So, a couple of weeks ago, a Masonic Family Picnic was held out at the nice little park at the Fannin battleground. Evidently this used to be quite the traditional gathering years ago, and the lodges are trying to revive it to promote family and fellowship. The weather was windy and cold and we all wore jackets and huddled around the barbecue pit.

People brought tons of food since so many lodges were invited and there was no idea how much food to fix. Hamburgers, hot dogs and sausage wraps were rounded out with potato salad, coleslaw, a huge roaster of beans and countless desserts.

Bil had signed me up for chips and dips. I went a little overboard and bought six pounds of sour cream to make three kinds of dip. Needless to say, I brought a lot back home as only a brave crowd of 50-60 people showed up in that chilly weather, not counting kids and dogs.

I had chips and dips for several nights for supper until I thought of combining them with those refrigerated shredded potatoes and baking them. I tasted them over and over and can’t pick my favorite. You might want to try this idea if you ever have leftover party dip.

 First the dip recipes:


• 1 regular size bag frozen spinach, thawed, drained and squeezed dry.

• 1 pkt. Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix

• 2-3 green onions, sliced 

• 1 can diced water chestnuts, drained 

• Enough sour cream to make it dip consistency


• 1 pkt. dry onion soup mix 

•1 pkt. dry onion-beef soup mix. 

• Enough sour cream to make it dip consistency


• 4 oz. cheddar cheese, grated 

• 1 bag cooked bacon bits 

• 1 pkt. Hidden Valley ranch dressing mix

• 2 green onions, sliced

• 2 cans rot-tel tomatoes, drained well

•  Enough sour cream to make it dip consistency.

Dip Potatoes:

• 2 bags “Simply Potatoes” refrigerated shredded hashbrown potatoes, divided into three bowls.

Into each of the three bowls, stir in 1 to 1 ½ cups of each of the three dips, one flavor per bowl. Add enough half & half or whole milk to get it a little on the soupy side, but not so much that the dips wash off the potatoes.

Spray a large casserole dish with Pam. Put the prepared potatoes into the dish so you will have three sections of potatoes. Dot with butter

Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 1/4 hours or until potatoes are done.

(Cook’s Notes: After an hour, mine still had some dry spots so I added more half & half, covered the dish and baked it a bit longer.)

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