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Baked Potato Poppers

These crispy potato puffs unabashedly copy, but far surpass, the commercial brand found in the frozen section of your supermarket. Baked rather than deep-fried, they are perfectly crispy on the outside and meltingly soft on the inside. They will fool even the most die-hard tater tot fiend. You can't stop eating them. Panko bread crumbs are essential to the dish's success, providing the crispiest crunch.Excerpted from "Mad Hungry Cravings" by Lucinda Scala Quinn, Artisan Books, March 2013.

  • Yield: Makes 24 poppers
Baked Potato Poppers

Photography: Jonathan Lovekin

Source: Mad Hungry


  • 2 large russet (baking) potatoes (about 1 pound)
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Ketchup


  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees, with a rack in the middle position. Put a rimmed baking sheet in the oven to preheat. Peel and grate the potatoes, and transfer to a large bowl. Cover with boiling water by two inches. Let stand for 10 minutes.

  2. Drain the potatoes in a colander and rinse thoroughly with cold water. Squeeze the potatoes to remove excess moisture, and transfer back to the large bowl. Add the flour, cornstarch, salt, pepper, and egg yolk and fold into the potatoes.

  3. Spread the panko on another rimmed baking sheet. With wet hands, pinch off tablespoons of the potato mixture, form into balls, and coat with the panko crumbs.

  4. Carefully remove the hot baking sheet from the oven and coat with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Quickly transfer the poppers to the baking sheet and drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Bake for about 30 minutes, flipping once, until golden brown and crispy. Serve with ketchup.

Reviews (7)

  • clotilde1013 3 Feb, 2013

    I made these read all the reviews before I made them added what everyone said the cheese was a great idea they were ok mine didn't brown up all round it but they were crunchy mine were a little dry I think i squeezed to much water out of them when I mixed them they were very dry so i added some sour cream to make them moist again before I rolled them in the panko crumbs would I make them again maybe

  • terales 14 Mar, 2012

    I loved these little poppers! I made this recipe as written, except that after squeezing out the potatoes by hand, I did what LSQ did and squeezed them out one more time by using a kitchen towel. I didn't have any problems with them being mushy. What I will do different next time is add more salt to the potato mixture -- potatoes need a lot of salt -- and I'm going to try adding either fresh chives or dried rosemary for a bit more flavor. I will definitely make these again!

  • danpkelly 12 Feb, 2012

    If you follow the directions as written, they'll turn out great. I loved them. I wonder if some that didn't have luck and said they were undercooked maybe made them too big? Whatever the case, they were tasty.

  • msang 4 Feb, 2012

    Read the reviews and made some changes... added parm cheese, garlic pwd, onion pwd and some pepper jack cheese.. extra salt and used and egg white instead of yolk. Wow, super yummy. My family loved them.

  • ssnyder324 3 Feb, 2012

    This has been the only disappointment I've ever had with an LSQ recipe. I watched the episode, then followed the recipe to a tee and it was a complete failure. Crispy on the outside, gummy on the inside and flavorless. I even read the other comments and grated the potato very finely...I cannot imagine someone eating these. What a waste of time and potatoes!

  • akorenek 3 Nov, 2011

    These were okay, but I don't think we'll make them again unless we make some changes. More salt, probably an attempt at a finer grate on the potato. The plus side is that, served with ketchup, they are passable and filling.

  • azlhughes 18 Oct, 2011

    Lucinda has great recipes; however, this is not one of them. Neither my husband or myself enjoyed these oven baked poppers. Time isn't an issue if the end product is good. Sorry not a keeper!

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