Today I’m sharing my favorite recipe for loaded twice baked potatoes!
I make these all the time. I serve them with grilled steak, roasted chicken, on Christmas Eve with prime rib and wouldn’t these look mighty pretty next to your Easter ham? As of yesterday, I had one as is as my lunch with no regrets. Okay, two. But technically that’s like one potato right?
Really though, there’s just no bad time to have a loaded twice baked potato. Hello, cheddar and bacon!!
This recipe was one of the first posts I had on SS, nearly 7 years ago to the day! I’ve since switched up the way I make them, adding a not-so-secret ingredient into the filling… bacon fat! Just a simple tablespoon of melted bacon fat really ups the flavor, adding a silkiness like butter would, but oh-so much better than butter.
Start pre-heating your oven to 400° and scrub 4 large russet potatoes. I rub about a tablespoon of olive oil into the skins, for flavor and moisture, and then bake them on the middle rack for about and hour, turning them halfway through.
The potatoes are done when a knife pierces them easily, meeting zero resistance. If there still a bit firm, then just throw them back in the oven for a few more minutes.
While the potatoes are baking in the oven, I’ll cook the bacon in a large skillet until crispy but not overly so. They’ll crisp up more when baked in the oven with the potatoes.
When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, cut them in half down the length of the potato.
Now would be a good time to reduce the temperature of your oven to 350°. Using a spoon, carefully scoop out the flesh of the potatoes, being careful not to tear the skins. If it happens, don’t worry it has happened to me several times :).
Mash the potatoes until smooth with a few lumps.
Next, measure and add in the sour cream (about 3/4 to 1 full cup — depending on how much potatoes you have), 1/2 cup of the cheddar cheese, the reserved tablespoon of bacon fat and add only the light green parts of the green onion (reserving the dark for later). Lastly, season with a few generous pinches of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, then mix.
Load up the skins with the filling and top the remaining cheddar and chopped bacon. Bake in your preheated 350° oven for about 10 minutes or until the cheese has melted.
Lastly, sprinkle with the last of the green onions and some minced parsley for a pop of green.
Ahhh… you really should smell (and taste) these loaded twice baked potatoes!! So darn delicious!
I’d like to point out that there’s no wrong way to eat these loaded twice baked potatoes. My daughters leave the skins. Pat eats both the skins with the filling using a knife and fork. I like to eat the filling first, then fold the skins in half and eat those last. I’d only admit that you, because it’s so very ladylike.
Enjoy! And if you give this recipe a try, let me know by snapping a photo and tagging me on twitter or instagram!
My cookbook Simply Scratch : 120 Wholesome Homemade Recipes Made Easy is now available! CLICK HERE for details and THANK YOU in advance!
Loaded Twice Baked Potatoes
Easy and cheesy! Whether they're serve with roasted chicken, a holiday ham or prime rib, they are superb! They also can be easily made a day in advance, saving you time!
Yield: Serves 8
Prep Time: 5 minutes, plus 1 hour
Cook Time: 15-20 minutes (depending - see below instructions)
Total Time: about 1 hour 25 mintues
4 large russet potatoes
4 strips thick-cut Applewood smoked bacon, cooked until crispy and chopped, plus
1 tablespoon reserved bacon fat
8 ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated (divided)
3/4 to 1 cup of sour cream (more if you need it)
4 green onion, sliced thin (light and dark green parts divided)
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
minced fresh parsley (optional)
Preheat your oven to 400° and scrub the potatoes well. Pat dry with a clean kitchen towel before generously rubbing the skins with olive oil.
Bake potatoes on the middle rack of your preheated oven for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until they are easily pierced by a fork.
Let the potatoes cool a little until they are safe to handle. Cut the potatoes in half horizontally. Use a spoon to scoop the flesh out into a medium sized bowl.
Place the potato skins onto a clean rimmed baking sheet.
Mash the potato a little before adding in the sour cream (about 3/4 to 1 full cup -- depending on how much potatoes you have), 1/2 cup of the cheddar cheese, the reserved tablespoon of bacon fat and add only the light green parts of the green onion (reserving the dark for later). Lastly, season with a few generous pinches of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste, then mix.
Fill in the potato skins with the potato mixture. NOTE: If making these in advance, stop now cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
Sprinkle each potato evenly with cheddar the cheese and bacon.
Bake in a 350° oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until the cheese is melted and potatoes are warmed through.
Top with reserved green onion and minced fresh parsley right before serving.
NOTE: If making these in advance, and the filled potatoes have been refrigerated, please allow more time in the oven to heat thoroughly.
Sprinkle with remaining green onions right before serving.
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