The BEST Crispy Hash Browns (Restaurant-Style!)

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Crispy hash brown patties with a small bowl and spoonful of ketchup

After extensive testing and days of eating more than our fair share of potatoes, we’ve come up with a recipe for the BEST crispy hash browns! We tested russet and Yukon gold potatoes, various seasonings, steaming vs. boiling vs. raw, and too many methods to count. The result is homemade hash browns that taste just like diner-style potatoes, but healthier and less greasy!

They’re perfect for weekend brunch or making ahead and freezing for quick and easy breakfasts. This step-by-step recipe yields foolproof hash browns with just 4 ingredients required. Let us show you how it’s done!

Russet potatoes, avocado oil, salt, pepper, and garlic powder

How to Make the BEST Hash Browns

Want to know the secret to the BEST (crispy on the outside, tender on the inside) hash browns? It’s all about partially cooking the potatoes (and just the right amount) before grating them!

While some methods recommend grating raw potatoes and then squeezing out the excess liquid (easy, right?), we’ve found the result to be very disappointing. They don’t hold together well and have an unpleasant raw potato taste no matter how long you fry them.

Other methods recommend partially boiling the potatoes, which is more time-consuming but does result in a better texture. The tricky part is that everyone’s stovetop is a little different in how quickly it boils a pot of water, and potatoes come in different sizes. So getting the potatoes to be perfectly cooked but not mushy was difficult (and time-consuming) with this method.

But we were determined to bring you the absolute best hash brown recipe that is as easy as possible, so we kept innovating!

Small, medium, and large potatoes next to a ruler for showing scale

What did we come up with? Instead of boiling the potatoes, we steam them!

Less water means it takes less time to get to a boil (yay, time and energy savings!). And adding the potatoes to the steamer basket once the water is already boiling provides less variability in cook time. Plus, in the recipe, we provide specifications for different sizes of potatoes (no mushy hash browns here!).

Bonus points? Steaming vegetables (versus boiling) preserves more nutrients —especially vitamin C and B vitamins!

Russet potatoes in a steamer basket

Once steamed, the potatoes get a quick rinse with cool water to stop the cooking process. And when cool enough to handle, you can slice one in half and it will look about halfway cooked (exactly what you’re going for). The minimally cooked portion of the potato creates the shredded texture and the more cooked portion acts as the glue to hold the hash browns together.

Partially cooked potatoes for making hash browns

How to Shred Potatoes for Hash Browns

After partially steaming the potatoes, you can peel and shred them one of two ways:

  1. Our preferred method is using the grater attachment of a food processor — slice the potatoes so they fit through the food processor feed tube, then use the feed tube pusher to send them through the grater. It’s quick and easy and yields slightly more textured potatoes.
  2. Or, use the large side of a box grater — while a food processor is faster, it’s definitely not essential here. The potatoes will shred easily on a box grater and their peels act as a bit of a guard to protect your fingers from the grater.
Par-cooked grated potatoes in a food processor

The shredded potatoes are mixed with salt, pepper, and optional onion powder for flavor.

Stirring grated potatoes with salt and pepper

Then they’re formed into hash brown patties for cooking in a skillet. You can make larger hash browns, too, but smaller patties are easier to flip and have crispier edges (our favorite part).

Forming hash brown patties

How to Cook Frozen Hash Browns

One of the beauties of hash browns is that they freeze incredibly well. After forming them into patties, simply place on a silicone- or parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze until firm. Then transfer to a sealed container to keep them fresh and prevent freezer burn.

When ready to cook, simply heat up a skillet, add oil, and cook the hash browns directly from frozen for about 6 minutes per side or until golden brown and crispy!

Crispy hash brown patties in a cast iron skillet

We hope you LOVE these homemade hash browns! They’re:

Crispy on the outside
Tender on the inside
Buttery
Salty
Comforting
& SO Delicious!

They’re perfect for breakfast or brunch and especially delicious topped with ketchup. Make a big batch and store in the freezer for effortless, restaurant-quality, homemade hash browns any time the craving strikes!

Make it a meal by serving with fresh fruit and our Perfect Fried Eggs, Spring Vegetable Frittata, Easy Vegan Sausages, Vegan Scrambled Eggs, or Simple Vegan Omelet.

More Delicious Potato Recipes

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Crispy homemade hash browns topped with parsley and next to ketchup

The BEST Crispy Hash Browns (Restaurant-Style!)

A step-by-step guide to making the BEST hash browns every time! Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, buttery, salty, and just 4 ingredients required. Perfect for breakfast, brunch, and beyond!
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
The best homemade hash browns topped with parsley and with a side of ketchup
5 from 6 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4 (large hash browns)
Course Breakfast, Side
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 3-4 Days

Ingredients

HASH BROWNS

  • 1 ½ lbs russet potatoes, scrubbed clean, NOT peeled (~2 large, 3 medium, or 4-5 small potatoes as recipe is written)
  • 1/2 scant tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder (optional)
  • 3 Tbsp avocado oil (or sub melted vegan butter)

Instructions

  • Rinse and scrub potatoes (no need to peel yet). For any potatoes that are larger than 2 inches wide or 3 ½ inches long, cut in half widthwise. Set aside.
  • Place a colander in the sink so that it’s ready when time to drain and rinse the potatoes. This is important because small variations in cook time can lead to mushy hash browns or a raw potato taste.
  • Fill a large pot with ~1/2-inch of water (for us that was ~3 cups or 710 ml). Place a steamer basket over the water and position it so that you can see the water on the sides of the basket. Do not add potatoes yet.
  • Bring water to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, place the unpeeled potatoes in the steamer basket. It’s okay if the steamer basket fully covers the water at this point.
  • Cover and steam for 8 minutes. Then immediately transfer to colander. Drain and rinse with cool water and set aside until cool enough to handle (~5 minutes). They should only be partially cooked — the skin should be easy to pierce with a fork, but the center of the potatoes (or potato chunks if cut pieces of larger potatoes) should still feel firm. When cut in half, they should look about halfway cooked (see photo).
  • The peel usually slides off easily, but if it doesn’t, you can remove it with a vegetable peeler. If using a box grater, the peel will come off when grating and you can discard any large chunks of peel. It’s okay if some small pieces of the peel get grated.
  • Grate potatoes using a food processor grating attachment (our preferred method — chop into smaller pieces as needed to fit down the feed tube) or the large side of a box grater. Place grated potatoes into a medium mixing bowl. Add sea salt, black pepper, and onion powder (optional) and stir gently with a fork to evenly distribute spices. Stop here and see step 13 if freezing for later use.
  • For cooking the hash browns, you can either use the stovetop method (steps 9 & 10) OR the oven method (step 11). Both are delicious. We prefer the flavor and texture of the stovetop method but the oven method is ideal for larger batches.
  • STOVETOP: Heat a large (10-inch or larger) cast-iron skillet over medium to medium-high heat (non-stick will also work but doesn’t get them as crispy). Form potato mixture into 1/4-inch thick patties (recipe as written makes 4 large or 8 small hash brown patties).
  • Once the pan is hot, work in batches by adding half of the oil (1 ½ Tbsp (22 ml) // amount as recipe is written) and as many hash browns as will comfortably fit in the pan. Cook undisturbed for 6-8 minutes or until golden brown on the underside. Reduce heat if browning too quickly. Carefully flip and cook for another 5-7 minutes or until both sides are golden brown and crispy. Remove from the pan and repeat with the remaining half of the oil and hash browns. Skip to step 12 if you cooked your hash browns on the stovetop.
  • OVEN: Preheat the oven to 425 F (218 C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Form potato mixture into 3-inch wide by 1/4-inch thick patties and brush each side with half of the oil (1 ½ Tbsp (22 ml) // amount as original recipe is written). Use additional baking sheets if making a larger batch. Bake on the center rack for 13-15 minutes on the first side, flip, and bake 7-10 minutes on the second side, or until both sides are golden brown and crispy.
  • Best when fresh. Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Optionally, serve with ketchup, vegan sausage, vegan scrambled eggs, perfect fried eggs, frittata, and/or a vegan omelette.
  • FREEZE: proceed through step 7, form into 1/4-inch thick patties, and then place in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze until firm. Transfer to a sealed container, and when ready to cook, proceed with step 9 (stovetop method) or step 11 (oven method).

Video

Notes

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without optional ingredients.
*Adapted from Fav Family Recipes

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 4 large hash brown patties Calories: 225 Carbohydrates: 30.8 g Protein: 3.7 g Fat: 10.4 g Saturated Fat: 1.2 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.5 g Monounsaturated Fat: 7.2 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 301 mg Potassium: 711 mg Fiber: 2.3 g Sugar: 1.1 g Vitamin A: 2.5 IU Vitamin C: 9.7 mg Calcium: 23.4 mg Iron: 1.5 mg

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  1. Jim says

    I made these again, following the instructions exactly this time (I used chopped onion last time instead of onion powder). I cooked them on a cast iron griddle on the gas grill outside with avocado oil. They turned out fabulous! Crispy on the outside and so tasty! Instead of ketchup, we topped them with vegan sour cream and some shredded vegan cheddar – all I can say is WOW! I froze uncooked ones to try that next. Thank you for sharing your wonderful recipes!!

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yumm! Sounds so delish! Thanks for the great review, Jim, we’re so glad you enjoyed! xo

  2. Love one says

    Very delicious. I used the box grater and it turned out wonderful. Another substitution I made was to grill the potatoes. It turned out after putting them on the grill for baked potatoes they weren’t ready and the grill cooled. So, I transferred them to a pot, still wrapped in foil, with a 1/4 cup of water and boiled for 3-5 minutes. I grated them afterwards and they held their shape. I formed them into patties to freeze (I wish I had made them all the same size). The next day I pan fried them. Wonderful. I didn’t use enough oil on batch and used too much oil on the second, but this is user error. I will make again and agin. It’s hard to go back to store bought once you know how to make something yourself that taste better than the package. Great recipe! Thank you for sharing.

  3. A.J. says

    These turned out SO well. My kids gobbled them up. The easiest way to make hash browns! The only difference I found was I had to steam my potatoes for 12 minutes as they were still basically raw at 8 min.

  4. Marie says

    This recipe is so versatile!!! I followed it as written and used avocado oil on the stove top! The first time I made them I over steamed the potatoes but they still were good, but keeping them firm makes them AMAZING because you get the extra crunchy bits. I made extra today and took 1 potato and used it for tater tots by shredding an onion into it and forming into the traditional tot shape. Yay for a wonderful potato recipe. Thanks again MB team, you all rock! :)

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Aw, you’re so kind, Marie! Love that tater tot idea. Thank you so much for sharing! xo

  5. KP says

    I love this recipe! I have made it 7 days in a row. I use a preheated cast iron pizza pan in a 450 convection oven. I use ghee and avocado oil together. Also tried the 8 min steam method the recipe calls for and then cut into fries with my mandolin slicer. Then tossed in ghee and avocado oil and baked the same way. Dusted with truffle salt. Delicious!!!!

  6. Jim Wilson says

    I have been trying to make hash browns like this for a long time. I tried frozen shredded potatoes and shredding my own, but yours have been the best so far. I tried adding chopped onions, but the didn’t want to incorporate very well. I think the onion powder is the way to go.! Thank you!!!

  7. Jen says

    Hash browns are such a PERSONAL thing!! We like ours crispy and soft inside and I am so excited to make them. Also I appreciate the recipe as written for freezer directions when we have a ton of potatoes. Sometimes shredded potatoes are just the best thing to throw in a soup or recipe needing some oomph! Hooray!

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      That’s a great point! We were thrilled by how well freezing them worked =) Let us know if you try this method out!

  8. rose chouinard says

    I have made hash browns similar to these except I do not steam or precook. I shred them and put them in the salad spinner to remove some of the liquid. I do not form patties either. They turn out very good.

  9. Tracey Eisenberg says

    I am wondering if anyone has tried adding a beaten egg or two to the shredded potato? I have also added finely grated onion (once the processor is already dirty anyhow… :)

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Tracey, we haven’t tried that, but let us know if you do! Onion sounds like a great addition.

  10. Dana Chalamet says

    We actually prefer our hash browns to be more crispy throughout, not undercooked or raw in the center, which is also how you always find them in restaurants. When forming patties and only flipping to cook both sides, this is what you get.

    I don’t form a patty, but rather throw all shredded potatoes in skillet with preferred oil (back in the day, butter and olive oil was always the best flavor but if one is dairy free, of course there are healthier alternatives). ☺️ Add plenty of seasoning. Simply Celtic or Himalayan salt and garlic powder (garlic powder is a must. I’ve never used onion powder). … and keep tossing until ALL is browned and crisp. These are THE best hash browns hands down. 😬

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Dana, thanks for sharing your experience! These ones definitely aren’t raw or undercooked in the center and we think they taste exactly like diner-style (but better). Let us know if you give them a try!

  11. Penny says

    Five stars!! This recipe looks super easy to do. Do you think it could work with sweet potatoes? I am allergic to ordinary potatoes (and the rest of that plant group)

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Penny, we haven’t tried with sweet potatoes. They’re a little less starchy so they might not hold together quite as well, but we think it’s worth a try! Let us know how it goes!

  12. Ginger says

    I’m curious why you’re using russet potatoes? Wouldn’t there be less concern about potatoes turning mushy if red potatoes were used?

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Ginger, Russet potatoes provide a more classic hash brown taste/texture because they’re more starchy. But red will work if you’re okay with more texture. Let us know if you try it!

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Nicole, we haven’t tried steaming the potatoes in advance, but it’s worth a try! The hash browns may have a little more trouble holding together though. Yes, same time with Yukon gold.