This tater tots and bratwurst casserole is a quick and easy meal that is definitely kid-friendly but also great for parties and tail-gating.
It combines bratwurst, sauerkraut, tater tots, and loads of cheese — a perfect combination in our book that’s hard to go wrong with.
The sourness of the Sauerkraut (pickled cabbage) is a must-put ingredient for pungent loving tongues. Along with that, the ooey-gooey cheese will bind the whole dish together with its cheesy goodness.
While it adds some cooking time, we prefer to simmer our brats first in beer, although you can dice them up and brown in a pan to save a little time.
This bratwurst casserole will make about 6 to 8 servings and takes about 45 minutes to prepare, cook, and serve.
Our bratwurst casserole recipe was adapted from the Brats n Tots recipe found at Taste of Home.
Tater Tots and Bratwurst Casserole Ingredients
- Bratwursts (not pre-cooked) – 1 Pack
- Tater Tots (frozen) – 1 Pack
- Chicken Broth – 3 Cups
- Cheddar Cheese Soup – 1 gm
- Butter – salted/unsalted – 2 Tablespoons
- Sauerkraut – washed and shredded – 2 gm
- Cheese – Cheddar – grated – 2 Cups
- Milk – 1/2 Cup
- Green Onions – washed and chopped – 1/4 Cup
- Salt – to taste (if using salted butter, calculate the amount you add not to make the Casserole too salty).
- Pepper – to taste
Tater Tots and Bratwurst Cooking Instructions
- Take a Skillet/Saucepan. Pour the Chicken Broth in it. Add the Uncooked Bratwurst to the Broth in the pan.
- Close the lid and let the contents of the pan simmer for about 10-12 minutes on low heat. Once the Bratwursts have been cooked through, strain the Broth from the mixture and discard it.
- Cut the Cooked Bratwursts horizontally in 1/4 quarter inches each.
- Till the first part of the cook finishes, preheat the oven at 450℉/230℃.
- Put the Cut Bratwursts back into the pan, but now devoid of Broth. This time on high heat, glaze the Cut Bratwursts with Butter and let them brown.
- Place the Browned Bratwursts onto paper towels for removing excess butter.
- For the third part of the cook, take a Casserole Dish. Layer the bottom of the Casserole Dish with a thin coating of oil/non-stick spray or aluminium foil/parchment or butter paper. This aids in the easy removal of the cooked Casserole from the dish.
- Spread the shredded Sauerkraut evenly as a base of the Casserole.
- Put the cut pieces of the Browned Bratwursts over the Sauerkraut layer, forming the second storey of the Casserole. The pieces should not overlap each other, as this results in the sticking of the Bratwursts.
- On the side, mix the Cheddar Cheese Soup and Milk in a bowl. Whisk the above mixture thoroughly until a smooth texture is attained. Pour the mixture liberally over the slices of Bratwursts layered in the Casserole Dish.
- Lastly, add the Tater Tots on the top, completing the third and final layer of the Casserole.
- For the final part of the cook, open the lid of the preheated oven and place the Casserole Dish in it.
- Bake the Casserole for about 30 minutes.If the Tater Tops have not browned to the colour of your liking and taste, then give the Casserole Dish a few more minutes in the oven.
- To add the cherry on top, or in this case, the shredded Cheddar Cheese and chopped Green Onions, carefully open the lid of the hot oven.
- Using hand mittens, partially pull the hot Casserole Dish out and sprinkle the said ingredients.
- Push the Casserole Dish back to its original position once you have sprinkled the Cheese and Green Onions.
- Let the Casserole bake for an additional 5 minutes, until the Cheddar Cheese melts and the Green Onions cook.
- In the end, again, with the help of hand mitts, open the hot oven lid and pull out the steaming hot Casserole Dish and place it onto a heat resistant mat or wire rack.
- Your Brat ‘n’ Tots are ready to devour!
Tips for making perfect Tater Tots and Bratwurst Casserole
- You can also use frozen Bratwursts instead of Uncooked Bratwursts. Though for using those, you will have to bring them down to room temperature first, followed by boiling for 5-10 minutes. This is to avoid uneven cooking and burning of the Bratwursts.
- Crumbled Bratwursts is another option if Sliced Bratwursts are not your thing.
- Blush Pink colour are the centre of the Sliced/Crumbled Bratwursts is the best indication of perfectly cooked Bratwursts.
- Instead of the Cheddar Cheese Soup, another alternative is Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup. Soup is added to the Milk and whisked to get the consistency of a sauce. This keeps the Casserole moist and easy to chew. Hence, an alternative is okay to use since the function remains the same.
- You can pickle the shredded Sauerkraut before layering them in the Casserole Dish if you have a sour tooth. Pickling can be done by adding salt to the shredded Sauerkraut and leaving it undisturbed for it to ferment.
- For those who do not like Sauerkraut but still have a liking to sourness, don’t despair. You can use broccoli instead.
- Sour Cream is another substitute if you do not want to go through or wait for the process of Pickling.
- If you are an unconventional one, who likes to do things a little different from usual, then there’s a tip for you. Overturn the layers of the Casserole. For example, instead of layering the Bratwursts below the Tater Tots, you can do the opposite, meaning layering the Tater Tots first and then the Bratwursts. Mixing it up is always fun and surprising.
- Oven Baking is much preferred over Grilling. The former is safer and hassle-free compared to the latter. Therefore, this dish has the added advantage of requiring an Oven instead of a Grill.
Gifts for Brat Lovers
- How to Cook Bratwurst
- Bratwurst Recipes
- How to Grill Brats
- Make Your Own Bratwurst
- How to Cook Brats Like a Pro
Tater Tots and Bratwurst Casserole Recipe
- 1 Lbs Brats
- 2 Nos. White Onions Large
- 6 Nos. Beer Pack
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 Can Sauerkraut (16 oz)
- 1 Can Condensed cheddar soup (10 oz)
- 1/4 Cup Milk
- 2 Cups Shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 Package Tater tots (32 oz)
- Simmer your brats in beer for about 15 minutes, using equal parts beer and water and slicing and adding onions. Set brats to the side and add 2 tbsp of olive oil to a skillet and turn on low to medium heat. Add brats to the skillet and cook until browned, which should take about 5 minutes. Dice your brats up into 1/2 inch pieces.
- Pre-heat your oven to 425F.
- Open the can of sauerkraut and rinse and drain. Lightly grease your casserole dish and add the sauerkraut to the bottom, spreading it out evenly.
- Layer your bratwurst evenly on top of the sauerkraut.
- Mix the condensed cheddar soup with the milk, then pour on top of the brats.
- Add your tater tots to the top as the final layer and sprinkle on one cup of shredded cheddar cheese (leaving one cup of cheese remaining).
- Bake uncovered for about 25 minutes. Add the last cup of cheeseÂ when the tater tots have browned up and are crispyÂ and cook for another five minutes, just long enough for the cheese to melt.