Homemade Hash Browns

Here are all the secrets to homemade hash browns! No more soggy potatoes: just a few tricks get them perfectly crispy every time.

Homemade hash browns

Here’s a secret. Did you know you can make hash browns…without the bag of frozen potatoes? Homemade hash browns are incredibly delicious, and here’s the thing: they’re not much harder than cracking open a bag of frozen ones. The tradeoff in flavor is absolutely worth the two extra steps. These hash browns are browned and crispy, with flecks of tender moist shreds that combine into a texture that tastes like a cozy hug. Salt them to perfection with lots of black pepper, and you might not be able to put down your fork. Here are the three tricks you need to make perfect homemade hash browns.

Ingredients for homemade hash browns

We don’t eat hash browns often in this house. But when Alex made these for me, I realized my inner hash brown obsession. The crispy and salty bits of potato contrasted with softer bits made me keep coming back to the pan for more. In fact, though this is supposed to be 4 servings, we polished the entire pan rather quickly! The nice thing is this is just made of a few humble ingredients. Here’s what you need to make homemade hash browns:

  • 1 pound russet potatoes: The potato variety is important here! Russets have just the right crispy texture. The amount is also important, so as not to overfill your pan (see below).
  • Olive oil
  • Butter: To keep it plant based, you can easily substitute this with olive oil! Butter just adds a nice savory flavor
  • Salt & pepper
Homemade hash browns

How to make homemade hashbrowns: tips & tricks!

Making homemade hash browns without the bag is easier than you might think! It takes between 15 to 20 minutes. To avoid soggy or mushy potatoes, you just need to know a few tricks to get just the right texture. In fact, we made a few batches of soggy hash browns in testing, so we know these tips work like a charm! Here are the three tips you need to know:

Trick 1: Quick soak the potatoes!

Avoid mushy potatoes by soaking them! We use this trick in our Perfect Seasoned Fries and Homemade French Fries, too. It gets just the right texture to the potatoes. But where fries takes 15 minutes to soak, you can get away with less time for hash browns. Just 2 minutes! Yes, just soak them in a bowl of cold water for 2 minutes.

Tip: Make sure to drain and dry them completely before cooking! You don’t want any residual moisture in the potatoes, which will make them soggy. More details are in the recipe below.

How to make hash browns

Trick 2: Don’t overfill the pan.

Here’s another important thing we learned about homemade hash browns. Don’t overcrowd the pan! You can’t cook too many hash browns at once using the skillet method: they can’t get crispy enough when they’re stacked in a layer. So, use only 1 pound of potatoes to get it perfectly crispy.

Want to make more servings? We’re working on an oven baked hash browns recipe to make more servings at once.

Trick 3: Resist over-stirring the hash browns!

One last tip about homemade hash browns: don’t over-stir them! If you play with them often, they start to break apart into a mush. When you’re cooking them, make sure to let them cook on one side without touching them for about 5 minutes. Once they’re crisped up on one side, you can stir a little more in the last 6 to 7 minutes. Just don’t feel like you have to constantly stir. Less is more in this case!

Homemade hash browns

What to serve with homemade hash browns

Hash browns are wonderful breakfast or brunch side dish: they add just the right savory flair to eggs or vegan breakfasts! Because they are essentially vegan with the olive oil option, hash browns round out a filling plant based breakfast and brunch meals. Here are a few ways we’d accessorize these hash browns:

  1. Scrambled eggs: These Scrambled Eggs with Goat Cheese are creamy and tangy: perhaps the best you’ll have.
  2. Tofu scramble: Our top pick for a vegan breakfast! This Easy Tofu Scramble has a flavor and texture similar the real thing.
  3. Fried egg: Just throw an egg in the same skillet and fry it sunny side up.
  4. Quiche: Serve these hash browns at a fancy brunch with Spinach Quiche.
  5. Baked eggs: Another great choice for entertaining, try them with Baked Eggs with Parmesan.
  6. Frittata: These Veggie Mini Frittatas work for breakfast or a fancy brunch.

This homemade hash browns recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

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Homemade hash browns

Homemade Hash Browns (Perfectly Crispy!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 17 minutes
  • Yield: 3 to 4 modest portions 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Here are all the secrets to homemade hash browns! No more soggy potatoes: just a few tricks get them perfectly crispy every time.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 medium russet potatoes (1 pound)
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter (or more olive oil)

Instructions

  1. Grate and quick soak the potatoes: Wash the potatoes, leaving the skins on. Use the large side of a box grater or a food processor large grating blade to grate the potatoes. Place the grated potatoes into a large bowl and fill it with cold water. Tip the bowl to drain off starchy water, then fill it again. Stir the potatoes to release starches soak them for 2 minutes.
  2. Dry and season the potatoes: Drain the grated potatoes and squeeze out any excess water. Transfer them to a clean, dry towel. Wring the potatoes in the towel to remove as much liquid as possible. Place the potatoes in a bowl and stir with the kosher salt and lots of fresh ground black pepper.
  3. Cook the potatoes: In a large, heavy skillet, heat the olive oil and butter over medium high heat. Add the potatoes in an even layer and press them down gently with a spatula. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes without stirring until browned on the bottom. Flip and cook additional 6 to 7 minutes until cooked through, stirring and flipping occasionally to ensure all parts are browned. If necessary, drizzle with a little olive oil when you are stirring to continue the crisping. Taste and add additional salt if necessary: serve immediately.

  • Category: Side
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Homemade hash browns, hashbrowns, hashbrowns recipe, how to make hash browns

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

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