Cheesy Tater Tots

In addition to french fries and mozzarella, tater tots are another one of my guilty pleasures.  But do you know how hard it is to find a decent plate of tots? First, I scour restaurant and bar menus in hopes that I find one that serves them. Once I do, I am often disappointed as they tend to be over fried or over seasoned. I do buy frozen tater tots, but even those sometimes lack the seasoning that I am looking for. Sure you can season them with salt while they are cooking but it has a tendency to roll right off. For this reason, I decided to tackle making them on my own. And what was the best part of trying them on my own? Adding cheese to them of course.

I had had a couple of disasters making homemade tater tots before. I had originally tried using parboiled potatoes thinking that if I started with raw potatoes I would have raw potatoes inside the tater tot. Well, the result of that first round was a glop of fried potato in the bottom of the frying pan. Not so good. This time around, I decided to start with raw potatoes and it seemed to work perfectly. The potatoes were crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.

Another thing I learned while making these is to not make them a head. The first time that I made them,  I prepared the mixture about an hour before dinner, put them in the refrigerator and thought nothing of it. When I went to begin frying, the potatoes had released a lot of water and my mixture was total mush. To avoid this prepare the mixture just before you are about to fry them.

The Recipe

  • Serves 2 - 4
  • Prep time:
  • Cook time:

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium russet potatoes, peeled , chopped
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon seasoning salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • oil for frying

Instructions:

  1. Preheat 1 inch of oil in a pot.
  2. Place chopped potatoes in a food processor and pulse about 8-10 times or until potatoes are roughly chopped but not mush. Do not over process, you don't want mashed potatoes.
  3. Transfer processed potatoes to a bowl. Add in cheddar cheese, green onions, seasoning salt, egg and flour. The mixture will be thick. Place some of the mixture on a spoon, if you can gently push it off with you finger and it falls in one piece it is ready to go. Add more flour if needed.
  4. Once oil reaches 375 degrees. Carefully spoon rounded teaspoonfuls of mixture into oil. Fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle with more seasoning salt. Serve hot.

Oh and one more thing. While making these I decided that I had to get over the fact that the tater tots that I am accustomed to, are probably made by a machine so they are a little prettier than these turned out to be. These were a little bit more like tater balls. But look on the bright side, these taste a whole lot better. Enjoy!

  • http://www.cravingchronicles.com Theresa

    Oh no, you didn’t! Cheesy tater tots are the food single-handedly responsible for the Freshman 15 I put on in college because the dining hall sold them all the time. Now that I know how to make them on my own, I’m in serious trouble!

  • http://bakingismyzen.blogspot.com BAKING is my ZeN

    WoW do these look good!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://foodiewithlittlethyme.blogspot.com cassie

    My kids would love these. I’ll have to make these for them.

  • http://nikisbakingspot.blogspot.com/ Niki

    yum! great job!

  • http://lieslsconfectiondissection.blogspot.com/ Liesl

    YUM! These sound and look delicious!

  • http://simplyscrumptiousfoodie.com Jessie

    I have always wonder how tater tots are made. Those tots look really tasty and cheesy too my kind of tater tots!

  • Arline

    These sound very much like the cheesy potato wedges (not sure of the “official” name) at Arby’s. Believe it or not, they are fabulous and addictive. I have a feeling these are very similar and I’m anxious to try. Thanks so much.

  • http://oneshotbeyond.wordpress.com/ oneshotbeyond

    okay…so I’m wondering if you can make these with defrosted frozen hashbrowns instead of making the base potatoes from scratch? Then I’m wondering if you can bake them instead of fry them. If so, they sound awesome to me! My kids are always begging for tator tots!

  • http://watkinslynn.typepad.com/pages_pucks_and_pantry/ Mrs. L

    Oh YUMMY. Tater Tots! Tater Tots with Cheese! Tater Tots with Cheese I can make out home! I die.

  • http://www.lifesambrosia.com Deseree

    Hey there oneshotbeyond, I am not sure about the defrosted frozen hash browns since I have never tried them. But if they aren’t precooked, I dont see why not. I have tried baking before, they did not get as crispy as I would like, but that often happens when baking. If you want to give baking a shot, I would try at 425 degrees for about 25-30 minutes. Then switch to broil and cook for about 5 more minutes to get a little crispy. Hope that helps!

  • belle

    if u had to make these for a small party, and not everyone was into cheddar cheese, what would be the next best cheese that you would recommend for this recipe?

  • http://www.lifesambrosia.com Deseree

    hey belle, do they enjoy other kinds of cheese? Pepper jack, or jack cheese would be delicious in these.

  • http://closetcooking.blogspot.com Kevin

    Those look nice and crispy and cheesy and good!

  • T

    I wonder if I could freeze the balls and pull them out and fry them at a later date?

  • http://www.lifesambrosia.com Deseree

    Hey T- I’ve never done that before so I cannot say that it will work for sure but I don’t see why not. My only worry would be that they may fall apart during the thawing process. You could fry them, then freeze them and bake them or pan fry them at a later date. Similar to a bag of frozen tater tots. Hope this helps!

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  • Dawn

    Came across these on a search to replicate the cheesy potato munchers from a favorite college restaurant. Added chopped green chilies and jalopeno and to them instead of the green onion, served with salsa, and they turned out great!

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  • BITEthisBABY

    I don’t have a food processor, do you think grating the potatoes would work?

  • http://www.lifesambrosia.com Deseree

    I do think that grating the potatoes would work. Just make sure they are about the size of a fingernail and it should be just fine. I hope you enjoy them!

  • http://aisle4b.wordpress.com Rachel

    I don’t have a food processor, and my blender couldn’t handle this, so I just chopped the potato up finely. After frying, they weren’t fully cooked inside (though as full disclosure, I was eating them anyway because they were so. good.) so I moved them straight from frying pan to baking sheet, made sure there was a little bit of oil on the pan so they wouldn’t stick, and baked them at 400 for 15 minutes.

    And of course, just now I actually read through the comments and saw that I could’ve grated the potatoes. Whoops!

  • Cristy

    What kind of seasoning salt do you use?

  • http://www.lifesambrosia.com Deseree

    Cristy- I prefer to use Johnny’s Seasoning Salt.

  • MELISSA LUANGLUE

    Great recipe! I’ve been looking for a cheesy tot recipe ever since Burger K discontinued them.
    Loved the recipe. My sister is crazy about them too:)

  • HLS

    OMG! These were sooooo good. I added my own twist though. I rolled them in instant potato flakes. It made them easy to shape and made them nice and crispy. YUM!

A little bit about me...

My name is Des. I’m a Mom to Kellan and Preston. Wife to Ryan. Dog mom to Pumpkin and lover of all things food. Whether it is cooking it, eating it, shopping for it or watching TV about it, food is one of my favorite things. Read more »

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