Crisp Pan-Fried Potatoes


Makes: 4 servings

Time: About 45 minutes

This technique produces better results than conventional Home Fries, but you need two things: waxy potatoes, because starchy ones will fall apart before they get crisp; and patience.

Other vegetables you can use: beets, rutabagas, parsnips, or carrots, though they won’t get quite as crisp. Recipe from How to Cook Everything.

About 2 pounds waxy potatoes

1/4 cup peanut, extra virgin olive, or neutral oil, like grapeseed or corn, or more as needed

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Peel the potatoes if you like (it isn’t at all necessary since waxy potatoes have thin, delicious skins) and cut them into 1-inch chunks. Put the oil in a large skillet, preferably nonstick or cast-iron, over medium heat. When hot, add the potatoes and cook, undisturbed, until they begin to brown around the edges and release from the pan, about 10 minutes.

2. Continue cooking, turning to brown all the sides without stirring too often. (This is the part that takes the most patience.) Add more oil if needed to prevent the potatoes from sticking. And if they are browning too fast, turn the heat down just a tad. They’ll take up to 20 minutes longer to cook.

3. When the potatoes are tender and golden, turn the heat up a bit to crisp them up. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Taste, adjust the seasoning, and serve hot or at room temperature.


Posted in Produce, Recipes


  1. jay_mulligan said...

    Hey Mark: Which varieties are considered ‘waxy’?

  2. tsuji said...

    @jay red or fingerling potatoes are waxy.

  3. may1girl said...

    Is it possible to crisp fry starchy potatoes at all? Even if you let them fall apart.

  4. frk040 said...

    Just boil the potatoes, then fry. Much, much, much easier and they taste great

  5. richurbn said...

    Yes, you might boil potatoes before frying them. Red Bliss potatoes are great. Also, maybe add onions and caramelize.

  6. vadoug said...

    Microwaving and then frying works pretty well with Russet Burbanks, at least if you use a nonstick skillet. But I get the best results (and highest skin-to-potato ratios) from small white potatoes.

  7. frk040 said...

    Important thing is moisture content of the potato – red, yukon, or white – make sure they’re fresh and glossy. Nothing worse than dry homefries.

  8. ashley hawkins said...

    Just made this for a Sunday taco breakfast. I have tried so many pan-fried potato recipes before — this one was PERFECT. Thank you.

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