The Classics: Loaded Potato Skins

The Classics: Loaded Potato SkinsThe Classics: Loaded Potato SkinsI’m always asked how I come up with the recipes that I share on this site or what my blog is all about. I usually struggle to answer this question because I want to sound very smart and say something deep and profound, but the truth of it all is actually quite simple. The blog (and it’s recipes) is actually just a collection of dishes that I’m really craving and dying to eat at the moment. I mean of course, the blog is deeper than that. It’s a space where my two passions—food and photography—come together. Plus it’s a way to share the recipes step-by-step which I hope really helps all of you make said recipes and not feel lost in the kitchen. A chance for me to “hold your hand” while you cook or bake so to speak. Was that smart and profound enough? The Classics: Loaded Potato Skins are a prime example of a moment when I made something just because I was really craving it, and nothing made me happier at that moment in time. So here we are, and just in time for the holidays. Did I mention that these make the perfect holiday appetizers? They really are.

Let’s talk potatoes for a second. You want a russet baking potato for this because it’ll stand up to the twice cooking! The first cooking is baking them in the oven to make them soft enough to cut and scoop out most of the flesh. Scrub the potatoes under running water and dry off. Poke holes all around each with a fork and bake in a preheated 425°F oven until a knife goes in smoothly, about 50 minutes to 1 hour. Remove the potatoes from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature, but leave the oven on.

**Tip: You want medium to smallish sized potatoes for this, but if all you have are the larger giant potatoes, you can totally use those as well. Just note that your baking time will be increased because of the size and I would recommend cutting the potatoes in quarters once you’ve scooped out the flesh.**

In a small bowl, toss together the salt and spices until evenly combined; set aside. Fill a large heavy-duty pot with 2 inches of oil and heat to 375°F using a deep-fry thermometer.

**Tip: You can skip the homemade seasoning blend if you just want to use salt and pepper or if you have an all-purpose seasoning blend on hand already. Seasoned salt would work great as well!**

Slice the cooled potatoes in half, lengthwise, and scoop out the center of each potato half, leaving about an inch of flesh in each. Fry the potato skins in batches until golden brown and crispy, about 4 to 6 minutes. Drain and transfer the potatoes to a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Sprinkle with the seasoning mix while the potatoes are still hot and fry the remaining potato skins in the same manner.

**Note: The wire rack prevents the potato skins from getting soggy and seasoning the potatoes right out of the fryer allows the seasoning to stick to the potatoes.**

Top each fried potato with lots of shredded cheese and crumbled crispy bacon. Bake until the cheese has melted through, about 5 to 8 minutes.


Remove from the oven and transfer to a platter. Dollop each with sour cream and garnish with chives. Serve immediately with hot sauce on the side, if you wish.

If you want to make these ahead of time, I recommend making them right up to the point when you top the fried potatoes with the cheese and bacon, only don’t bake them. At that point you can place them in the freezer (cheese and bacon and allow) and flash freeze them until firm. Then transfer to an airtight freezer-safe container and freeze until ready to use.

To finish them off from frozen, you can place them on a baking sheet and bake them in a preheated 350°F oven until warmed through and the cheese has fully melted, about 15 to 20 minutes. Then top with sour cream and chives as directed! They’re a great appetizer and snack to keep on hand for holidays, gatherings, potlucks or game days. 

If you’re looking for a satisfying or heart-warming appetizer this holiday season or for any future game day gatherings, I hope you’ll keep this recipe in mind. They’re classic and they’re as good as it gets. If you make them, let me know what you think below! I’d love to hear about it or any other recipe you’ve tried from the site! Or take a picture and share on Instagram tagging me (@jonjon33). 

The Classics: Loaded Potato Skins

The Classics: Loaded Potato Skins are a no-fuss appetizer that everyone will love. They're hearty and comforting. Make ahead of time and serve at parties!
Servings 8 servings
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 20 mins
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins

Ingredients

  • 4 small to medium russet potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon granulated onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne or chili powder
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Colby Jack cheese
  • 6 slices crispy bacon chopped
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives
  • hot sauce for serving

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Scrub the potatoes under running water and dry off. Poke holes all around each with a fork and bake until a knife goes in smoothly, about 50 minutes to 1 hour. Remove the potatoes from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature, but leave the oven on.
  • In a small bowl, toss together the salt and spices until evenly combined; set aside. Fill a large heavy-duty pot with 2 inches of oil and heat to 375°F using a deep-fry thermometer.
  • Slice the cooled potatoes in half, lengthwise, and scoop out the center of each potato half, leaving about an inch of flesh in each. Fry the potato skins in batches until golden brown and crispy, about 4 to 6 minutes. Drain and transfer the potatoes to a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Sprinkle with the seasoning mix while the potatoes are still hot and fry the remaining potato skins in the same manner.
  • Top each fried potato with lots of cheese and bacon. Bake until the cheese has melted through, about 5 to 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer to a platter. Dollop each with sour cream and garnish with chives. Serve immediately with hot sauce on the side, if you wish. Enjoy!
Author: The Candid Appetite

 

Join the Conversation

  1. Any suggestions for the scooped out potato insides?

    1. I actually mix it together with sour cream, some cheese, chives, and bacon with a pinch of salt and pepper and eat it as a snack! Or brown the potato filling with a bit of oil or butter in a skillet and season with salt and pepper then scramble eggs into the browned potatoes and make breakfast tacos!

  2. Made these for dinner tonight and loved them! The seasoning mixture really elevates the flavor.

    1. I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed them! Definitely one of my favorites!

  3. Could you bake the potatoes a day before making the skins?

    1. You can definitely bake them the day before. Just cut and scoop them the day of!

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