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A traditional winter recipe with cheese and potatoes, Tartiflette is rich, satisfying comfort food straight from the French Alps.

hand scooping tartiflette out of cast iron skillet

What is Tartiflette?

Tartiflette is a casserole that traditionally contains potato, onion, lardons, and reblochon cheese.

It’s a classic winter dish that’s perfect for warming up with as an après-ski meal or anytime you’ve been enjoying the cold mountain air. Originating in the French Alps, this recipe hails from the Savoy region of southeastern France that encompasses the Haute-Savoie and Savoie départements.

If you’re not familiar with reblochon cheese, which is a main ingredient in the classic Tartiflette recipe, it’s a soft washed-rind cheese made from raw milk in the Haute-Savoie region of the French Alps. It has its own Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée (AOC) designation. This means that only reblochon produced in the defined geographical area using traditionally recognized methods can actually be called reblochon.

Reblochon has an interesting history. Reblochon stems from the word “reblocher” which literally translates as “to pinch a cow’s udder again”. This is because during the Middle Ages, mountain farmers in Haute-Savoie paid taxes based on how much milk their herds produced.

This led to the practice of farmers not fully milking their cows until after the yield was measured. After that, farmers would milk their cows again. The richer milk from the second milking was used to make reblochon cheese.

close up of tartiflette recipe in dish

Reblochon is quite a unique cheese. It’s soft and creamy with a nutty flavor and slightly herbal, fruity aroma. Similar to brie, the rind of reblochon is edible.

I’ve heard that the Tartiflette recipe we know today was invented in the 1980’s by reblochon cheese producers (specifically Le Syndicat Interprofessionnel du Reblochon) as an effort to boost cheese sales.

It bears noting that reblochon hasn’t been available here in the U.S. since 2004 because it’s an unpasteurized cheese. But not to worry, I give several reblochon substitutes, which are all readily available in the U.S.!

You can read more about reblochon on Wikipedia and Cheese-France.

tartiflette potatoes served with cornishons and white wine

Tartiflette Recipe Ingredients and Substitutions

Ingredients Explained

In this section I explain the ingredients and give substitution ideas where applicable. For the full recipe (including the ingredient amounts), see the recipe card below.

tartiflette ingredients
  • Waxy yellow potatoes – Yukon Gold potatoes work well here. You can peel them if you like, but there’s no need to. Just scrub them and slice them into 1/4-inch thick slices.
  • Coarse kosher salt – Use less if you’re using fine salt instead of coarse salt.
  • Beef bacon – Lardons (aka fatty bacon cut into small cubes) are traditionally used. I opt for beef bacon, but you can any kind of bacon you like (such as pork bacon or turkey bacon) and cut it into small strips or cubes. If you use turkey bacon, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to cook the bacon in.
  • Onion – The humble onion adds a ton of savory flavor to this simple potato casserole. Use a large onion here; we want about 2 1/2 cups of sliced onion.
  • Garlic – Garlic adds depth of flavor and aroma. And it pairs beautifully with potato!
  • Dry white wine – If you want to make it extra special, you can look for a wine from the Savoy region of France. But this dish will be just as delicious if you use whatever your favorite dry white wine is (mine is Sauvignon Blanc).
  • Fresh thyme – The bright peppery, citrusy flavor of fresh thyme adds another dimension to this dish and helps balance out the rich flavors.
  • Black pepper – Black pepper adds a touch of piquancy for balance.
  • Heavy whipping cream – Or you can use crème fraîche instead.
  • Reblochon cheese – As reblochon isn’t available in the U.S., camembert or brie are both good substitutes that are easy to find.

Instructions

Step 1: Pre-Cook the Potato

boiling sliced potato

Add the sliced potato to a 3-quart pot and add enough cold water to cover the potatoes by 2 inches. Sprinkle in 1 teaspoon of salt.

Bring to a boil over high heat, then turn the heat down slightly and boil until the potato is tender, but not falling apart, about 7 to 10 minutes. Drain well.

Step 2: Make the Tartiflette Sauce

how to make tartiflette sauce
  1. While the potatoes boil, add the diced bacon to a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Cook until the bacon has rendered most of its fat but is not fully crisp, about 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Push the bacon to the outside of the skillet.
  2. Add the onion in the center of the skillet. Cook until the onion is softened and just starting to turn golden in spots, about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally (try to leave the bacon along the outside when you stir).
  3. Stir the bacon from the outside of the skillet into the onion, and then stir in the garlic; cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Stir in the wine and cook until it’s mostly evaporated, about 1 to 2 minutes, stirring frequently and using a wooden spoon to scrape up any brown bits that have formed on the bottom. Stir in the thyme, remaining 1 teaspoon salt, black pepper.
  4. Stir in the cream and cook for 30 seconds.

Step 3: Assemble and Bake the Cheesy Potato Casserole

how to make tartiflette
  1. Cut the cheese into thick slices. (I slice each 8-ounce cheese wheel horizontally so I end up with 2 full cheese rounds from each wheel.)
  2. Add the drained potatoes to the tartiflette sauce in the skillet, and gently toss to coat. Remove from the heat.
  3. Spread the potato mixture out evenly in the skillet, and arrange the sliced cheese on top of the potato mixture.
  4. Bake (uncovered) until the cheese is melted and the top is golden, about 30 minutes. To brown the top more, you can briefly broil the dish if desired. Let it cool for 10 minutes, then garnish with fresh thyme and serve.

Storage and Reheating

Once cooled to room temperature, you can store this cheesy potato casserole covered in the fridge for up to 4 days.

To reheat, preheat the oven to 350F. Put as much Tartiflette as you want to eat in an oven-safe dish, cover it with foil, and let it sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes while your oven preheats (this also takes the chill off the food so it reheats more evenly). Bake until it’s warm throughout, about 20 minutes.

Tips

  • Swap out the thyme for another fresh herb. The piney, woodsy flavor and aroma of rosemary is another of my favorites here.
  • If you don’t have garlic on hand, it’s not the end of the world. I love the complex flavor profile that garlic helps build here. However, it’s definitely not the star of the show and the end result won’t suffer too much if you don’t have it. Many Tartiflette recipes don’t call for garlic!
  • Don’t skip pre-cooking the potato. This helps ensure that the whole dish is perfectly cooked; no one likes undercooked potatoes!
scoop of cheesy potato casserole with bacon

What to Serve with Tartiflette

This is an extremely rich and satisfying dish; you can serve it as a main course or as a side dish. I like to serve it with something light to cut through the richness. Here are a few ideas:

  • Dry white wine – You can look for a dry white wine from the same region that reblochon is produced if you like (if so, check out this Savoie wine guide on Wine Folly for more information). Or use any type of dry white wine you like, such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio.
  • Cornichons – Or go with any type of pickled vegetables you like.
  • Leafy green salad – I like to include some peppery greens (such as arugula) or bitter greens (like frisée, radicchio, or endive) along with a milder flavored lettuce (think Romaine, green leaf, or red leaf). A simple French vinaigrette of lemon juice or white wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, and possibly fresh herbs is all you need to dress the greens here.
  • Dutch oven whole roast chicken – If you want to round out the meal with some additional protein, a juicy roast chicken is the perfect pairing.
top view of french tartiflette in cast iron skillet

Cheesy Potato Casserole FAQs

What Type of Potato Works Best in This Casserole?

Waxy yellow potatoes, such as Yukon Gold, work well here.

This is for two reasons:

  1. This type of potato holds its shape well. Unlike a starchy potato (such as Russet), a waxy yellow potato won’t disintegrate into the casserole.
  2. Waxy yellow potatoes have a thin skin that you don’t need to peel.

What is a Good Substitute for Reblochon Cheese in Tartiflette?

You can use the following types of cheese as a substitute for reblochon in this recipe:

  • Camembert
  • Brie
  • Raclette
  • Port Salut
  • Taleggio
  • A combination of fontina and gruyère
front view of serving of cheesy potato casserole in bowl

Can I Make This Recipe Without Wine?

Yes! The purpose of the wine in this recipe is to deglaze the pan. Basically, you add the wine after the onion and garlic are lightly browned and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any brown bits that have formed on the bottom of the pan.

An additional reason for using wine is that its acidity helps cut through the richness and adds another layer of complex flavor to the dish.

However, if you don’t want to use wine for any reason, you can use chicken broth, vegetable broth, or a mixture of 1/2 cup water + 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice. If you have a lemon on hand, I recommend the water + lemon juice replacement for white wine because it adds the acidity that you’d get from the wine without actually having to use wine.

More Cheesy Potato Casserole Recipes to Try

top view of potato cheese casserole in skillet

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Tartiflette Recipe

Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time45 minutes
Yields: 10 servings
A traditional winter recipe with cheese and potatoes, Tartiflette is rich, satisfying comfort food straight from the French Alps.

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Ingredients
 

  • 2 1/4 pounds yellow potatoes scrubbed and sliced into 1/4-inch thick slices (peeled if desired; I use thin-skinned yellow potatoes and don’t peel them)
  • 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt divided
  • 1/4 pound beef bacon diced (or any kind of bacon you like; add 2 tablespoons oil if you use turkey bacon)
  • 1 large onion thinly sliced (about 2 1/2 cups sliced)
  • 2 large cloves garlic crushed
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine see Notes for substitutions
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme plus more for garnish
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 16 ounces reblochon cheese or camembert or brie (I used two 8-ounce wheels of cheese)

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 375F.
  • Add the sliced potato to a 3-quart pot and add enough cold water to cover the potatoes by 2 inches. Sprinkle in 1 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then turn the heat down slightly and boil until the potato is tender, but not falling apart, about 7 to 10 minutes. Drain well.
  • While the potatoes boil, add the diced bacon to a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Cook until the bacon has rendered most of its fat but is not fully crisp, about 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Push the bacon to the outside of the skillet and add the onion in the center. Cook until the onion is softened and just starting to turn golden in spots, about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally (try to leave the bacon along the outside when you stir).
  • Stir the bacon from the outside of the skillet into the onion, and then stir in the garlic; cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Stir in the wine and cook until it’s mostly evaporated, about 1 to 2 minutes, stirring frequently and using a wooden spoon to scrape up any brown bits that have formed on the bottom. Stir in the thyme, remaining 1 teaspoon salt, black pepper, and cream, and cook for 30 seconds. Add the drained potatoes and gently toss to coat. Remove from the heat.
  • Cut the cheese into thick slices. (I slice each 8-ounce cheese wheel horizontally so I end up with 2 full cheese rounds from each wheel.) Spread the potato mixture out evenly in the skillet, and arrange the sliced cheese on top of the potato mixture.
  • Bake (uncovered) until the cheese is melted and the top is golden, about 30 minutes. To brown the top more, you can briefly broil the dish if desired.
  • Let it cool for 10 minutes, then garnish with fresh thyme and serve.

Video

Notes

  • White Wine Substitution: Instead of wine in this recipe, you can use chicken broth, vegetable broth, or a mixture of 1/2 cup water + 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice. If you have a lemon on hand, I recommend the water + lemon juice replacement for white wine because it adds the acidity that you’d get from the wine without actually having to use wine.
  • Storage: Once cooled to room temperature, you can store this cheesy potato casserole covered in the fridge for up to 4 days.
  • Reheating: To reheat, preheat the oven to 350F. Put as much Tartiflette as you want to eat in an oven-safe dish, cover it with foil, and let it sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes while your oven preheats (this also takes the chill off the food so it reheats more evenly). Bake until it’s warm throughout, about 20 minutes.

Nutrition

Calories: 364kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.02g | Cholesterol: 71mg | Sodium: 1051mg | Potassium: 623mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 738IU | Vitamin C: 22mg | Calcium: 211mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutritional information is automatically calculated and should be used as an approximate.

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: French
Keyword: French Tartiflette, French Tartiflette Recipe, Tartiflette, Tartiflette Recipe

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Faith, author of An Edible Mosaic.
About Faith

I’m the writer, recipe developer, photographer, and food stylist behind this blog. I love finding the human connection through something we all do every day: eat! Food is a common ground that we can all relate to, and our tables tell a story. It’s my goal to inspire you to get in the kitchen, try something new, and find a favorite you didn’t know you had.

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