Recipes for au gratin potatoes (or potatoes au gratin) combine layers of sliced potatoes and cheese in a baked casserole dish, sometimes with a breadcrumb topping for a contrasting crunch. People often compare and contrast au gratin potatoes with another classic potato side dish, scalloped potatoes. While both are rich and creamy potato dishes that reheat well, au gratin potatoes contain cheese, whereas scalloped potatoes contain a simple, creamy sauce. As a result, cheesy potatoes au gratin dishes tend to be more decadent than their scalloped counterparts. Additionally, scalloped potato rounds are usually cut thick, while chefs prepare au gratin potatoes with a mandoline slicer for the thinnest possible potato rounds.\nPotatoes au gratin recipes turn out best when home cooks opt for a type of potato that holds its shape while cooking but will ultimately be tender after its baked. The best kinds of [potatoes](https://www.masterclass.com/articles/different-ways-to-cook-all-types-of-potatoes) to use for au gratin potatoes include Yukon gold potatoes and red potatoes, both of which have thin skin that you don’t necessarily have to peel before cooking. You might also consider using russet potatoes (peel off the tough skin first), which contain more starch than Yukon gold or red potatoes and will therefore result in a creamier sauce. For a twist on the usually savory dish, try making your cheesy potatoes au gratin with sweet potatoes.\nHomemade au gratin potatoes are a fall comfort food and side dish for cooks looking for alternatives to mashed potatoes.