Friday Recipe Exchange: Twice-Baked Potatoes

jeffreyw loaded baked potato

(Jeffrey W’s Loaded Baked Potato)

From our Food Goddess, TaMara:

I think potatoes are one of my favorite foods. So many things you can do with them. I’ve covered a lot of recipes for potatoes over the years, but there always seems to be more. Tonight I wanted to cover a simple recipe, but one that is oh so good. Time consuming, but you can make part of it ahead of time and assemble before the final baking.

For some less laborious baked potatoes, let’s start with some easier, foolproof recipes:

Quick and easy baked potatoes, instructions here. I love these because by splitting the potato you get a nice crispy roasted flavor.

Smashed potatoes are fun, flavorful and a great side for a dinner party. We have two good recipes, here and here.

And if you missed it, this week’s Dinner Menu – Beef and Pepper Subs with Walnut Pear Salad, can be found here.

What’s on the weekend agenda? Any fun pre-Halloween plans like corn mazes or pumpkin hay rides? Hit the comments, and don’t forget to share your favorite potato (or other) recipes. And what do you think, should we tackle pumpkin recipes next week?

Tonight I’m featuring two recipes:

Twice Baked Potatoes
(pictured at the top of the post)

These potatoes are packed full and could be a complete meal with a nice salad. You can bake the potatoes a day ahead, refrigerate them and then prep quickly before dinner.

5 large baking potatoes, washed and scrubbed
1 tbsp olive oil
1 3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
4 ounces bacon, chopped
3 green onions, chopped (reserve 2 tbsps of chopped greens for garnish)
4 oz shredded sharp cheddar cheese
4 oz shredded Jack cheese
8 oz sour cream
4 tbsp butter, at room temperature
Baking sheet

Additional Ideas to make a meal: Fresh chopped broccoli, diced mushrooms to mix in

Preheat the oven to 400°.

Rub the potatoes with the olive oil and salt. Place in the oven, pierce each with a fork and bake until fork-tender, 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes. Let the potatoes sit until cool enough to handle (or refrigerate for preparation the next day)

Cook the bacon in a medium skillet over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp and the fat is rendered, 5 to 6 minutes. Add chopped onions and cook until tender-crisp, 1-2 minutes. Drain bacon and onions on paper towels.

Cut ONE potato in half and scoop out completely. Place the pulp in a large bowl.

Cut the top quarter from each of the remaining FOUR potatoes and using a spoon, scoop the pulp from the potatoes into the bowl, leaving a 1/4-inch layer of pulp on the skin. Season the inside of the shells with salt and pepper and place the potato shells on the baking sheet.

Using a handheld masher, mash the potato pulp until smooth. Add 2 oz of each cheese, the sour cream, butter, bacon, cooked onions, salt, pepper and mix well with a fork. Spoon the potato mixture back into the potato shells, top with the remaining cheese and bake at 400 degrees until hot and the cheese is melted, about 15 minutes. Serve hot and garnish with remaining onion greens.

All those leftover potato tops can be used in soup or other recipe.

How about changing things up with the next recipe?

jeffreyw twice baked sweet potatoes

(Photo by JeffreyW)

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes

4 sweet potatoes, washed scrubbed
4 tbsp brown sugar
4 tbsp butter, room temperature
2 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground ginger
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped pecans
Baking sheet

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Pierce potatoes with a fork and place sweet potatoes on sheet tray and bake for 1 hour or until soft. Remove from oven and let stand until cool enough to handle (again you can make a day ahead and refrigerate at this point).

Cut the top quarter from each of the potatoes and using a spoon, scoop the pulp from the potatoes into the bowl, leaving a 1/4-inch layer of pulp on the skin. Season the inside of the shells with salt and brown sugar and place the potato shells on the baking sheet.

In another bowl, add brown sugar, butter and cream cheese and the all of the spices and mash with a fork or rubber spatula. Add the butter and cream cheese mixture to the sweet potato flesh and mash completely. Add the filling back to the potato skins and place on a half sheet tray. Sprinkle tops with brown sugar and chopped pecans. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

61 replies
  1. 1
    MomSense says:

    Looks amazing! I am going to try the twice baked potatoes.

  2. 2
    The Pale Scot says:

    Does anyone have a good apple cobbler recipe? Apples in season, family coming over, good excuse to make desserts that don’t involve pie crusts.

  3. 3
    Joseph Nobles says:

    Baked potatoes work well in a crock pot, too. Oil them and salt them and wrap them in foil. Takes 4-6 hours. Do a whole bunch without turning on a huge oven.

  4. 4
    Yatsuno says:

    SPUTZIM!!! The saviour of Irish bellies since they brough the funny tuber over from Peru. I got lots of good ways of cooking them and I’m working on a frying technique that is just the potato, salt, and pepper, but get them really crunchy and delicious. I’m still futzing around with it though so it’s not quite ready for primetime.

    In other moment of awesome: found a dead cockroach under my desk at work today. Plus both my computer and my phone died at the same time for different reasons. Drink, I needs it.

  5. 5
    👾 Martin says:

    @Joseph Nobles: Huh. Why have I never thought of that? Great idea.

  6. 6
    Redshirt says:

    Potato pizza would work, right? Thin potatoes as a topping, maybe with onion and jalapeno and feta.

  7. 7
    Comrade Mary says:

    Looks AMAZING and — bwah! I’m just trying out a pure potato diet to kickstart some weight loss, so I’ve already eaten 3 pounds of potatoes today (steamed with a bit of pepper and balsamic, and roasted with a little olive oil.)

    I’ll pencil these in for next week :-)

  8. 8
    NotMax says:

    @Joseph Nobles

    Piercing them a few times with a fork and microwaving them while still barely damp from rinsing is spiffy, too.

  9. 9
    Yatsuno says:

    @Redshirt: Serious Pie has a Yukon gold potato pizza that is divine. You do have to precook the spuds but that’s not too complicated.

  10. 10
    Comrade Mary says:

    Oh, and my mother always made those split baked potatoes, too. I don’t know how old I was before I had a “real” baked potato, but on my own, I’ll go for the extra-crispy every time.

  11. 11
    raven says:

    Have you ever had rosin baked potatoes? Cooking potatoes in rosin produces the finest baked potato you will ever eat. The extreme heat of molten rosin produces a remarkably light and fluffy potato.”

  12. 12
    Comrade Mary says:

    @Redshirt: We have pizza places in Toronto that use crinkle-cut french fries as the potato topping (sacrilege!) but as Yutsy says, pre-cooking thinly sliced potatoes will do. Add rosemary, skip the tomato sauce.

    This variation uses potatoes as the base for a pizza.

  13. 13
    Mike in NC says:

    For dinner we had baked potatoes with Brussel sprouts and a fine meatloaf with apricot sauce. Now washing it down with a vodka martini. TGIF.

  14. 14
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    @Comrade Mary: I’m betting JeffreyW will have a photo of his attempt of that pizza on the blog in a week.

  15. 15
    Disco says:

    My mom used to make the best twice-baked I’ve ever had. I attempted them for the first time last Christmas and they were just OK. It’s definitely some work. Mine got dried out. (a) Make sure you don’t bake them too long the second time. and (b) add more cream cheese than what’s in the recipe, and add =butter too. Not just because they both taste good, but they keep the potatoes moist.

    Do it right and they’re awesome.

  16. 16
    Yatsuno says:

    @Comrade Mary: @TaMara (BHF): Sigh. If you just want poutine then make the damn poutine. Don’t get cute about it.

  17. 17
    NotMax says:

    A favorite potato recipe:

    Easiest Latkes Ever

    2 eggs
    ½ small onion
    1 tsp,. salt
    2 tbl. flour
    ½ tsp. baking powder
    3 cups peeled, cubed raw potatoes

    Put eggs, onion, salt, flour, baking powder into a blender. Ass about ½potato cubes. Cover and blend on Grate speed approx. 1 minute.

    Add remaining potatoes and blend at Chop (low) speed until potatoes are a medium granular consistency, approx 1 minute or less.

    Pour or spoon onto a hot, greased griddle or pan and cook just as you would pancakes.

    Makes around twelve 3-inch pancakes.

    Note 1: Do NOT use a food processor – it mushes the ingredients into a slurry.

    Note 2: When in a hurry, have had excellent results using rinsed and patted dry canned whole potatoes, sliced into halves (into quarters for the big ones) rather than peeling and cubing fresh spuds.

  18. 18
    Comrade Mary says:

    @Yatsuno: Oh, honey, do you dare follow this link?

  19. 19
    SFAW says:

    My mother-in-law and at least one of my sisters-in-law makes twice-baked. The only bad thing about it is I have to double-dose on my cardiac meds beforehand. Outside of that, they are all kinds of awesome.

    In other words, do yourself the favor of trying them.

  20. 20
    Comrade Mary says:

    Oh, no, THIS is a better link.

    I wanted to like [the abomination]. I really did. And to Pizza Hut’s credit, I did not hate it. I would absolutely never order it again, but it could have been so much worse.

  21. 21
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    @Yatsuno: LOL. Had to look that up.

    You’d appreciate what’s going on here right now….I’m trying to work and my neighbor’s dog is visiting, she’s not small, german shepherd sized and she’s sprawled across me with her head on my keyboard. NOT getting a lot of work done.

  22. 22
    Churchlady says:

    @Joseph Nobles: How to bake chicken in a crock pot: Slice an onion, lay it on the bottom of the crock. Put in 3-4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts seasoned with garlic powder, onion powder, seasoning salt (i.e. Lawry’s.) Cover, cook on LOW for 4 hours – no more. Voila! Baked chicken. It’s great in hot weather for using in salads or any time for cubed baked chicken.

  23. 23
    normal liberal says:

    Okay, I followed the link and was more or less on board until I got to the note about the extreme flammability of boiling rosin. Yikes. And I’m one of those brave souls who devours the potato skin, which seems ill-advised with this method. (Granted, my last direct experience with rosin was when I gave up ballet and the viola in junior high.)

    Cook’s Illustrated suggests baking potatoes buried in a bed of salt (which, like the rosin, can be cooled and reused for this purpose), with what are described as similar results. It lacks the mad scientist element, but also the risk of burning down the house. They also suggest baking a garlic bulb in the salt and using the results to season your potatoes.

  24. 24
    Comrade Mary says:

    @TaMara (BHF): I’m so sorry that you have been attacked by a large, snuggly dog.

    Here, have some poutine.

  25. 25
    raven says:

    @normal liberal: I report, you decide.

  26. 26
    Yatsuno says:

    @Comrade Mary: And here I thought my native country was just mad from the Harper interregnum. I would kill for a Quebec sales report. That would be some high comedy there.

    (And yes they eat pizza in France. And like it.)

  27. 27
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    Oh look, crazy people who threatened to move business from Colorado if we passed gun legislation are still here and customers are turning on them.

  28. 28
    normal liberal says:

    And I feel richer for knowing that this technique exists. (Although I have to wonder how you came across this in the first place, but I don’t wish to pry.)

    Perhaps if I find myself in possession of industrial quantities of rosin, potatoes, a well-ventilated cooking venue and a gas mask, I might just try it.

    But I doubt it.

  29. 29
    Redshirt says:

    The potato is from South Central America. So too the tomato. And corn.

    All the cool food in the World came from Peru, basically.

  30. 30
    raven says:

    @normal liberal: I read about this years ago in the “Men Cooking” by Sunset. It also had this method:

    Clinching — cooking meat directly on hot coals — is one of the more unusual cooking methods grilling guru Adam Perry Lang explores in his latest cookbook, “Charred & Scruffed: Bold New Techniques for Explosive Flavor On and Off the Grill” (Artisan, May 2012, $24.95).

    Read more:

  31. 31
  32. 32
    Honus says:

    OT, but Kershaw and Puig don’t look very sensational against the NL Central champs tonight.

  33. 33
    raven says:

    And in other wonderful, crazy cookbooks

    Bull Cook and Authentic Historical Recipes and Practices

    “”Sauerbraten was invented by Charlemagne…Henry the VIII actually never amounted to anything and would not have made a good ditchdigger…In 1212 St. Francis went to the Holy Land. When he came back he taught his followers a simple way to poach eggs…Pate De Foie Gras was first made for Joan of Arc by one of her army cooks …” ”
    This has “The Norwegian Method of Getting Rid of Rats” and “How To Survive in Case of a Hyrdogen Bomb Attack”

  34. 34
    normal liberal says:

    I can’t tell from the Amazon listing, but I am confident that the Norwegian method for rat disposal involves soaking the rats in lye and feeding them to unsuspecting tourists, possibly with a side of pickled herring to disguise the taste.

    It flows from Terry Pratchett’s explanation of old traditional recipes using inedible sheep parts.

  35. 35
    Yatsuno says:


    Sauerbraten was invented by Charlemagne

    I so love this myth. There is no culinary antrpological evidence that Sauerbraten existed before spices were more common for ordinary people in the later Middle Ages. It’s a nice bit of mythmaking though.

  36. 36
  37. 37
    MomSense says:

    We oven roast potatoes with olive oil, salt, pepper, lots of garlic and fresh lemon juice.

  38. 38
    MomSense says:


    I’m on this super low cholesterol, vegetarian diet so I’ve decided that every month I am going to just enjoy and eat the good (bad) stuff.

  39. 39
    Yatsuno says:

    @jeffreyw: WANT!!!

  40. 40
    Yatsuno says:

    @TaMara (BHF): PUPPEH!!! That was my life at the ranch. Between two border collies and two Dachshunds, it was a great time to be sure.

  41. 41
    NotMax says:


    Ash Bread is a snap to make.

  42. 42
    Joseph Nobles says:

    @Churchlady: I work ten-hour shifts here at night, so it’s hard to do crockpots on nights I work. However, I have boned chicken breasts to cook and was thinking about schlepping the crockpot here to work Saturday night and cranking it up. I think I may just do a variation of that! Thanks!

  43. 43
    cckids says:

    My daughter makes a twice-baked potato casserole that is just divine, it works great for large groups or if you have to travel with the dish at the holidays. Also can make in advance. Yum.

  44. 44

    I vote yes for pumpkin recipes.  I made these mini pumpkin pies for a work potluck one year and they were a huge hit.  I made enough for G to take a batch to work for his guys and they loved them, too.

  45. 45
    NotMax says:


    A light and frothy pumpkin mousse makes a nice change from heavy pumpkin pie.

  46. 46
    Anne Laurie says:


    All the cool food in the World came from Peru, basically.

    Don’t forget chocolate, which is from the “New” World if not quite Peru.

    But then again: Mushrooms, and also garlic. Both of them available to our Eurasian ancestors, fortunately!

  47. 47
    Redshirt says:

    @Anne Laurie: Given that the tomato is from the Americas, and pasta is from Asia, one wonders what “real” Italian food is.

    I think it’s all fish based dishes, like a fish casserole. Real low class shit.

  48. 48
    handy says:

    Oh well Doyers maybe next year *snicker*

    Actually, the sucky part about the St. Louis Cardinals winning tonight is that it’s the St-Freaking Louis Cardinals in the WS again. For the love of Gaia, National League, can’t you find any other team not named Giants or Cardinals. I’d nominate the Cubs but…well…you know…

  49. 49
    Cacti says:


    Oh well Doyers maybe next year *snicker*

    The Dodgers and the Pirates should both be contenders again next year.

  50. 50
    Violet says:

    Easy to make, fancy-looking sweet potato dish:

    Peel sweet potatoes, cut in pieces, boil until soft. Mash with butter. Spread in baking dish.

    While sweet potatoes are cooking, microwave bacon until crispy. Let cool and crumble.

    Top mashed sweet potatoes with crumbed bacon and crumbled blue cheese. Bake in oven (350-375, depending on oven) until cheese is bubbly.

    Use way more sweet potatoes than you think you need. They seem to mash down and there isn’t as much to fill the baking dish as you think you’ll have.

  51. 51
    wasabi gasp says:

    @Redshirt: Bar in New Haven, CT does a mashed potato topping. I’ve had it a couple of times and it’s delicious. If a pizza genie were to appear and grant me any pie at all, that’d be my wish.

  52. 52
    Anne Laurie says:


    Given that the tomato is from the Americas, and pasta is from Asia, one wonders what “real” Italian food is.

    Whole-grain bread (as in ‘bread & circuses’), with olives, dried fish & garum for the lucky (prosperous). Grapes, greens & maybe some tree fruits for farmers, chicken/pork/beef for the rich.

    Still arguably better than our Northern ancestors, who basically lived on pease porridge (‘nine days old’), barley, sourkraut, the less attractive dairy products, and whatever they could scavenge on the shorelines!

  53. 53
    scav says:

    @Redshirt: I think by that logic there is no American cuisine whatsoever, except what the first nations came up with, pre contact and, if we’re really fussy, minus whatever foodstuffs traveled up from the South (corn at the very least).

  54. 54
    NotMax says:


    Whipping in some orange juice and some maple syrup will help keeping them from settling.

  55. 55
    PurpleGirl says:

    @raven: Sunset publishes some neat books. I have a few volumes in various crafts.

  56. 56

    You mentioned pumpkin!
    So I just have to share this discovery.
    It was Thanksgiving here last weekend, so I made the King Arthur’s Flour pumpkin pie recipe and it was absolutely the best flavoured pumpkin pie I have ever eaten (and I forgot the ginger.)
    The key, I think, was their recommendation to mix up the pumpkin mixture (except for the eggs), and then let the bowl sit for an hour or more, to let the flavours meld.
    Looking forward to trying the potatoes — Chef Michael also has this recipe and it looks very easy:

  57. 57
    HeartlandLiberal says:

    Most people do not realize how diverse varieties of potatoes still are in South America, from whence they came. Over 4,000 varieties of native potatoes grow in the Andean highlands of Peru, Boliva, and Ecuador.

    I remembered reading a great article in Smithsonian last year, and found in on line. Check it out, not the picture of the colored varieties.

    One of the successes in our garden this year was the three rows of Pontiac, Yukon, and Red potatoes I grew. I harvested nearly 60 lbs of small, think skinned, and absolutely delicious potatoes. I picked out all that had any damage or evidence they would not keep, and I still have half of them in a plastic bin on floor in the kitchen next tot he fridge. We are happily working our way through them. I have been harvesting fall crop lettuces and kales and Asian greens, and making great salads, which go wonderfully with French fries made from homemade potatoes. One of my favorite lunch meals.

  58. 58
    cmorenc says:

    The twice-baked potato recipe sounds delicious, all except for the part about the green onions. I cannot STAND the flavor of onions, not no way, no how ! To my taste buds, the flavor onions added to a recipe make anything taste like the food it is mixed with got spoiled, and the chef tried to hide it by washing the food in ammonia combined with armpit sweat. In short, the sharp flavor others enjoy I experience several hundred times too strong, the way some folks cannot tolerate even the tiniest hint of heat whatsoever in peppers. I CAN however tolerate onions in something like a stew or sauce that’s cooked and simmered long enough to essentialy destroy whatever chemical element it is in onions that I cannot tolerate.

  59. 59
    shelly says:

    Yup, the worst thing you can do is roast them in aluminum foil. Soggy, soggy

  60. 60
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    @cmorenc: I’d say you are a super taster. Balsamic vinegar is my kryptonite..same response if even a drop is added to a dish.

  61. 61
    janut says:

    I was looking something up in The Joy of Cooking a few years back. On the opposite page was directions for baked potatoes. Being very Irish, I had never thought to look, as I thought I knew. I did not. After you’ve washed and oiled and pierced them, they say to lay your potatoes on a bed of kosher salt and bake them. The salt draws out all the impurities and extra water. You will get the most pure white, flakey, delicious baked potatoes you’ve ever had. The salt turns dark brown where the water has exited the spud.

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