Craving something crispy, cheesy, filled with flavor, and perfect for parties? Let me introduce you to my Loaded Tater Tots Appetizer recipe! Everyone will love a delicious handheld cup of crunchy tater tot cups filled with classic toppings like sour cream, bacon bits, and chives. Or, get creative and try your favorite sauces and extra goodies on these yummy baked snacks!
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Seeing Tater Tots in a New Light
“Gimme your tots!” Do you remember that phrase from the movie Napoleon Dynamite? Well, tater tots have certainly come a long way from being just a last-minute freezer-to-oven side dish. They are now super trendy for making lots of creative munchies and meals!
This loaded tater tots appetizer recipe uses tater tots as the edible base for a heavenly, tasty trio: cheese, bacon bits, and sour cream. How does that all sound?
These are similar to loaded potatoes but are easy to make and, in my opinion, much tastier to enjoy. This recipe makes loaded tater tot cups that are crunchy, cheesy, and tangy. That’s perfect for a game night party appetizer or as a quick afternoon snack.
To be sure, tater tots won’t be on any healthy foods list. But, hey, that’s ok!
Sometimes you simply need an indulgent, delicious, comforting, and satisfying snack. So, go ahead and splurge with this Loaded Tater Tots Appetizer dish.
What Ingredients are in Loaded Tater Tots
This incredibly easy tater tot appetizer is made with only a few simple ingredients. Here is everything you need:
- Frozen tater tots
- Shredded cheddar cheese
- Sour cream
- Cooked bacon
- Green onions
Other suggestions for toppings to try: zesty hot sauce or salsa, ranch dressing, and crispy french fried onions.
Substitute the sour cream with Greek yogurt for a “healthier” tater tots appetizer if you like.
How to Make A Tater Tots Appetizer
Although there are a number of steps in the prep of this dish, they are really easy to make. And there are photos showing the step-by-step prep each step of the way!
In fact, this would be a good food activity to have kids help with. Plus, they are sure to love the tasty results.
The number of tots you place in each muffin tin depends on the size of the muffin pan you’re using.
In the pictures here, I used a regular-sized muffin pan, adding 5 tater tots each.
The complete recipe below also includes instructions for using mini-muffin-sized pans.
Baking the Tasty Tater Tot Appetizer
Spray your muffin tin with nonstick spray. Then add a few tots to each muffin well, and bake the frozen tater tots in the oven. Let cool before moving on to the next step.
Then, depending on the size of your muffin tin, use a shot glass, small juice glass, or measuring cup to make the tater tot cups. Gently press the glass or cup into the cooked tots to create potato cups.
I used a small Duralex juice glass to create deep impressions in each group of tater tots. The photo below shows how to create the tater tot cups.
TIP: You only want a small gap between the glass and muffin tin opening. Twist the glass or container until the edges of the potatoes are close to the top of the muffin tin opening.
Bake again for a few minutes until crispy. Then it’s time to fill the tater tots cups with cheese!
Add grated or shredded cheese to each tater tot cup. I used a small melon baller to measure and add the cheese to the cups.
Bake again for just a couple of minutes until the cheese is melted and your appetizers are almost done!
Get the Full Loaded Tater Tots Appetizer Recipe Below!
Lastly, top the cheese with chopped bacon bits, sour cream, sliced green onions, or chopped chives.
These loaded tater tots are so yummy! Be sure to make enough though for each person to have plenty because they will definitely go quickly.
If you love appetizers, check out these easy appetizer recipes
- Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers
- Mini Cheese Biscuits
- Bisquick Sausage Balls with Cheese
- Pretzel Balls from Ready-Dough
- Pretzel Cheese DIp
- Tater Tot Egg Nests
- Easy Party Appetizers
- Italian Sliders
- 3 Ingredient Biscuits
- How to Make a Cheese and Charcuterie Board
Frequently Asked Questions
You can. Follow steps 1-6 in the recipe, then refrigerate. Before serving, cover the muffin tin with foil and bake the tater tot cups at 400ºF for 10 minutes or until crispy and golden. Add toppings and serve.
I recommend keeping them in a crockpot on the warm setting to keep them at 175ºF for serving.
Loaded Tater Tot Appetizer Recipe
Loaded Tater Tots Appetizer
- Muffin pan, regular or mini sized
- 48-60 frozen tater tots (16-oz bag)
- 3/4 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
- 2 green onions, sliced (green part only)
- Preheat oven to 450ºF. Spray muffin pan cups with cooking spray.
- For mini-sized muffin pan: Place 2-3 tater tots in each muffin cup.
- For regular sized muffin pan: Place 4-5 tater tots in each muffin cup.
- Place tater tots muffin pan on bottom rack of the oven and and bake 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven.
- Spray bottom of shot glass or small juice glass with cooking spray. Use it (in a twisting motion) to press the tater tots in each muffin cup to make potato cup. Return to oven; bake additional 15 minutes or until deep golden brown.
- Add 1 tablespoon of cheese to each potato cups. Bake for 4-5 minutes, or until the cheese has melted. Transfer to platter and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Add sour cream, bacon, and green onion to each tater tot cup, and other garnishes. Serve warm.