wikiHow to Make Home Fries (Breakfast Potatoes)

Three Methods:Prepping the PotatoesPar-boiling the PotatoesFrying the Potatoes

First of all, home fries are not French fries, and are meant to be eaten with a fork. They can be made with just about any kind of potato, so go with whatever your preference is or whatever you have laying around. Regardless, they are an excellent addition to most meals – especially breakfast – and a good way to feed a lot of people cheaply and easily.

Method 1
Prepping the Potatoes

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    Cut the potatoes into half inch cubes (1.5cm). If you cut them much larger it takes longer to cook them than the instructions written here are designed for, and they may not cook all the way through.
    • Another popular way to prepare them is to slice them into wedges. This technique works best with small, redskin potatoes.
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    • There is no need to peel the potatoes, but you may do so if you like.
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Method 2
Par-boiling the Potatoes

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    Get a pot of water to a rolling boil while you cut the potatoes. Make sure not to fill it to the top so the water doesn’t spill over when you add the cut potatoes.
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    Add the potatoes to the boiling water. Scrape the potatoes off a cutting board using a knife. Add the potatoes slowly and carefully so the boiling water does not splash you. It’s best to wear a mitten-style potholder just in case.
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    Boil the potatoes for no more than four to five minutes. You are essentially partially cooking them here, but not all the way through. Any longer than five minutes, and you will overcook them before they are fried. If your cubes are very small, do not boil them for longer than three minutes.
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    While the potatoes are boiling, get a deep skillet (frying pan). Use a cast-iron or non-stick pan and add the oil. Any of the following oils will do just fine: peanut oil, canola oil, sunflower seed oil, or just plain vegetable oil. Olive oil will work but is generally not the best of oil for frying.
    • The amount of oil you use depends on the size of the pan you are using and how large a recipe you are making. A good rule of thumb is about a half an inch (1.5cm) in the bottom of the pan.
    • Get the oil nice and hot, but be careful not to get it too hot as this may cause a dangerous grease fire. It’s better to start on the cooler side with the burner on medium and work your way up from there if you are not sure of the correct temperature.

Method 3
Frying the Potatoes

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    Add the strained potatoes carefully to the oil. Again, being careful not to spatter hot oil on your hands or arms. Wear a full oven mitt just in case or at least a long-sleeve shirt. Cover the entire bottom of the pan with potatoes but don’t pile them on too high.
    • If you are cooking a large quantity just cook more than one batch. The potatoes need to be mostly covered in oil.
    • If the oil is the right temperature the potatoes will boil and sizzle immediately when you put them in the pan. If this does not happen, carefully add heat until they are really frying, and note the temperature setting for next time.
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    Add your seasonings. This is the perhaps the most enjoyable and also the trickiest part of making great home fries. A mixture of salt, rosemary, thyme and occasionally a pinch of lemon pepper make for a great recipe, but none of these are truly necessary. At least a sprinkle of salt is recommended.
    • As you add your spices, sprinkle them on the potatoes as you stir them to get decent coverage, being careful not to add too much salt or any other ingredient.
    • Salt and other seasonings can be added later, but like any recipe, they can never be taken out once they are in the mix.
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    Continue stirring the potatoes until they are a golden brown. Keep watch to ensure they do not burn.
    • If you prefer crispier home fries, leave them on a little longer, but once they start to turn brown it doesn’t take long to burn them.
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    Place several layers of paper towel over a large plate or bowl. Scoop the fully-cooked potatoes onto the paper towels to absorb any extra oil. They will be extremely hot at this point, so give them a minute or two to cool off before serving them.
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    Serve and enjoy.


  • If you need to cook more than one batch of home fries to feed everyone, keep the first batch or batches warm by placing them in the oven in an oven-safe bowl on the oven's lowest setting.
  • If you are preparing this as part of a breakfast meal, cooking the potatoes in the grease from the pan you cook the bacon in can also add a lot of flavor.
  • The seasonings listed above are just recommendations. As you get a feel for what flavors you like best, start to make the recipe your own by playing around with different spices. Old Bay and Lowery's Seasoned Salt as well as black pepper may work well.


  • Cooking oil that is too hot is an invitation for a grease fire, which can be very hard to extinguish.
    • If a grease fire breaks out, do not put water on the fire! It will make the fire flare up. Use a fire extinguisher or smother the fire as quickly as possible with flour, baking soda, corn starch, or a lid.

Things You'll Need

  • A bag of potatoes of your choice
  • A deep cast-iron skillet or non-stick frying pan
  • Cooking oil such as peanut, sunflower seed, canola or vegetable.
  • Spices such as salt, rosemary, thyme, and black pepper or any of your choice.

Article Info

Categories: Savory Breakfast Dishes