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.

Cheesy Tater Tots Recipe

Serves 2 - 4 Prep Time: Cook Time:


  • 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



Preheat 1 inch of oil in a pot.


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.


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.


Once oil reaches 375 degrees. Carefully spoon rounded teaspoonfuls of mixture into oil. Fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes.


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!

Leave a Comment

  • Reply
    February 19, 2016 at 6:04 pm

    Made these with shredded hash browns and they turned out great. Nice and crispy on the outside, gooey inside from the cheese (I added a lot). Rolled them into balls by hand and it wasn’t as messy as I thought. I’ll make them again, wife likes them so that’s the important thing.

  • Reply
    March 31, 2012 at 8:54 am

    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!

  • Reply
    August 30, 2011 at 4:36 pm

    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:)

  • Reply
    August 26, 2011 at 9:24 pm

    What kind of seasoning salt do you use?

    • Reply
      August 27, 2011 at 5:57 pm

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

  • Reply
    July 8, 2011 at 9:12 pm

    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!

    • Reply
      February 9, 2016 at 8:46 am

      Parboiling potatoes for about 6-7 minutes will help prevent this. Then you can finely grate the potatoes. Hope this helps.

  • Reply
    July 4, 2011 at 10:47 pm

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

    • Reply
      July 5, 2011 at 8:15 am

      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!

  • Reply
    October 2, 2010 at 8:04 pm

    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!

  • Reply
    November 11, 2009 at 11:49 am

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

    • Reply
      November 11, 2009 at 12:36 pm

      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!

  • Reply
    August 15, 2009 at 7:26 am

    Those look nice and crispy and cheesy and good!

  • Reply
    August 13, 2009 at 12:29 pm

    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?

    • Reply
      August 13, 2009 at 12:58 pm

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

  • Reply
    Mrs. L
    August 11, 2009 at 11:11 am

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

  • Reply
    August 11, 2009 at 8:44 am

    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!

    • Reply
      August 11, 2009 at 3:53 pm

      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!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2009 at 4:38 pm

    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.

  • Reply
    August 10, 2009 at 8:59 am

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

  • Reply
    August 10, 2009 at 8:06 am

    YUM! These sound and look delicious!

  • Reply
    August 10, 2009 at 6:25 am

    yum! great job!

  • Reply
    August 8, 2009 at 5:28 am

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

  • Reply
    BAKING is my ZeN
    August 7, 2009 at 6:23 pm

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

  • Reply
    August 7, 2009 at 5:09 pm

    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!