Eating boiled potatoes on their own is kinda sad and not something we’d generally recommend. However, being able to boil potatoes properly is a very important life skill to have. Three reasons: potato salad, mashed potatoes, and smashed potatoes.
Why boil and not roast? The oven draws out moisture, which is great for crispiness but not good when you want fluffy whipped potatoes on Thanksgiving.
The Best Type Of Potatoes To Boil
Like Yukon gold or red bliss. They hold their shape better in the water, which is v important for potato salad. Russet potatoes also work well for mashed potatoes, but they tend to absorb tons of water. To prevent this as much as possible, keep them whole while boiling.
The Knife Test
And be honest with yourself. The fact that you can pierce a paring knife through a potato doesn’t necessarily mean they’re ready. The knife should slide in easily.
The Rapid Simmer
Once you bring the water to boil, you want to cook the potatoes at a rapid simmer. Boiling them too aggressively will break them down and make them mealy.
0 HOURS 10 MINS
0 HOURS 30 MINS
Yellow, red bliss, or russet potatoes
Scrub potatoes clean. If you’re making potato salad or mashed potatoes, cut potatoes into evenly-sized large chunks.
Add potatoes to a large pot then pour over enough water to cover potatoes by 1″. Season with a teaspoon of salt per pound of potatoes. Bring water to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium and cook at rapid simmer until potatoes are easily pierced with a paring knife, about 10 minutes for chopped potatoes and 20 minutes for whole potatoes. Drain potatoes in a colander.