Scalloped Potatoes with Blue Cheese and Mushrooms

This cheesy layered potato dish is the ultimate comfort food.

Layer after layer of warm cheesy potatoes — it’s pretty much a classic definition for comfort food. Here, buttery yellow-skinned potatoes and thickly sliced mushrooms are drenched in a 10-minute cream sauce and sprinkled with rich blue cheese.

In past decades, scalloped potatoes were on the dinner rotation with other casseroles. But these Scalloped Potatoes with Blue Cheese and Mushrooms have been updated for modern tastes, and they feature a few tricks that make them lighter than the cream-drenched "covered dishes" of the past. Here’s what I stirred up:

Yukon Gold Potatoes

These thin-skinned potatoes taste buttery even without the addition of any dairy. Leaving the skins on ups the flavor and nutrition.

Blue Cheese

Your grandma probably didn’t add blue cheese to her hot dish; using this umami-rich cheese packs intense flavor throughout the recipe, with the use of only a half-cup of cheese.

Baby Bella Mushrooms

Also known as "cremini," these meaty mushrooms are sliced thick to give them solid structure, making the scalloped potatoes hearty enough to serve as a meatless meal. Also, mushrooms contain vitamin D, which may help improve your mood as daytime sunshine becomes sparse.

Lastly, this updated casserole is served in a cast-iron skillet — a nod to "what’s old is new again." You could also use a large oven-safe saute pan. Using a large skillet makes this a convenient one-pot meal.

Grab some friends — or blue-cheese-loving family members — and serve this cozy dish alongside a contrasting crisp, green salad dressed with tart, citrus dressing. Add dessert and you’ve got a fine meal. If you choose to add lean meat, beef would be a tasty complement.

After some of this warm comfort food, you may even be able to shed a few layers of those scarves and sweaters you’ve been snuggling up in to try to stay warm.

Scalloped Potatoes with Blue Cheese and Mushrooms

Makes 6 servings  
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 cup chopped onion (1 small)
One 8-ounce package baby bella mushrooms, sliced into 1/4-inch slices
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups reduced-fat (2 percent) milk
2 ounces (1/2 cup) crumbled blue cheese, divided
4 medium (1 1/2 pounds) Yukon Gold potatoes

In a large cast-iron skillet or saute pan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion; cook and stir 3 minutes. Add mushrooms and garlic; cook and stir 4 minutes. Sprinkle in flour, pepper and salt; cook and stir 1 minute.

Pour in milk all at once; cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly, about 3 minutes. Spoon most of the mushroom sauce into a heatproof bowl. (Do not clean skillet.) Reserve 1 tablespoon of cheese; stir remaining cheese into warm sauce.

Slice potatoes into 1/4-inch thick slices; layer half the potatoes into the bottom of the skillet. Cover with half the sauce. Repeat potato and sauce layers.

Cover tightly with aluminum foil. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 40 minutes. Remove from oven; uncover and sprinkle with reserved blue cheese. Bake about 20-30 minutes more, or until potatoes are tender.

Note: Slice potatoes right before using to prevent them from turning brown.

Per serving: Calories 200; Fat 9 g (Saturated 3 g); Sodium 271 mg; Carbohydrate 24 g; Fiber 3 g; Sugars 5 g; Protein 7 g

Serena Ball, MS, RD, is a registered dietitian nutritionist. She blogs at sharing tips and tricks to help readers find cooking shortcuts for making healthy, homemade meals. Her recipes are created with families in mind.

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