The Cozy Cook

Hash Brown Casserole (Cracker Barrel Copycat!)

This Hash Brown Casserole tastes just like the real Cracker Barrel recipe and is easy to make with just 6 ingredients! Plus, it’s make-ahead and freezer friendly!

Be sure to serve this with my fluffy scrambled eggs  and buttermilk biscuits!

Wooden Spoon Scooping Cracker Barrel Hashbrown casserole out of a white casserole dish.

Hash Brown Casserole

Welcome to one of my favorite comfort food recipes on the blog! (And I have a lot of them.)

Not only can you make this ahead of time, but if you happen to have leftovers, (we never do), you can freeze them!

Read on, I have everything you need to know about making this recipe. From customization options, tips on obtaining the perfect consistency, how to make it ahead of time, storing, reheating, and more!

How to Make it

See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

Pro Tip: I like to use Lamb Weston Thick Cut Hash Browns. They’re nice and thick and hold up well in this casserole!

  1. Thaw the hash browns and pat them dry.
  2. Set 1 cup cheddar cheese aside. Combine remaining ingredients.
  3. Place in a greased 9 x 13 casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese.
  4. Cover and bake at 350° for 35 minutes.
  5. Remove cover and increase heat to 400° Bake for 5-10 more minutes.
  6. Let it sit for 10 minutes prior to serving.

Should I Thaw Frozen Hash Browns Before Cooking

Yes. The consistency is much better if you thaw them out and pat them dry prior to assembly. It also takes twice as long for the casserole to bake if the hash browns are frozen.

3 Ways to Thaw Them:

  • Place the package in the refrigerator overnight.
  • Defrost them in the microwave.
  • Let them sit at room temperature in a large bowl for about 45 minutes.

Be sure to pat them dry after they have thawed.

Can I Make Hash Brown Casserole The Day Before

You can assemble this casserole the night before and store it in the fridge overnight, just be sure that your hash browns are thawed and patted dry when you combine them with the other ingredients.

Can You Freeze Hash Brown Casserole

Yes. You can assemble and freeze this casserole prior to baking. When ready to serve, let it thaw in the fridge overnight and bake as outlined.

Using Frozen Cubed Potatoes

You can absolutely use cubed hash browns in this recipe if that is your preference or if you’re unable to obtain the shredded ones.

You can also use frozen Potatoes O’Brien and eliminate the need to dice up an onion!

Using Fresh Potatoes

  • Shred the potatoes with a boxed grater.
  • Rinse the potatoes in cold water to release some of the starch, which allows them to become crispy.
    • If possible, let them sit in a large bowl of cold water in the fridge for a minimum of one hour and then rinse  with cold water.
  • Pat them completely dry before proceeding.

Crock Pot Method

  • Assemble as indicated in recipe, reserving some of the cheese for the top. Place in a lightly greased Crock Pot.
  • Heat on low for 4-5 hours or high for 3+1/2. 
  • Top with cheese, cover until melted, then serve.
  • Note: Crock Pots vary in terms of temperature so you may want to check on it periodically as it cooks.

A wooden spoon laying across a white casserole dish filled with cracker barrel hashbrown casserole.

Add-On Ideas

  • Meats: Cooked/diced ham, sausage, bacon, or chicken.
  • Veggies: Bell Peppers, chiles, jalapenos, broccoli.
  • Cheeses: Colby, Cheddar Jack, Monterey Jack, Boursin.
  • You can also sprinkle some crispy fried onions on top during the last 5 minutes of baking!

Try These Next

Storing Leftovers

  • Leftovers should be refrigerated in an airtight container and are best if used within 3 days.
  • You can also freeze leftovers, they’re best if used within 3 months. 
    • To reheat, let it defrost in the refrigerator and bake it in a 350° oven, covered, for 20-25 minutes.
    • You can also microwave them until heated through.

Overhead view of a wooden spoon laying in a white casserole dish that's full of hashbrown casserole.

Get My Free Meal Plan

I’ve got a Free Meal Plan with 7 of my super popular recipes (complete with grocery list)! Sign up for my email list and I’ll send it over now along with weekly dinner recipes!

You can also find me on FacebookInstagram, and Pinterest!

Overhead view of a white casserole dish filled with hashbrown casserole with a wooden spoon scooping it up.

Hash Brown Casserole (Cracker Barrel Copycat!)

4.97 from 30 ratings
This Hashbrown Casserole tastes just like the Cracker Barrel version and is so easy to throw together and serve with breakfast, or even dinner. (Plus, leftovers are freezer friendly!)

Ingredients

  • 32 oz. frozen hash browns, thawed*
  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • 10.5 oz. cream of chicken soup, (cream of cheddar works too)
  • 16 oz. sour cream
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 2.5 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/3 teaspoon pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Ensure that your hash browns have thawed. (Otherwise they take a very long time to bake.) You can defrost them in the microwave to speed up this process.
  • Pat them dry of excess water.
  • Set 1 cup of cheddar cheese aside.
  • Combine all remaining ingredients in a large bowl.
  • Place it in a greased 9x13 casserole dish and top with remaining cheese.
  • Cover and bake for 35 minutes.
  • Remove cover and increase heat to 400°. Bake for an additional 5-10 minutes, until the top begins to crisp and brown slightly.
  • Remove from the oven and let stand for 10 minutes prior to serving.

Notes

*They only have 28 oz. bags at my grocery store, so I use that and leave everything else the same. Frozen Cubed Hash Browns may also be used.
If using fresh potatoes, measure out about 10 cups.

Crock Pot Method

  • Assemble as indicated in recipe, reserving some of the cheese to top it with. Place in a lightly greased Crock Pot.
  • Heat on low for 4-5 hours or high for 3+1/2. 
  • Top with cheese, cover until melted, then serve.
  • Note: Crock Pots vary in terms of temperature so you may want to check on it periodically as it cooks.

Make-Ahead Method

You can assemble this casserole the night before and store it in the fridge overnight, just be sure that your hash browns are thawed and patted dry when you combine them with the other ingredients.

Storing Leftovers

  • Leftovers should be refrigerated in an airtight container and are best if used within 3 days.
  • You can also freeze leftovers, they're best if used within 3 months. 
    • To reheat, let it defrost in the refrigerator and bake it in a 350° oven, covered, for 20-25 minutes.
    • You can also microwave them until heated through.

Nutrition

Calories: 664kcal, Carbohydrates: 45g, Protein: 12g, Fat: 48g, Saturated Fat: 22g, Cholesterol: 92mg, Sodium: 971mg, Potassium: 799mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 1060IU, Vitamin C: 16.3mg, Calcium: 294mg, Iron: 1.3mg

Leave a Comment & Rate this Recipe

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Click the Stars to Rate This Recipe




125 comments on “Hash Brown Casserole (Cracker Barrel Copycat!)”

  1. Made this in the crockpot, on the high setting.   I should have checked it at about 2 hours, but I just let it roll.  Final result:   A really yummy mush!!!   The flavor was great (and I sautéed half each of a red pepper, green pepper and onion, adding that at the beginning)
    Definitely try this recipe.   I’ll do it in the oven next time!  But you will probably be fine if you do it in your crockpot on low, or even high, as long as you periodically check it’s progress!

    • Hey Marianne! Thank you so much for sharing your experience with this recipe, it’s true, Crock Pots do vary in terms of temperature so it’s always a little tricky to give an exact timeframe! I’ll add a note that you should keep an eye on it during cooking! I’m glad that you enjoyed it and will be making it again! 🙂

  2. In the picture it shows salt, but I don’t see that as an ingredient listed. Do u add that in?

    • Hey Christy! You can add salt to taste, if preferred, although it’s just fine without it! You can always sprinkle salt onto your plate when serving if desired! 🙂

  3. Delicious and easy!!

  4. Oh no. Which recipe have I been using?  For some reason I was thinking I was supposed to use cheese soup. Or something like that. Hmm uh oh and I also baked it with foil over it. Maybe that’s why it hasn’t been very good the past couple times I made it. Hmmm 

  5. Question! I don’t have hash browns, but I’ve got “tater rounds” (think Hardee’s/Carl’s Jr./Burger King hash browns. On the back of the bag it says “do not thaw”. Can you still thaw it and it’s ok or is that like THE rule for safety?

  6. I am wondering if this can be frozen after baking for  eating later

  7. I made this a few days ago. There’s just 4 of us and it makes a 9×13 pan. It was so great, it was warmed up two different nights by my sons and it’s gone completely. Thank you for the recipe!

  8. My family loved this! They are a tough crowd and very picky people. I will be making this often.

  9. This recipe is so easy and delicious!  My  kids and grandkids loved it this morning!   After one bite my daughter-in-law said she was voting right now that we have this EVERY year for our Christmas breakfast!

    • That’s SUCH great news Kathy, I am so happy that your family enjoyed it so much and will work it into your new traditional holiday breakfast! Thank you so much for the great review! -Stephanie

  10. In these trying times, I’m making this family friendly recipe, with ingredients I have on hand (no special trip to the store). We LOVE this recipe!!@ Thank you for all the added items (can be added in). I’m using left over cooked/cubed ham from Thanksgiving I set aside (and froze). Thank you again, and we wish you a VERY Merry Christmas, or, Happy Holidays.

As Seen On…