This kid-friendly Lasagna Tater Tot Casserole uses tater tots to replace the traditional noodle layer – a delicious twist on a family favorite!
Get ready for some easy comfort food! This Lasagna Tater Tot Casserole has all the flavors of lasagna we love plus the addition of delicious Tater Tots. It’s simple to assemble and is a family favorite in our home.
Another name for Tater Tot lasagna is Totsagna. It has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?
The bottom layer is a meaty part of a lasagna with ground beef, onions, mushrooms, spices and your favorite spaghetti sauce. Then on top of that, you’ll add a layer of creamy cottage cheese. I use the full fat variety because it is comfort food, after all.
Then, you’ll grab those frozen Tater Tots from your freezer and layer them on top of the cottage cheese. Don’t worry; they’ll bake completely in the oven.
The top layer is ooey gooey mozzarella cheese and a sprinkling of Italian seasoning. This casserole bakes in just 45 minutes. Talk about an easy meal!
Serve it hot and fresh from the oven. I serve ours in bowls because it is a little messy! It may not be the prettiest casserole you’ve seen, but it sure tastes good. I hope you enjoy it.
Why You’ll Love Lasagna Tater Tot Casserole
- The kids will love it! It’s somewhat easier to eat than the large flat noodles. Plus, kids just adore anything with tater tots.
- It’s so easy to pull together this easy recipe using jarred pasta sauce and frozen tater tots.
- The meal is hot, filling, and flavorful — a wonderful comfort food dish the whole family will love.
- Delicious dinner with a side of garlic bread or garlic twists.
- Serve with a simple wedge salad for a well-rounded meal.
- Ground Beef: Lean ground beef is traditional for many types of lasagna, but you can use ground Italian sausage or ground turkey, if you prefer.
- Onion: Chopped yellow onion adds delicious flavor to this casserole.
- Mushrooms: I love sliced mushrooms because they add even more meaty texture to the dish. You can leave them out and add about ¼ lb of extra meat or some chopped veggies instead.
- Garlic: Measure garlic with your heart! I used three cloves here, but you can increase or decrease this amount according to your tastes.
- Pasta Sauce: Use a jar of your favorite pasta sauce. Traditional meat sauce, onion and garlic flavored, or even chunky pasta sauces are all delicious in this recipe.
- Cottage Cheese: This adds to the cheesy richness of the dish. You can use low-fat cottage cheese if you’d like, but I opt for the full-fat version when making comfort food.
- Tater Tots: No need to thaw them — add them in while frozen!
- Mozzarella Cheese: It wouldn’t be a lasagna without loads of gooey, stretchy mozzarella cheese!
- Italian Seasoning: Use a packaged blend or make your own homemade Italian seasoning.
How to Make Lasagna Tater Tot Casserole
- Step One: Preheat your oven to 400°F. Spray a 9×13 casserole dish with cooking spray, and set it aside.
- Step Two: Add the ground beef, chopped onions, minced garlic, and sliced mushrooms to a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until the onion is softened and the meat is browned (about 7 to 8 minutes). Turn off the heat, and stir in your favorite pasta sauce.
- Step Three: Spread a layer of meat sauce over the bottom of the pan. Top with a layer of cottage cheese. Add a layer of tater tots (still frozen) evenly on top of the cottage cheese layer.
- Step Four: Put the lasagna in the oven and bake for 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and top the layer of tots with mozzarella cheese and Italian seasoning. Return the dish to the oven to bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted. Serve hot.
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What to Serve with Tater Tot Lasagna
Serve this easy tater tot casserole recipe with my Easy Garlic Twists. They are super easy to whip up because they’re made with canned biscuits. Garlic bread or garlic cheese rolls are excellent choices, too.
For a side dish that’s on the lighter side, try this Easy Cucumber Salad. You can swap out the dressing for your favorite bottled Italian dressing or a simple vinaigrette.
Lasagna Tater Tot Casserole Tips and Tricks
- To get the cheese on top of the casserole golden brown, place the dish under the broiler for a few minutes, watching carefully so as not to burn it.
- If you don’t enjoy cutting up onions, you can substitute one tablespoon of onion powder for one medium onion, according to Taste of Home.
- No fresh garlic? No problem! Use ¼ teaspoon of garlic powder per clove (per Simply Recipes).
Variations and Substitutions
- Use ground Italian sausage instead of ground beef or a combination of the two to amp up the flavor.
- To lighten up the tater-tot lasagna a little, use ground turkey and low fat cottage cheese and mozzarella cheese.
- Sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese in addition to the mozzarella.
Store this lasagna tater tot casserole in the fridge in an airtight container or the casserole dish covered with plastic wrap for up to 4 days. It won’t last that long, though!
Can I Freeze Tater Tot Lasagna?
Yes, you can freeze parts of this dish to have a simple dinner on hand for another day. However, instead of assembling it completely, I recommend cooking the ground beef, onions, garlic, and mushrooms, and adding the sauce.
Freeze this meat and sauce mixture in a freezer-safe bag, and when you’re ready to make the lasagna, add this to the bottom, and then top with the cottage cheese, tater tots, and mozzarella cheese on the day you plan to serve it.
Don’t freeze all the ingredients together because the tater tots will soak up the pasta sauce, changing the texture, and the cottage cheese won’t freeze and thaw well.
Why is my tater tot casserole runny?
When it’s hot right out of the oven, the sauce and cheese will look runny or watery. As the casserole cools, the ingredients will hold together better. However, I serve this in bowls rather than on a plate because it is a little messy (but oh-so-delicious with all its cheesy goodness).
What sides go with tater tot casserole?
It depends on the type of casserole, but garlic bread, bread sticks, a simple salad, garlic green beans, or roasted veggies will all be very tasty with this totsagna recipe.
How do you reheat lasagna tater tot casserole?
While you can reheat it in the microwave if you want quick and easy, it will be a little mushy. The best way to reheat any tater tot casserole is in an oven-safe dish at 350°F for about 10-15 minutes or until warmed through. Cover with foil if you’re worried about the cheese on top getting too browned.
Delicious Tater Tot Casserole Recipes
Looking for more easy casseroles made with tater tots? Check out some favorites below:
- Tater Tot Breakfast Casserole
- Mexican Tater Tot Casserole
- Classic Tater Tot Casserole
- Pizza Tater Tot Casserole
- Sloppy Joe Tater Tot Casserole
You’ll also like this Slow Cooker Lasagna.
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- 1 lb lean ground beef
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 cup mushroom, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (24oz/650ml) jar pasta sauce
- 2 (16oz/500g) containers cottage cheese
- 1 (2lb/800g) package frozen Tater Tots
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- Preheat oven to 400F. Grease a 9x13 casserole dish with cooking spray. Set aside.
- Add ground beef, onions, garlic and mushrooms to a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until onion is softened and meat is cooked (about 7 to 8 minutes). Turn off the heat. Stir in pasta sauce.
- Spread meat mixture on the bottom of the casserole dish. Cover with a layer of cottage cheese. Top evenly with a layer of frozen Tater Tots.
- Bake for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and top with cheese and Italian seasoning. Put back in the oven to bake an additional 5 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Serve hot.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 587Total Fat: 29gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 96mgSodium: 1540mgCarbohydrates: 41gFiber: 4gSugar: 9gProtein: 40g