The BEST Baked Potato Recipe

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The best baked potato recipe!  Learn how to bake a potato that is perfectly crispy and flavorful on the outside, soft and fluffy on the inside, and perfectly delicious.  It’s so easy!

Ever since we arrived home from our trip to New Zealand a few weeks, I’ve been making up for lost time with friends in Kansas City by scheduling about 1.2 million happy hours, coffee dates, brunches, lunches and dinners galore to catch up with everyone.  Which has been awesome, and much-needed, because I miss my people so much when I’m away.  But after an uber-social few weeks, after what was also an uber-social vacation, I realized it was also high time to recharge my introverted batteries.

So this weekend, I did just that.

I cleared my calendar.  I stocked my fridge with all of my favorite ingredients.  I settled in with my comfiest yoga clothes and new favorite candle (affiliate link, love this one).  And I did blissfully nothing all weekend except three things:

  1. Snuggle and go for long walks with my pup.
  2. Binge-watch the entire new season of House Of Cards.
  3. Conquer the art of making the absolute perfect baked potato.

Since I can’t share Henry or the HoC spoilers with you, I figured we should at least discuss this perfect potato today. :)

Perfect Baked Potato Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Because here’s the thing: I’ve never been really satisfied with my homemade baked potatoes in the past.

The skins have never been crispy enough.  The insides aren’t always evenly cooked.   The flavor can sometimes be a little bland.  And — I don’t know — I’ve just always thought they could be better.

So I took to my stash of cookbooks and the internet to do some spud-sy research.  And after a few hours, I had collected a handful of new tips and methods that seemed promising.  So between episodes, I decided to put them to the test and literally filled my little house with hot potatoes.  From the microwave baked potato of my childhood to oven baked potatoes, from quick roasted to slow, from butter on the skin to oil, and a dozen other little tweaks and methods to try in between…good grief, there really are so many methods for how to bake potatoes!

But more than a dozen attempts later, I’m happy to report that I have settled upon my favorite method and recipe.  And good news — it’s so easy!

Oven Baked Potato Ingredients:

First off, let’s talk ingredients.  To make the perfect baked potato, you’ll need:

  1. Russet potatoes: I love all kinds of different potatoes for all different kinds of recipes.  But when it comes to a classic baked potato, I’m Team Russets all the way.  The skins are nice and thick, which are perfect for crisping up in the oven.  The insides are super starchy, which make for an extra fluffy and sweet filling.  And they’re also the cheapest spuds at the grocery store, which is extra-great for entertaining or a cheap dinner.  ;)
  2. Butter or olive oil: I prefer the flavor of butter here, but olive oil will also work.
  3. Kosher salt: I like mine fairly coarse, which will add a bit of a crunch to the crispy skins.
  4. Freshly-ground black pepper: You can either sprinkle this on the potato skin before baking, or do what I do, and add a few generous cracks of black pepper to the fluffy inside of the potato once it is fully baked.

How To Bake A Potato:

Next, let’s talk about how to make baked potatoes in the oven.  Here are the steps:

  1. Heat oven to 450°F. Yep, we want your oven super-toasty to begin so that it can get those skins nice and crispy.
  2. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.  This will make for much easier cleanup.  Note though: most brands of parchment paper do not withstand heat quite that hot, so if in doubt, go with foil.
  3. Poke your potato all over with a fork.  Because no one wants to deal with exploding potatoes. ;)
  4. Bake!  (Round 1)  So this is the big question — how long to bake a potato.  Answer — in two rounds!  For the first round, just pop your potato straight in the oven at this point and bake for about 25 minutes, until the skin starts to feel dry and slightly wrinkly.  This is good!!!  It will help your baked potato be even crispier in the end.  But we’ve gotta give it some oil to help finish the process.  So…
  5. Brush the outside of the potato with olive oil or melted butter. I recommend doing this with a pastry brush, and be sure to brush it evenly on all sides.  Then sprinkle the potato with a generous pinch of Kosher salt (I like mine fairly coarse so that you get a bit of a crunch), and place the potato back on the baking sheet upside down so that it can cook evenly on both sides.
  6. Bake!  (Round 2)  Return your baked potato to the oven and cook for an additional 20 minutes.  Check for doneness by squeezing the potato (using an oven mitt since it’s a hot potato!).  If the insides are nice and soft and give under pressure, remove the potato from the oven.  Otherwise, continue cooking in 5-minute increments until the potato is done.  Cooking time will vary depending on the size of the potatoes.  But I’d say on average they will take 45-55 minutes total to cook.
  7. Cut, squeeze, fluff, season and serve!  Then slice the potato open lengthwise with a paring knife, give it a good squeeze to open it up, fluff it up with a fork, add your favorite seasonings or toppings and…


This perfectly crispy-on-the-outside, soft-and-fluffy-on-the-inside, and oh-so-delicious baked potato is now yours to enjoy.

You can either go the simple route and just serve it with a pat of butter and some salt and pepper, or get fancy and load it up with the works.  Up to you!

Loaded Baked Potato Toppings:

Speaking of toppings, here are a few ideas for how to load up those freshly baked potatoes:

  • Classic: cheddar cheese, bacon, sour cream, green onions
  • Chili: love this 5-ingredient chili (or the vegetarian version), plus classic toppings
  • Guacamole: mega fan of this perfect guacamole, maybe with some extra jalapeños, cheese and crumbled tortilla chips
  • Broccoli cheese: I often use this slightly-healthier broccoli cheese recipe (minus the rice) for baked potato toppings

The sky is the (topping) limit here, so have fun and go with whatever sounds good to you!

Hope you enjoy, friends!  Happy potato baking. :)

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The Perfect Baked Potato

  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 52 minutes
  • Yield: 1 serving 1x


Learn how to make the perfect baked potato using this step-by-step tutorial and recipe. So easy and delicious!



  • 1 medium-to-large Russet potato, scrubbed clean of any dirt
  • olive oil or melted butter
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly-cracked black pepper


  1. Heat oven to 450°F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.**
  2. Using a dinner fork or a small paring knife, poke the potato multiple times on all sides.
  3. Place the potato on the baking sheet.  Bake for 25 minutes, then remove from oven.
  4. Using a pastry brush, brush the outside of the potato with olive oil or melted butter until it is completely coated on all sides.  Sprinkle the potato with a generous pinch of Kosher salt, and place the potato back on the baking sheet upside down so that it can cook evenly on both sides.
  5. Return to oven and cook for an additional 20 minutes.  Check for doneness by squeezing the potato (using an oven mitt since it’s a hot potato!).  If the insides are nice and soft and give under pressure, remove the potato from the oven.  Otherwise, continue cooking in 5-minute increments until the potato is done.
  6. Use a small paring knife to cut down the middle of the potato, and then give it a squeeze to open.  Serve immediately, with your desired toppings.


*For super-even cooking, you can alternately cook the potato either directly on the oven racks.  Or you can also place a small cooling rack directly on top of your baking sheet, and place the potato on that.  For either of those methods, you can (obviously) skip the parchment paper or aluminum foil.

**If using parchment paper, make sure your paper can tolerate 450 degree heat (Reynolds brand only tolerates up to 425 degrees), as you want to make sure the paper doesn’t burn! You can also use aluminum foil.

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117 comments on “The BEST Baked Potato Recipe”

  1. Made these exactly the way you did. Awesome, the best baked potatoes ever. Thanks for sharing!

  2. 5 stars
    OMG! My potatoes turned out perfect! My go to recipe for baked potatoes.

  3. 5 stars
    Perfect potatoes, this is my new go to recipe for the perfect baked potatoe!

  4. 5 stars
    I’ve used this recipe several times – comes out perfectly!

  5. 5 stars
    Total success!!! Can’t wait to try this one again soon.

  6. Awesome, make them for my family and found something the four year old will actually eat!

  7. I’m gonna try this method tonight. Question – I see that you tested several techniques and landed on not oiling & seasoning until halfway through. What was the difference when you oiled & seasoned from the start. not doubting, just curious :)

  8. 5 stars
    Made these potatoes tonight…So easy and delicious…

  9. 5 stars
    Deeeelish!!! Always perfect baked potato!

  10. 5 stars
    My first time baking potatoes. I followed your instructions. Results were ‘Perfect Baked Potato ‘! Thank you!!!

  11. 5 stars
    These turned out great! The skins were the best 😁 Thanks for sharing!!

  12. 5 stars
    Perfection. My kid kept asking me to make it again after the first time eating it so it is now my go-to recipe :)
    Love that the outsides are crispy and tasty enough to eat!
    Thanks for sharing!

  13. can I make it to round 1 and then let it rest for 20 min or so? or do they need to go back into oven right way?

  14. 5 stars
    Made these potatoes tonight to go with some grilled Boneless Pork Chops…. They were fantastic!!

    I too had been looking for a great baked potato recipe for use at home – thank you for sharing this!

  15. 5 stars
    I made these for a dinner birthday party and they were a huge hit… and how simple to make!! Will def be making again for the holidays.. thanks for this easy yummy recipe!!!

  16. 5 stars
    Just made these for lunch and they turned out PERFECT ! Crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside. Topped with chili, cheese & sour cream- DELISH ! This recipe’s definitely a keeper.

  17. 5 stars
    Best potato my wife and I have ever had!!!!

  18. 5 stars
    Fail proof, delicious recipe! A household favourite on rotation. Thanks for sharing!!

  19. 5 stars
    PERFECT EVERY TIME!! My go to recipe for myself and when I’m serving friends! Thank you so much :)

  20. 5 stars
    This was REALLY a good baked potato!

  21. 5 stars

  22. Perfect just like you said it would be! Fed a house full of 5 teenage boys after an afternoon of backyard baseball. Topped with shredded barbecue pork roast. This is by far the best baked potato I’ve had! Crispy on the outside and fluffy in the middle! I’m a happy Mama!! Thank you.

  23. 5 stars
    Love your recipe, I’ve always tried to get potatoes to taste like Red Lobster or Texas Roadhouse! I also add Parmesan cheese and garlic salt to my potatoes… Makes the house smell yummy while they’re baking and very tasty, trust me😌

  24. Best baked potato recipe EVER!!!!. I only use this recipe and have been for over 2 years now. Always comes out perfect and my boyfriend requests that they are on the dinner menu once every week! Soooooo good. Dont use any other recipe. I swear u wont be disappointed.

  25. I used your baked potato method on a couple of medium-sized russets tonight, they came out so crispy and buttery. Thanks much 🥔