The Little-Known Secret To Perfectly Crispy Country Roasted Potatoes


Serious Eats / YouTube


Country Roasted

Nothing’s better than a delicious meal with country roasted potatoes. Sure, any potatoes make a meal better, but he seasonings and that crunch of country potatoes? It’s unbeatable!


Unfortunately, making these perfectly crispy potatoes isn’t as easy as you’d think.

Just frying them in a skillet takes forever, and the often get burnt. Boiling them first? The potatoes fall apart. Simply roasting them? There isn’t an even crisp.

So, how do restaurants get those country potatoes perfect every time? It’s not magic, but there is a little science involved…

Believe it or not, you should boil your potatoes first, but you should parboil them, meaning you partially boil the potato. You will also add a couple of things to the water to make sure it crisps later!

Those things you add? Add 1 oz. of salt and 2 quarts of water, along with the ultimate secret ingredient: 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda. Boil this mixture, then add 4 pounds of potatoes.

Why Does This Work?

Boiling the water first concentrates the cooking to the outer portion of the potato, allowing the next step to finish the cooking process and keep the potato together. Moisture also escapes faster, leading to a thicker crust.

But why the baking soda? The answer is in the chemistry: baking soda makes the water more alkaline, causing the potato’s cellular glue, called pectin, to break down. This results in higher surface area.

What does more surface area do? It roughens up the potato, and causes a higher crunch without affecting the flavor. Cool, right?

Parboil these for about 10 minutes or so, then you can create your ultimate potato recipe.

Infuse your oil with your favorite ingredients, toss the potatoes in the oil after moisture escapes from draining and steaming, then roast the potatoes in a 450 degree F oven like it’s shown in the video below.

Mine comes from YouTuber Serious Eats. His has a ton of garlic and herbs… what could be better than that?

Check out the video below for more tips and tricks, and enjoy eating perfect potatoes every time!