Soggy hash browns have no business on my plate. Crispy or bust! I’ve always associated hash browns with classic diner fare, and left them there. However, I’ve been working on a breakfast burritos recipe on request of several readers, all of whom have suggested including potatoes.
Hash browns seemed like the easiest way to incorporate crispy potatoes. Hash browns are easy to make—basically, all you have to do is grate up some potato, rinse off the starch, squeeze it dry, and cook the potato in a skillet with oil until crispy.
I found some areas of nuance, of course. To enhance the flavor, I tossed grated potato with salt, garlic powder and onion powder before cooking. The garlic and onion powder flavors are subtle, but they make these golden hash browns absolutely irresistible. I’ve used this trick with my roasted breakfast potatoes and mashed potatoes, too.
My other trick to making these hash browns remarkably delicious is to cook them in extra-virgin olive oil. Yep! Extra-virgin olive oil actually has a pretty high smoke point (around 400 to 425 degrees Fahrenheit, contrary to what you might have heard over the years), but I cook these hash browns over medium heat just to be safe.
Cooking over high heat is tricky no matter what kind of oil you’re using. Depending on your pan and your stove, it’s just too easy to burn your food over medium-high or high heat.
In the recipe, you’ll see that I suggest stirring the potatoes and pressing them back down against the skillet every two minutes. That’s just long enough for the potatoes to get crispy; stirring ensures that some of the potatoes don’t burn while the rest are left uncooked.
The final step is to transfer the hash browns to a plate lined with a paper towel to absorb some of the excess oil. I assume the nutrition facts offered under the recipe are a little inflated in fat content, but I can’t account for how much oil is left in the pan and on the paper towel.
Regardless, these hash browns are a more nutritious option than diner hash browns that are cooked in highly refined vegetable oil. They offer more complex flavor than standard hash browns, too, since they’re cooked in olive oil with garlic and onion powder until golden and crispy.
How about some homemade hash browns this weekend? These hash browns will go great with eggs, cooked any which way (here are all of my egg recipes). I think they would be especially great with this broccoli cheddar frittata.
I can hardly wait to share those breakfast burritos with you tomorrow morning. Please leave a comment to let me know how these turn out for you. Your star ratings with your comment is much appreciated, too (those help convince other visitors that the recipe is worth making!). Have a great weekend!
Delicious Crispy Hash Browns
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: Stovetop
Learn how to make the best crispy hash browns at home! These delicious hash browns are lighter and healthier than greasy diner hash browns, since they’re made with olive oil. Recipe yields 4 servings; you can double or triple this recipe but cook in batches as written below.
- 1 pound Russet potatoes (2 small-to-medium), peeled if desired
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Scrub the potatoes clean and grate them on a large-holed cheese grater (I left the skin on, but you can peel it first if you’d like). In a fine-mesh sieve, rinse the grated potato well until the water runs clear.
- Drain the potatoes, and then place them potato on a clean tea towel or several paper towels. Twist the towel to remove as much moisture from the potatoes as possible (you might need to do this in two batches).
- Transfer the grated potato to a bowl and toss it with the salt, garlic powder and onion powder.
- In a large skillet (preferably cast iron, but non-stick works, too), warm the olive oil over medium heat until shimmering and a piece of grated potato sizzles on contact. Spread the potatoes over the skillet in an even layer and press them down with a spatula. Let them cook, undisturbed, for 2 minutes.
- Stir again, press them down again, and cook for another 2 minutes. Repeat in 2-minute intervals, flipping in sections once they’re crispy enough to do so, until the potatoes are golden brown and crispy, about 4 to 8 more minutes. Meanwhile, line a plate with a couple of layers of paper towels to absorb excess oil, and set it near the stove.
- Transfer the hash browns to the lined plate and let them drain for a minute. (If you’re making multiply batches of hash browns, repeat these steps as necessary—keep in mind that your skillet will be really hot so your next batch may cook faster.)
- Season to taste with additional salt, if necessary, and serve hot.
Why buy organic? Potatoes are number 12 on the dirty dozen list, meaning that conventionally grown potatoes are high in pesticide residues.