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Loaded Breakfast Potato Skins

Never underestimate the power of bacon fat.

Loaded potato skns with scrambled eggs and bacon topped with cheddar cheese and green onions on a sheet pan.

My husband roasts 7 pounds of russet potatoes and pan-fries a pound of bacon every Thanksgiving morning, scraping the steaming potato out of its skins and tossing it with sour cream, chunks of white cheddar, and the crispy crumbled bacon in a huge glass baking dish. I think his dad first suggested frying the potato skins in the pan of leftover bacon fat. A new Thanksgiving morning tradition was born. And now, featuring those golden crispy potato shells piled high with scrambled eggs, bacon, and a confetti of melty cheddar cheese, these loaded breakfast potato skins are just the next iteration.

Crispy potato skins on a metal sheet pan.

Potato skins—loaded or otherwise— can seem like a lot of work. They don’t have to be. Cooking the potatoes in the microwave cuts the time in half. Using the same pan to fry the bacon and cook the onions and peppers for the eggs eliminates extraneous dishes (though I do recommend switching to a nonstick pan for the eggs).

The secret to a truly irresistible potato skin lies in both how it’s prepped before baking as well as how it’s baked. Brush each skin thoroughly with the bacon fat—top, sides, bottom, hollowed-out interior, EVERYWHERE—and season liberally with kosher salt. This is not the time for moderation. Bake the skins cut-side-down on a bare metal sheet tray, and flip them halfway through baking to ensure they get maximum golden-brown crispness.

Let’s talk scrambled eggs. The key to amazing scrambled eggs is a nonstick pan, medium heat, and constant stirring. I like to actually hold the pan just above the burner and move it back and forth while I stir the eggs using a circular motion: this is a technique I got from Jas, who still makes the best scrambled eggs I’ve ever eaten. It’s a little like patting your head and rubbing your stomach simultaneously, but even if you don’t do it perfectly, it’ll still produce great results.



Loaded Breakfast Potato Skins

(Makes 8)

Loaded potato skns with scrambled eggs and bacon topped with cheddar cheese and green onions on a sheet pan.

4 medium russet potatoes, (about 2 lb), scrubbed clean

4 slices bacon (about 4 oz), cut cross-wise into ½” pieces

2 tsp. Diamond Crystal kosher salt, divided

2 tbsp. plus 2 tsp. neutral oil, divided

¼ white onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup)

½ red pepper, finely chopped (about 1 cup)

4 large eggs

½ cup shredded cheddar cheese

1 green onion, thinly sliced

Hot sauce, for serving (optional)

Special equipment: large metal baking sheet, large metal pan, nonstick pan



Arrange potatoes on a microwave-safe plate. Using the tines of a fork, poke potatoes on all sides. Microwave in 5-minute bursts, flipping the potatoes between bursts, until cooked through, 15-25 minutes. Let cool slightly.

Potato skins brushed with bacon fat on a metal sheet pan.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425° F. Arrange bacon in a large pan in a single layer. Set over medium heat and cook undisturbed, until golden on the bottom, 5-7 minutes. Stir and continue to cook until crisp, 2-3 minutes more. Remove from pan and set aside. Reserve pan with bacon grease.

Halve potatoes lengthwise and, using a spoon, dig out the inside of the potato, leaving a ½” rim on all sides. Arrange cut side up on a bare metal baking sheet. Brush inside and outside with reserved bacon grease and season on both sides with 1 teaspoon salt. Lay cut side down and bake until golden brown on the flat edges, about 10 minutes. Turn to face cut side up and continue to bake until crisp all around, 8-10 minutes more.

Scrambled eggs with red pepper, onion, bacon, and cheese in a nonstick pan.

Meanwhile, in reserved pan, heat two tablespoons oil over medium heat. Add onion and ½ teaspoon salt and cook until slightly softened 2-3 minutes. Add red pepper and cook until onion is translucent and pepper is soft, 2-3 minutes more. Transfer to plate with bacon.

In a small bowl, whisk together eggs until homogenous. Add remaining two teaspoons oil to a small nonstick pan and place over medium heat. Add eggs and cook, stirring constantly, until small curds form, 2-3 minutes. Fold in remaining ½ teaspoon salt, cooked onions and peppers, half of cooked bacon, and half of cheese and continue to cook until just set, 1-2 minutes more. Remove from heat to the plate.

Stuff potato skins with loaded scrambled eggs. Top with remaining bacon and cheese. Return to the oven and bake just until the cheese is melted, 4-5 minutes. Top with green onion and serve immediately with hot sauce if desired.

Loaded potato skns with scrambled eggs and bacon topped with cheddar cheese and green onions on a sheet pan.

Originally posted November 25, 2023.


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