The best potatoes for traditional roasting tend to be the more ‘floury’ varieties as they create the ideal mix of textures, once cooked. Maris Piper and King Edward are popular favourites, with newcomers like red-skinned Laura and distinctive-looking Nemo offering great golden-fleshed roasting alternatives. We recommend allowing around 220-250g of potatoes per person, which works out to roughly two small or one large potato each, with a few leftovers for seconds.
For a quick and easy roast, New or Baby potatoes are also a deliciously simple option. No need to peel or parboil, just cut any larger ones in half. All you need to do is add a little oil to a roasting tray, then cook them until they are golden on the outside and tender on the inside, turning occasionally.
We recommend using smooth textured potatoes for mashing. Red-skinned varieties like Mozart or Laura are ideal, so are creamy whites such as Nectar or Georgina. Maris Piper is also a traditional favourite to make a deliciously fluffy mash. Be careful not to overcook your potatoes or you’ll end up with sloppy mush rather than mash.
To make a creamy mashed potato drain well and make sure all the water has steamed off before you start mashing. Then warm your milk and butter before adding into the mix. Use equal measurements of butter and milk, or a dash of cream to add richness.
We recommend using Maris Piper for your ‘traditional’ chip. Thanks to its creamy white flesh and starchy texture, you can guarantee a tasty crunch on the outside whilst it stays light and fluffy in the middle. Maris Piper potatoes are also great for fries, as they give a consistent cook throughout.
We recommend leaving the skins on wherever possible, as that’s where much of the vitamins and fibre are concentrated. Skin-on chips, wedges and roasties are especially tasty. However, if you are peeling your spuds and you don’t want to waste the peel, we have some tasty suggestions.
We have some potato skin recipes on Seasonal Spuds to whet your appetite, such as our creamy potato peel soup. You can also try crisping them up in an air fryer for a snackable treat.
A classic potato salad is the perfect recipe for a summer BBQ, picnic spread or for a quick and easy packed lunch at work. We recommend using New/Baby potatoes, as they have a smooth waxy texture that holds its shape well. Through the summer months fresh Cornish New potatoes are an ideal option. Wash the potatoes (no need to peel) and cut any larger ones in half. Steam or boil the potatoes in salted water for around 20 minutes, or until tender, and then drain and tip them back into the pan.
Allow to cool slightly then add your dressing of choice and mix well to infuse all the flavours. Try our delicious pesto potato salad, served fresh and warm as an accompaniment to a light fish or chicken dish or a simple zesty new potato salad for summer.
Baked potatoes are a satisfying dish that’s perfect either on the side or as a whole meal, depending on your toppings. Georgina, Melody and Nectar are our favourite varieties for baking, but most large-sized maincrop potatoes will do. Wash and dry your potatoes and prick each one a few times with a fork. If you want to speed up the cooking, you can insert a metal skewer through the potato to conduct the heat better through to the middle. Pop them straight onto the oven shelf and cook in the oven for around an hour, depending on the size of your potatoes, until tender when pierced with a knife.
For a speedier jacket spud, microwave for 5 – 6 minutes until tender, then finish off in the oven or air fryer for 15 – 20 minutes until they’re cooked through and the skin crisps up.
Once they’re cooked slice open and serving with your favourite topping such as butter, cheese, beans, tuna mayo or coleslaw.
Boiling potatoes is an essential cooking technique that’s the first step to hundreds of dishes. Whether you are boiling potatoes for creamy mash, a potato salad or par-boiling for roasties, the most straightforward way is to boil them on the stove. Make sure your pan is big enough for your spuds, plus enough water to cover them, without boiling over. Add your potatoes to cold water and bring it to a boil, reduce heat to medium low, cover with a lid and simmer until tender when poked with a fork.
We’ve all had the unfortunate experience of reaching into a bag of potatoes, ready to make dinner, and pulling out a sprouting spud. Potatoes have a natural tendency to want to grow, and to use all that goodness to create a new plant. As long as they haven’t gone too far and the spud isn’t wrinkled and squishy just cut the sprouts off and eat the rest of the potato.
If you don’t have a potato masher, never fear. You can also use a ricer, food mill or even the humble fork to mash your potatoes to their desired consistency. We wouldn’t recommend using a food processor or mixer, as this can overwork your potatoes and give them a gluey texture.
Read our guide on the best potatoes for mashing for our expert cooking tips.
Jacket potatoes are the ideal fuss-free dinner and go well with a wide range of tasty additions and accompaniments. Take your chosen spud, Georgina, Nectar and Melody are our favourites, and pierce with a fork a few times to allow the steam to escape while cooking. It’s personal preference whether you rub your potato skin with oil and salt or not before baking, it can help the skin to crisp up. Place your potato directly onto the oven shelf for around 1hr – 1hr 30 minutes. If you think your potato might be done, pierce gently with a knife, if you feel any resistance removing the knife it may need longer in the oven.
You can also cook jacket potatoes in the microwave for around 7-10 minutes for a more energy efficient meal. Cook your potato for around 4-5 minutes initially, then in short 1-minute bursts until fully cooked and there is no resistance when pierced with a knife.
Check out our guide on the best potatoes for baking for more top tips.
Once your potatoes, preferably a red skinned variety or Nectar, Georgina, or Maris Piper, have been boiled until tender, then you can start to make mash magic. Gently insert a knife into your potatoes to test whether they’re ready for mashing, if the knife goes in and comes out of the potato easily with no resistance, they’re ready. Drain and air dry your potatoes for a couple of minutes to remove any moisture, then begin mashing.
Once they’re relatively smooth, add salt and pepper, a knob of butter and a splash of milk to your potatoes. Incorporate all your ingredients and mash until smooth and no lumps remain. Taste your mash and season if needed, then serve with an extra knob of butter on top.
Read our guide on the best potatoes for mashing for even more essential info.
Flexitarian is a term used to describe someone who follows a mostly vegetarian diet, with limited inclusion of meat, usually eaten one or two days a week. They follow a mostly plant-based diet with some animal products such as cheese and milk and occasional meals that include fish or meat. The flexitarian diet has become increasingly popular in recent years as people try to include more plant-based foods in their daily meals. The reasons for following a flexitarian diet could be anything from health concerns, to environmental, climate or cost related.
Read our guide to 5 nights of easy flexitarian recipes to try for more delicious inspiration.
Flexitarian diet recipes can be a mixture of vegan and vegetarian meals as well as dishes that include meat and fish. Check out our guide and our 5 nights of easy flexitarian recipes to try.
Place your chunks of potato in a pan of cold water and bring to the boil. This ensures your spuds will cook more consistently inside and out. Smaller cubes of potatoes will take around 15 minutes to cook through, whereas larger potatoes will take around 25 minutes. Be sure to drain your potatoes well as soon as they’re cooked.
Parboiling is partial cooking. For roast potatoes, parboiling creates a tender and moist inside as the cells in the potato expand and absorb the water and it means that you can roast them without drying out. Depending on the size of your potato chunks and the variety of potato, you’ll need to gently simmer them for 8 – 12 minutes to achieve the desired consistency. They need to be slightly soft but not completely cooked through.
Polenta is made from corn which is ground into a flour or meal. It can be mixed with water and cooked to become thick and creamy, allowed to set and served in slices. Or dry polenta can be used in place of breadcrumbs to add texture to foods. For an extra crispy coating for your roast potatoes, try our crispy polenta roast potatoes. They make a delicious twist on your favourite Sunday dinner classic.
Roast potatoes are a staple side dish for any roast dinner. King Edward and Maris Piper varieties work well. For delicious roasties that are fluffy on the inside and crispy on the outside, we recommend parboiling first for around 10 minutes, then shaking in a pan to ruffle up the edges of your spuds before roasting in your chosen fat. Roast in the oven at around 180 degrees for roughly 40 minutes, turning halfway through to ensure your potatoes are crispy on all sides. Make a batch of our crispy polenta roast potatoes for a tasty Sunday side dish.
Believe it or not, New potatoes and Baby potatoes can be fried without parboiling. Simply slice into thin wedges or rounds and pan fry for around 10-15 minutes until your potatoes are tender and cooked through. Use vegetable oil or an oil with a high smoking point for the best results. Alternatively, try air frying your sliced potatoes for around 10 minutes for a healthier, more energy efficient meal. Try our Asian-style vegan stir-fry potatoes for a simple dinner that packs plenty of flavour.
There’s no need to peel your New potatoes, simply scrub gently to remove any dirt and cook to your liking. The skin on New potatoes is thinner and won’t get in the way of the texture of your dish.
While there’s no hard and fast rule that you need to parboil potatoes before frying or roasting, it can help to ensure that your chips are cooked all the way through before they crisp up in the fryer or in the oven. Parboiling or blanching until they’re partially cooked but still maintaining their shape then leaving them to dry thoroughly will give you chips that are fluffy on the inside and crispy on the outside. Try our triple cooked chips for deliciously fluffy fries with that characteristic crunch.
Soaking your potatoes before frying or roasting gets rid of some of the excess starch, which makes your potatoes less likely to stick to your pan and encourages them to become as crispy as possible. Make our triple cooked chips for an impressively tasty side dish.
When you’re choosing frying oil, ideally you want one with a high smoke point and a neutral taste. This means it will be better suited to cooking at higher temperatures and won’t impact the flavour of your chips. Groundnut, rapeseed, vegetable and sunflower oil are all good options for frying. Try air frying your chips for a healthier alternative to deep frying. Make our triple cooked chips and cure your cravings for a crispy, carby treat.