I confess I use my crockpot a lot in the summer months. I actually use it all year round, truth be told, but it is especially handy in the summer when I am not wanting to turn my oven on and heat my kitchen up. Crock Pot Baked Potatoes are one of my favorite things to cook in it. In fact, I have several crockpots and often have some meat or poultry cooking in one and a side dish like these baked potatoes in the other! Think you can only cook main meals in a crockpot/slow cooker? Think again!
Crock Pot Baked Potatoes are an easy side dish that you can put in the slow cooker and totally ignore for several hours while you get on with something else, returning later on where you will find them to be perfectly cooked.
Your kitchen doesn’t get heated up at all!! That spells winner/winner to me! Count me in!
WHAT YOU NEED TO MAKE CROCK POT BAKED POTATOES
Nothing fancy here. Just ordinary, simple ingredients.
|4 large baking potatoes (each one about ¾ pound in weight)|
|2 tsp olive oil|
|Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste|
|Aluminium foil to wrap them in|
|Your favourite toppings to serve with the finished potatoes|
HINTS AND TIPS
If you follow my hints and tips you are assured of success with this simple method.
1. Read through the recipe several times to familiarise yourself with any ingredients or equipment needed.
2. Assemble everything you need for the recipe before you begin to cook. This can help to prevent you from leaving anything integral to the recipe out.
3. Use a proper baking potato. You want one that will have a nice and fluffy interior once cooked. Russet potatoes are perfect for this purpose. You want largish ones, but not overly so. Remember people need to be able to eat them! Too big is too big and it will take much longer to cook really large ones. I would not go any larger than ¾ of a pound in weight for each.
4.. Wash/scrub your potatoes really well, removing any stuck on dirt or mud. Likewise dry them really well also. I use paper kitchen towelling.
5. Prick them all over with a fork. This helps to prevent them from breaking open or exploding open as they cook.
6. Make sure you use pieces of foil large enough to securely wrap the potatoes in completely.
7. I rub the potatoes with some oil and then season them with salt and black pepper prior to wrapping them. If you want to add even more flavour you can mix some Parmesan cheese, salt, garlic powder, paprika and black pepper and rub this into the potatoes before you wrap them up instead. It is really a matter of taste and choice.
8. I like to place little balls of foil in the bottom of the slow cooker which act as trivets and keep the potatoes from burning or getting overly done on the bottoms. This way the heat circulates all around them for a more even cooking process.
9. Although these taste really nice on their own, offering a variety of goodies for your family and friends to top them with really takes these over the top into spectacular.
HOW TO COOK CROCK POT BAKED POTATOES
Simple, simple, simple.
Scrub your potatoes really well, removing any dirt, digging it out of any crevices if necessary. Dry well with some paper towels.
Pierce the potatoes all over with a fork, about 10 times per potato, then rub well with olive oil, coating each one completely. Generously season each potato with salt and black pepper.
Make little balls of foil and place them into the bottom of the crock pot creating a trivet of sorts. Pace the potatoes on top of the balls of foil. Cover the crock pot and cook on high for 4 to 6 hours. The cook time depends on the size of your potatoes. You will know they are done when they can be pierced easily with a fork or toothpick and yield somewhat when lightly pressed with your fingers. If they are still hard in the centres, cook for a while longer.
Let cool for 10 minutes or so, then make a slice in the top of each, push the sides to fluff up and serve immediately with your favourite toppings.
If you prefer your baked potatoes with a crisper skin, you can pop the cooked potatoes into a hot oven (425*F), placing them directly on the oven rack which will crisp the skins. This will take about 10 minutes or so and is a personal preference.
This photo perfectly illustrates the difference between the two potatoes, you see a potato cooked solely in the crock pot at the forefront and one finished off in the oven in the rear of the photograph. Both are delicious.
HOW TO TOP CROCK POT BAKED POTATOES
Although baked potatoes are perfect served as a side dish just as they are, they are and can be complete meals all on their own. Here are my suggestions for both ways.
FOR USE AS A SIDE DISH
- Dairy Sour Cream
- Butter Pats
- Chopped green onions or minced chives
- Crumbled cooked bacon
- Grated cheese. We really like sharp cheddar in this house.
- Prepared Guacamole
- Tomato Salsa
FOR USE AS A MAIN COURSE:
- Prepared chili con carne, or a vegetarian chili if you prefer
- Pulled pork or chicken
- Baked beans and cheese
- Creamed chicken or fish
Another fun thing to do when you are serving Baked Potatoes is to set up a Baked Potato Bar! Put out a nice assortment of baked potato toppings in various dishes with spoons so that your friends and family can help themselves to whichever toppings they enjoy.
One thing is certain, no matter how you choose to top them, Crock Pot Baked Potatoes are destined to become a favorite in your kitchen. Preparing your baked potatoes in this way takes all the guesswork out of them and makes the whole job so easy. They are perfect for entertaining.
A Baked Potato Bar is a beautiful addition to game night. These keep your kitchen cool, leaving your hands free to get on with any other meal prep you need to be doing. Ready to serve after the steak or chicken comes off the BBQ, these are destined to become a great addition to your meal planning any time of year!
- 4 large baking potatoes (each one about ¾ pound in weight)
- 2 tsp olive oil
- Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
To Serve: (all optional)
- Pats of butter
- Sour cream
- Bacon bits
- Chopped chives or green onions
- Scrub your potatoes really well, removing any dirt, digging it out of any crevices ifnecessary. Dry well with some paper towels.
- Pierce the potatoes all over with a fork, about 10 times per potato, then rub well with olive oil, coating each one completely. Generously season each potato with salt and black pepper.
- Make little balls of foil and place them into the bottom of the crock pot creating a trivet of sorts. Pace the potatoes on top of the balls of foil. Cover the crock pot and cook on high for 4 to 6 hours. (Low 8 to 10 hours.)
- The cook time depends on the size of your potatoes. You will know they are done when they can be pierced easily with a fork or toothpick and yield somewhat when lightly pressed with your fingers. If they are still hard in the centres, cook for a while longer.
- Let cool for 10 minutes or so, then make a slice in the top of each, push the sides to fluff up and serve immediately with your favourite toppings.
You can crisp up the skins by placing the potatoes in a 425*F oven directly on
the rack for about 10 minutes.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 150 per potato without any additions
Marie Rayner is a retired Chef, freelance writer, recipe developer, food blogger, and Cookbook author. She makes her home in Chester, UK, where she lives with her husband, Todd, and their much beloved English Cocker, Mitzie. Her motto is “Life is far too short to eat bad food,” and her goal is to share delicious and easy recipes which anyone can enjoy and cook in the comfort of their own home.