You can’t beat classic oven baked potatoes with a crispy skin and a hot, fluffy interior. It’s the perfect pairing for a juicy steak or chicken dinner. Or, add your favorite toppings and make a loaded baked potato that's a complete meal on it's on.
Making baked potatoes in the oven is relatively hands-off and we've got the scoop on keep them from becoming shriveled or soggy. Our no foil method is the ticket to perfect oven baked potatoes every time.
OTHER BAKED POTATO METHODS
There are so many other ways to make baked potatoes without an oven, like on the grill, in the crock pot and in a toaster oven. And, if you're in a hurry, you can bake potatoes in an air fryer, instant pot or microwave for faster, still delicious, results.
OVEN BAKED POTATO INGREDIENTS
Only 3 simple ingredients are needed to make these potatoes. See recipe card below for ingredient amounts.
- Potatoes: Russet potatoes are best for making oven baked potatoes as they are low in moisture and have a thick skin that crisps nicely. (If you have the smaller potato varieties on-hand, check out Andrea's crispy smashed roasted potatoes.)
- Oil: Use a high-heat cooking oil such as vegetable oil.
- Coarse Salt: Kosher salt or sea salt are great options. Don't skip the salt!
Enjoy this great recipe as a great addition to a full meal with these other recipes:
- Easy Chili – A hearty ground beef chili with beans, tomatoes and just the right amount of spice. Don't forget the sour cream!
- Chicken in White Wine Sauce - A savory chicken skillet meal the whole family will love.
- Parmesan Roasted Broccoli – An excellent accompaniment or topping for your potatoes.
- Granny Smith Apple Pie – This classic, easy apple pie is the perfect finish to your meal.
FULLY LOADED OVEN BAKED POTATOES
- Loaded Classic – Cheddar cheese, dollop of sour cream, green onions and bacon bits (optional).
- Loaded Chili – Easy chili, cheddar cheese, sour cream, green onions and/or avocado.
- Vegetable Medley - Top with roasted vegetables like broccoli, mushrooms, bell peppers, tomatoes and artichokes.
- Broccoli Cheddar – Parmesan roasted broccoli and melted cheddar cheese.
- Southwestern – Pico de gallo, corn, black beans, cheese, sour cream, cilantro, avocado (or guacamole).
- Lox - Smoked salmon, chives, cream cheese
- Fajita - Fajita chicken, bell peppers, onion, cilantro lime sour cream and shredded cheese
- Goat Cheese and Herbs - Mix together goat cheese, olive oil, parsley, shallots and lemon zest.
- Vegetable Medley - Top (or serve alongside) with your favorite roasted vegetables, with herbs, salt and a drizzle of olive oil. An excellent gluten free, vegetarian option.
If you'd like to print this recipe, scroll down to the recipe card where you can print the recipe or have it scaled to double or triple. You'll also find nutrition information.
TOOLS AND SUPPLIES NEEDED:
- cutting board
- paring knife
- basting brush
- baking sheet
PRE-HEAT YOUR OVEN: Preheat your oven to 450°F.
POKE HOLES: Poke potatoes 6-8 times with a fork to vent the potato.
ADD OIL AND SALT: Brush oil on the outside of each potato. Sprinkle the potato with coarse salt. Use your hands to make sure the salt is rubbed on and isn’t falling off.
BAKE FOR 45 MINUTES: Place potatoes on the middle rack on the oven or on a rack on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes. If you have not yet, brush the potatoes with oil and sprinkle them with salt.
CHECK SOFTNESS: Use a fork to poke your potatoes to check that they are soft in the center. If you feel firmness, bake for 10 more minutes, or until a fork will insert easily into the center of the potato. If it is still a little firm, cook for longer, checking every 5 minutes.
Refrigerate: Got leftovers? Baked potatoes can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 days. While the skin may not be as crispy, they will still taste just as good.
Freeze: You can freeze baked potatoes for up to a month. Before freezing, make sure your potatoes are fully cooled and don't contain any toppings. Wrap them in foil or plastic wrap, ensuring no part of the potato is exposed to air. Place in a sealed freezer bag without any excess air.
Defrosting: Thaw in the refrigerator overnight or, for faster results, thaw in the microwave.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Russet or Idaho potatoes are the best potatoes for baking because they are low in moisture. Avoid waxier, thin-skinned varieties such as red-skinned potatoes because they won’t have a fluffy center when baked.
We recommend baking potatoes at 450˚F to get the crispiest skin on the outside and the hot, fluffy texture inside.
Skip the foil! Wrapping potatoes in foil traps steam, which creates soggy potatoes, instead of crispy ones. We recommend baking them unwrapped on a baking sheet or directly on the oven rack, leaving space between them.
Cooking time will vary depending on the size of your potatoes. Start with 45 minutes at 450°F and check the softness by poking the potatoes with a fork. If your potatoes are still firm, bake for 10 more minutes, or until a fork will insert easily into the center of the potato.
Baking potatoes in the oven is the best method for getting crispy potato skin and a hot, pillowy center. You can use the same ingredients to make a microwave baked potato, however the skin will not be crispy and the insides may be slightly more dense.
Baked potatoes are the perfect blank canvas for any of your favorite toppings. The classic loaded baked potato usually includes butter, cheddar cheese, sour cream, bacon bits and green onions. However, you can add meat (chicken or chili, for example) or go totally vegetarian or vegan with your toppings.
For vegan baked potatoes, use a vegan butter or a high-heat cooking oil to prepare the outside of your potatoes.
Yes, however, sweet potatoes have a slightly different cooking time, depending on the size and type of potatoes. Also be sure to cook them over a baking sheet as some varieties make ooze sugary liquid while cooking.
- 4 large potatoes - Russet (also called Idaho)
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoon coarse salt
- Preheat the oven to 450°F and prep potatoes by scrubbing off any dirt, patting them dry and poking them 6-8 times with a fork to vent.
- Brush oil on the outside of each potato.
- Sprinkle with coarse salt. Use your hands to make sure the salt is rubbed in and not falling off.
- Place potatoes directly on middle rack of the oven or on a baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes.
- If you have not yet, brush potatoes with oil and sprinkle with salt. Then, bake for 10 more minutes or until a fork will insert easily into the center of the potato. If it is still a little firm, cook for longer, checking every 5 minutes.
- Remember, there is no need to wrap your potatoes in foil. Doing so, might actually make your potatoes soggy because the steam from the potato cannot escape. You'll be pleasantly surprised at how these potatoes turn out.
- Once cooked, while still hot, make a large slice down the center of the potato and fluff up the center of the potato a little. Add toppings that melt first, like butter or cheese. Then add some more toppings like sour cream, chives, bacon or any of your favorite toppings.