Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, cast iron skillet encouraged—these country potatoes are invited to breakfast, but honestly, they’re a great side any time of day. This recipe alone is a reason to keep a couple of potatoes in the pantry!
Is There Anything Better Than a Crispy Potato? I mean seriously!!
A crispy potato is pretty high on my list, and I’ve got the tips and techniques to get you cowboy-worthy, diner-style country potatoes every time. With a pinch of salt, and a handful of seasonings that are easy to adjust and the perfect potato is easier than you think.
At home next to a fried egg or a juicy steak. Or both at the same time. These are country style potatoes after all, and a big breakfast is important! Or keep it simple with a drizzle of your favorite dipping sauce. There are so many ways to serve.
If you’ve always got potatoes on hand, I’ve got some ideas for you! These are some of my favorites. I hope you try them next.
So start with breakfast, and then see where they take you! Let’s make these!
What Type of Potatoes Are Best For Country Potatoes?
If you’re a regular reader, you know my favorite type of potatoes, in general, are russet potatoes, also known as Idaho potatoes. I love their flavor, high starch content, and lovely creaminess. They also produce wonderful crispy exteriors. I use them in my crispy country potatoes and find them to be perfect.
That said, other potatoes work well in this recipe. Try Yukon, red skin, white skin, or fingerling potatoes next!
Ingredients For Best Country Potatoes Recipe
- Russet Potatoes: These are the potatoes I use but above I suggest other choices.
- Yellow Onion: I like using yellow onion in this recipe.
- Red Bell Pepper: You can use any color bell pepper.
- Bacon Drippings or Vegetable Oil: These are so much better with bacon drippings. Please tell me to save them!
- Salt: I use plain table salt. The recipe is written for granular salt, not coarse salt.
- Black Pepper: I use fresh cracked black pepper.
- Garlic Powder: Garlic powder not garlic salt. If you use garlic salt, reduce the amount of salt to taste.
- Thyme: I like thyme with these potatoes but rosemary also works really well, too.
- Cast Iron Skillet: I like to make these potatoes in a 12-inch cast iron skillet. I find that the way the cast iron holds the heat works best. Adjust heat as needed, you may need to lower it as the potatoes cook. If you only have a 10-inch skillet, it will work also. I don’t have a tight-fitting lid for my cast iron, so I cover it completely and tightly with aluminum foil. Yes, you can use a standard skillet if that’s all you have.
- Bacon Drippings: When you make bacon, save the pan drippings. Let it cool until it can easily be handled. Use a sieve and drain it into a jar or secure lidded container. Or pour it into a small dish then refrigerate until solid. Scoop solid drippings into a resealable baggie. Store it in the freezer and you’ll always have it on hand.
- Vegetable Oil: If you’re using vegetable oil, use a neutral-flavored, high-smoke point such as canola or sunflower oil.
- Tossing: Make sure when you toss the potatoes with bacon grease and spices well so that the potatoes are evenly coated. This will ensure consistent flavor and better browning.
- Bell Peppers: Any color of bell pepper works great in this recipe. Feel free to switch it up or use a combination.
- Spices: This recipe is the perfect canvas for many different spices. Garlic powder is an absolute must! Onion powder, cumin, turmeric, thyme, or paprika (smoked, sweet, or hot!) are all wonderful additions.
- Spice It Up: Add cayenne pepper to taste if you like things spicy. You can also add hot paprika.
- Change The Herbs: I use whatever I have fresh in my herb garden. Parsley, chives, or rosemary are also excellent choices.
- Add Bacon: I love little chunks of crumbled bacon in these potatoes. Give it try, I’m sure you’ll love them this way!
- Add Cheese: Add your favorite shredded cheese during the last 5-7 minutes of cooking. Cheddar or Pepper Jack are my favorites. Use 1-2 cups.
- Reheating: Heat 1 tablespoon of bacon grease or vegetable oil to a shimmer. Add leftover potatoes and cook over medium until heated through. Reheating in the microwave may be tempting but the stovetop will give you better results!
Storing + Freezing + Make Ahead
- How Long Can You Keep This In The Fridge? This can be kept in the fridge for 3-5 days.
- Can You Freeze This? Yes, place this in a Ziploc bag and this can last up to a year in the freezer!
- Make-Ahead Tips: This is a very quick and simple recipe but you can always chop the vegetables ahead of time. Wait to chop the potatoes until ready to serve otherwise they will turn brown.
- Food Safety: Check out this potato storing guide.
I love to serve these with a full brunch buffet. Try it with one of my breakfast casseroles such as a tater tot breakfast casserole, Crockpot breakfast casserole, Bisquick breakfast casserole, or Bisquick quiche (the very one my Mom and Grandma made!).
How To Make Country Potatoes In The Oven
If making these in the oven, don’t cut them too small or they will burn. Watch them closely towards the end of the cooking cycle.
You may need to remove them early. If they are burning and not yet tender enough, flip them again, reduce the oven heat to 350°F (177°C) and continue to cook until they’re fork tender. You can also cover loosely with aluminum foil, during the last stages of cooking, as needed.
- Preheat oven to 450°F (232°C). Adjust an oven rack to the lower third of the oven. Make sure that the oven is completely preheated!
- Melt bacon dripping in a small bowl in the microwave.
- Pour bacon dripping or vegetable oil (I use 1/3 cup) onto a large-rimmed baking sheet ( I use a half sheet).
- Add potatoes.
- Evenly sprinkle seasoning over the potatoes.
- Toss to evenly coat potatoes. Arrange potatoes in a single layer evenly spaced so the heat will reach all edges of the potatoes.
- Bake in the preheated oven, on the arranged shelf, for 20-25 minutes then flip the potatoes, and try to arrange them in a single layer again. Continue to cook another 20-25 minutes or until the potatoes are fork-tender and golden brown.
How to Make Country Fried Potatoes
- Chop the ingredients.
- Cook potatoes, onion, red pepper, garlic, salt and pepper in the skillet.
- Continue to cook until golden brown or until fork tender. Sprinkle with thyme. Serve.
See full instructions below.
I LOVE Potatoes How About Some More Recipes!!
- Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes
- Boursin Cheese Scalloped Potatoes
- Loaded Crispy Smashed Potatoes
- Au Gratin Potatoes
- Twice Baked Potatoes
- Funeral Potatoes
Craving more delicious recipes?
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- 2 to 2 1/2 pounds (4-5 potatoes) russet potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 1 cup yellow onion, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1/4 cup, plus more as needed bacon drippings or vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme optional
- Add 1/4 cup of bacon drippings to a 12-inch skillet and heat over medium heat.
- When the drippings shimmer, add the potatoes (2 to 2 ½ pounds), onion (1 cup), and red pepper (½ cup). Add the salt (1 ½ teaspoon), black pepper (1 teaspoon), and garlic powder (1 teaspoon) and toss to evenly coat.
- Over medium heat, cover the skillet tightly, and cook undisturbed for 10 minutes.
- Remove the lid and turn the vegetables. Add more bacon drippings or vegetable oil (I generally add another 1/4 cup at this time). Continue to cook for another 10-12 minutes. Flip the potatoes and continue to cook until most of the potatoes are golden brown, and all are fork tender. Adjust seasoning, as needed, sprinkle with chopped thyme (1 teaspoon), and serve.