How to Peel a Potato

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Don’t you just love spuds? I do. I don’t think I ever met a potato I didn’t like.

This week we’ve added potatoes, carrots, and other root vegetables to the frugal pantry. These are not only inexpensive, but they also add great flavor to any number of dishes. And while onions aren’t technically a “root vegetable,” we invited them to the party anyway. They add such yumminess as well as healthy stuff to what you’re eating. If your family avoids onions, you will appreciate Jenna’s story on learning to like onions you can see.

There’s been great debate over how to peel a potato. Do you use a peeler or a paring knife? Peel away or peel toward yourself? Who knew that potatoes could be so complicated? Aren’t they all ready to go in the freezer section, anyway?

If you’ve never met a real spud, then this demonstration of how I peel a potato is for you.

FishMama’s Tips and Tricks for Potato Peeling:

1. Use a quality potato peeler. I like like this one from Oxo.

2. Don’t stuff peels down the garbage disposal. Years ago, I stopped up the disposal this way — in three different houses. Does not make for a happy husband. I learned my lesson and now gather peels on a newspaper or old bag and then dispose of them. They make great compost. Or you can just throw them away. Whichever you prefer.

3. Peel toward you. I find that this gives better control. However, I do alternate directions every once in awhile to avoid hand cramping.

Fresh is Better

While convenience is nice, I think freshly peeled potatoes always taste better than frozen, boxed, or canned. They are better for you in most cases and often cheaper. This weekend one of my favorite stores is selling 10-pound bags for a buck! Yeehaw! I think it might be time for some Buckaroo Potatoes. Or some homefries. Mmmm. I made these last weekend and they were so good.

Seasoned Homefries

2-3 Tablespoons olive oil
6 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup chopped onion
1-2 Tablespoons favorite seasoning blend, depending on how spicy you like it.

In large nonstick skillet, heat oil until shimmering. Add potatoes and onions and toss to coat. Cover with lid or aluminum foil. Stir occasionally. Potatoes will steam. Cook until potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes, possibly longer. Stir in seasoning. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally until potatoes develop a crisp crust on the outside.


About Jessica Fisher

I believe anyone can prepare delicious meals—no matter their budget.

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  1. OH, yum! I’m going to have to try this tomorrow morning with breakfast. 😀 Thank you for hosting!

  2. 1. Oh no, I always put potato peels in the garbage disposal! I’m not supposed to? Yikes.

    2. I always peel away from me so I don’t hit myself in face by mistake.

    3. Your homefries recipes look delicious. I agree about fresh potatoes being the best, but I have trouble with thin french fries – I still buy them frozen.

  3. Amber says

    Yum! I grew up in Idaho and even so, never became proficient in peeling potatoes. Now I just don’t peel them. Some people don’t like that but I tell them that’s where the fiber and potassium are!

  4. Alea says

    Your fires look awesome! I am too lazy to peel potatoes. 😀 I just cut off the eyes and any bruised spots, chop, and then cook as usual.

  5. Chaya says

    Those home fries look delectble. I am a potato lover and I would put them way up on the list of favorites.

  6. I am so much faster when I peel with a knife, always towards me. However when I have sous chef’s they use a peeler – seems so much safer. I posted a potato soup recipe. Yum!

  7. We love home fries at our house! 🙂

  8. Both the home fries (a favorite here) and the seasoning recipe look awesome. I’ll have to try it on our roasted potato wedges for variety.

    We serve pureed sweet potatoes a lot here. The kids love them and my oldest son (ds13) loves to have them as a snack. I bake them whole in a 350 degree oven for about 1.5 hours until they’re done. Then I puree them in the food processor with molasses, cinnamon and honey, tasting along the way. Sometimes I throw in a few tablespoons of butter.

  9. I’ve been eating TONS of root vegetables this winter as I joined a winter CSA. It’s amazing how many different things you can do with them.

    • eileen windras says

      Try cutting just through the skin around the middle of your potato, leave the skin on. Boil them as usual and when cooked, leave to cool a little, then you can pull the skins away from the potato . simple! I’m from the UK so I hope it works with your potatoes too x

  10. just a granny says

    love this ‘Pioneer Woman Cooks’ recipe for “Hot Crash Potatoes” –

    they are WONDERFUL! give them a try.

  11. they look delicious 🙂

    I agree — I typically include onions with the root veggies, even though they are really leaves of a plant!

  12. I made my Potato Leek Soup in the winter, and it’s also great in warmer weather, so I re-posted it today. Great links on there also giving info. on the medicinal values of the ingredients in it, and a link to my medicinal stock recipe! Thanks for hosting this every week!

  13. Those look yummy!!!

  14. frugal potato peel tip – if you’re buying organic potatoes save your skins in the freezer in zip top bag with other veggie scraps to add to home-made bone broths or veggie stock. i haven’t bought a box of stock in months!

    for anyone who missed the caramelized onion and peas dish that was on G&CE yesterday, I’m linking it here.

    • Jessica Fisher says

      Great idea! Thank you!

  15. Ann says

    Love this swap. So many great ideas. Thanks!!

  16. Don’t throw away those potato peels! You can make a healthy snack that tastes an awful lot like potato chips with them; I linked up the recipe above. 🙂 Katie

  17. Amanda says

    I know you mentioned tater tots. My daughter (4) has never been a potato fan, including french fries, but I recently made up a batch of oven-baked fries and she loved them. Real easy and yummy. She calls them “Mommy Fries” and while I would love to take credit for the recipe it actually came from Ellie Krieger on Food Network:

    We normally eat them with homemade fish sticks…

    I normally cut the recipe in 1/2 (only three mouths that can eat this right now) and I don’t think 3/4c of olive oil is really necessary. We’ve used different bread crumbs in place of the panko and it always tastes good…and my kid eats real fish! Bonus!

    • Jessica Fisher says

      Thank you! I think those fries are in my Ellie Krieger cookbook. So yummy! Just a lot of work to cut them thin. I will try out your fishsticks. Thanks so much!

      • Amanda says

        @Jessica Fisher, Jessica, I don’t go crazy cutting them thin. I normally cut the potato into 1/3rds or 1/4ths length-wise, and then I try to get 3 – 4 slices out of them. Although I am only doing three potatoes, and I imagine with your family it would be a lot more 😉

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