapeños if you wish to make it extra spicy.

    tater tot hotdish
     Leah Maroney
  10. Serve and enjoy.

Recipe Variations

  • Taco Tater Tot Hotdish: Fill the casserole dish with prepared taco meat mixed with cheddar cheese soup mix. Top with tater tots and pepper jack cheese. When it's done baking, drizzle with sour cream, salsa, chopped olives, and chopped scallions.
  • Bacon Cheeseburger Tater Tot Hotdish: Cook up the ground beef as directed and add in bacon. Keep the cream of mushroom soup, but change the veggies to just corn (or you can leave them out). Top with tater tots and cheese and bake!
  • Ham and Broccoli Tater Tot Hotdish: Use a pound of chopped ham, cream of mushroom soup, and chopped broccoli. Top with tots and bake away. Add some cheddar if you want this creamy and cheesy.
  • Cheesy Chicken Tater Tot Hotdish: Replace the beef with shredded chicken and the soup with cheddar cheese soup. Add a packet of ranch seasoning and a veggie of your choice. Top with tots and cheese.