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Slow Cooker Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole

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This Slow Cooker Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole recipe is the richest and most creamy side dish you will ever make!

two white plates with cheesy hash browns.
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There’s nothing quite like a cheesy hash brown casserole to comfort you on a cold winter day, and this slow cooker version is just as creamy and delicious as the classic, but with the added convenience of cooking in your crockpot!

Whether you’re serving it at a potluck or family gathering, or just want a cozy side dish for dinner, this crock pot cheesy hashbrown casserole is sure to please.

Why We Love This Slow Cooker Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole

Shredded potatoes slow cooked using a Crock Pot into creamy, cheesy hashbrowns and loaded with even more cheese… what’s not to love?

Our Cracker Barrel copycat cheesy hash brown casserole recipe has long been a big hit on the blog and at home.

After all, it’s simple to make with shredded potatoes and includes lots of yummy shredded cheddar cheese.

But, there are times when you don’t have the oven space for it, like during the holidays, parties, or family dinners.

So, we decided to see if you could make it in the slow cooker and it was just as delicious as oven baked!

We used Colby jack shredded cheese to balance the cheddar with a pleasantly light flavor.

Plus, it melts very well to create that beautifully thick and gooey slice of cheesy casserole that you crave, and it’s slow-cooked to perfection in your Crock Pot.

Serve it for family dinner night, potlucks, or barbecues – and I promise you will be asked to make it again and again!

a white plate with Slow Cooker Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole.

Want more potato recipes? Try our Mashed Red Potatoes, Instant Pot Breakfast Potatoes, Loaded hashbrown casserole, and Instant Pot Smashed Potatoes for a dose of delicious potato goodness!

Ingredients For Making Slow Cooker Hash Brown Casserole

  • Butter
  • Shredded hash browns – fresh or frozen (I prefer Ore Ida or Simply Potatoes brands)
  • Onion 
  • Colby jack cheese or sharp cheddar – freshly shredded is best
  • Sour cream
  • Cream cheese
  • Dry ranch dressing mix – see our DIY recipe in the recipe
  • Pepper

GARNISH

  • Green onions – chopped green part only
ingredients for cooking

Equipment Needed

Tips for Thawing Crock Pot Hash Brown Casserole

If you use Ore Ida or other frozen hash browns to make this Crock Pot cheesy hashbrown casserole recipe, they will need to be thawed before making it.

My preferred way to thaw shredded potatoes is to spread them evenly on a baking sheet and let them sit at room temperature for 30-60 minutes.

To make the process a bit quicker, place the baking sheet in a 175°F oven for 15 minutes.

You also have the option to thaw the hashbrowns in the refrigerator overnight. Put them frozen in a colander in the fridge with a dish underneath to catch moisture.

Whether fresh or frozen, DO NOT RINSE the hash browns. Shredded potatoes will soak up the water and release moisture into your casserole. No one wants that!

For the best texture and taste, I suggest you keep thawed hash brown potatoes in the fridge for no more than 3 days before using them.

close up photo of two white plates with cheesy hash browns.

How to Make crockpot hashbrown casserole without sour cream

To substitute sour cream, use a 1:1 ratio of either plain Greek yogurt, cream cheese, or cottage cheese in place of the sour cream.

I recommend using full-fat versions for the richest cheesy hashbrown potato casserole.

How to Make Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole using Crock Pot

Slow cooker preparation. Spray the cooking oil inside the slow cooker liner to help prevent sticking.

a large bowl with all the ingredients are placed together.

Make the hash brown mixture. Mix together thawed hash browns, chopped onions, 2 1/2 cups of shredded cheese, sour cream, softened cream cheese, dry ranch dressing, and pepper in a large bowl.

mixed ingredients inside a large bowl.

Slow cook the hashbrowns. Put the hash brown mixture in the crock pot. Cover it and cook it on high for 3 1/2 hours or low for 5-6 hours.

Check it every 2 hours (if possible) as some slow cookers cook hotter and faster than others.

slow cooker with the cheesy hash brown ready to cook.

Ready to Serve. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of grated cheese on top and garnish with green onions before serving.

cooked slow cooker cheesy hash brown casserole.

Recipe Variations

  • Mix in some chopped cooked bacon or crumbled sausage for a hearty breakfast casserole.
  • Stir in a can of green chiles or diced jalapeños for a bit of spice.
  • Add some frozen corn, diced bell peppers, or other veggies to make it a complete meal.
  • Use gluten-free hash browns to make this slow cooker dish gluten-free.
  • Replace the ranch dressing with Italian seasoning for a flavor change.
  • Try other shredded cheese like pepper jack, Swiss, or Gouda. Gruyere would be delicious too!
  • Use Velveeta or American cheese instead of shredded cheese for an extra cheesy casserole.

What to Serve with Crock Pot Hash Browns

This cheesy, gooey, rich, and satisfying Crock pot hashbrown casserole is great with all your favorite comfort foods!

Serve as a delicious side dish alongside Instant Pot Chicken Tenders or Bisquick Oven Fried Chicken.

It’s also fantastic with Crockpot Ranch Pork Chops, Buttermilk Brined Pork Chops, and Turkey Meatloaf.

two white plates with cheesy hash browns and a blue striped kitchen towel..

Storage and Reheating Instructions

For the easiest prep and reheating, I highly recommend you use a foil pan to make and freeze the casserole. That way, you can quickly go from freezer to oven!

Make the cheesy hash brown casserole recipe as guided, but do not bake. Instead, wrap the casserole with a layer or two of foil and keep it in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Bake from frozen (uncovered) in a 375°F oven as directed in the original recipe, but add another 15 minutes to the cooking time.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I add meat to the recipe?

Sure you can! As-is, this is cheesy hashbrown casserole recipe is vegetarian. However, you can add cooked chopped ham or turkey, crumbled cooked bacon, or cooked and crumbled sausage.

How do I double or halve the casserole?

I love to double the recipe of this Cracker Barrel cheesy hash brown recipe. I cook one, then add another to a foil casserole container to freeze – see our hash brown casserole for baking directions.

Then, I have one to serve the family that night and one in the freezer. You never know when you’ll need to bring a hot dish to a BBQ or potluck or offer as part of a meal train.

How long do cheesy hash brown potato casserole leftovers last?

The baked casserole will keep well for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Let the leftovers cool completely before transferring them to a sealed container and storing them in the fridge.

(Better Than Cracker Barrel!) Slow Cooker Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole Recipe

close up photo of two white plates with cheesy hash browns.
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5 from 1 vote

Slow Cooker Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole

Rich and creamy hash brown potato casserole (aka funeral potatoes) is the ultimate cozy side dish. Enjoy your favorite Cracker Barrel classic at home with this vegetarian-friendly, foolproof slow cooker cheesy hashbrown casserole recipe!
Course Side Dish, Holiday
Cuisine American
Keyword hash brown casserole, crock pot hash brown, slow cooker hash brown casserole, Casserole, Dinner, Make Ahead, loaded potatoes, hash brown recipe, cracker barrel hash brown casserole, cheesy potatoes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 40 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Calories 378kcal

Equipment

  • Crock Pot or slow cooker

Ingredients

  • ½ cup melted butter
  • 30 ounces shredded hash browns, fresh or frozen (thawed) (I prefer Ore Ida or Simply Potatoes brands)
  • 1/2 cup onion finely chopped
  • 3 cups Colby jack cheese or sharp cheddar (divided) freshly shredded
  • 2 cups (16 ounces) sour cream
  • 4 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1 packet dry ranch dressing mix (see our DIY homemade ranch dressing recipe in recipe notes)
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

garnish

  • 1/2 cup green onions, chopped green part only

Instructions

  • Prepare the slow cooker by spraying the liner with cooking oil.
  • In a very large bowl, mix together thawed hash browns, chopped onions, 2 1/2 cups of shredded cheese, sour cream, softened cream cheese, dry ranch dressing, and pepper.
  • Pour hash brown mixture into the prepared crock pot. Cover and cook on high for 3 1/2 hours or low for 5-6 hours. Check it every 2 hours (if possible) as some slow cookers cook hotter and faster than others. 
  • Garnish with the remaining 1/2 cup of grated cheese and green onions before serving.

Notes

Homemade Ranch Dressing Seasoning: 2 Tablespoons Buttermilk Powder (optional), 1 Tablespoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon dried parsley, 1 teaspoon dried chives, 2 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon dried dill.
Leftovers will keep well stored in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
Leftovers will keep well for up to 4 or 5 days in the refrigerator. Let the casserole cool completely and transfer it to a sealed container before placing it in the fridge.
If you plan to make this dish in advance and freeze it, I suggest you use a freezer Ziplock bag to thaw it in the fridge overnight, then add it to the Crockpot. You can freeze for up to 3 months
Prepare the casserole as directed, without cooking, and refrigerate for up to 3 days.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 378kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 64mg | Sodium: 522mg | Potassium: 331mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1081IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 290mg | Iron: 1mg

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