Side Essentials: Bacon/Cheese Smashed Taters

Andy Anderson !


Oh, you are going to love these babies… they are rustic starters that hit all the right comfy flavor notes. Serve them as a snack, or place them out on the sideboard and let your guests nosh on them before the big event.

Crispy smashed taters, finished off with bacon and some sharp cheddar cheese. These babies go great as the starch in meal… Like a big juicy steak, or as a starter at you next get-together.

Between Thanksgiving & Christmas, I have a couple of open houses, and you will always find these on one of the sideboards…

So, you ready... Let's get into the kitchen.


★★★★★ 1 vote

2 -3
10 Min
30 Min



  • 6 - 8 small
    baby yukon potatoes
  • 4 slice
    bacon, diced
  • 3 Tbsp
    olive oil, extra virgin, for brushing
  • 1 tsp
    hot sauce, i prefer franks’s
  • ·
    salt, kosher variety, to taste
  • ·
    black pepper, freshly ground, to taste
  • 3 oz
    sharp cheddar, freshly grated

  • ·
    a dollop of sour cream, oh yeah
  • ·
    green onion, chopped, just the green part

How to Make Side Essentials: Bacon/Cheese Smashed Taters


  2. Gather your Ingredients (mise en place).
  3. Place a rack in the bottom position, and one in the upper position, and preheat the oven to 450f (230c).
  4. Add the taters to a large pot of salted water.
  5. Bring the pot to the boil, and cook until they are fork tender, about 8 – 10 minutes.
  6. Chef’s Tip: When picking up the taters, do not go for the prepackaged bag; instead pick them up individually from the bin, and try to make them all the same size. That way they will all finish cooking at the same time…
  7. While the taters are happily boiling away, place the bacon in a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat. I just love, love, love bacon. It is truly one of nature’s perfect foods.
  8. Cook the bacon until it renders its fat, and begins to crisp, about 6 – 8 minutes.
  9. Remove from the pan, drain on paper towels, and reserve.
  10. Remove the taters from the water, and allow them to rest for five minutes.
  11. Place the potatoes into the skillet with the bacon fat, and using the bottom of a glass, or the palm of your hand, smash the potatoes, until they split open.
  12. Chef's Tip: Leave them nice and thick. As soon as the skin begins to split open, stop.

    If you flatten them too much, they will burn in the oven, and fall apart.
  13. Chef’s Note: If you do not have much bacon fat in the pan, add a glug or two of olive oil. What is a glug, you ask? Actually, I do not know, I just keep hearing Jamie Oliver use that term, and it sounded really cool.
  14. Place the olive oil into a small bowl, add the hot sauce and whisk until combined.
  15. Chef’s Note: Okay, I know one of those ingredients is oil, and the other is not. However, contrary to what you may have heard, you can mix oil and water. You just have whisk, whisk, whisk… Put your back into it.
  16. Brush the tops with the 3 tablespoons of oil/hot sauce mixture.
  17. Chef’s Note: If your skillet is not big enough to hold all the taters, you will need to switch over to a baking sheet. Just coat the bottom the sheet with the rendered bacon fat, and maybe a bit of olive oil, and you are good to go.
  18. Place the ovenproof skillet into the oven on the lower rack, and bake until the taters are golden brown, about 20 – 25 minutes.
  19. Remove from the oven and sprinkle on the cheese.
  20. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper.
  21. Return the skillet to the oven on the upper rack, and bake until the cheese melts, and begins to bubble, about 2 – 3 minutes.
  22. Remove from the oven, sprinkle on the bacon, add a dollop of sour cream, and the chopped green onions, if using.
  24. Serve as a side dish with your favorite foods, or as an hors d'oeuvre, or starter. Enjoy.
  25. Keep the faith, and keep cooking.

Printable Recipe Card

About Side Essentials: Bacon/Cheese Smashed Taters

Course/Dish: Vegetable Appetizers
Main Ingredient: Potatoes
Regional Style: American
Other Tag: Quick & Easy

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