Homemade Tater Tots with Cheese and Bacon


Tuesdays are moody. We’re still at the beginning of the week, so I feel like I should be conducting myself with restraint, but a kale pineapple smoothie feels too Monday. The weekend is still far away, so I could use a morale boost, but I’m not prepared to stay out late sipping Skinny Margaritas (that’s for Thursday). My solution: Homemade Tater Tots Tuesday!

Baked, not fried homemade tater tots a mini muffin pan. GENIUS recipe with cheese and bacon. Say goodbye to those frozen bags of tater tots. This homemade version is so easy and way better than store-bought! @wellplated

These Homemade Tater Tots are baked in a mini muffin tin and filled with cheese, chives, and bacon. They taste just like mini loaded baked potatoes that are crispy on the outside, soft and steaming on the inside, and are generally not the sort of thing it’s possible to enjoy in small quantities. Plus, since these homemade tater tots are baked, not fried, and are made with simple, real ingredients, you can still pile a generous serving on your plate and make good on a Tuesday.

Baked homemade tater tots (especially ones with bacon) are also fun to make! So fun, in fact, that I made a quick video showing these Homemade Cheesy Tater Tots in action. Check it out at the top of this post, if you haven’t already.

More about Homemade Tater Tots:

Creating homemade versions of foods that are typically highly processed energizes and inspires me, and I’d wanted try making tater tots from scratch for a while. Most of the recipes I found, however, called for cooking a mushy potato paste, stuffing it into a pastry bag, then piping it onto a baking sheet or even deep frying it, which is way more of a mess than I’m prepared to handle at home.

Frying also defeated the purpose of making tater tots from scratch. I wanted my homemade tater tots to have the signature golden, crispy that makes tater tots so gloriously addictive in the first place, but I wanted to bake them in the oven. Oh, and I wanted to stuff my homemade tater tots with cheese and bacon.

Mini Muffin Pan Homemade Tater Tots with Cheese and Bacon. GENIUS! So much easier than other homemade tater tot recipes and way better than store-bought. @wellplated

The solution to my baked homemade cheesy tater tot quest: Bake the tots in a mini muffin pan. Although my homemade baked tater tots don’t have the oval shape of the boxed tater tots you’ll find in the grocery store freezer section, their perfect golden crust and fluffy, cheesy interior is worth the mismatch.

How to make homemade tater tots in a mini muffin tin. Baked, not fried! GENIUS recipe with cheese and bacon. This is the best, easiest way to make homemade tater tots! @wellplated

Feel free to use this baked homemade tater tot recipe as a base for a variety of flavors. I went classic with the traditional baked potato fixin’s (cheese, green onions, and bacon), but I think these homemade tater tots be great with Cajun spices or simply black pepper and garlic. Use them as a sneaky way to painlessly convince your picky eaters to eat their veggies (or have your kids help make them!). I can even see these homemade cheesy tater tots in place of hashbrowns at brunch.

How to make Homemade Tater Tots in a mini muffin tin! We added cheese and bacon. So easy and tastes way better than store-bought! @wellplated

Happy Homemade Tater Tots Tuesday!

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Homemade Tater Tots with Cheese and Bacon

Homemade tater tots baked in a mini muffin tin. Cheese and bacon make these irresistible, and they taste so much better than store bought!

Yield: 48 tots

Total Time: 1 hour

Ingredients:

  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • 6 strips of bacon
  • 2 1/2 pounds russet potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese (about 2 ounces)—OK to swap reduced fat, but do not use fat free
  • 3 tablespoons chopped green onion
  • Reduced fat sour cream or plain non-fat Greek yogurt, for dipping

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with foil, then place an ovenproof baking rack on top. Arrange the bacon in a single layer on the baking rack, then bake until crisp, about 12-15 minutes depending upon the thickness of your bacon. Remove from the baking rack to a paper towel-lined plate. Let cool, then dice into small pieces.
  2. Increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees F. Scrub and peel the potatoes. Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover with 1-inch of cold water. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook for 6 minutes (the potatoes should be about halfway cooked). Drain and let cool for 15 minutes.
  3. Once cooled, grate the potatoes into a large bowl. Add the olive oil, flour, salt, garlic powder, and black pepper. Gently combine by hand so that the ingredients are as evenly distributed as possible. Add the bacon, cheese, and green onion, then combine again.
  4. Generously coat two 24-cup mini-muffin tins with cooking spray, or make the tots in two batches. With a small cookie scoop or spoon, scoop about one heaping tablespoon of the potato mixture into each muffin cavity, then with your fingers, press each scoop flat. Bake until the potatoes are brown at the edges, about 15 minutes, then remove from the oven and coat the tops with cooking spray. With a small offset spatula or table knife, flip each tot. Coat tops with cooking spray once more, then return the pan to the oven and bake until browned, 12-15 additional minutes until golden brown. Let cool in the pan for 2 minutes, then serve with sour cream.
  • This recipe can easily be halved or doubled.
  • Make it ahead: Scoop the potato mixture into the muffin tins, press down, then cover with plastic wrap. Store in the refrigerator up to 1 day in advance. Let come to room temperature, then bake as directed.
  • Leftover tater tots can be stored in the refrigerator, then gently reheated in a 350 degree oven until warm and crispy.

Mini muffin tin concept adapted from Southern at Heart

// All images and text ©/Well Plated.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 6 tots (without sour cream)

  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories: 190
  • Total Fat: 7g
  • Saturated Fat: 3g
  • Cholesterol: 44mg
  • Sodium: 372mg
  • Carbohydrates: 32g
  • Fiber: 3g
  • Sugar: 0g
  • Protein: 8g

If you like these Cheesy Homemade Tater Tots, I bet you’ll love these recipes too:

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Loaded Baked Potato Dip

Chicken Bacon Ranch Fries

Chicken Bacon Ranch Fries

Baked Cauliflower Buffalo Wings with Creamy Blue Cheese Avocado Dip

Cauliflower Buffalo Wings with Blue Cheese Avocado Dip

About Erin Clarke

I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food taste incredible. Wearer of plaid, lover of bourbon, and firmly convinced that sweets and veggies both deserve a place at the table. MORE ABOUT ERIN...

18 comments

  1. Love that these are baked and not fried! Plus, cheese ans bacon definitely makes EVERYTHING better. Is it Sunday brunch time yet? 

  2. shawnna griffin Reply

    hey girl these look so yummy! And I loved the video!

  3. Wow these lithe guys must be delicious especially with the cheese and the bacon!

  4. Nice recipe, Erin Thank you.

  5. So yum! I love  tater tots and I love how easy these are to make :) Pinning!

  6. These look delicious! Great at a party as finger food. 😊

  7. How cute are these?! I think it’s so simple and easy, we can make it for snack or appetizer too! I’ll try it out! So yummy! – Love, Anna

  8. I love these videos!! You are amazing.

  9. Wow, really, I can’t get over that delicious taste! So simple and yet – sooo great. Thank you for this recipe – it’s a real keeper

  10. I’m finally getting the nerve to make these and I’ve been dying to try them. But whenever I cook potatoes and try to grate them, they turn out mushy. Am I cooking them too long probably? AND can frozen shredded potatoes be used in place? And also, thank you Erin, for always taking the time to answer my questions. I love trying your recipes, and my family loves the outcome (except when I make a total mess, hence my questions)!

    • Hi Donna! I’m always happy to do what I can to help :) It sounds like the potatoes are cooked for too long—I’d stop cooking them a few minutes early next time so that they are still somewhat firm. As far as the frozen potatoes, I’m afraid I can’t answer that since I’ve never tried the recipe that way (and I don’t cooked with frozen potatoes often either!). I’d suggest doing an online search for homemade tater tots using frozen potatoes and see what you find. Sorry I can’t give you clearer direction!

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