Perfect Baked Potato

A perfect baked potato has crispy skin and fluffy insides. My method for how to bake a potato works every time, so load up your spuds, and dig in!

Baked Potato

A perfect baked potato is hard to beat. The outside is brown and crisp, coated in a crust of sea salt. Pierce the skin, and your fork gives way to a soft, fluffy interior. It might be hard to resist eating the whole thing straight out of the oven, but if you take the time to top it with a pat of butter or a dollop of (cashew) sour cream, you won’t be able to deny that it was worth the wait.

Reading this, you might be surprised to learn that until recently, I wasn’t a baked potato fan. I thought they were bland on their own. Whenever I had them at restaurants or at home as a kid, the toppings were always the main attraction. The potatoes themselves would be shriveled and soft, meager vessels for sour cream, cheddar cheese, and bacon.

But this salt-crusted baked potato recipe changed everything for me. In it, the potato becomes the main event. Don’t get me wrong, a little butter or sour cream goes a long way here, but the potatoes come out of the oven with perfectly crispy, flavorful skins and creamy, piping hot interiors that taste delicious as they are. Serve them as a hearty side dish, or load them up and call them dinner. You’ll love them either way!

Baked potato recipe

How to Bake a Potato

I like to use russet potatoes here, as their skin really puffs up and becomes crisp in the oven. Along with the potatoes, you’ll just need olive oil and salt to make this baked potato recipe. Once you’ve assembled your ingredients, follow these easy steps:

First, preheat the oven to 425, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

How to bake a potato

While the oven preheats, prep the potatoes. Scrub the potatoes well and pat them dry with a kitchen towel. Then, poke the potatoes with a fork a few times to create small holes across their surfaces.

Next, season the potatoes. Place them on the baking sheet and rub them all over with olive oil. Sprinkle them liberally with sea or kosher salt, and transfer them to the hot oven to bake.

How to bake a potato

Bake for 45 to 60 minutes, until the skins are crisp and puffy and you can easily pierce the potatoes with a fork. Use oven mitts to remove the hot baking sheet from the oven.

Finally, dig in! Allow the potatoes cool for a few minutes before slicing them open, fluffing up their insides, and topping them with your favorite fixings. I like cashew sour cream, tempeh bacon, chives, and salt and pepper!

Oven baked potato recipe

Baked Potato Recipe Tips

  • Skip the foil! The key to making a good baked potato is getting really crispy skin. If you wrap the potatoes in foil, the potato skins will shrivel and soften in the oven. For the best results, leave the potatoes unwrapped.
  • Don’t skimp on the salt. Are you someone who likes to eat potato skins? If you make this baked potato recipe, you will be! Coating the spuds in salt makes the skins extra-crispy and flavorful. Plus, with a bit of the salty skin in each bite, you won’t need to worry about seasoning the potato flesh as you eat.
  • Know that the cooking time will vary. In the recipe below, I say to bake your potatoes for 45 to 60 minutes. This is a wide range, but I list it for a reason. The cooking time will vary depending on the size of the potatoes. Be ready to take them out of the oven when they’re fork-tender and their skin is crisp. The baking time will be longer for larger potatoes and shorter for small ones.

Bacon bits on a baking sheet

Oven Baked Potato Serving Suggestions

You can’t go wrong by serving this oven baked potato recipe with a pat of butter, salt, and pepper, but a few well-chosen toppings can really take it to the next level. I love mine with cashew sour cream, tempeh bacon, and chives, but regular sour cream, “cheese sauce,” Greek yogurt, or cheddar cheese would also be delicious.

Enjoy this baked potato recipe as a meal on its own, or pair it with your favorite protein. It would also be yummy with a hearty salad like my Caesar salad, broccoli salad, or kale salad, or with roasted broccoli, cauliflower, or Brussels sprouts.

Loaded baked potato

More Favorite Potato Recipes

If you loved learning how to bake a potato, try one of these favorite potato recipes next!

Perfect Baked Potato

rate this recipe:
5 from 146 votes
Cook Time: 1 hr
Serves 4
Bake a potato perfectly every time! With the olive oil & sea salt coating, it'll come out of the oven with crispy skin and fluffy insides that are delicious with your favorite toppings.



  • Preheat the oven to 425°F and line two baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Use a fork to poke a few holes into the potatoes. Place on the baking sheet, rub with olive oil, and sprinkle liberally with sea salt all over. Bake 45 to 60 minutes, or until the potato is fork-tender and the skin is crisp.
  • Slice open each potato. Assemble with a dollop of sour cream or cashew cream, tempeh bacon bits, and a sprinkle of chives. Serve with remaining cashew cream and tempeh bacon on the side.



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Rate this recipe (after making it)

  1. Rod Peel

    5 stars
    I love baked potatoes either on their own or with a filling ranging from cheese to chilli. I do not always have the time to put the potatoes in the oven to cook so I found that if I microwave the potatoes first (5 – 10 minutes – some microwaves have a potato program) then coat with Olive oil and Salt and pop into a preheated oven for up to 30 minutes. Still the fluffy interior, still the crisp salty skin but a time saving of up to 20 minutes. Also I put the potatoes directly onto my convection (fan) oven grid which is great for circulating the hot air around them.

  2. Brenda Norman

    I must be missing something.. Why two baking sheets for only four potatoes? Seems to me there would still be plenty of room for heat circulation with four potatoes on one cookie sheet? Thanks!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Apologies – that’s a typo, you just need one.

  3. Tammy

    5 stars
    5 stars on this. I’ve always had issues with baked potatoes, but the consistency of this recipe is awesome! Thanks so much for sharing!

    P.s. I will be making potatoes tonight. 😋

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you loved them!

  4. Barbara

    The potatoes are great. Did anybody else have issues with smoke and a burning smell?

    • Nina

      I don’t like roasting with olive oil because it smokes much easier than vegetable oil. Not all olive oils are created equal so yours could have a lower smoking point than the recommended cooking temp.

      Alternatively your oven could just have built up oil residue from use that could be burning at such a high temp too.

      • Malinda

        5 stars
        I have been doing baked potatoes in this manner for several years, with different types of olive oil and have never had a problem with it smoking. They always turn out perfect.

    • Tim

      Make sure to use regular olive oil. Not virgin or extra virgin.

    • Brenda Norman

      If I have grease buildup on my racks or oven bottom, I get smoke with the higher temps.

    • Jaqulynn

      I just started my potatoes and the smoking and burning is from the PARCHMENT PAPER. My oven started smoking and the fire alarm went off because of it. The heat caused the paper to burn and the wax on the paper to burn. Don’t do this recipe with parchment paper, use tinfoil to line instead. As soon as I switched the paper, I stopped having this issue.

  5. Shaleen Michelle

    5 stars
    The best baked potato I’ve had!!! I usually don’t eat the skin but this time I didn’t leave anything on the plate!!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m glad you loved it!

  6. Nilton De Maacedo

    5 stars
    I tried the baked potatoes – my first time – and they came up as you said: crispy outside and soft inside. Thank you. It is now one of my favorite (and easiest) things to prepare.

  7. George Worley

    Awesome baked potato. I always wondered how some restaurants did the potatoes like your recipe. So so good. Thanks!

  8. Brian

    How do you stop the potatos from smoking up your entire house? The smoke point of olive oil is around 375 degrees and these potatoes were a smoke factory.

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Brian, I didn’t have this issue in my oven.

    • Cristina

      5 stars
      Try using avacado oil. It has a better heat tolerance.

    • 5 stars
      Usually that means I need to clean out my oven 🥴

  9. Kathryn

    5 stars
    WOW! Wow wow wow! Hands down best baked potato I’ve ever had or made. The outside is soooo nicely crispy and the inside, holy cow, soooo smooth! This one will be taught to my children, it’s a staple. Thanks so much! Amazing!

    • Kathryn

      Oh and I used Fleur de Sal (in place of classic sea salt) on the skin generously and it added the best crunch on the skin!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Kathryn, I’m so glad you loved it so much!

  10. Liz

    5 stars
    Wow! So simple, but I couldn’t believe what a difference this made. They were great. I’ve never eaten the skin of a baked potato until now. I’ll never make them any other way from now on. Thank you!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Liz, I’m so glad you loved the method!

  11. Ronnie

    5 stars
    Do I need to change anything if I’m making about 15 of them instead of 4?

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Ronnie, it’s possible they might need a tad more time if there are more in the oven together, but it should be the same otherwise.

  12. Bill

    Amazing. I’ve made baked potatoes forever but these are the best! Thank you!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you enjoyed them!

  13. Tina Keene

    5 stars
    Thank you! I don’t have any parchment paper .. wish me luck

  14. Roger

    5 stars
    Totally awesome. I used the true convection setting at 400° for ~60 mins and the four of them were perfection. The salted exterior eliminated the need for salting the interior.

  15. Elaine

    5 stars
    Completely perfect!! And faster.

  16. Veronica

    Wow! This seriously was the perfect baked potato, I made it tonight and it’s definitely the best baked potato I’ve ever produced from my oven! Definitely my go to recipe from now one.

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you loved it!

  17. Kally

    Made this for dinner tonight, don’t know how I could go back! This was so tasty!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you loved it!

  18. Tony

    So do you have to flip them at any point?

  19. Boyd Emery

    5 stars
    This is my go to recipe from now on!

  20. Mark

    5 stars
    I know this may sound strange but I was never able to find a baked potato recipe that worked for me. They either yielded bad results or were way too complicated to even attempt.
    Well, after one try tonight I can confirm THIS RECIPE IS GOLD. And hey, it’s easy which makes sense as we’re just roasting some potatoes, right?

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Ha, I’m so glad you loved them!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.