While baking potatoes in the oven is the most common way to cook a baked potato, it’s not the only one. Here are some main ways you can bake potatoes.
In Oven: This is the most popular way of baking potatoes. To bake your potatoes in the oven, preheat the oven to 375°F, then place the potatoes on a lightly oiled baking sheet. Place potatoes directly into the oven and. Cooking time is anywhere from 45-60 minutes, until the skin is crisp and a knife inserted into the potato meets no resistance.
Air Fryer: If you’re short on time, you can also bake potatoes in an air fryer. Preheat the air fryer to 375°F – 390°F, rub your potatoes with oil, and place the potatoes in the basket. Cook for 15-30 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
Microwave: You may have wondered at some point: “Can I make baked potatoes in the microwave?” And the answer is: Yes. Just be sure to wash and dry the potatoes beforehand and rub them with oil and salt. Poke the potatoes with a fork, as you would before putting them in the oven, and place them on a microwave-safe plate. Cook for between 3 and 5 minutes on each side, or until the potatoes are tender. Add the toppings of your choice.
Note about microwaving your potatoes: Microwaving potatoes won’t have the same texture or flavor as oven-baked potatoes, and the skin probably won’t be as crispy. Still, they can taste great and are a convenient option if you are in a hurry or are just feeling lazy. Just make sure to let the potatoes cool for a few minutes before serving.
Congratulations: You have mastered the basics of baking the perfect potato. Now you can start exploring some other great potato recipes and possibilities. Here are some of our other favorite ways to prepare a potato:
Twice-baked potatoes: These are baked potatoes that have been split open, stuffed with butter, cream cheese, and cheese, then baked again. Twice-baked potatoes, which are richer and more decadent than regular baked tomatoes, are easy to make. Simply bake the potatoes, scoop out the flesh, and combine it with cheese, butter, and herbs. Then, stuff the potatoes back into their skins and bake until golden brown and crispy.
Mashed potatoes: This comfort food classic is generally made with boiled potatoes, butter, milk, and herbs. To make mashed potatoes, boil the potatoes until tender, then mash them with butter and milk and season with salt and pepper. For additional flavor, use roasted garlic or fresh herbs.
Roasted potatoes: These are potatoes that have been tossed in olive oil, herbs, and spices, and then roasted in the oven until they’re golden and have crisp skin. Roasted potatoes are a great way to use up small potatoes, and a favorite dish for premier chefs all over the world. Chef Nancy Silverton provides a wonderful recipe for bagna cauda roasted potatoes. She pairs the potatoes with bagna cauda, which is a buttery Italian sauce consisting of garlic and anchovies.
Sweet potato fries: These are sweet potatoes that are cut into thin strips and then fried or baked until crispy. They go great with all sorts of main courses, from burgers and sandwiches to macaroni and cheese.
Scalloped Potatoes: Scalloped potatoes are perfect for special occasions. To make them, layer thinly sliced potatoes with cheese and herbs, then bake until golden brown and bubbly.
Smashed potatoes: Chef Francis Mallmann makes an unbelievably tasty Smashed Potatoes recipe. He boils potatoes until they’re soft and tender, lets them cool on a work surface, and then – using the palm of his hand – slowly and gently smashes the potatoes. He then grills the smashed potatoes on a chapa in clarified butter, very slowly, until they’re golden brown on both sides. The end result is a hot potato that’s crunchy on the outside and mashed on the inside.
GBD Potatoes: A specialty from chef Kwame Onwuachi are GBD potatoes (GBD stands for Golden Brown Delicious.) In this great recipe, Kwame boils diced potatoes until they’re tender, quickly cools them, gently flattens the potatoes, and fries them in oil until they’re crispy and golden brown. He coats the GBD potatoes in a green-season aioli and serves them alongside curried goat.
You now have everything you need to know to make an excellent baked potato: its ingredients; how to choose, prepare, and bake your potato so that it is perfectly crispy on the outside; some tips and alternative cooking methods for baking potatoes; and, once you have mastered the dish, moving on to other ways of cooking with potatoes. But just know that however you prepare your potatoes, you’ll be sure to end up with a delicious side dish. Now, get cooking!