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!

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Perfect Baked Potato

rate this recipe:
4.95 from 350 votes
Cook Time: 1 hour
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.

Equipment

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 425°F and line a 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, fluff the insides, and serve with desired toppings.

 

223 comments

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Rate this recipe (after making it)




  1. VivaLoCa
    10.09.2023

    5 stars
    Fantastic and very useful. Thank you so much.

  2. Andries Herholdt
    09.21.2023

    4 stars
    I made a filling of marscapone, sour cream, bacon bits, oreganum, salt and pepper. Yum.

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      09.21.2023

      Sounds delicious!

  3. Rebeca Johnson
    09.14.2023

    We’re camping and can’t have a camp fire due to the heat. Can I bake these at home and serve the next day?

  4. Molly B.
    09.03.2023

    5 stars
    I followed the directions exactly and baked two medium sized russet potatoes this evening. They turned out perfectly. Thank you for a simple, reliable & delicious recipe!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      09.05.2023

      I’m so happy your potatoes were perfect!

  5. Tom C
    09.01.2023

    425° is way too hot to use olive oil.

    • Carrie H.
      09.06.2023

      5 stars
      The potatoes turn out perfectly following these directions, just as written. I’ve been using these directions for my baked potatoes for about a year & they’re consistently great every time!

    • Regia
      09.07.2023

      You could use avocado oil. It has a better hit tolerance. I use olive oil just for dressing and never for cooking:))

    • Lisa R
      10.09.2023

      It’s not WAY too hot… extra virgin olive oil can be heated to 400*F, and even at a slightly higher temperature does not produce carcinogenic compounds. That myth has been debunked by scientists. It has something to do with the stability of food-grade oils versus non-food grade oils. High heat does, however, degrade the nutritional benefits of e.v.o.o. o I agree that avocado oil is better for baking over 400*F.

  6. SpiceyChef Stratford
    08.22.2023

    5 stars
    This baked potato recipe is a game-changer! And your tips are spot on, especially about skipping the foil for that perfect skin. Thanks for sharing this delightful potato masterpiece!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.22.2023

      I’m so glad your baked potatoes were perfect!

  7. Barbara
    08.21.2023

    These are the best baked potatoes I have ever made!!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.22.2023

      I’m so happy to hear that!

  8. Barb Gillett
    08.07.2023

    I have never had a baked potato I didn’t like but tonight I will try these and see the difference. I don’t normally oil and salt the skin. Also when I make baked potatoes I usually make them with a roasted meat of some sort and that is way too hot for most meat (tonight it’s Greek Ribs) so I guess we’ll see how they turn out at 350.

  9. Brandy Joiner
    07.07.2023

    I’ve made these several times, and they’re always perfect! I use the largest red skin potatoes though. They’re my favorite! I don’t have parchment paper, but I use aluminum foil and it’s just as good. Thanks for the amazingly easy recipe. 😋

  10. Shawna
    05.26.2023

    5 stars
    BEST baked potatoes EVER! I love baked potatoes, but every time I make them, even trying different techniques, they are always a letdown. So, I rarely make them. My boyfriend came home with two potatoes asking if I’d make baked potatoes dinner. I wasn’t thrilled, but I gave it one more try and looked for a recipe online.

    These potatoes were so incredible, that I actually saved the leftovers and ate them for lunch the next day! I’ve never, ever saved leftover baked potatoes. My boyfriend even sent me a text the next day saying “FYI, those baked potatoes were really good!”

    Thank you so much for sharing this amazing, and super easy recipe! I will definitely be adding baked potatoes back into my meal plans 🙂

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      05.30.2023

      Hi Shawna, I’m so glad you both loved the potatoes!

      • Shawna
        05.30.2023

        I’m making them again right now for dinner! I happened to be on your recipe page checking the oven temp, and saw your reply 😊

  11. Val Ingrassia
    05.14.2023

    5 stars
    Can you bake them ahead a few hours to take & share & then just heat them up?

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      05.19.2023

      Hi Val, yes! That would work fine.

      • Angela Dallas
        06.18.2023

        I was wondering the same! What would the best way to reheat? Thanks so much!!

  12. Jean-Marie
    05.01.2023

    Made these tonight for a big crowd. It was easy and they were so good!

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      05.01.2023

      Hi Jean-Marie, I’m so glad the potatoes were a hit!

  13. Beth Patterson
    04.29.2023

    5 stars
    I made these baked potatoes tonight . Thank you! Love this recipe. Had surprise guests and with little time to prepare sides and this was the bomb! Will definitely cook them this way from now on!

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      05.01.2023

      Hi Beth, I’m so glad they were a hit!

  14. Carrie
    04.11.2023

    5 stars
    FABULOUS potatoes! Used them for twice baked potatoes and the skins were so crispy and nicely browned. Tip to keep your hands clean – put olive oil and generous kosher salt into a gallon ziplock. Smoosh it around to “mix” and then put in the potatoes. Zip the top and shake or swish around the potatoes until they are coated. May need to do in two parts if all the potatoes don’t fit. Pour – or plop – out the potatoes onto your prepared pan (foil works fine) and cook away. No greasy hands!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      04.12.2023

      I’m so glad you loved them!

  15. Joyce
    04.10.2023

    Wow I don’t know why I was wrapping them in foil before. I did mine 50 mins at 425 and was perfect. Sour cream, cheese and bacon bits. This is much better without the foil! Thank you for sharing.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      04.12.2023

      I’m so glad you enjoyed them this way!

  16. Bee
    04.10.2023

    5 stars
    I was skeptical by the simplicity of ingredients and steps but wow the potatoes turned out amazing! I used red skin potatoes.

  17. Jennifer
    04.04.2023

    4 stars
    Hello! What if I don’t have parchment paper? What can I use, if anything? Also, does it made the type if oil and salt?

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      04.07.2023

      Hi, we love the flavor of olive oil here, but you can use a different oil if you prefer. You could use foil instead of parchment or just place the potato straight on the baking sheet. Enjoy!

    • Natalie
      06.18.2023

      Olive oil is the healthiest, but you can use avocado, vegetable or canola oil. Type of salt doesn’t matter (use what you like 🙂) I put the potatoes directly on the upper rack with a cookie sheet on the bottom rack to catch any oil drippings. Bon appetite!

  18. Nikita
    03.24.2023

    5 stars
    Mmmm… this baked potato recipe is one of the best I’ve ever tried! It’s the perfect combination of fluffy, creamy, and savory.

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      03.24.2023

      I’m so glad you loved it!

  19. Cindy
    03.02.2023

    5 stars
    I was looking for an easy and delicious baked Potato recipe and found it!

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      03.03.2023

      Hi Cindy, so glad you loved it!

      • Jody
        03.06.2023

        This smoked up my house so bad. What did i do wrong?

        • Sara
          03.16.2023

          It was probably the olive oil. It has a low smoke point. I can’t remember if the more expensive an olive oil is the higher the smoke point, but I don’t think so…you could research that though. Avocado oil has a much higher smoke point.

        • Chesley Winsett
          03.29.2023

          Don’t use extra virgin oo. Only use 100% oo. Worked for me.

  20. Kim
    03.02.2023

    5 stars
    I followed recipe exact. They were perfect 😛

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      03.03.2023

      So glad you loved them!

      • Nancy Taylor
        10.06.2023

        Can you Barbaque 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.