The humble potato. Pretty boring, right? Wrong. Potatoes are one of the most versatile vegetables out there. Cook them right, and you are in for a real treat. Golden crispy skin, soft inside and the best thing about potatoes is that they have a relatively neutral flavor, so they go with just about anything! Don’t believe us, well here’s the proof. Read on to see 18 potato side dishes and see if you find something to tickle your tastebuds.
Best Potato Sides To Make At Home
Alright, we don’t want to blow your mind right away, so we’ll start simple. Mashed potatoes are so easy to make. The hardest part is probably peeling the potatoes. After that, it is just a case of boiling them and mashing them into a creamy pile. Yukon Gold potatoes make the best mash! Don’t feel limited to making boring old mash either.
At the bare minimum, add a large knob of butter and a generous amount of seasoning. If you really want to push the boat out, add cream, sour cream, cream cheese, and chopped herbs. If you want the smoothest mash, push your potato mixture through a sieve using a spoon. No lumps, guaranteed!
2. Twice Baked Potatoes
Why bake a potato once when you can bake it twice? Alright, it is a little more effort, but we promise the end result is worth it. We start by baking a potato in the usual fashion. But, the story doesn’t end there… Once the potato’s flesh is soft and tender, we scoop it out, combine it with some amazing ingredients and then pop it back into the skin for a second round in the oven. Cream cheese and bacon? A match made in heaven when it comes to baked potatoes. Made all the more delicious with crispy skin and golden brown top!
3. Roast Potatoes
Roasting potatoes is actually an art form. There are several ways to do it. The key to getting a gorgeous crunchy crust comes in several stages. First, make sure to parboil your potatoes to loosen the starches. They don’t need to be cooked through. About 5 minutes in a pan of salted water will do. The second step is to ensure a good coating of oil.
Top tip, drain your potatoes and let them steam. Give them a shake to get the edges all nice and fluffy. From there, mix them with oil in the pan you steamed them in. It means you don’t have to waste time heating oil in the oven.
This might just be the best side dish to make with potatoes… Ever! This is a cross between several different cooking styles. You get the crispy crunch of French fries, the buttery center of a baked potato, oh, and they look super fancy too. Bu cutting a line of small ridges in your potatoes, you increase the surface area. Guess what that means? More flavor!. It also gives you more room to drench your potatoes in different toppings. Melted cheese along with bacon pieces works really well!
5. Grilled Potatoes
Grilled potatoes? Really? You bet! Normally this wouldn’t work as the underside of the potatoes will burn on the grill (and if you’ve cut them small enough, they’ll fall through the grill)… But we’ve got a trick up our sleeve. Kitchen foil! By making a potato parcel with foil, you create the perfect environment for the potatoes to steam and roast at the same time.
The beauty of this tin foil parcel is that you can trap other flavors inside to infuse and soak into the potatoes. Our favorites include garlic, butter chives, cream cheese, and bacon. But you can really go to town with different tastes and styles.
6. Tater Tots
Processed food? No thanks! We prefer to make our own from scratch. If you are looking for a touch of nostalgia, tater tots are a solid staple on many school dinner hall menus. Trust us, these taste better. They can be a little bit fiddly to make, they rely on grating a vast quantity of potatoes, but once that’s done, they are really quick to assemble. The good news is that you can freeze your tater tots after they are cooked and reheat them in the oven whenever you feel like it. Convenient and delicious.
If it’s straightforward simplicity you are looking for, then this might be the dish for you. They are so easy to make. Just cut your potatoes into thick wedges. Boil for a minute or two, then slather with oil and seasoning before baking until the skins go all crispy.
The trick to avoiding a soggy wedge is to ensure that your potato wedges are spaced out on the baking sheet, that way, they don’t steam each other when they cook. This is great as a side or even as a main dish if you want to make loaded wedges.
8. Crispy Smashed Potatoes
So, you don’t like messing around with presentation? It’s ok, we understand, us neither. So what’s the answer? How’s about crispy smashed potatoes? This recipe encompasses all of the best bits of the humble baked potato and is really easy to make. We prefer to bake instead of frying our potatoes, so this recipe is easier on the old waistline! Just boil some baby potatoes until they are tender, then gently squish until they burst out of their skins. From there, it’s just a case of covering in oil and roasting until they turn golden and crispy.
9. Mashed Potato Casserole
If you want something filling and tasty, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better dish than this recipe. It is a pretty low-maintenance recipe. We like to combine a large helping of mashed potatoes with a few other ingredients (like cheese and bacon)… We then top with even more cheese and bacon before baking in the oven until the top goes all gooey and slightly toasted. The best thing about this recipe is that you can get it all assembled and then bake later. It’s the perfect dinner party food (provided your guests like potatoes).
10. Zucchini Potato Bake
Alright, we know sometimes you want more than just potatoes. They are a vegetable, but they aren’t the most colorful. Why not add a splash of color with some bright green and super tasty zucchinis? This dish takes layers of zucchini and layers of potatoes and combines them, along with garlic cream and cheese. The entire dish is baked until it is bubbly, then served in thick slices. Think of it as a healthy lasagna!
11. Baked Potato Salad
Potato salad is ok, but some might say it is a bit meh. We don’t do boring here, so we have decided to pimp up this dish to make it super special. Guess what we use? Did you say bacon, cheddar cheese, and lashings of creamy mayo? That’s what we are talking about. This is ideal as a side dish but keeps really well, so if there is any leftover (doubtful), you can take it to work the next day.
12. French Fries
No list of potato side dishes would be complete without including French fries. But, they’re really bad for you, right? Nope, bake them in the oven. They aren’t much different from other ‘healthy’ potato dishes like wedges or roast potatoes. You’ll get a great opportunity to hone your knife skills too. The key to a great French fry is uniformity in shape and size. That way, they all cook at the same time. We like to make our extra special by roasting them with a few sprigs of rosemary and a garlic clove or two!
13. Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Ok, this might be a little bit of a cheat. Sweet potato isn’t quite a potato but just go with it. This is really easy to make and is prepared in much the same way as regular mashed potato. There are a few benefits to making sweet potatoes. First, they are a nice orange color, so if you are looking to perk up your plate, this could be ideal. Second, sweet potatoes are low on the glycemic index, which means that they keep you feeling fuller for longer. If you’re looking for something extra special try this sweet potato casserole.
14. Scalloped Potatoes
Scalloped potatoes are an absolute joy. You might also hear them called by their posh French name, potato dauphinoise. Either way, they are delicious. We place layers of golden sliced potato in a baking dish, top with some garlic-infused heavy cream (and maybe a few onions), add another layer and repeat until we run out of ingredients. We then bake this dish.
The potatoes soak up the creamy sauce and turn crisp and golden on top. You can serve this in thick slices alongside almost any dish. We love it with a nice steak.
15. Hash Browns
Potatoes for breakfast? Damn right! These are a little fiddly to make, but the good news is that you can pre-prep them the night before and then just fry (or bake) a batch in the morning.
The key to a crispy hash brown is to remove all the starch from the potatoes before shaping and cooking. We do this by rinsing grated potatoes in freezing cold water. Using a clean cloth, we squeeze as much water out as possible before combining with eggs, flour, and subtle seasoning before cooking to golden brown perfection. They are just the right consistency for mopping up egg yolks. Ours is over easy, thanks!
16. Fondant Potatoes
Been to a fancy restaurant lately? If not, don’t worry. Once you know how to make fondant potatoes, you won’t need to. Fondant potatoes are easy. The basic recipe is a tune of potato that is gently fried in butter until it is golden. We then add a savory stock to the pan and bake it wholesale in the oven until all the liquid has been absorbed. The result is a potato that is crunchy on the outside and soft and tasty on the inside. It’s a great way to work on your knife skills too. There’s something really rewarding about making a potato into a perfect tube!
This has to be one of our favorite potato recipes. It is so simple to make and will have everyone coming back for seconds. We start by boiling cubes of potatoes. But we don’t do this in water, oh no. We are all about poaching our potato chunks in heavy cream and milk. Once they are tender, we tip the entire mix into a baking dish and top with a layer of golden breadcrumbs. Here’s a top tip when cooking with cream. Add a small pinch of baking soda to your recipe, you won’t taste it, but it will stop your cream sauces from splitting.
18. Garlic Potato Bites
This one is our very own. It is so easy and makes for a really eye-catching accompaniment to steak or grilled chicken. We start by boiling potatoes before draining them to make a mash. We allow it to cool, then using a pair of clean hands, roll the potatoes into balls (somewhere between the size of a golf ball and tennis ball is perfect.
From there, we take a plate and sprinkle a mixture of garlic powder, salt, pepper, and occasionally some finely grated cheese. Roll the balls in the seasoning, then spray with zero-calorie cooking spray or brush with oil, and bake until they turn dark and golden. Crispy on the outside, soft on the inside! Amazing!
Still, think potatoes are bland or boring? No way! They are so tasty! In our list of 18 potato side dishes, we were hard-pressed to think of our favorite! They are all delicious. The vast majority can be made ahead of time too. Some even benefit from being given a second blast in the oven. Which is your favorite? Have we missed any? Let us know in the comments below!