This post may contain affiliate links. See our disclosure policy.
Loaded potato skins are a game-day must! With crisp bacon, tender potato, and lots of gooey cheese, this recipe rivals anything you can get at a restaurant.
Featured with this recipe
Loaded cheesy potato skins are a favorite staple for the Super Bowl, or just about any casual family gathering, and it’s an appetizer my husband looks forward to more than the actual game! They are like a salted potato boat filled with crisp bacon and melted gooey cheddar and are so good dipped in sour cream or our homemade ranch dressing. They’re really easy to make, and you only need four ingredients!
This recipe is one of our favorite Super Bowl Recipes. Be sure to check out our full list of recipes for the big game. You’ll find all kinds of saucy meats, savory appetizer recipes, sweet treats, and delicious dips. Everything you could possibly need to host the Super Bowl or any tailgate/sports-watching party!
Easy Cheesy Potato Skins Ingredients
Making loaded cheesy potato skins is an easy and fun task! This recipe comes together with a few simple steps using delicious ingredients. Everyone loves cheese and bacon then add it to the potatoes and you have a delicious appetizer or snack that everyone enjoys!
- Potatoes – Pick up medium russet potatoes and wash them but leave the skin on them.
- Olive oil – This will help crisp up the potato skin and bake the inside a softer potato whereas the outside is crisp and flavorful.
- Cheddar cheese – Preshredded or a brick of sharp cheddar cheese will melt over top in the oven.
- Bacon – You can cook up your own bacon, or buy it pre-cooked and crumbled from the grocery store, but steer clear of those tough bacon bits.
- Butter – The melted butter is brushed over the potatoes to soften and crisp the skin while broiling.
- Salt – Sprinkle the salt on the potato leaving a balance of flavors but also giving a crispy and salty outer layer.
- Chives – Garnish on top with a little greenery and spice!
How to Make Loaded Potato Skins
These potatoes don’t take long to make and are a simple recipe that comes together quickly. Simply, bake potatoes, scoop out the inside, then broil the cheese and bacon. Combined it is layers of deliciousness!
- Bake potatoes – Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash and dry each potato. Using a fork, poke through the skin of each potato 8 to 10 times. Rub a light coat of olive oil, cooking oil, or shortening over each potato. Place potatoes on the middle rack of the oven. Place a baking sheet on the lower rack to catch drippings. Bake for 1 hour. You can also bake them in the air fryer using our Air Fryer Baked Potato method.
- Cut and scoop – Cool potatoes on a cooling rack for 10-15 minutes. Using a sharp knife cut each potato in half. Scoop out and remove the insides potato, leaving about a 1/2-inch layer of the potato flesh.
- Brush – Use a pastry brush to brush the potatoes all over with melted butter. Place the potatoes on a baking sheet and broil on high for about 4 to 6 minutes. The skin should turn golden brown.
- Broil – Divide the cheese and bacon crumbles evenly into the scooped side of the 12 potato skins. Broil again for 1 to 2 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
Tips for the Best Loaded Potato Skins
Sometimes picking and choosing the best ingredients makes all the difference in some recipes and this is one of those recipes! From cooking raw bacon, using the right cheese, and how to shred the cheese, plus making the skin extra crispy are all great tips and how to make the best loaded cheesy potato skins!
- Cooking bacon – If cooking raw bacon at home, simply place bacon slices onto a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes until done.
- Serving size – This recipe does not have exact measurements because you can do as much or as little as you like of these. If I fill up a cookie sheet-sized pan with these, I usually use a dozen russet potatoes, a package of bacon, and a pound of shredded cheddar cheese.
- Crispy potato skins – If you use melted butter or baking shortening to rub on the potato skins, the skins become crisper and withhold their shape while broiling. They don’t crack as much and usually have an extra buttery flavoring.
- Shed the Cheese – It tastes a lot better if you get a block of cheese and shred it yourself as opposed to getting the pre-shredded cheese. The pre-shredded cheese is floured to keep from sticking with sometimes can really take away from the flavor. It also doesn’t have the best melty cheese appearance.
- Tillamook cheese – I prefer Tillamook cheese to every other brand I have tried. It’s creamier and better tasting, and they let their cheese age naturally instead of genetically trying to make it age faster, and you can really taste the difference.
- Top it Off – Experiment with various toppings like jalapenos, diced tomatoes, blue cheese crumbles, or sautéed onions. See more great ideas and variations below.
- Perfect Pairings – Pair with your sour cream or your favorite dipping sauce, such as ranch dressing or BBQ sauce
There are countless topping ideas to make potato skins unique and flavorful. Here are some creative options:
- Classic Loaded: Shredded cheddar cheese, crispy bacon, and sliced green onions.
- Broccoli Cheese: We love our Broccoli Cheese Potato Skins recipe! Just add cooked broccoli and our delicious melted cheddar sauce (included in the recipe).
- Chili Cheese: Add a small scoop of chili and top with cheese, sour cream, and diced onion.
- BBQ Chicken: Chopped grilled chicken, BBQ sauce, red onions, and cilantro.
- Tex-Mex: Seasoned ground beef, diced tomatoes, jalapenos, and a dollop of sour cream.
- Buffalo Chicken: Shredded buffalo chicken, blue cheese crumbles, and drizzle with ranch dressing.
- Veggie Lover: Sautéed mushrooms, bell peppers, spinach, and a sprinkle of feta cheese.
- Pesto Parmesan: Pesto sauce, grated parmesan cheese, and cherry tomatoes.
- Mediterranean: Diced olives, sun-dried tomatoes, crumbled feta cheese, and fresh oregano.
- Philly Cheesesteak: Sautéed onions, sliced steak, and provolone cheese or a little drizzle of Cheese Whiz.
- Breakfast Style: Diced ham or chopped bacon, scrambled egg, and cheddar cheese.
- Spinach Artichoke: Spinach and artichoke dip, topped with mozzarella and grated parmesan.
Feel free to mix and match ingredients to come up with your signature loaded potato skin creation! Do you have a favorite way of making potato skins? Let us know in the comments below!
“Give me all the potato skins! These are so good! They are perfect as an appetizer or side dish!”-Kristyn
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes! The skin is the healthiest part of the potato and holds all the nutrients. The potato skin holds fiber which makes it a little tougher compared to the inside of the potato.
Really any type of protein like chicken, pork, or beef goes well with cheesy potato skins. For side dishes, baked beans, potato salad, or anything bbq related is a delicious combination! Use these skins as an appetizer and watch them disappear, they are SO good!
Place the leftover loaded potato skins in a storage container and store them in the refrigerator for three to five days long. When ready to reheat, remove the airtight container from the fridge and place them in an air fryer, oven, or microwave to warm up.
There are a variety of sauces that you can choose from! Some of our favorites are sour cream, chives, salsa, or ranch dressing.
More Potato Side Dishes
If you love potatoes as much as we do you should definitely try some of these other potato sides!
Loaded Potato Skins
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.Wash and dry each potato. Using a fork, poke through the skin of each potato 8 to 10 times. Rub a light coat of olive oil, cooking oil, or shortening over each potato.
- Place potatoes on middle rack of oven. Place a baking sheet on the lower rack to catch drippings. Bake for 1 hour.
- Cool potatoes on a cooling rack for 10-15 minutes. Cut each potato in half. Scoop out some of the center, leaving about a ½ inch layer of potato.
- Use a pastry brush to brush the potatoes all over with melted butter. Place the potatoes on a baking sheet and broil on high for about 4 to 6 minutes. The skins should turn golden brown.
- Divide the cheese and bacon crumbles evenly to the scooped side of the 12 potato skins. Broil again for 1 to 2 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
- Serve hot with one or several dipping sauces.
Dipping sauce options:
- Sour cream and chives: Mix 1 cup sour cream with 1 tablespoon chives. Chill 1 hour before serving.
- Ranch dressing: Your favorite ranch dressing or our Homemade Ranch Dressing.
- Sour cream and salsa: Mix 2/3 cup sour cream with ⅓ cup salsa. Chill 1 hour before serving.
Love this recipe?
We want to hear from you! Please leave a review.