Here Are America’s 17 Most Favorite Ways to Eat a Potato

Who doesn’t love potatoes? Fried, baked, or mashed—there are just so many different ways to enjoy America’s most widely produced vegetable. In this article, we’ll uncover the top 17 ways to eat potatoes in the United States. Take a look and see if your favorite is here!

Mashed Potatoes

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According to the Produce Blue Book, 17% of Americans love to eat their potatoes mashed. This type of potato is loved for its creamy texture and versatility in recipes. Mashed potatoes can be enriched with ingredients like butter, cream, garlic, or cheese and make for a great and hearty side dish.

Baked Potatoes

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Baked potatoes are another much-loved way to consume potatoes, particularly popular for the variety of toppings that can be eaten with them. Baked potatoes are a classic that involves a simple preparation method and are often served as a side dish with various toppings like sour cream, chives, cheese, and bacon.

French Fries

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As shared by DoorDash, “Despite their European origin, French fries are America’s favorite type of potato! French fries made up 69% of the top potato dishes ordered nationwide.” Fries are especially loved as a side for burgers and come in various styles, with traditional and waffle fries being popular choices. They’re often deep-fried, but they can also be baked for a healthier alternative.

Boiled Potatoes

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Boiled potatoes are favored by those in coastal regions like the Deep South, Mid-Atlantic, and Pacific. They’re commonly used in potato salads or as a simple, healthy side dish to meat or fish. Boiled potatoes can be flavored with herbs and spices or dressed with butter.

Crushed Potatoes

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A relatively new trend, crushed potatoes involve par-boiling new potatoes (or baby potatoes) with their skins on, brushing them with oil and seasonings, then crushing them down and baking them until crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Crushed potatoes make a delicious side dish!

Potato Chips

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As you may well know, potato chips are a popular snack choice, especially for takeout and casual dining. Potato chips come in a variety of flavors and styles, from classic salted to gourmet options. They can also be homemade for a healthier version, baked, or air-fried.

Hash Browns

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According to YouGov, hash browns are enjoyed by 83% of people. This form of potato is mostly eaten as a breakfast food and is typically pan-fried to a crispy texture, often with onions and spices. Hash browns are served in diners and breakfast spots across the country.

Roasted Potatoes

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A firm favorite in the Farm Belt region, roast potatoes are known (and loved) for their crispy exterior. They can be flavored with herbs like rosemary and thyme, and they are often roasted with other vegetables as a hearty side dish. A simple yet tasty way to enjoy potatoes!

Air Fried Potatoes

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With the invention of air fryers came new, healthier ways to enjoy potatoes. With an air fryer, people can enjoy crispy potatoes (a similar texture to deep-fried potatoes) with less oil than traditional frying methods. There’s also less clean-up and the potatoes are cooked faster than trying to achieve the same result in a standard oven.

Potato Salad

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Potato salad is a staple at American picnics and barbecues—a much-loved side dish. According to the Daily Meal, “Most Americans (62 percent) prefer potato salad as their must-have barbecue side dish.” Potato salad can be made with a mayonnaise-based or vinegar-based dressing and often includes ingredients like eggs, celery, onions, and mustard.

Potato Soup

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A comforting dish, especially during the colder months, potato soup is quite a popular way to use up potatoes. The soup can be either creamy or broth-based, made with various vegetables and meats according to the cook’s preferences. Potato soup is often garnished with cheese, bacon, and green onions.

Twice-Baked Potatoes

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This delicious dish involves baking potatoes, scooping out the insides, mixing the insides with other ingredients, and then baking them again. Common mix-ins include cheese, sour cream, and bacon. Twice-baked potatoes are typically served as a side dish or a main course with additional protein.

Potato Pancakes

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Savory potato pancakes are a real treat, made by grating potatoes, mixing them with egg and flour, and then frying the mixture. They can be served with a range of sauces, such as sour cream, ketchup, or applesauce. This dish is actually traditional in various cultures, and even in the U.S., it can vary between regions.

Au Gratin Potatoes

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This delicious French dish has become a popular, indulgent way to enjoy potatoes in America as well. It involves thinly sliced potatoes baked in a creamy cheese sauce, often topped with a crispy breadcrumb or cheese crust. It’s a rich side dish, perfect for special occasions.

Scalloped Potatoes

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Scalloped potatoes aren’t too different from au gratin potatoes, but “au gratin potatoes contain cheese, whereas scalloped potatoes do not,” according to Potato Goodness. This dish is made by baking potatoes with a creamy or stock-based sauce, often flavored with garlic and herbs. It’s a classic side dish for family dinners and gatherings.

Potato Skins

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An extremely popular U.S. appetizer or side dish, it’s simply the crispy skins of potatoes—often loaded with cheese, bacon, and sour cream. You can typically find this served in bars and casual dining restaurants, usually as a sharing dish. It can be made in various ways, including baked and air-fried.

Potato Wedges

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Another classic way to enjoy potatoes is in wedge form, cutting them into thick wedges and either baking or frying them. Potato wedges are often seasoned with spices like paprika or garlic powder and served as a side dish or a snack with dipping sauces.

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