These are a long-time family favorite, perfect as a side dish or vegetarian option at cookouts but also a comforting meal in colder seasons. They’re a decadent treat that practically make a meal all alone. Meat-eaters can add crispy, crumbled bacon. For a lighter version you can use a low-calorie butter substitute and reduced fat cheese. And for those who don’t like mushrooms, try replacing them with broccoli or another favorite vegetable! I’ve left quantities open in the recipe because they’re very dependent on the size of your potatoes and the number you plan to bake.
Large baking potatoes
Shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Fresh grated Parmesan cheese
Large, shallow baking dish
Optional: Hand mixer, ice cream scoop
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Thoroughly scrub and rinse potatoes, leaving skin on. Pierce the potatoes through the center with knife and place in baking dish. Cover dish with foil and bake for one hour (longer depending on the size of potatoes- check for tenderness with a fork).
When potatoes are tender, remove from oven and let cool. While you’re waiting you can prepare your ingredients.
Once potatoes are cool enough to work with, use small sharp knife to slice an oval shape into top of each one. Use a spoon to scoop out the top and insides of each potato, leaving skin and enough flesh intact so that the potato forms a bowl. I’ve found that a small metal ice cream scoop is perfect for this job! As you work, save the insides of the potatoes in your mixing bowl.
Mash the potatoes you’ve collected in your mixing bowl using a fork or your hand mixer. Slowly incorporate butter, mushrooms and cheeses as you work. Set aside enough cheese for topping.
When the potato mixture is ready, fill each potato shell with a heaping amount of mixture, adding a sprinkle of Parmesan and cheddar to top each one off. Cover with foil and return finished potatoes to oven for another 15 minutes. Serve immediately or keep in oven on warm until ready to eat. These can also easily be made the day before, stored in the refrigerator and the last step completed right before your meal.