These Crispy Puffed Potatoes Are Almost Too Good to Be True (I’m Still Amazed I Made Them)

published Apr 25, 2023
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puffed potatoes on a plate
Credit: Nicole Rufus

When I was in culinary school for all of three seconds (the pandemic cut my time short), we spent an entire day on potato preparations. One of the styles we discussed was a classic French technique called pommes soufflées, which are twice-fried potato slices that puff up during the second fry. They’re sort of like a cross between a french fry and a potato chip (aka perfection), but unfortunately we never got around to making them.

Recently, a video of similarly puffed potatoes by user Reduced Fat Meal has been making the rounds on TikTok. While the technique isn’t exactly the same (the TikTok video uses cornstarch to coat the potatoes), the end result is crispy puffed potato pillows, which is exactly what I’ve been craving ever since that day in school. Here’s what happened when I tried the recipe at home.

How to Make TikTok’s Twice-Fried Potatoes

Peel and wash two russet potatoes and cut them into 1/8-inch-thick slices. Place in a bowl and sprinkle with salt, then rinse and pat dry. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon cornstarch over the slices and toss to fully coat.

Heat oil for frying in a high-sided pan. When the oil reaches 300°F to 325°F, drop the potato slices in for the first round of frying. Fry until they begin to brown just slightly (about two minutes), then remove from the oil and transfer to paper towels. Once the oil has reached 375°F, return the slices to the oil and fry for another two minutes. At this point, the slices will begin to puff up. When they’re dark golden-brown, transfer them to the paper towels. Sprinkle with a bit of salt and serve immediately.

Credit: Nicole Rufus

My Honest Review of These Puffed Potatoes

These puffed potatoes were such a fun treat, and tasted delicious. Salting the potatoes before rinsing them helped draw out some of their starch, which ensured they fried up crispy and didn’t stick together in the oil. The TikTok user’s suggesting of tossing them in cornstarch was also super smart — it gave the potatoes an even crispier exterior. In fact, they came out even better-looking than I anticipated.

Sure, you have to deep-fry these potatoes, but otherwise I found the technique very straightforward and easy to pull off. Considering the end result is an impressively puffed potato, I think the deep-frying is absolutely worth it. Plus, watching them puff up is supremely satisfying.

I’m so excited to make these again and experiment with different seasonings for the potatoes, as well as different dipping sauces. These potatoes deserve a lot of love.

My #1 Tip for Making These Potatoes

Use a thermometer. This recipe is made infinitely easier with the use of a deep-fry thermometer to closely measure the heat of the oil.