I came up with this recipe when I wanted to make a hash brown casserole. Just about every recipe was nearly the same and, frankly, sounded a little bland for what I was looking for at the time. This is a combination of a few ideas I came across.
This recipe is very versatile, it works really well as a breakfast, brunch or supper. I like to put a cheesy bake of some type on a brunch buffet, since they’re usually quick to prep and often can be prepped ahead and then just popped into the oven. This recipe is perfect for a brunch buffet.
I used a “Fiesta Blend” for one of the cups of cheese. Several brands, including store brands usually have a “Mexican Mix”. The one I used was a blend of Monterey Jack, Cheddar, Queso Quesadilla and Asadero cheese.
Be aware there is a “Taco Blend” of shredded cheese… they usually contain seasonings, as well, as cheese. It might be worth trying them…. but I wanted to point it out since that might not be what you are aiming to do.
I went the lazy way out and used a package of cubed ham. It comes in a pound package, I used half and saved the other half for another meal. You certainly could add the whole package, I don’t think it would over power this.
For a bit blander casserole, you can substitute Cheddar Cheese for the Pepper Jack Cheese, it will also make a delicious alternative.
You can cut this recipe in half and make it in an 8 inch square baking dish (see pictures). Bake for same amount of time.
This is a great bring-along to a potluck supper or those food days at work.
Cheesy O'Brien Potato & Ham Bake Recipe:
All you need:
1 28 oz. bag of frozen Ore-Ida Potatoes O’Brien
4 tablespoons melted butter or margarine
8 oz cubed cooked Ham
1 cup shredded Pepper Jack Cheese
1 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese or Fiesta Blend Cheese
½ cup Cheddar Cheese
½ cup chopped green onions
1 can (12 oz.) evaporated milk
¼ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon paprika
All you need to do:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spray a 13 x 9 baking dish with cooking oil (for this recipe, I prefer Butter Flavored).
In a large bowl toss frozen potatoes with melted butter.
Add ham, pepper jack cheese, 1 cup Cheddar or Fiesta Cheese and green onions to the potatoes and turn to mix.
In a medium bowl, beat with a wire whisk the evaporated milk, eggs, salt, pepper and paprika until completely mixed.
Pour the milk mixture over the potato mixture and turn to mix.
Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Press gently the top of the mixture with the back of a spoon to even out top of the casserole.
Sprinkle ½ cup Cheddar Cheese on top if casserole.
Bake in a 350 degree oven for 60-65 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
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