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14 Celebrity Chef Tips For The Most Delicious Roasted Potatoes

Roasted potatoes with herbs
Roasted potatoes with herbs - Fcafotodigital/Getty Images

Roasted potatoes seem like a simple side dish, yet can be surprisingly hard to pull off. This is frustrating when trying to make a lovely meal; after all, they're just potatoes cooked in the oven for a while with seasoning and some fat. Yet, even experienced home cooks sometimes find their roasted potatoes blackened, underdone, stuck to the pan, or limp and unappealing. So, what's the deal?

Don't worry, we've got you. Once you know a few secrets, roasted potatoes will be on the menu every chance you get. We've rounded up tips and tricks from celebrity chefs to level up your potato game so you can serve exquisitely roasted potatoes. Imagine them golden and crunchy on the outside while creamy and fully cooked on the inside, a superb accompaniment to any meal, whether grilling a steak, roasting a chicken, or whipping up a weekend brunch. Either way, after reading these tips, you'll roast potatoes just like Bobby Flay and Padma Lakshmi.

Read more: Ingredients To Take Your Scrambled Eggs To The Next Level

Semolina And Spice Makes Everything Nice – Gordon Ramsay

Semolina roasted potatoes
Semolina roasted potatoes - Food Via Lenses/Shutterstock

Gordon Ramsay's personality rubs some people the wrong way, but there's no doubt that as a chef, he knows what he's doing. Ramsay, author, reality star, and owner of 58 restaurants worldwide, swears by a sprinkle of semolina, turmeric, and chili flakes for his roasted potatoes. The semolina turns the volume up on the crunchy coating, and the turmeric enhances the golden color while deepening the flavor. Whether you're a spice lover or wary of heat, chili flakes add interest and can be adjusted up or down according to your preferences.

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Ramsay always simmers potatoes in salted water before roasting them, giving them a good shake in the colander while draining. This is known as "roughing them up," creating texture on the surface of the potato that crisps beautifully in the oven. Although we won't go as far as to say roasties will fail if you start with raw spuds, all the celebrity chefs agree with Ramsay and start with potatoes that are boiled to fork-tender before roasting.

Quality Ingredients Matter – Ina Garten

Bowl of olive oil surrounded by heads of garlic and a bottle of oil
Bowl of olive oil surrounded by heads of garlic and a bottle of oil - Ozgur Senergin/Shutterstock

Anyone familiar with acclaimed cookbook author and celebrity chef Ina Garten (also known as the Barefoot Contessa) knows she always chooses the best quality ingredients. It's pretty much her brand — elegant meals using simple but premium ingredients. It should come as no surprise, therefore, that her tip for making perfect roasted potatoes is to use the best ingredients you possibly can.

Garten uses plenty of garlic in her roasties and, as you might guess, chooses the freshest, firmest bulbs. Forget jars of minced garlic, tubes of garlic paste, or tiny bulbs with some of the cloves wrinkly or discolored. Dig through the bin at the store, or better yet, go to a farmstand or farmer's market to find big garlic heads without any sprouting, ideally with purplish streaks throughout the head. Garten is adamant about using "good olive oil" as well, as those who watch her show have noticed. Common wisdom says always to buy extra virgin olive oil in a dark bottle, but Garten sticks to Olio Santo Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Finally, she prefers red potatoes for their thin skins that don't need peeling. As with most Barefoot Contessa recipes, if you can source the best ingredients, you're going to love tasting the results.

Always Roast Tiny Potatoes – Giada De Laurentiis

Multicolored tiny potatoes
Multicolored tiny potatoes - Billnoll/Getty Images

Bestselling cookbook author, host of Food Network's "Everyday Italian," and entrepreneur Giada De Laurentiis favors roasting tiny potatoes over larger varieties. She calls them "peewee potatoes" and loves using multiple colors to elevate the presentation (via Giadzy). Don't let different names fool you — whether your grocery store calls them new potatoes or baby potatoes, these are young potatoes harvested before they mature. Their skins are thin and delicate, yet they become deliciously crisp when roasted. They have a sweet, creamy interior, cook quickly, and offer a lovely aesthetic for serving.

De Laurentiis always chooses waxy varieties for roasting, which makes sense because the more starch potatoes have, the more likely they are to come apart when cooking. Starchy varieties are best for mashed or baked potatoes. In contrast, waxy varieties like red potatoes and all baby potatoes keep their shape even if you parboil them before roasting. De Laurentiis favors simple seasoning for her roasted potatoes, such as olive oil, salt, and herbes de Provence. Still, any seasoning you prefer or that blends with your menu will work well.

Don't Limit Yourself To Just Potatoes – Guy Fieri

Potatoes roasted with mushrooms, zucchini, tomato
Potatoes roasted with mushrooms, zucchini, tomato - O.Kemppainen/Shutterstock

Guy Fieri, with his spiky hair, flame-licked shirts, and infectious enthusiasm, knows a bit about not following the rules. After all, the "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives" host inadvertently made himself the mayor of Flavortown, USA with an offhand remark about a diner pizza. He thinks the flavor could use a boost when it comes to roasted potatoes. Yes, roasted potatoes are simple comfort food, but why not add other veggies to enhance the flavor?

Fieri loves to roast fingerling potatoes with cremini mushrooms, herbs, and butter to add depth and richness to the dish. Mushrooms caramelize beautifully and lend a meaty texture to the potatoes. Not a mushroom fan? No problem — onions, chunks of zucchini, bell peppers, or Brussels sprouts would all liven up roasted potatoes and add a boost of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. These tips will make your next pan of roasties a trip to Flavortown without leaving your house.

Unexpected Seasonings Make All The Difference – Padma Lakshmi

Amchoor mango powder, cayenne, curry, and turmeric
Amchoor mango powder, cayenne, curry, and turmeric - stockcreations/Shutterstock

Padma Lakshmi is known for seamlessly blending flavors from around the world into her dishes, and her tips for roasted potatoes are no exception. The "Top Chef" host loves combining flavors that surprise and delight the senses, and her recipe for roasted potatoes on Instagram was a hit. She seasoned her roasties with Vulcan's Fire Salt and amchoor powder, a powdered green mango used in Indian cuisine. Lakshmi says that the combination of the spicy Vulcan's salt and the fruity, tart flavor of amchoor complement one another beautifully, and we can totally see it. However, it's worth noting that the tip itself is probably more important than the exact flavor combo. The point is that everyone uses garlic and rosemary on potatoes. Don't be afraid to think outside the box — if Lakshmi recommends it, that's good enough for us.

A few other tidbits Lakshmi shared about roasted potatoes are worth noting. She leaves the skins on for more texture, and she always makes sure the cut sides of the potatoes face down on the tray so they get more color. Her potatoes don't spend long in the oven — just 10 minutes or so — because she boils them longer than other chefs, around 15-18 minutes, until fork tender. Finally, she likes to smash them down so there are more surfaces to crisp in the oven. Try these tips on any roasted potato recipe; we bet the results will be excellent.

Who Needs An Oven To Roast Potatoes? Make Them Stovetop – Jacques Pépin

Potatoes roasted in a cast iron skillet
Potatoes roasted in a cast iron skillet - Sentelia/Shutterstock

Jacques Pépin has spent his entire life cooking, first at his family's restaurant, then in Paris and New York. He's a prolific author, columnist, and star of many cooking shows on public television. His warm and humble manner as he teaches us about food has made him a culinary icon in league with his friend, Julia Child. Pépin has a knack for elevating simple ingredients into extraordinary dishes, and his method of roasting potatoes bypasses the oven completely. Pépin prefers roasting potatoes on the stovetop in an iron skillet with just chicken stock, butter, salt, and pepper. By the time they're finished, you have potatoes that are simultaneously crispy and creamy, with a depth of flavor that's out of this world.

Pépin uses Yukon Gold potatoes and simmers them gently in chicken broth with a few knobs of butter. He sometimes adds rosemary sprigs along with salt and pepper, but use the seasonings you prefer. The pan should be covered till the potatoes start to get soft, then uncovered so the stock evaporates, leaving only butter at the bottom. Flip them around in the butter, lightly smash them with a masher or the bottom of a jar, and let them crisp up before flipping and crisping the other side. Not only are these potatoes outstanding, but if you're short on oven space, you can still have fabulous roasted potatoes made on the stove.

Preheating Your Baking Sheet Brings Magical Results – Martha Stewart

Baking sheet on a counter with olive oil, salt, and pepper
Baking sheet on a counter with olive oil, salt, and pepper - Maryia_K/Shutterstock

Roasted potatoes can be shockingly finicky, as anyone who's suffered through soggy, unevenly cooked, bland roasties knows. Culinary icon Martha Stewart, the definition of meticulous attention to detail, has a simple secret to roasted potatoes that are fluffy inside with a golden exterior — and that's a very good thing.

Stewart knows preheating your baking sheet will always make excellent roasted potatoes because it jumpstarts the cooking process. When the potatoes hit the heated sheet, they sear immediately and caramelize faster for that golden, crackled crust. You can put your baking sheet into the oven as it preheats, turning to other tasks like prepping the potatoes and seasonings. It takes 10-15 minutes for the tray to be hot enough, so if your oven preheats quickly, just let it sit in the hot oven longer. This method will work with any recipe for roasted potatoes, so add your seasonings, pop the potatoes back into the oven (don't forget to flip them halfway through), and prepare to devour those fantastic taters.

Roasting Potatoes With Stock And A Flavorful Vinaigrette Is The Way To Go – Bobby Flay

Lemon vinaigrette with lemon, garlic, honey, rosemary
Lemon vinaigrette with lemon, garlic, honey, rosemary - New Africa/Shutterstock

Bobby Flay has no shortage of culinary expertise, with shows like "Boy Meets Grill," "Iron Chef," and "Bobby's Triple Threat," multiple James Beard awards, cookbooks galore, and six restaurants across the United States. Considering his innovative culinary creations, it's no surprise that Flay has a unique tip for making roasted potatoes that flies in the face of conventional wisdom. Traditionally, roasted potatoes are tossed in oil (or some other fat) and seasonings, and then put into the oven. Flay turns tradition on its head and uses a zesty lemon vinaigrette with garlic and oregano for his Greek-style roasted potatoes.

The oil in the dressing is the fat source, while the lemon and herbs lend their flavor with citrusy brightness that transports you to the Greek islands any day of the week. But Flay doesn't stop there — adding just ½ cup of chicken stock to the roasting pan lends depth and moisture, eliminating the need to parboil the potatoes before roasting. Since there's so little stock, it evaporates as the potatoes roast, caramelizing and giving the spuds an extra crunch while leaving the insides fluffy and succulent. Fans of Greek cuisine, bold flavor, or just plain delectable roasted potatoes should tuck this tip into their rotation.

Hosting A Big Meal? Parboil And Partially Roast Your Potatoes For Easy Prep – Mary Berry

Potatoes in a pot of water to be boiled
Potatoes in a pot of water to be boiled - Vladimir Mironov/Getty Images

Whether you're having a dinner party or making a holiday feast, cooking a huge meal can pose logistical challenges. Timing is critical since everything should be finished simultaneously, and you may lack space in the oven or stove. Mary Berry, the former host of "The Great British Baking Show," renowned chef, and author of more than 70 cookbooks, has an excellent tip for meal-prepping impeccably crunchy roasted potatoes.

Berry notes you can prep the day before the meal by parboiling potatoes for five minutes, then allow them to drain and dry off. Shake them in the colander to encourage crisp edges and add goose fat (or oil), a sprinkle of semolina for crunch, and seasonings. She recommends roasting as you usually would for half an hour, and then before the meal, pop them back in the oven for about 20 minutes to heat up and finish cooking. Berry's tip will deliver faultless roasted potatoes, reduce stress in the kitchen, and just might be the showstopper on your table.

Elevate Roasted Potatoes With Delicious Dipping Sauces – Rachael Ray

Various dipping sauces in small bowls
Various dipping sauces in small bowls - Pundapanda/Getty Images

Rachael Ray is known to her fans for her down-to-earth personality, megawatt smile, and simple, hearty dishes you can make any night of the week. However, just because her recipes are easy for everyone to make doesn't mean they're boring. Ray knows potatoes are meant for dipping sauces and likes to roast potatoes in wedges, perfect for dunking. She offers two inventive options to make roasted potatoes even better: a spicy, creamy Horseradish-Dijon Dipper and a Balsamic Dipper (via Rachael Ray Show). These zesty dippers complement the earthy flavor of the potatoes and will go with various menu options, but of course, you can use any dipping sauce you prefer.

You can use the tried-and-true: ketchup, mustard, mayo, ranch dressing, or barbecue sauce. You can buy sauces from your favorite restaurants or make your own at home. Maybe you're in the mood for spicy and cheesy or want to make hibachi restaurant yum yum sauce that's beloved by just about everyone. You could even go with something you might never have heard of, like Alabama white sauce, but whichever sauce you dip your roasties in, you'll thank Ray for the inspiration.

Use A Seasoned Flour Sprinkle On Oiled Potatoes – Emeril Lagasse

Bowl of flour with wheat and flour
Bowl of flour with wheat and flour - WIROJE PATHI/Shutterstock

Emeril Lagasse is a household name due in no small part to his infectious enthusiasm for the world of food, his dynamic personality, and his passion for bold flavors and twists on ordinary techniques. Lagasse has written 19 cookbooks, opened 20 restaurants, created the Emeril Lagasse Foundations to mentor future chefs, won numerous awards, and hosted over 2,000 shows on Food Network. His method for roasted potatoes is straightforward, with just potatoes, olive oil, seasonings (he uses only salt and pepper, but feel free to adjust to whatever suits you), and all-purpose flour.

While the British chefs on our list favor semolina for roasted potatoes, Lagasse tosses red potatoes in olive oil and arranges them on the baking tray. Then he mixes salt and pepper with just 2 tablespoons of flour, and sprinkles it over the potatoes before popping them in the oven. This produces a light coating that crisps to a golden brown for a superbly crunchy, flavorful roastie. Added crunch without having to source semolina sounds like an awesome tip, especially on busy nights.

Go Greek With Oregano And Feta – Nigella Lawson

Roasted baby potatoes with feta cheese, herbs, and lemon
Roasted baby potatoes with feta cheese, herbs, and lemon - P Kyriakos/Shutterstock

Nigella Lawson has charmed audiences with her indulgent yet accessible recipes since 1999, when her first show, "Nigella Bites," came on the air. An author, journalist, and restaurant critic, she is not a formally trained chef, yet we trust this self-described "kitchen klutz" to know what's happening in the kitchen. Lawson decided her roasted potatoes needed a Greek influence after tasting fries in Australia, where chef George Calombaris served them fried in garlic oil, sprinkled with feta and fresh oregano.

Lawson roasts potatoes as expected, with olive oil, garlic, and oregano. Fresh oregano will give you sublime flavor, but remember, Lawson's recipes are always down to earth, so if dried is all you have, no worries. The magic happens after the potatoes are crisp and golden — Lawson advises taking most of the crumbled feta and stirring it into the dish, where it will melt all over, then topping it with the remaining crumbles for a lovely presentation. A sprinkle of extra oregano, and you'll feel like you're dining by the Mediterranean.

You Can Never Have Too Much Butter – Ree Drummond

Potatoes roasted with garlic, butter, and herbs
Potatoes roasted with garlic, butter, and herbs - Daniel_Dash/Shutterstock

No one has ever accused Ree Drummond of skimping on butter — the Pioneer Woman, known for her down-to-earth charm and ability to blend traditional recipes with a modern twist, once divulged she used 121 pounds of butter in two short weeks. Not only that, but it was probably a conservative estimate! Her tip for roasting potatoes in butter instead of oil likely won't surprise you.

Drummond adds complexity and depth to her roasted potatoes by infusing the butter with garlic and rosemary. Before you write this tip off as too complicated, know that all you have to do is melt a stick of butter over low heat, add minced garlic and rosemary sprigs (the Pioneer Woman prefers fresh rosemary, of course, but we can tell you that dried will work, too) and let it bubble for 10 minutes. With the potatoes on the baking tray, pour the infused butter on top, stirring to coat each surface before roasting. The results are rich and savory, lending a sophistication that a simple sprinkle of herbs on the potatoes would lack. Season to taste with salt and pepper after they're golden and crispy, and prepare for potatoes worthy of anyone's table.

Goose Fat Is The Most Flavorful Addition – Jamie Oliver

Jar of rendered goose fat, spatula of fat resting across top
Jar of rendered goose fat, spatula of fat resting across top - Oksana_Schmidt/Shutterstock

Jamie Oliver has entertained audiences since the late 1990s with cooking shows on BBC, Food Network, Discovery+, and TLC. This author, chef, and restaurateur has advocated for healthy eating habits with accessible recipes focusing on fresh, seasonal ingredients. While Oliver told viewers on YouTube that he sometimes roasts potatoes in olive oil or butter, his favorite indulgence is goose fat for its rich flavor and luxurious taste. Goose fat, with its high smoke point, won't burn and results in gorgeous golden, crunchy roasties.

Goose fat is readily available in England, but never fear; you can find it at Whole Foods, Kroger, and Amazon in the U.S. Oliver recommends Maris Piper potatoes for roasting, but this is a variety grown in the U.K. that Americans are unlikely to find. New or baby potatoes work beautifully, though you could probably roast any old potato in goose fat and have it come out delicious. Oliver roasts plenty of garlic (in the skins) along with his potatoes and uses fresh herbs, salt, pepper, and a splash of red wine vinegar, which he says disappears into the potatoes but gives them a flavor boost. As for herbs, in his usual easy-going way, he tells us to use what we like but says that sage, thyme, bay leaves, citrus zest, and rosemary are all classics with roasted potatoes. No matter how you make your spuds, if you follow Oliver's goose fat tip, you'll want them constantly.

Read the original article on Mashed.