If you've never had smashed potatoes, you're missing out! They're elevated French fries when you want to make yourself feel better or impress someone (did you say date night?!) These smashed potatoes are fluffy on the inside, and crispy on the outside. They do take a bit longer than popping frozen fries into the oven, but trust me, it'll be worth your time!
The post contains helpful tips and tricks to make sure you're successful in your first attempt. But if you're in a rush, please use the link above to jump to the recipe card at the end!
💭 Why you'll love this recipe
There are many reasons to love this recipe, but I'll list the top three below:
- Vegan and gluten-free: These potatoes are a great side for many dietary restrictions since they're vegan and gluten-free (unless you top with cheese!)
- Simple ingredients, easy recipe: This recipe needs very basic ingredients and basically involves smashing some potatoes, spicing them up and roasting them
- Ready in under an hour: Regardless of whether you bake or air-fry, this recipe is ready in an hour, making it a perfect snack for all occasions!
📋 Ingredients & notes
These smashed potatoes are simple but rustic. You'll need a pound of potatoes of small or medium size, olive oil, turmeric, garlic powder, and red chili powder.
- Choosing the right potatoes: I like Yukon Gold baby potatoes but you can also use red potatoes for something more "meaty" (the skins are also more flavorful). In terms of size, going for smaller potatoes will help make each piece a delectable, bite-sized snack. If you have medium sized potatoes, just chop them in half so you can get the perfect bite!
- Extra crispiness: If you have some chickpea flour on hand, grab that as well for the crispiest smashed potatoes you'll ever make.
- Adjusting spice and flavor: The turmeric adds a beautiful golden color, while the red chili powder gives it a tangy kick. If you want it less spicy, tone down the latter!
📖 Step-by-Step Instructions for Crispy Smashed Potatoes
Preheat oven or air-fryer to 425F and boil the potatoes
Similar to the process for making mashed potatoes, you will start by boiling the potatoes (no need to peel them!) I recommend rinsing the potatoes and then throwing them in a pot of fresh cold water and bringing them to a boil. If you are using medium sized potatoes (like I am) - quarter them so they're the right size!
This process typically takes about 15 to 20 minutes. You'll know they're cooked when you insert a fork and it goes straight through. Drain the potatoes and let them cool for a few minutes in a mixing bowl.
Prepare the seasoning
While the potatoes are cooling down, add turmeric, red chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder and salt to olive oil and give it a good whisk. We're going to coat the potatoes with this seasoned oil before we pop them into the oven. Note that I use Kashmiri red chili powder, which is quite potent - however, you can adjust this spice level to your taste!
Season and smash the potatoes to get it ready for action!
If you're baking: pour half the seasoned oil into the mixing bowl with the potatoes and give it a good toss to coat all the potatoes evenly. Once that's done, place the potatoes on a baking sheet with sufficient spacing between them. Using a large fork or a cup, smash the potatoes flat (thinly) in a crisscross pattern so you can get a nice crispy texture once you bake them. Drizzle remaining seasoned oil on the potatoes to your liking.
If you're air-frying: pour all the seasoned oil into the mixing bowl with the potatoes and give it a good toss to coat all the potatoes evenly. Similar to baking, using a large fork or a cup, smash the potatoes flat (thinly) in a crisscross pattern. Place the potatoes evenly in the air fryer basket, leaving sufficient room besides the potatoes. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you might need to roast the potatoes in batches.
Bake or air-fry to perfection!
I typically recommend cooking the potatoes at 425F for about 25 minutes, but this timing will depend a bit on your oven or air fryer. I suggest taking a peek at the 15 minute mark to see how the potatoes are faring and flipping them so each side can get a nice crispy layer on the outside. Once they're nice and golden brown, your potatoes are done!
You can choose to just eat the potatoes as is, garnish with just more salt, pepper and/or fresh herbs (e.g. parsley) to keep it vegan or you can add a bit of fresh grated cheese! Delicious regardless of what you choose at this stage.
🍴 Serving & storage suggestions
The recipe as written is vegan, but if you're vegetarian, you can add some parmesan on the potatoes. You can also top with some finely cut up scallions and/or fresh herbs. You want them creamier? Add a dollop of vegan sour cream for a punch of flavor.
I typically serve these by themselves, but I love recommending two great dipping options: spicy ketchup (add a few red pepper flakes and/or habanero hot sauce) or a spicy aioli (add habanero hot sauce to vegan mayo).
You can make these crispy smashed potatoes ahead of time. I suggest boiling the potatoes, smashing it, and then wrapping plastic wrap around the entire baking sheet tightly and then throwing it in the fridge, ideally the night before you need to make them. This is particularly helpful when you're meal-prepping for a large family meal the next day, or for occasions like Thanksgiving when you have a ton of stuff going on. Then, 40 minutes before eating, remove from fridge and proceed with the rest of the steps.
To store roasted potatoes, I suggest wrapping them up tightly with plastic wrap and throwing them in the fridge. They should be okay for a couple of days. You could microwave them (but I've found that makes them mushy). When you're ready to eat, just pop them in the oven at 350F for 10 minutes.
If you liked this recipe, check out my other vegan, baked / air-fryer snacks recipes:
Crispy Garlic Smashed Potatoes
- 1 lb Potatoes, Prefer using a mix of gold and red potatoes - baby potatoes or small to medium size!
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons salt, adjust to taste!
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder, prefer using powder vs. fresh garlic (latter burns)
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder
- Wash the potatoes thoroughly (because you'll eat the skin too!). If you're using medium sized potatoes, quarter them. If using small (golf ball or smaller sized) potatoes, boil them as-is. Cover the potatoes with salted water with a teaspoon of turmeric in a large pot, and cook on medium-high heat for about 20 minutes to boil the potatoes. Check after 15 minutes - if a fork passes easily through the potatoes, they are done. If not, cook until they're done.
- Preheat your oven to 425F (use the roast setting if available) - or preheat your air fryer to 400F.
- Add a teaspoon each of garlic powder and red chili powder to 3 tablespoons of olive oil and mix well using a fork. I prefer mixing them before sprinkling on the potatoes since they coat better this way. See next step if you prefer to season separately!
- Once the potatoes are cooked, drain the water and cool them completely, and add to a mixing bowl. Whisk the olive oil mixture once more and pour half of it on the potatoes and coat them well using your hands or a fork. If using an air fryer, you can pour all the oil on potatoes. Alternative: If you don't want to make an oil mixture, start by pouring half the olive oil on the potatoes and coat them well. Then add the spices and make sure the potatoes are fully coated.
- Place the potatoes on a baking sheet. Using a fork or a masher (or even a glass) - smash the potatoes softly. You want to make sure the skin loosens and breaks, and the end potato is about ½ an inch thick. See pictures in post for details.
- Baking: If baking, arrange them on the baking sheet with sufficient space and drizzle the remaining oil on top to your liking. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, flipping halfway through. Air Frying: If air-frying, transfer the potatoes into the air fryer basket or sheet with sufficient spacing. Air fry for about 20 flipping halfway through to your desired crispiness!
- You can either enjoy this as-is, or top with fresh herbs and some more salt and pepper as well as fresh grated cheese!
- Roast times really do depend on the air fryer and the oven you're using, I suggest checking in 10 minute increments to make sure the crispiness is to your desired levels!
- Ideally, you want potatoes the size of golf balls. You could make these with larger sizes, but in that case, I suggest chopping them into halves, so you can still get a crispy thin layer!
- I wouldn't suggest using fresh herbs or garlic when you're loading up the potatoes - they just burn in the oven and the taste is really bitter!
Note: This recipe was originally published April 12, 2020 and updated on Dec 29, 2020 to include better visuals and instructions.