Potatoes are a versatile root vegetable and a staple food in many households. They are relatively cheap, easy to grow and packed with a variety of nutrients. The potato is the world’s fourth-most important crop after rice, wheat and maize, and the first among non-grains. What makes the potato so irresistible is its unrivalled nutritional value and its relative easiness to cultivate.
Potatoes are an excellent source of many vitamins and minerals but the nutritional content of potatoes can vary depending on the variety and how they are prepared. For example, frying potatoes adds more calories and fat than baking them.
It’s also important to note the skin of the potatoes contains a great amount of the vitamins and minerals. Peeling potatoes can significantly reduce their nutritional content.
Potatoes are rich in compounds like flavonoids, carotenoids and phenolic acids.
These compounds act as antioxidants in the body by neutralizing potentially harmful molecules known as free radicals. When free radicals accumulate, they can increase the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes and cancer.
Potatoes are naturally gluten-free, which makes them an excellent food choice for people with celiac disease or a non-celiac gluten sensitivity.
Baked, fried or mashed, there’s no wrong way to cook potatoes.
Muffin Tin Potato Stacks
- 1 lb potatoes Yellow Flesh or Russet
- 1½ tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- ½ tbsp fresh thyme leaves minced, stems removed
- ½ cup Gouda (or other cheese) grated
- salt & pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 400° then add the butter, olive oil, thyme, salt and pepper to a medium size bowl. Microwave 30 seconds or until the butter is just melted then give it a good stir.
- Peel and thinly slice the potatoes then add them to the bowl, gently tossing to coat.
- Lightly spray a standard size muffin pan with cooking spray then begin stacking the potatoes into the cups adding a little cheese between the layers finishing the stack with potatoes. Then using your fingers or the back of a teaspoon gently press down on each stack.
- Drizzle any remaining butter over top. Add a light sprinkle of salt and fresh cracked black pepper to the top of each stack then bake 30-45 minutes or until the potatoes are tender with golden, crispy brown edges.
- Let the potatoes rest 2-3 minutes in the tins then gently remove onto a plate. Enjoy!
Loaded Baked Potato Soup
- 6 slices bacon chopped
- 1 small onion diced
- 2 tbsp flour
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 3 cups mashed potatoes
- 1¼ cups sharp cheddar cheese shredded and divided
- ½ cup buttermilk
- ⅓ cup sour cream plus extra for garnish
- 2 green onions finely chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- Fry bacon in a large pot until crisp. Remove bacon and set aside leaving the drippings in the pot.
- Reduce heat to medium low and add diced onion to drippings. Cook until tender, about 5-7 minutes.
- Add garlic and flour, cook 1 minute while stirring. Whisk in chicken broth, bring to a boil over medium high heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Stir in mashed potatoes. Simmer an additional 5 minutes. Add the buttermilk and stir to combine allowing mixture to just come to a boil.
- Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup cheese, half of the bacon, and ⅓ cup sour cream.
- Garnish with a dollop of sour cream, remaining bacon, green onion and serve hot.