Loaded potato skins are one of those dishes that everyone loves. They are crispy, cheesy, bacon y and topped with sour cream and green onions. They are perfect for parties, game nights or a satisfying snack. In this blog post, I will show you how to make loaded potato skins from scratch, with tips and tricks to make them extra delicious. You will also learn how to customize them with different ingredients and variations.
To make loaded potato skins, you will need the following ingredients:
Potatoes: You can use any potatoes, but I recommend russet potatoes because they have thick skin and starchy flesh, making them ideal for this recipe. You will need about 4 large potatoes or 8 small ones.
Cheese: Cheese is star of the show. You can use any cheese that melts well, like cheddar, mozzarella, Monterey Jack or a blend of your favorites. You will need 2 cups of shredded cheese.
Bacon: Bacon adds a smoky and salty flavor to the loaded potato skins. You can use regular or thick chop bacon, depending on your rather than. You will need about 8 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled.
Sour cream adds a creamy and tangy touch to the loaded potato skins. You can use regular or light sour cream, depending on your preference. You will need about 1/2 cup of sour cream.
Green onions: Green onions add a fresh and crunchy element to the loaded potato skins. You can use green onions or scallions, depending on your preference. You will need about 1/4 cup of chopped green onions.
Seasonings: Seasonings enhance flavor of the loaded potato skins. Salt, pepper, garlic powder and paprika can all make great seasoning options. You will need about 1/2 teaspoon of each seasoning.
To prepare the loaded potato skins, you will need to follow these steps:
Selecting and washing potatoes: Choose firm, smooth potatoes without bruises or sprouts. Wash them well under running water and scrub them with a brush to remove dirt or debris.
Baking the potatoes:
- Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
- Pierce each potato several times with a fork to allow steam to escape.
- Place them on prepared baking sheet and bake them for about an hour or until they are soft when pierced with a knife.
Cutting potatoes into halves: Remove them from the oven and cool slightly. Cut them into halves and scoop out most of the flesh with a spoon, leaving about 1/4 inch (0.6 cm) of flesh attached to the skin. Reserve scooped out flesh for another use (like making mashed potatoes) or discard it.
Preparing bacon and cheese:
- While the potatoes are baking, cook the bacon in a skillet over medium high heat until crisp, turning occasionally.
- Drain bacon on paper towels and crumble it into small pieces.
- Shred the cheese with a grater or cut it into small cubes.
Assembling the Loaded Potato Skins
To assemble loaded potato skins, you will need to follow these steps:
Stuffing potato skins with cheese and bacon:
- Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C) and line another baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
- Place potato skins on the prepared baking sheet and evenly sprinkle half of the cheese over them.
- Top with half of bacon pieces.
Seasoning loaded potato skins: Sprinkle salt, pepper, garlic powder and paprika over the cheese and bacon layer. Substituting amounts according to your taste.
Baking until golden and crispy: Bake loaded potato skins for about 15 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly and the skins are golden and crispy.
To serve the loaded potato skins, you will need to follow these steps:
Garnishing with sour cream and green onions: Remove the loaded potato skins from oven and let them cool slightly. Dollop sour cream over each potato skin and sprinkle green onions over them.
Presentation tips: Arrange the loaded potato skins on a large platter or individual plates. You can also garnish them with more cheese, bacon or seasonings.
Serving suggestions: Enjoy your loaded potato skins as they are or with your favorite dipping sauce, like ketchup, barbecue sauce, ranch dressing or salsa. Like Baked Salmon.
To make variations of loaded potato skins, you can try these ideas:
Vegetarian loaded potato skins: Substitute bacon with other ingredients that add texture and flavor, like mushrooms, black beans, corn or broccoli.
Healthier versions: Use sweet potatoes instead of regular potatoes, low fat cheese instead of regular cheese and turkey bacon instead of regular bacon. You can also use Greek yogurt instead of sour cream or skip it altogether.
Different cheese and topping options: Experiment with cheese and toppings, like Parmesan, blue cheese, feta cheese, jalapeños, olives, sun dried tomatoes or cilantro.
Tips and Tricks
To make the best loaded potato skins, follow these tips and tricks:
How to ensure crispy skins: To make the potato skins extra crispy, brush them with oil or melted butter before baking them. After baking them, you can also broil them for a few minutes to make them more golden and crunchy.
Avoid common mistakes: Wait to overcook the potatoes or they will become dry and crumbly. Refrain from scoping out too much flesh or skins will become too thin and fragile. Do not overcrowd baking sheet or the potato skins will steam instead of bake.
Make ahead and storage options: You can make the loaded potato skins ahead of time and refrigerate them for up to 3 days or freeze them for up to 3 months. To reheat them, bake them in a preheated oven at 375°F (190°C) for about 15 minutes or until heated through.
Loaded potato skins are a classic appetizer that is easy to make and delicious. They are crispy, cheesy, bacon y and topped with sour cream and green onions. You can customize them with different ingredients and variations to suit your taste and preferences. I hope you enjoyed this step by step guide on how to make loaded potato skins at home. Try making them for your next party or game night and impress your guests with this mouthwatering snack.