Recipe Review

These TikTok-Famous Crispy Potatoes Are 100% Worth the Hype

published Jan 23, 2021
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Credit: Sara Tane

As a proud millennial on TikTok, it is both my duty and my responsibility to stay clued into all of the hot new Gen Z trends. I’ll admit I’m not up to speed on all the dances (my body is incapable of moving like that, so I leave the renegading to Charli D’Amelio), but when recipes go viral, you better believe I’m the first to try them.

In addition to being a millennial on TikTok, I’m also a self-proclaimed Potato Enthusiast, so when I saw these crispy roasted potatoes rack up millions of views every time TikTok star Jeremy Scheck posted them, I knew I had to give them a whirl. Potato cookery is not something I take lightly, so I had high expectations for these spuds. Here’s what happened when I tried them out at home.

Credit: Sara Tane

How to Make Jeremy Scheck’s TikTok-Famous Potatoes

You’ll begin by quartering baby Yukon gold potatoes — the creamiest and waxiest potato of them all — and covering them in cold, heavily salted water (cold water makes for more even cooking, and salting the water seasons the insides of the potatoes). Bring them to a boil, cook until knife-tender, drain them, and return them to the pot. This par-boiling step is crucial to softening the interior of the potato and creating a creamy, buttery texture. (If you simply tossed raw potato chunks into the oven, the outside would likely burn before the insides were done cooking).

Next, you’ll shake the cooked potatoes around in the pot to rough ‘em up a bit, increasing their surface area and creating more jagged and crispy edges. I happen to love this instruction (I’m a fan of any recipe that asks me to smash or shake my food), but I found it quite hard to bruise the edges of my potatoes. Ultimately, the effect wasn’t as dramatic as I had hoped.

Credit: Sara Tane

Next, transfer the potatoes to a sheet pan and toss them with oil and spices — Jeremy uses Old Bay, garlic power, sweet paprika, cayenne, black pepper, flaky salt, and fresh rosemary. Don’t skimp on the oil here: The potatoes need plenty of fat in the pan to help them caramelize and get super crunchy.

You’ll then roast the potatoes at 450°F, periodically tossing them so all sides get nice and golden. Jeremy suggests roasting them for 20 minutes until golden-brown and crispy, then roasting them for 10 more minutes with the oven turned off. When the potatoes are ready, you’ll toss them with fresh herbs, such as parsley or dill, and serve while they’re nice and hot.

My Honest Review of These TikTok-Famous Potatoes

When I took my first bite, I knew these were a winner — and well worth the hype. The potatoes were super crispy-crunchy on the outside and meltingly tender on the inside, and perfectly seasoned all the way through. If you’re in need of a go-to roasted potato recipe, Jeremy’s is an excellent choice, and you can easily customize the spices to your liking.

The one thing that tripped me up was Jeremy’s tip of turning off the oven for the final 10 minutes of cooking. I was hoping this was some sort of ingenious technique, but honestly I don’t totally understand the logic. It’s not like it had a negative effect; I’m just not sure why he insists on cooking them this way. I will say that I like the idea of turning off the oven and throwing in a knob of butter, which would allow the butter to slowly melt and coat the potatoes. I’ll try this next time.

All in all, I must bow my head to the strong and mighty Gen Z. They dance, they sing, they act, and boy oh boy can they cook. My Savage dance still needs some work, but I can confidently say that my potatoes are right where they need to be, thanks to the ‘Tok.

Credit: Sara Tane

If You’re Making the TikTok Potatoes at Home, a Few Tips

Because I am a spud devotee, I can’t help but think about ways to improve upon this recipe for next time. Here’s what I suggest.

  1. Add baking soda to the boiling water. Adding about 1/2 teaspoon baking soda to the boiling water will help break down the surface of the potatoes, allowing them to get really roughed up when you shake them around, and ultimately leading to crispier spuds. Don’t worry about the alkaline flavor — it’s a small-enough amount of baking soda that you won’t taste it.
  2. Preheat the oil. When my goal is maximum crispiness, I add a generous drizzle of canola oil to the pan (I often use a roasting pan to ensure no oil runs off) and stick it into the oven for about five minutes or until it’s just barely smoking. This way, the potatoes start to sizzle as soon as they hit the pan and a golden-brown crust immediately begins to form. Just make sure the potatoes are completely dry before tossing them in the hot oil.
  3. Add a few more flourishes. Next time I’ll finish the cooked potatoes by tossing them with a knob of butter, some freshly grated Parmesan, and a small squeeze of lemon to brighten them up.

Have you tried these TikTok-famous crispy roasted potatoes? Tell us what you thought!

Credit: Kitchn