Baked potato skins are a well-loved appetizer that is easy to make.
Turn the skins of a potato into a cheesy favorite with a little garlic, butter, and cheese. And, of course, a sprinkling of bacon!
We love this version because it skips the deep fryer and they still come out crisp and delicious.
An All Time Favorite
- Skip the deep fryer, potato skins can be oven baked or made in the air fryer and have better flavor than deep fried.
- They’re budget friendly, keep the skins for snacking and save the insides for potato soup or mashed potatoes.
- Top them with cheese and bacon, or add some leftover pulled chicken or taco meat.
- Serve these crispy potato skins as an appetizer for game day, or movie night. Have sour cream ready for dipping!
- The leftover white center of the potato can be used for making mashed potatoes, or cottage pie.
Easy Ingredients for Potato Skins
Potatoes – Russet potatoes are the best option for this recipe because they hold up well in the oven, ensuring that they become crispy. Sweet potato skins are also a great option.
Cheese – This recipe calls for cheddar cheese, but try any cheese blend. Preshredded cheese works well in this recipe.
Bacon – Bacon adds a delicious smoky salty flavor.
How to Make Potato Skins
This is the best potato skins recipe, they come out crispy and full of flavor.
- Bake potatoes in the oven or air fryer. Allow to cool.
- Spoon out the flesh of the potato, leaving a shell.
- Brush the skins with butter and bake in the oven (as per the recipe below).
- Fill each potato with cheese and crumbled bacon and bake until bubbly.
Top with green onion and serve with sour cream or ranch dressing for dipping.
Our Fave Toppings
For variety, add some ground beef with taco seasoning. Or add some pulled pork, or even sloppy joe filling. Top them with scallions or cilantro.
Tips for Great Potato Skins
- Bake the potatoes in the microwave, air fryer or oven. Cool just until they’re easy to handle.
- Scoop out the flesh while the potatoes are still warm.
- Leave a ¼-inch shell; if it’s too thin, they won’t hold up.
- If you cook bacon (instead of using bacon bits) use the bacon fat in place of butter for extra flavor.
- Try other variations to use up leftovers. Turn these into loaded potato skins or try leftover chili, pulled pork, or even broccoli cheddar.
These are easy to make ahead.
- Freeze the empty shells on a baking pan. and then once frozen, stack them in a freezer bag. They’ll keep for several months in the freezer.
- Bake these easy potato skins starting right from frozen; no need to thaw them first!
More Delicious Appetizers
Did your family love these Crispy Oven Baked Potato Skins? If so, leave a comment and a rating below!
Crispy Oven Baked Potato Skins
- 6 small baking potatoes
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- ½ teaspoon parsley
- ¼ teaspoon seasoned salt
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- 3 slices cooked bacon finely chopped or 3 tablespoons bacon bits
- 2 tablespoons green onion or chives, sliced
- 1 cup cheddar cheese
- sour cream for serving
To Bake Potatoes
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Scrub the potatoes and poke each potato with a fork 5-6 times. Place them directly on the middle rack of the oven. Bake for 40-50 minutes or until tender when poked with a fork.
- Remove from the oven and let cool until the potatoes are easy to handle.
To Prepare Potato Skins
- Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise. Using a small spoon, scoop out the flesh leaving a ¼-inch thick shell.
- In a small bowl, combine melted butter, parsley, seasoned salt, and garlic powder. Brush the inside and outside of the potatoes with the butter mixture.
- Place potatoes cut side down in a baking dish or 9×13 inch pan. Bake for 15 minutes.
- Flip potatoes over and bake for an additional 5 minutes or until slightly browned and crisp.
- Fill each potato with cheese and bacon. Return to the oven for an additional 5-7 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Remove from the oven, top with green onion and serve with sour cream.
- Preheat the air fryer to 400°F.
- Bake the scrubbed and poked potatoes for 35-40 minutes or until tender. Scoop out the flesh as per the recipe above.
- Place the potato skins, brushed with butter mixture, cut side down in the air fryer basket. Air fry for 7-9 minutes or until crisp, flipping halfway.
- Sprinkle cheese and bacon bits over the potato skins. Return to the air fryer and cook for an additional 2 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.
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Oven temp for crisping the hollowed out potatoes for 15 min cut side down?
I would keep the oven at 425°F Oscar. Enjoy!
I made these for Super Bowl and they were just perfect. When (and I will) make it again I will be careful not to get too much butter mixture on the inside. I used a silicon brush and I think got a tad too much butter on the inside. Will purchase a different brush on Amazon today for this. My husband said he really enjoyed them – great job!
Made exactly as described crispy finger licking good
We used different sauces as well as the sour ream for toppings~ the star of the game
Thanks for the awesome recipe, but just wondering what would be the best way to store leftovers?
Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days V. They’ll keep for several months in the freezer. Bake these easy potato skins starting right from frozen, no need to defrost first!
Very Tasty! I used a 1/2 tsp of spicy tomato sauce, peppers in oil and spices, Italian cheeses and they were delicious! The baking/seasoning the skins prior to stuffing, is a game changer. Thanks for a great recipe :)
Is the bacon fried first, before putting it in the potatoes? (Re potato skins)
Yes, the bacon is cooked.
Super yummy ! I will make these again
Awesome recipe they came out so delicious my whole family loved them, I will definitely be making these again soon, I highly recommend this recipe for anyone while loves cheese, bacon, and potatoes! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe, it is out of the ballpark.
So happy it was a hit for you, Olivia!
Nice recipe. Questions – if I make the shells for freezing, do I brush them and crisp them in the oven first, and then freeze? When I want to use them right from the freezer, how long would they need to bake them when “loaded” at since they’re frozen? Lastly, can you “load” them with the cheese, bacon, green onion (hold off on the sour cream of course) and then freeze them?
I freeze them without baking first but if you’re going to add all of the toppings, you can make the recipe up to step 4 and then cool the skins. Once cooled, fill them with your toppings and freeze. They will need an extra 5 minutes or so.
Me and my girls(23 & 26) absolutely LOVE LOVE the flavoring of these potato skins!!! They are 1000 percent better than TGI Friday’s potato skins. Thank you for a marvelous recipe SWP :)
I’ve made potato skins a gazillion times at work where there was a deep fryer but never at home where there isn’t a deep fryer. I was given a free bag of potatoes at the grocery store for Christmas and there is no way I can use them before going bad so I thought I’d make potato skins. I made the NYTimes recipe first with one potato and I was underwhelmed. I had baked quite a few to freeze so seeings as I had everything out I decided to try this recipe with another potato. I didn’t have any parsley or garlic powder but aside from that I made it exactly as written and they were excellent!! Thank you so much!
So happy that you enjoyed this recipe, Patti!
Made these today and they were delicious!
These are SO good. We will definitely be making them again.
Made these today for the first time and they were great. I have always loved potato skins but never could get them to taste the same or be as crispy and I would get at the restaurants, but these were the best I have ever eaten. Followed the recipe to the tee. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe with us.
You’re very welcome Paul! So glad you love these potato skins!
These are crispy and delicious. I bake my potatoes ahead of time which makes for an easy prep at dinnertime. My husband and I love them!
Can you make potato skins ahead of time?
Hi Karyn, you can prep these ahead of time and pop them in the oven when ready to crisp them up and serve!
These were a huge hit with my family! I made them with baby potatoes so they’d be bite size. Will definitely be making these again!
This recipe does not say how long to initially cook the potatoes. It jumps to after they have been baked. Am I missing something?
The recipe asks for 5 baked potatoes, with a link to the baked potato recipe. The recipe starts with already baked and cooled potatoes. Enjoy KJG!
Hello, Holly. Making this recipe today…fresh or dried parsley? I bought fresh, but second guessed when I saw the amount used in recipe. Have to add…this is a great gluten free addition to my recipes.
Both will work well in this recipe Susan. Enjoy!
Recipe was fine except it missed the step about baking them before so now I have already cut my potatoes and now I don’t know what to do….. when putting a recipe online you need to make sure you include ALL of the directions.
Erinn, the ingredients ask for baked potatoes. You could wrap them in foil and bake them, then cool for the recipe.