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How To Make a Baked Potato

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How to make a baked potato with instructions for the oven, air fryer, microwave and crock pot! Enjoy perfect baked potatoes, no matter how you prefer to cook them.

Baked potatoes are one of those classic sides that pair perfectly with a variety of main dishes, especially steak. Whenever Parmesan Crusted Steak is on the menu, there’s always going to be baked potatoes to go along with it! Originally, baked potatoes were commonly prepared in the oven, but now there are so many ways to prepare them. In addition, there are endless ways to inncorporate baked potatoes into an actual meal which is a great way to use up leftover baked potatoes, but more on that in a minute…

Making baked potatoes can take anywhere from 10 minutes to 1 hour depending on which kitchen appliance you decide to use, but one thing is for sure: no matter what appliance you decide on using you can still easily achieve a fluffy, delicious potato! Top that potato with some butter, a dollop of sour cream, cheese, bacon crumbles, salt, pepper, and some chopped green onions, and oh man, you will be in heaven! Speaking of heaven, this Loaded Baked Potato Casserole is like heaven on earth! It is so creamy and delicious and loaded with so much goodness which is why it is a perfect side to any meal.

Baked Potato Ingredients

  • Butter – using a tablespoon or two of butter on the potato will enhance the flavor of the potato.
  • Sour Cream – another common topping is sour cream, or if you are looking for a little healthier option give a similar taste, you can also use unflavored greek yogurt or cottage cheese.
  • Cheese – you can always stop after the butter and sour cream, or you can go all out and make a “loaded potato” with cheese and bacon crumbles. You can really use any kind of cheese you would prefer, though cheddar or Colby jack seem to be the most common choices for baked potatoes. With whichever cheese you choose, the best route is always using a block of cheese and shredding it yourself instead of buying the packaged cheese. The cheese will melt so much better resulting in a better taste!
  • Green Onion – while this is typically used for a garnish in most recipes, for baked potatoes it adds a nice pop of flavor in addition to making a pretty garnish.

Additional topping ideas:

Get creative and use those leftovers in the fridge to top your baked potatoes. Leftover Slow Cooker Pulled Pork or Instant Pot Pulled Pork are delicious options.

Chili! If you have leftover chili in the fridge, try making a chili topped baked potato. Our Slow Cooker Chili works perfect for this, as dow our Low Carb Beanless Chili.

Another incredibly delicious option for topping baked potatoes is Picco De Gallo – our Easy Pico De Gallo gives a baked potato tons of fresh flavor.

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How to make a baked potato in the oven:

Making a baked potato in the oven is the most common method. The key to a perfect baked potato in the oven is to brush the potato with olive oil or melted butter along with the sea salt. We do not recommend wrapping each potato in foil, as you’ll end up with more of a steamed potato than a baked potato with a crispy skin.

How to make a baked potato in the air fryer:

Making a baked potato in the air fryer reduces the time by about 15-30 minutes compared to baking them. The method is simply – wash your potatoes and pat them dry. Use a fork to poke holes in each side of the potato. Lightly brush the potato with olive oil or melted butter and sprinkle with sea salt. You’ll place the potatoes in your air fryer at 390 for about 30-45 minutes. Make sure to flip the potatoes halfway through. Please note that each air fryer could produce varying results, so be sure to check for doneness.

How to make a baked potato in the slow cooker:

Did you know that you can make baked potatoes in the slow cooker? The process is similar, except you’ll want to wrap each potato in foil, then place in the slow cooker on high for 4.5-5 hours or 7.5-8 hours on low.

How to make a baked potato in the microwave:

While you can make a baked potato in the microwave, it is not our preferred method. They just don’t taste as good, but if you are short on time, the microwave works. Cook time in the microwave will be about 10 minutes — 5 minutes on each side.

How to Host a Baked Potato Bar:

If you are hosting a party or family dinner, a baked potato bar is a fun idea to feed a crowd! Make sure to have a variety of toppings on hand including butter, sour cream, a variety of shredded cheese, bacon crumbles, diced ham, green onion, cheese sauce, steamed broccoli, chili, pulled pork, black beans and pico de Gallo. There are so many delicious options!

Bake your potatoes ahead of time and cut a slit down the center of the potato before wrapping them tightly in foil. That way they are ready for your guests to fill when they remove the foil. Altneratively, you could also keep the potatoes warm by putting them in the slow cooker on the “warm” setting.

What to serve with baked potatoes:

As mentioned earlier, these baked potatoes are so perfect with our Parmesan Crusted Steak or even our Baked Ranch Chicken.

If you have extra baked potatoes, try using them in this Loaded Baked Potato Salad or our Ultimate Loaded Baked Potato Soup! Both are delicious options.

We hope you find this guide for How to make Baked Potatoes helpful! With so many cooking methods, and so little prep-time involved, baked potatoes are the perfect side dish or even main dish if you’re like me and love a good baked potato on a busy weeknight! Enjoy!

Looking for other delicious potato recipes to make as a side dish? Here are some of our recommendations:

How To Make a Baked Potato

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Prep Time: 2mn
Cook Time: 1hr
Total Time: 1hr 2mn

INGREDIENTS

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TO SERVE:

  • salted butter
  • sour cream
  • shredded cheddar
  • chives
  • Freshly ground salt & pepper

OVEN DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  2. Wash your potatoes and pat dry. Using a fork, poke holes in each side of the potato.
  3. Sprinkle on the salt and place them directly on the oven rack. Cook for 60-70 minutes until the outside is crispy and the inside is soft when you stick a fork in.
  4. Lightly brush each potato with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
  5. Place in the oven and bake 45-60 minutes (time will vary per oven and on the size of each potato).
  6. Potatoes are done when you can easily pierce them with a fork.

AIR FRYER DIRECTIONS

  1. Wash potatoes and pat dry. Using a fork, poke holes in each side of the potato.
  2. Lightly brush each potato with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
  3. Place in the air fryer basket about an inch apart. Air fry at 390 degrees for 30-45 minutes (cooking time will vary per air fryer). Make sure to flip the potatoes halfway through the cooking time.
  4. Potatoes are done when you can easily pierce it with a fork.

SLOW COOKER DIRECTIONS

  1. Wash potatoes and pat dry. Using a fork, poke holes in each side of the potato.
  2. Lightly brush each potato with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
  3. Wrap each potato tightly with aluminum foil. Place the potatoes in the slow cooker, cover, and cook on high for 4 1/2 to 5 hours or on low for 7 1/2 to 8 hours.
  4. Potatoes are done when you can easily pierce it with a fork.

MICROWAVE DIRECTIONS

  1. Wash potatoes and pat dry. Using a fork, poke holes in each side of the potato.
  2. Place the potato on a microwave safe plate. Cook on full power for 5 minutes. Flip over the potato and cook for 5 more minutes or until you can easily pierce it with a fork.
Servings: 2+
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