This recipe for crispy smashed potatoes with whipped feta has that double delicious crisp and soft texture from the potatoes and salty umami and a slight tang from creamy Whipped Feta. Best of all, you can do it all on the stovetop!
- What You Need to Make Crispy Smashed Potatoes
- How to Make Crispy Smashed Potatoes, Fast and Easy on the Stovetop
- Ingredients Notes and Resources
- Tools and Equipment
- Stovetop vs Oven for Crispy Smashed Potatoes
- Health and Dietary Considerations
- More Smashing Side Dishes
- Crispy Smashed Potatoes with Feta, Salsa Verde, and Hot Chili Honey
And if you really want to take these potatoes to the next level, you can turn the herbs into a bright, tangy Salsa Verde and amp the heat and sweet by making Hot Chili Honey.
I made a version of this dish for the first time with National Geographic—yes, that world traveling National Geographic!—when they were exploring the country of Peru through the lens of food, specifically potatoes, which are native to Peru!
This recipe for Crispy Smashed Potatoes is:
- dairy-free adaptable
What You Need to Make Crispy Smashed Potatoes
To make Crispy Smashed Potatoes, fast and easy on the stovetop, you will need:
- Baby potatoes
- Feta or amp it up with Whipped Feta
- Herbs or amp it up with Salsa Verde
- Hot Chili Honey
How to Make Crispy Smashed Potatoes, Fast and Easy on the Stovetop
There are a couple of ways to make crispy smashed potatoes. All versions have a two-step cooking process. This recipe conveniently keeps the entire process on the stovetop. Here's how:
- Boil potatoes first
- Smash them
- Cook smashed potatoes in a skillet until crisp!
That's essentially it! Then to serve the potatoes, you add Whipped Feta, Salsa Verde, and Hot Honey. You can layer the sauces over the potatoes, and get almost a nachos effect, or serve the sauce alongside as dips.
If you want to make a larger batch, i.e. more than 4 servings, try the Oven-fried Crispy Smashed Potatoes recipe. You can fit a lot more smashed potatoes on two large baking sheets, and it's also a little less active cooking time, standing at the stovetop vs. leaving baking sheets in the oven!
Ingredients Notes and Resources
- POTATOES. Use the smallest waxy textured potatoes you can find, 2-inches maximum. The smaller the potato, the faster they cook, and the thinner you can smash them, resulting in much crisper edges. The red, white and blue potatoes in the top photo are baby red potatoes, Yukon Gold, and Baby Blues.
- COOKING OIL. I use California Olive Ranch Olive Oil for cooking the potatoes. You can also use butter, which will technically add more umami flavor, but this dish is fried potatoes with whipped feta, and that's about all the flavor you already need right there.
- KOSHER SALT. Diamond Crystal brand and nothing else.
- WHIPPED FETA. Make Whipped Feta, though if you're feeling lazy, you could just crumble straight up feta over the hot Crispy Smashed Potatoes. Feta doesn't melt, but it does get warm and soft over hot potatoes.
- SALSA VERDE. Make Salsa Verde. If you need a substitute, generously shower the potatoes with chopped fresh parsley, basil and garlic. As a last resort, you can use a store-bought pesto, but seriously, basil pesto is a last resort only if you have no other way to add an herbal element because pesto, made with all basil as well as pine nuts and cheese, tastes absolutely nothing like Salsa Verde, which is made with mostly parsley.
- HOT CHILI HONEY. There really is no excuse not to make Hot Chili Honey because it is literally two ingredients mixed together. Unless of course, you're sensitive to spice, in which case, just drizzle with honey! You can also buy any manner of hot honey online or grocery.
Tools and Equipment
- Large pot for boiling potatoes, this is a reliable, standard size soup pot
- Large colander to drain potatoes. This one is silicone so the cooked potatoes dont get bruised, and bonus: it's collapsible for easy storage!
- Cast iron skillet. I have been using this enamel-covered 10-inch cast iron skillet for years and I have never used anything else because I love it.
- Vegetable Scrubbing Brush to get every bit of dirt off those potatoes since we're leaving the skin on! I have one exactly like this
- Vegetable Wash to remove the outer wax and residues on the skins. I have been using this organic brand for YEARS.
- Salad Spinner/Colander you don't technically need to get the cooked potatoes desert dry, but a salad spinner is great for the herbs that go with them!
Stovetop vs Oven for Crispy Smashed Potatoes
If you're wondering whether the stove-top or the oven is better for Crispy Smashed Potatoes, the answer is... yes! Meaning yes, they're both better, for different reasons.
Stove-top Crispy Smashed Potatoes. Use this stove-top method in this post if you're making 2-4 servings, which is a manageable amount to cook in a couple of batches in a large pan or skillet on the stove top. Obviously the stove-top method is preferable if you'd rather not turn on the oven or if the oven is occupied by something else.
Use the stovetop to make Crispy Smashed Potatoes when:
- smaller servings
- don't have to turn oven on
- crispier texture
Oven-fried Crispy Smashed Potatoes. Use the oven method if you're making a larger amount. Because the smashed potatoes crisp in a single layer, you need a lot of surface area for all of the potatoes. Two baking sheets will allow you to cook more potatoes, all at once. Roasting in the oven is less active time—you can leave the potatoes in the oven for the recommended time and come back when they're done. Oven "frying" can also use less oil, if that's a health concern for you. However, the potatoes don't get quite as shatteringly crisp as they do in a skillet on the stovetop.
In summary, use the oven to make Crispy Smashed Potatoes when:
- larger number of servings
- "set it and forget it" in the oven
- use less oil
Health and Dietary Considerations
To make this recipe dairy-free, use a plant-based feta. This one is my current favorite.
To make this recipe 100% plant-based for vegans, use a plant-based feta as noted above, and switch the honey to maple syrup. Honey is not considered vegan-friendly because it comes from bees.
More Smashing Side Dishes
We love the comfort of a hearty vegetable side dish in this house. Here are more recipes that also give you the satisfaction of smashing out any negativity in your life:
- Oven-Fried Crispy Smashed Potatoes
- Crispy Smashed Potatoes with Caviar
- Crispy Smashed Sweet Potatoes
And just some other really great hearty vegetables, perfect as side dishes for dinner parties and Holiday entertaining, or if you're like me, as a main dish on just any random Tuesday night.
- Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Feta and Pomegranate
- Roasted Butternut Squash with Feta and Pomegranate
- Pan-Roasted Miso Brussels Sprouts and Shiitakes
- Whole Roasted Cauliflower Head Stuffed with Garlic and Cheese
Crispy Smashed Potatoes with Feta, Salsa Verde, and Hot Chili Honey
- In a pot large enough to hold the potatoes in about 2 layers, cover potatoes with water by 1-inch, then bring potatoes up to a boil. Simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes, but will depend on size of potatoes. Drain, rinse with cold water, and set aside to dry. The potatoes need to be dry to the touch in order to get crispy.
- Gently smash each potato with the palm of your hand or the bottom of a sturdy glass, making sure to keep each potato generally intact. Small pieces that break off will turn into the best crispy bits in the pan later.
- Heat olive oil or butter in large pan (cast iron is great here) over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add as many of the smashed potatoes that will fit into the pan in a single layer.
- Cook the potatoes until they turn deeply golden brown and crisp. Using a spatula, gently flip the potatoes over and brown the other side. Remove crisped potatoes to serving plate. Continue same process with the remaining potatoes.
- Spoon Whipped Feta and Salsa Verde over the Crispy Smashed Potatoes. Drizzle with Hot Chili Honey. Serve additional Whipped Feta, Salsa Verde, and Hot Chili Honey in separate bowls alongside the Crispy Smashed Potatoes.
- Leftovers, if you have any, will keep in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for two days. Because leftovers will likely have Whipped Feta and Salsa Verde already on them, it will not re-heat well. Just eat the leftover Crispy Smashed Potatoes cold it like potato salad.