You know those people who say they’re not big breakfast eaters? Or worse…they don’t like breakfast foods (gasp!)? Yeah, I’m not one of those people. I love breakfast and breakfast food. If I could pick one meal to eat out with friends, it would be breakfast/brunch. And my favorite favorite breakfast food? Potatoes. Hash browns. Whatever you want to call them, I will go out of my way to make sure I have them when I’m ordering breakfast or for special breakfasts at home (like, say, Christmas morning?)

I know this is pretty basic, but this is one of those things like scrambled eggs where it seems like it should be easy, but the potatoes just never come out quite right, you know? The key here is to not overwork the potatoes–you want to touch them as little as possible. Also, don’t be afraid of letting the potatoes get a little brown and crispy (if that’s your thing; if you prefer them cooked but not crispy, that’s cool, too). If you cook them just until they’re done, they’ll still taste good, but the texture might be a bit soggy.

You’ll need 4 smallish-medium russet potatoes (peeled or unpeeled, it’s up to you; I prefer the skins on mine), 1 small onion, salted butter, kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, smoked paprika, and Tabasco sauce. You can also substitute 2 tablespoons of bacon grease for 2 tablespoons of the butter.

Bring a medium-large pot of water to a boil and cut your potatoes into 1/4″-1/2″ cubes (depending on how big you like ’em). When the water is boiling, add the potatoes and cook for about 5 minutes or until they are slightly softened but not completely cooked. Drain and rinse in cool water.

In a large skillet (preferably cast-iron; if you don’t have a cast iron skillet, Santa needs to bring you one for Christmas this year), melt the butter (or butter and bacon grease) over medium heat. When the butter is melted and bubbly, add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, for about 1 minute or until the onions are softened. Add the potatoes in a single layer and combine with the onions, then let the potatoes cook for 3-4 minutes without touching them at all. Sprinkle with paprika, a little salt and pepper, and about 10 dashes of Tabasco sauce. Use a spatula to scrape the bottom of the pan and flip as many potatoes as you can at once until all the potatoes have been flipped. Cook for another 3-4 minutes and test them for doneness and seasoning; add more salt, pepper, and Tabasco to taste. Give ’em a few minutes more if they need it, stirring gently to prevent the potatoes from burning. Serve immediately. And not just for breakfast–they’re a great quick and easy side for dinner on a cold night!

I kind of completely love them with ketchup; yes, I know that is a completely un-foodie admission, but then I’ve never really claimed to be a foodie. Are you shocked and horrified?


  1. Yum! I’ve never boiled mine first, so they never turn out exactly right. Excited to try this! Think it would also work with red potatoes? I feel the need to always buy the 10 lb bag at Costco so I’m always in search of recipes with them!

    1. Yep, you could and they would be delicious! The only problem is that they aren’t as starchy, so they will fall apart easier. When you’re frying them, cook them at a slightly higher temperature and reaaaaaally touch them as little as possible.

  2. Thanks for the recipe. I will try this recipe, it sounds very good. I can picture this as a side dish for any meal.

  3. I wake up every morning STAAAAAARVING. True story. I don’t understand people who don’t eat breakfast. At. All.

    Breakfast potatoes are one of my all time favorite things!! Definitely giving these a try.

  4. Those look deish!! And I am so glad you did this post because I HAVE always wondered how to make really good breakfast potatoes! Who knew you needed to par-boil? Thanks!! Just love you ladies!!!

  5. Ooh yum! I make my potatoes somewhat like that except I always sprinkle them with cheese right before I serve them. Cheesy potato goodness.

  6. We make our skillet potatoes just like that…oddly enough, I had never thought of making them for breakfast, as we usually make them as a side for dinner. I cannot wait to try them for breakfast now, too. Yummy!

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