How to Make the Best Baked Potato

Baked Potato

This baked potato recipe is very simple to make, and requires little prep work, but always makes a fluffy baked potato with a beautiful crispy skin. It's an affordable, easy, low-effort dish that anyone can master. Enjoy perfectly baked potatoes as a side dish or load them up with protein and vegetables for a complete meal.



  1. Preheat oven to 425°F
  2. Wash and scrub the potatoes to remove dirt. Pat dry.
  3. Pierce each potato several times with a fork. This will let steam escape during baking. No popped potatoes here!
  4. Rub each potato all over with olive oil, then season generously with coarse salt all over the skin. 
    This step is crucial to getting a nice crispy skin and flavorful baked potato--really get the oil and salt all over and don't hold back!
  5. Place the potatoes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. 
    Don't worry about wrapping the potatoes in foil--that will cause the potatoes to steam as the interior moisture is released, and the skin won't get as crispy. In this case the easy way produces a better result.
  6. Bake for 45-60 minutes, until the potatoes are tender and easily pierced with a fork and the skin is crispy.
  7. Remove the potatoes from the oven and let them cool for a few minutes before handling.
  8. Make a lengthwise slit in the top of each potato and push the short sides in toward the center. This will spread the potato open. 
  9. Fluff the cooked baked potato with a fork, and season with salt and pepper.
  10. Serve hot topped with butter, sour cream, chives, broccoli, shredded cheese, chili, chopped crispy bacon, or any toppings you like.