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Exactly How To Reheat Scalloped Potatoes – I Test 4 Methods [Pics]

Got some leftover scalloped potatoes and wondering if you can reheat them without ruining their creamy sauce?

Dairy-heavy dishes are always a challenge to reheat, but it’s possible with the right know-how.

I experimented with four different ways of reheating scalloped potatoes to find the one that works best.

I also cover how best to store and freeze your scalloped potatoes to keep them (nearly) as fresh as day one.

In a rush? Here’s the short answer:

The best way to reheat scalloped potatoes is in the oven. Preheat your oven to 325°F (160°C). Next, allow the scalloped potatoes to come to room temperature. Sprinkle some milk over the potatoes and cover the baking dish with foil. Reheat for 20 minutes, removing the foil for the last 5 minutes.

A note on my experiment

I baked a large batch of scalloped potatoes using my mum’s tried-and-tested recipe. 

After quality testing the potatoes to make sure they were up to scratch, I popped them in the fridge overnight.

The next day, I experimented with the following reheating methods:

  • In the oven
  • In the microwave
  • In a frying pan
  • In the air fryer

The potatoes warmed up perfectly in the oven, with the sauce coming out creamy and delicious.

The microwave heated the potatoes fine but there wasn’t any crispness and the sauce curdled slightly.

The air fryer and the frying pan were great for crisping the potatoes up and adding a bit of crunch.

Scalloped potatoes are a delicate dish, so whatever reheating method you use, remember to go low and slow!

Reheating scalloped potatoes in the oven

Preheat the oven to 325°F (160°C). Remove the potatoes from the fridge and allow them to reach room temperature as the oven heats up. Sprinkle a little milk over the potatoes and cover the baking dish with foil. Heat a portion for 20 minutes, removing the foil to brown the top for the last 5 minutes.

Note: timings are approximate and will vary depending on the size of your dish and the type of oven you have.

How to reheat scalloped potatoes in the oven:

  1. Set your oven to heat to 325°F (160°C).
  2. Remove your potatoes from the fridge while the oven heats up so they warm up slightly. 
  3. Sprinkle the potatoes with a little milk (or water), then cover the baking dish with foil.
  4. Put the potatoes in the oven and heat one portion for 20 minutes (up to 60 mins for a whole tray).
  5. To brown the tops, remove the foil for the last 5 minutes and add a little extra cheese on top if you like.

The low temperature will ensure that that creamy sauce doesn’t split. 

And by allowing the potatoes to reach room temperature first, the dish will spend less time in the oven and heat more evenly.

If you’re in a rush and want to speed things up, you can microwave the scalloped potatoes for 30-60 seconds first (low power) before finishing them in the oven.

To test if your potatoes are heated all the way through, stick a knife into the thickest part of the potatoes and feel how hot the metal is when you pull it out.

The potatoes are ready if the knife is warm.

My verdict

Scalloped potatoes are cooked in the oven, so it makes sense that reheating them in the oven would work well.

It’s gentle on your dish and heats the sauce beautifully.

My scalloped potatoes were crispy on top and tasted just as good as the previous day’s “taste test”.

The oven is great for large portions, but I think it’s a bit slow for smaller servings.

Reheating scalloped potatoes in the microwave

Scoop the scalloped potatoes into a microwave-safe dish if they’re not already in one. Cover the dish with a damp paper towel. To gently heat the creamy sauce, use 50% power. Heat the potatoes in 30-second intervals with a 10-second break in between until heated through.

How to reheat scalloped potatoes in the microwave:

  1. Transfer a serving or two of the scalloped potatoes to a microwave-safe dish. (Don’t use foil containers!)
  2. Cover the dish with a damp paper towel to keep the moisture in. You can also sprinkle the dish with some water and then cover it with plastic wrap.
  3. Heat the potatoes at 50% power in 30-second intervals, letting them rest for 10 seconds in between each heating burst.
  4. Check the dish during each break and stop heating as soon as it’s warm enough.

Using low power gives you greater control over the heating process and reduces the risk of the cream sauce splitting.

If the cream splits the dish will become greasy and unappetizing, so you want to avoid overheating.

Letting the dish rest for 10 seconds gives the heat a chance to spread out, so the potatoes heat evenly.

My verdict

The microwave is quick and convenient but doesn’t yield the best results.

The creamy sauce stayed moist, but it did split a bit. There’s also not much you can do to revive the crispy potato on top.

For a single serving for a late-night dinner, it’s fine.

Reheating scalloped potatoes in a skillet

To reheat scalloped potatoes in a skillet, heat a little butter in a pan over medium-low heat. Place a slice of scalloped potato in the pan and sprinkle some water around the outside. Place a lid on the pan and heat the slice for around 5 minutes.

How to reheat scalloped potatoes in a skillet:

  1. Heat a knob of butter in a skillet over medium-low heat (you can also use a non-stick frying pan).
  2. Put a slice of scalloped potato in the pan. 
  3. Sprinkle a little water around the edge of the pan to add moisture. 
  4. Pop the lid on the pan before heating the slice for 5 minutes.

The butter will add a little crunch to the potatoes while helping to prevent the bottom from sticking.

By covering the frying pan with a lid, you trap the steam inside, which heats the top layers of the scalloped potatoes. 

Don’t try to rush the process and turn the heat up, or you’ll burn the bottom of your potatoes!

My verdict

The butter gave a lovely crisp texture to the bottom of my scalloped potatoes, which I really enjoyed. 

The potatoes can leave a bit of mess in the pan, but it’s a good option for heating a slice of potatoes if you want to avoid the microwave.

Reheating scalloped potatoes in the air fryer

Remove the scalloped potatoes from the refrigerator while preheating the air fryer to 300°F (150°C). Cut a small slice of scalloped potato and place it in a heat-proof dish. Alternatively, you can rest it on a piece of foil inside the air fryer. Heat for 4-5 minutes.

How to reheat scalloped potatoes in the air fryer:

  1. Set your air fryer to 300°F (150°C).
  2. Place a small slice of scalloped potato in a heat-proof dish or rest it on a piece of aluminum foil inside the air fryer.
  3. Heat the slice for 4-5 minutes until it is warmed through.

Rather than trying to heat a large slice of scalloped potato, cut it into smaller slices for even heating.

This prevents the outside from getting burnt before the middle has had a chance to heat through.

Using a lower temperature to heat your scalloped potatoes will reduce the risk of cream splitting, which is a real danger at higher temperatures.

My verdict

My potatoes got a nice crunch using this method, but I did find the sauce turned a little greasy.

Like the microwave, the air fryer is good for one portion but not for larger servings.

How to store scalloped potatoes

To store scalloped potatoes, first cool them to room temperature. Transfer the potatoes to an airtight container (or leave them in their baking dish), then cover the dish with a paper towel before sealing it with plastic wrap. The potatoes will last 3-4 days in the refrigerator. 

You can also freeze scalloped potatoes.

The paper towel will absorb any excess moisture in the container, so the potatoes don’t become too soggy. 

Cooling the potatoes to room temperature helps avoid condensation building up in the container (which would also lead to soggy potatoes).

To cool the dish quickly, portion it out into smaller containers or rest the baking dish in a sink filled with cold water.

Don’t leave scalloped potatoes out at room temperature for more than two hours – after this, the dish can start to harbor bad bacteria.

Can you freeze scalloped potatoes?

You can freeze scalloped potatoes, but be aware that the sauce may split upon thawing. It won’t always happen, but there’s not much you can do to rectify it if it does. If you’re planning ahead, undercook your scalloped potatoes by 10 minutes so that when you reheat them, they won’t overcook. 

Scalloped potatoes will last for up to 3 months in the freezer.

How to freeze scalloped potatoes:

  1. Chill the scalloped potatoes in the fridge. This will make it easier to portion the dish out, and a colder dish will also freezer quicker. 
  2. Portion out the scalloped potatoes and wrap each portion in a layer of plastic wrap followed by foil.
  3. Alternative option: Freeze the whole dish in its baking dish by first covering it with plastic wrap and then foil. 
  4. Place the dish in the freezer and aim to use it within 3 months. 

Double layering plastic wrap and foil provides excellent protection against freezer burn, which can give your potatoes an off-taste. 

If you want to freeze the whole dish, it’s easiest to use a disposable foil baking tray that can go straight from the freezer to the oven.

How to reheat frozen scalloped potatoes

It’s better to thaw scalloped potatoes slowly in the fridge. A slow thaw is less likely to end up in a split sauce. 

If you don’t have time to thaw the dish overnight, you can reheat it from frozen in a 350°F (180°C) oven. Cover the dish with foil to stop it from drying out, and check it every 20 minutes until it’s warmed through. It could take over an hour for a whole baking dish to heat.

Another option for smaller portions is to use the microwave. Thaw the scalloped potatoes using the defrost setting, then heat them on low power in 30-second intervals.

Summary

The best way to reheat scalloped potatoes is in the oven. Reheat the scalloped potatoes for approximately 20 minutes in a foil-covered baking dish. Alternative scalloped potato reheating methods include the air fryer, skillet, and microwave. The air fryer produces an excellent crispy top.

Exactly How To Reheat Scalloped Potatoes

In this short recipe, I show you the best way to revive and reheat your leftover scalloped potatoes.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: reheat scalloped potatoes, scalloped potatoes
Prep Time: 0 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 88kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 portion scalloped potatoes
  • 1 tbsp milk or water

Instructions

  • Set your oven to heat to 325°F (160°C).
  • Remove your potatoes from the fridge while the oven heats up so they warm up slightly.
  • Sprinkle the potatoes with a little milk (or water), then cover the baking dish with foil.
  • Put the potatoes in the oven and heat one portion for 20 minutes (up to 60 mins for a whole tray).
  • To brown the tops, remove the foil for the last 5 minutes and add a little extra cheese on top if you like.

Notes

The low temperature will ensure that that creamy sauce doesn’t split.
And by allowing the potatoes to reach room temperature first, the dish will spend less time in the oven and heat more evenly.
If you’re in a rush and want to speed things up, you can microwave the scalloped potatoes for 30-60 seconds first (low power) before finishing them in the oven.
To test if your potatoes are heated all the way through, stick a knife into the thickest part of the potatoes and feel how hot the metal is when you pull it out.
The potatoes are ready if the knife is warm.

Nutrition

Serving: 100g | Calories: 88kcal

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