Monday, November 5, 2012

Loaded Twice Baked Potatoes

I think I've said this a time or two before, but I have not met a potato I did not like. When I was in college, one of my favorite meals to come home to was either chili with a side of cheese bread or steak with a twice baked potato. It may not be the most thrilling meal, but it is cheap, easy, and pretty tasty on a blustery day.

Tonight I have made my twice baked potato into a meal by loading it with cheese, broccoli, green onions, and bacon. Serve with a simple side salad to round out the meal. I like to make my potatoes ahead of time and store in the refrigerator or freezer until I am ready to reheat and serve.

Loaded Twice Baked Potatoes

4 large baking potatoes
1/2 cup thawed frozen chopped broccoli cuts
8 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese
1 cup light or fat free sour cream
1/4 cup 2% milk
1 1/2 cup shredded 2% cheddar cheese, divided
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 cup sliced green onions
4 slices center cut bacon, cooked and crumbled

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Pierce the potatoes with a fork. Bake at 400 degrees for one hour or until tender. Remove from the oven and let cool for 20-30 minutes. Cut each potato in half lengthwise. Scoop out the inside into a large bowl leaving 1/4 of an inch around the skin to form a shell. Mash the potatoes until creamy. Add the broccoli, cream cheese, sour cream, milk, 1 cup of the cheese, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Stir until combined. Spoon the mixture into the shells. Top each potato with the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese. Place the potatoes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Sprinkle the potatoes with the green onions and bacon before serving.

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