This is an easy recipe for loaded smashed red potatoes – an incredible crowd pleasing appetizer or easy side dish.

Smashed red potatoes are boiled, smashed, and baked with olive oil, cheese and bacon until crisp and topped with sour cream and chives for an irresistible and memorable appetizer!

A loaded smashed red potato on a white plate.
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I’ve been making smashed potatoes for years in various ways. These smashed red potatoes are a family favorite, because we can easily customize the toppings to everyone’s tastes.

They are boiled, drizzled with olive oil, salt and seasonings and then baked under high heat until perfectly crispy. Much like my Garlic Smashed Potatoes or Smashed Sweet Potatoes, the whole family adores them, and sometimes we make a dinner out of them instead of an appetizer or side.

It was time I shared these smashed red potatoes, so you too can learn how to make the perfect side dish or party appetizer to serve a crowd. These pretty little potatoes are so good, and perfect for entertaining, especially on game day!

You can serve them on a pretty platter, but they rarely make it to one – as soon as I pull out a sheet of these, everyone is trying to get their hands on one!

Loaded smashed red potatoes on a gold baking sheet.

Why You’ll Love these Smashed Red Potatoes

  • They are an appetizer, side dish OR dinner!
  • Gluten Free
  • Easy to customize
  • Great for a crowd
  • Perfect for game day
  • Filling and wholesome
A loaded smashed red potato on a white plate.

Ingredients and Substitutions

  • Small Red Potatoes – You can use any small potatoes, but I love the color for this loaded side.
  • Olive Oil – Adds a hint of flavor and makes the skin nice and crispy.
  • Salt and Pepper – Classic loaded potato seasonings. I love to use a grinder for nice thick flakes.
  • Cheddar – Freshly shredded melts the best because it’s higher quality cheese with less preservatives and doesn’t dry out like pre-shredded, but you can use whatever you have on hand.
  • Bacon – Fresh cooked or purchase bacon pieces (not bits) in the salad aisle of your grocer.
  • Sour Cream – Added after the bake for a classic loaded potato topping.
  • Green Onion – Garnish for color and flavor after the bake. Chives will work, too!

Variations

  • Use your favorite cheese – even blue cheese crumbles would be incredible here!
  • Spice them up with red pepper flakes, or add Fiesta Ranch Seasoning to your sour cream for drizzling.
A loaded smashed red potato on a white plate.

How to Make Loaded Smashed Red Potatoes

  1. Boil – Boil potatoes until tender.
  2. Bake – Place on a cookie sheet, using a potato masher or back of a wooden spoon, smash the potatoes so they are flattened but still hold their shape.
  3. Top – Drizzle with olive oil, add shredded cheese, bacon pieces, salt and pepper.
  4. Bake – Bake until crispy.
  5. Garnish – Top with green onion and sour cream. To drizzle, thin sour cream with heavy cream, half and half or milk and funnel into a ketchup or mustard bottle and cover in a zigzag pattern.
Loaded smashed red potatoes on a gold baking sheet.

Tips

  • Need help with measurement conversions? Check out my Essential Measurement Conversion Chart or use the slider in the recipe card to double or triple the ingredients as needed.
  • Fresh shredded mild cheddar is best. The pre-shredded cheese is coated in a substance that prevents it from melting as well!
  • To make the sour cream thin enough for drizzling, add a little heavy cream, half and half or milk, and funnel it into a squeeze bottle and cover in a zigzag pattern.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between mashed potatoes and smashed potatoes?

Mashed potatoes feature skin-free potatoes that have been boiled to the point of softness, and then blended with liquids to create a fluffy, pureed masterpiece of decadent potatoes.
Smashed potatoes, on the other hand, are served as individual potatoes with the skins remaining, leaving chunks of fluffy potatoes as a feature after baking. Crispy edges make them a crunchier type of potato, and the toppings are widely varied.

Do red potatoes take longer to cook?

It’s less about the type of potato, and more about the size. The smaller size of potatoes you’re using, the less time they will take to cook. In the case of these smashed red potatoes, they are cooked almost completely after boiling, and the oven time serves to make them perfectly crispy!

Loaded smashed red potatoes on a gold baking sheet.

Serving Suggestions

These make a wonderful side dish for a wide variety of protein entrees. Consider any of the following family favorites to make a well rounded, wholesome family meal!

Dietary Considerations

  • Vegetarian (eliminate bacon topping)
  • Nut Free
  • Gluten Free

How to Store

  • Room Temperature – your smashed red potatoes can remain at room temperature for up to two hours while serving.
  • Refrigerate – Store for 4-5 days in an airtight container in your refrigerator.
  • Freeze – you can freeze these smashed red potatoes in a tightly closed Ziploc bag or in an airtight container for up to three months. (Preferably, do this prior to adding sour cream and other toppings.)
A loaded smashed red potato on a white plate.

More Side Dish Inspiration

Loaded smashed red potatoes on a gold baking sheet.
5 from 2 votes

Smashed Red Potatoes

An easy recipe for Loaded Smashed Red Potatoes – an incredible crowd pleasing appetizer or easy side dish. Smashed Red Potatoes are boiled, smashed, and baked with olive oil, cheese and bacon until crisp and topped with sour cream and chives for an irresistible and memorable appetizer!
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
Servings: 12
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Ingredients  

  • 12 small red potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt {to taste}
  • pepper {to taste}
  • 1 ½ cups cheddar shredded
  • ¾ cup bacon pieces

Toppings (after baking)

  • 3 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream for thinning the sour cream so it can drizzle
  • ½ cup green onion chopped

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 475° Fahrenheit.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil over medium high heat adding salt. Boil potatoes until tender, about 12-15 minutes.
  • Place potatoes on a baking sheet. Using a potato masher or back of a wooden spoon, gently press to smash. 
  • Drizzle with olive oil, fresh cracked salt and pepper. Top with shredded cheese and bacon pieces.
  • Bake 15 minutes or until crisp, and remove from oven.
  • While the potatoes are in the oven, combine sour cream with heavy whipping cream so it's thin enough to drizzle over the top. Top with thinned sour cream and green onions.

Julie’s Tips

  • Use the slider bar in this printable recipe card to double or triple the ingredients as needed.
  • Fresh shredded mild cheddar is best. The pre-shredded cheese is coated in a substance that prevents it from melting as well!
  • To make the sour cream thin enough for drizzling, add a little heavy cream, half and half or milk, and funnel it into a squeeze bottle and cover in a zigzag pattern.
Serving: 1g | Calories: 218kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 26mg | Sodium: 333mg | Potassium: 803mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 215IU | Vitamin C: 15.4mg | Calcium: 125mg | Iron: 1.4mg

Estimated nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is not guaranteed.

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