Slow Cooker John Wayne Casserole is made with tater tots with southwestern flair and lots of cheese!
Not your average recipe today! I made this drool-worthy Slow Cooker John Wayne Casserole for dinner the other night. I’ve wanted to try an oven version of John Wayne casserole for years, but never got around to doing it. I thought, why not make it in the slow cooker?
The history on John Wayne Casserole and my changes
I don’t think John Wayne had anything to do with the casserole. I believe the name of this came about because it’s western themed, but still, this is a fun recipe to try. The original John Wayne casserole recipe that I’ve found is made with biscuit mix, but one of the reviewers on Food.com said that she had a version of this casserole made with tater tots at a restaurant. BINGO! That’s how this recipe can be made perfect in the slow cooker, with tater tots.
I have a beloved standard tater tot casserole recipe that I adore on my site, so I knew exactly how to assemble this new creation.
How to make this:
You will need:
- tater tots
- ground beef
- bell pepper
- sour cream
- taco seasoning
- salt, pepper, onion powder
I add the bag of tater tots to my slow cooker. Then I brown a pound of hamburger with bell pepper, onion, taco seasoning, and water, I pour that meat mixture over the tots.
Then I make a sour cream and cheese mixture with a bit of seasoning and spread that on top of the meat.
Cook on LOW for 4.5 hours, and topped with more cheese, I put the lid back on the slow cooker and the cheese melts in minutes.
I like to serve this delicious casserole with tomatoes on top. When I say this meal was the bomb, I mean it! I was seriously licking my plate! Try it, you’ll love it!
I want to do a shout-out to my favorite cheese company Tillamook. If you ever visit the Oregon coast you must visit the Tillamook Cheese Factory! We do it once a year. Tillamook was a sponsor at the Indulge Conference I went to recently. We arrived in our hotel room to find that Tillamook stocked our mini fridge with cheese! That was possibly the best gift ever.
I hope you enjoy this fun twist on tater tot casserole and try it soon. Have a great week.
First published 06/04/2015
Slow Cooker John Wayne Casserole
- 32 oz. bag tater tots (frozen, not thawed)
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 1 small yellow onion diced
- 1 green bell pepper diced
- 1 oz. taco seasoning mix (I use Lawry's)
- water add the amount of water to the meat that the taco mix says to add, 2/3 cup is what my packet said
- 16 oz. sour cream
- 8 oz. sharp cheddar cheese (divided, half in sour cream mixture and half on top at the end)
- ⅛ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. pepper
- ½ tsp. onion powder
- diced tomatoes
- bell peppers
- Spray a 6-quart oval slow cooker with non-stick spray. Add the tater tots down in an even layer, so there isn't a high spot.
- In a large skillet, set over medium high heat, brown the hamburger, onions and bell pepper. When the meat is browned, drain the fat. Add the amount of water the taco packet says to add to the meat (my packet said to add 2/3 cup). Add the taco packet, and continue cooking and stirring until the meat and the seasoning has thickened.
- Pour the meat mixture over the tater tots in the slow cooker.
- In a medium sized bowl add the sour cream, salt, pepper, onion powder, and half of the cheese (this is about a heaping cup of shredded cheese, save the other half to top the casserole at the end.)
- Spread this sour cream cheese mixture over the meat mixture in the slow cooker.
- Cover and cook on LOW for 4.5 hours, without opening the lid during the cooking time.
- After the cooking time is up add the remaining cheese evenly over the casserole.
- Cover and let the cheese melt, this will only take about 5-10 minutes.
- To serve, top with diced tomatoes.
Other wonderful Slow Cooker Ground Beef Recipes that are similar and are easy to prepare:
- Slow Cooker Shipwreck Stew
- Slow Cooker Land Your Man Baked Beans
- Slow Cooker Salisbury Steak
- Slow Cooker Beef and Potato Au Gratin
- Slow Cooker Hobo Dinner
- Slow Cooker Taco Meatloaf Stuffed Peppers
- Slow Cooker Texas Trash Beef and Bean Dip
- Slow Cooker Porcupine Meatballs
- Slow Cooker Lipton Onion Meatloaf
- Slow Cooker Chuck Wagon Chili
- Slow Cooker Hamburger Hash