The Perfect Baked Potato

Crispy on the outside, light and fluffy on the inside

Create the Perfect Baked Potato Every Time

Comprehensive Guide on How to Bake a Potato

Have you ever wanted to know how to get that perfect steakhouse baked potato?  A crispy exterior, a light and fluffy interior.

The kind of potato that steams the moment you pierce a fork into the crackling skin. Speckled with grains of salt and kissed with just a touch of sweet butter, this luscious preparation of America’s favorite vegetable will be a crowd pleaser time and time again.  Whether it’s a simple Tuesday night or you have some steaks hot off the grill, this recipe will be all you need to enjoy the perfect baked potato.

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The Perfect Baked Potato

  • Ready Time:60min
  • Prep Time:5min
  • Cook Time:55min
  • Serves:4 (1 potato per person)
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Description

Whether it’s a simple Tuesday night or you have some steaks hot off the grill, this recipe will be all you need to enjoy the perfect baked potato.

Ingredients

  • 4 Russet Potatoes, Large (about 8 ounces each)
  • As needed - Kosher Salt or Large Grain Sea Salt
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil

Preparation

Essential Equipment:

  • Baking Sheet aka Cookie Sheet/Sheet Pan
  • Pastry Brush
  • Paring Knife
  • Wire Rack that fits on the baking sheet
  • Kitchen Towel

 

  1. Adjust the rack to the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 450 F.
  2. Rinse the potatoes under cold water and gently scrub the outside of the potatoes with a vegetable brush to remove any excess dirt. Dry the potatoes and pierce lightly with a paring knife about 6-8 times.  This will allow steam to escape the potato as its baking.
  3. Dissolve 2 tablespoons of salt in a ½ cup of warm water in a large bowl. Place the potatoes in the bowl and rub the outside of the potatoes until they are evenly coated.  Transfer the potatoes to a wire rack that is set inside the baking sheet.  Place the potatoes in the oven and bake for 45 minutes – 55 minutes, or until the center of the largest potato reaches 205 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. Remove the potatoes from the oven and brush them with the vegetable oil. Return the potatoes to the oven and continue to bake them for an additional 10 minutes.
  5. Remove the potatoes from the oven. Using a paring knife make one slice down the length of the potato, making sure not to cut all the way through.  Grab the potato on either end using a kitchen towel and gently squeeze so as to push the flesh of the potato upwards.
  6. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garnish with any toppings you desire.

Nutrition

Calories340
Fat5g
Sodium20mg
Vitamin C21mg
Carbohydrates67g
Fiber5g
Protein8g
Potassium1539mg
Sugar2g

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Why You Shouldn’t Microwave a Baked Potato

A microwave might seem like a fast way to “bake” a potato, but there are two reasons why it’s not a great idea.  First, microwaves heat foods very unevenly, so some parts of the potato might rapidly reach 205 degrees while others get to only 180 degrees. Second, rapidly heating a potato causes pressure to build and cell walls to burst, releasing starch molecules that glue together the broken cell walls. Resulting in a potato that isn’t light and fluffy, but rather dense and sticky.

Pros

Cons

Hints & Tips

Selecting the right potato:
Russets are ideal for baked potatoes.  They have a relatively low water content compared to other potatoes, which allow them to remain fluffy and airy on the inside.  Their thicker skins lend to a crispy exterior as well as providing protection for the inside of the potato as it cooks.

Storing Potatoes:
Potatoes should be stored in a cool, dry place, away from UV and bright lights. A pantry with a door is usually the best bet.  While they store longer than other produce, buy potatoes more often and as you need them.

Air Fryer Baked Potato:
Ari Fryers work like convection ovens, where hot air circulates around the food, cooking it from the outside in.  Because air fryers are similar to convection ovens they make for a wonderful baked potato.  However, due to their smaller capacity, they don’t allow for large batches, and steam can build up in the cavity when at capacity.  Air fryers also do not get as hot as convection ovens.

Pros

Cons

Multi Cooker Baked Potato:

Multi Cookers, don’t make for the best baked potato due to the fact they trap steam and moisture, resulting in a soggy potato exterior.  They do however significantly reduce the time it takes effectively cook a potato.  Multi cookers trap water pressure in the cavity, which drastically increases the temperature and significantly reduces the cooking time.  Multicookers can still be used for baked potatoes however such as our (Salt Brined Bakers), though they take a little more care and steps to execute than other methods.

Pros

Cons

Baked Potatoes on the Grill:

Baked Potatoes on the grill is probably the one time we recommend using foil.  The foil while it does trap steam, also protects the potato from the intense heat of the open flame of the grill.

Pros

Cons

Toaster Oven Baked Potatoes:

Toaster ovens can make a decent baked potato as they work very similarly to a standard oven.  They do however have some disadvantages. The door on most toaster ovens lack enough insulation and thus heat tends to escape the cavity quicker than that of a normal oven.  Also, their heating elements are not as powerful, so food typically takes longer to cook.  Due to their size the food is much closer to the heating element which can result in uneven cooking and even burning/scorching of the food in some instances.  The best way to cook a baked potato in a toaster oven is to par cook the potato in salted water beforehand until it is fork tender.  Then allow it to drain completely before finishing it in the toaster oven to crisp up the exterior.

Pros

Cons

FAQs

How to Make Baked Potatoes?
+
Adjust the rack to the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 450 F. Rinse the potatoes under cold water and gently scrub the outside of the potatoes with a vegetable brush to remove any excess dirt. Dry the potatoes and pierce lightly with a paring knife about 6-8…Continue Reading
Baked Potato Oven Temp
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Baked potatoes are best when cooked at a high and dry heat in your oven.  We recommend 450F until the internal temperature of the potato reaches 205F.Continue Reading
Cooking Baked Potatoes
+
Adjust the rack to the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 450 F. Rinse the potatoes under cold water and gently scrub the outside of the potatoes with a vegetable brush to remove any excess dirt. Dry the potatoes and pierce lightly with a paring knife about 6-8…Continue Reading
How to Make a Baked Potato in the Oven
+
Adjust the rack to the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 450 F. Rinse the potatoes under cold water and gently scrub the outside of the potatoes with a vegetable brush to remove any excess dirt. Dry the potatoes and pierce lightly with a paring knife about 6-8…Continue Reading
How to Cook a Baked Potato in the Oven
+
Adjust the rack to the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 450 F. Rinse the potatoes under cold water and gently scrub the outside of the potatoes with a vegetable brush to remove any excess dirt. Dry the potatoes and pierce lightly with a paring knife about 6-8…Continue Reading
How Long to Cook a Baked Potato in the Microwave
+
Typically, microwaves can cook a potato very rapidly in some cases less than 10 minutes.  This of course depends on the size of the potato you are starting out with. To gauge doneness, using a thermometer is still recommended as the internal temperature should be 205 F. For more information,…Continue Reading
How Long to Bake Potatoes in the Oven
+
The time it takes to bake a potato depends on a few factors, primarily the type of cooking method and the size of the potato.  This is why it’s better to gauge doneness by the internal temperature of 205 F. A meat thermometer or probe thermometer works great for this. …Continue Reading
Baked Potato Temperature
+
The internal temperature of a perfect baked potato should be 205 F.Continue Reading
How to Make a Baked Potato in the Microwave
+
A: The time it takes to bake a potato depends on a few factors, primarily the type of cooking method and the size of the potato.  Therefore, it’s better to gauge doneness by the internal temperature of 205 F. A meat thermometer or probe thermometer works great for this.  On…Continue Reading
How to Bake a Potato in the Microwave
+
The time it takes to bake a potato depends on a few factors, primarily the type of cooking method and the size of the potato.  Therefore, it’s better to gauge doneness by the internal temperature of 205 F. A meat thermometer or probe thermometer works great for this.  On average…Continue Reading
How Long to Microwave a Baked Potato?
+
Typically, microwaves can cook a potato very rapidly in some cases less than 10 minutes.  This of course depends on the size of the potato you are starting out with.  To gauge doneness, using a thermometer is still recommended as the internal temperature should be 205 F. For more information,…Continue Reading
How Long to Cook a Baked Potato
+
The time it takes to bake a potato depends on a few factors, primarily the type of cooking method and the size of the potato.  Therefore, it’s better to gauge doneness by the internal temperature of 205 F. A meat thermometer or probe thermometer works great for this.  On average…Continue Reading
How Long Does it Take to Bake a Potato
+
The time it takes to bake a potato depends on a few factors, primarily the type of cooking method and the size of the potato.  Therefore, it’s better to gauge doneness by the internal temperature of 205 F. A meat thermometer or probe thermometer works great for this.  On average…Continue Reading
How to Cook a Baked Potato
+
Adjust the rack to the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 450 F. Rinse the potatoes under cold water and gently scrub the outside of the potatoes with a vegetable brush to remove any excess dirt. Dry the potatoes and pierce lightly with a paring knife about 6-8…Continue Reading
How Long to Bake a Potato?
+
The time it takes to bake a potato depends on a few factors, primarily the type of cooking method and the size of the potato.  This is why its better to gauge doneness by the internal temperature of 205 F. A meat thermometer or probe thermometer works great for this. …Continue Reading

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