Flickr Photo Credit: Patrick Woodward
Given the popularity of these treats at popular chain restaurants across the United States, I’m pretty sure this little tip could help a fair number of families. Whenever there is a supersale in my town on baking potatoes (10 pound bags routinely drop to between 69-99 cents), I take the opportunity to have a massive mashed potato bake off.
When I remove the baked potatoes from their skins, i do two very specific things. First, I slice them in half lengthwise rather than across the narrower middle section. Second, I make sure to leave almost a full quarter-inch of potato matter attached to the skin. These steps leave me with the makings of a great snack for family appetizer night . . . homemade potato skins! Put a few handfulls each into plastic freezer bags to have on hand. Then, on a night when you need a fun, affordable crowd pleaser, take them out to thaw.
Prepping them for snack time is simple. You can either drop them in a portable fryer to then drain and serve with sour cream or cheese dip, or spray a cookie sheet with nonstick spray and lay them out flat. Drizzle with some olive oil and light seasoning blend of your choice. Bake at 375 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until crispy and golden brown. You can also add bacon bits, shredded cheese, green onions, and other toppings of choice before baking in the oven. Be as creative with your dip and topping choices as you like. This is one of many affordable potato ideas for frugal folks on a budget.