How to bake a potato in foil

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Potatoes are truly a parent’s best friend. They're inexpensive, available year round, easy to prepare and just about every kid I've ever met loves at least one version of them. When it comes to food and eating, kids tend to love almost anything that's got a “fun” aspect to it. So, when you're searching for recipes to cook with your kids, these potato packets are a perfect choice as you can let the little ones doctor them up with as many (or as little) herbs as they want.

Kenya and I had a ball taking sheets of foil, folding them into “books” (he loved that concept), the spreading out the potato slices, layering them with herbs, a touch of butter and a sprinkling of salt. We folded them up, placed them in the oven for 30 minutes and “ta-da!”, in minutes Kenya got to open his own individual potato packet. Remember to be careful opening the packets because you’re going to release some hot steam from cooking, but also enjoy that part as you’ll just love the heavenly smell that comes out.

We used these to make this recipe_ Kyocera Adjustable Mandoline Slicer, Red

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Time to Toss the Tinfoil

No need to wrap your potatoes with aluminum foil anymore! Skip that pesky step and instead rub the skin with olive oil and kosher salt. This process will create a buttery crisp exterior and ensure fluffy freshness inside.

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Potatoes are Good For You!

Don’t let the low-carb craze scare you away from a good potato dinner. They’re actually very good for you! Here’s why:

  • Potatoes have more potassium than a banana.
  • They’re high in fiber, so potatoes in your diet can help lower cholesterol and decrease your risk of heart disease.
  • Potatoes are chock full of Vitamin C and Vitamin B6.
  • Plus, they’re quite delicious!
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More Potato Side Dishes

Potatoes are so versatile and go well with many meats and vegetables.  Here are a few of our favorites:

  • Pesto Potatoes – These diced potatoes are coated in pesto and roasted to perfection.  So easy and packed with flavor!
  • Roasted Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts – Another easy side dish!  The bacon adds a tasty dimension – a must try!
  • Roasted Red Caesar Potatoes – Red pepper, Caesar salad dressing, and Parmesan cheese flakes give these potatoes a unique Italian zest.
  • Grilled Foil Ranch Potatoes – These potatoes are great in the summer.  Throw them on the grill at your next BBQ.  The packets can be loaded with bacon, ham, onions, peppers, and/or cheese.  The clean-up is so easy!
  • Parmesan Baked Potato Halves – This is one of the most popular recipes on our site.  The potato halves are cooked in butter and Parmesan cheese giving the potatoes a crispy, flavorful topping.

How to Bake the Perfect Baked Potato

  • 1 large Russet potato
  • 1 teaspoon oil vegetable or canola oil
  • Kosher salt to taste
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees and position racks in top and bottom thirds.   

  2. Wash potato (or potatoes) thoroughly with cold water. Dry well

  3. Using a fork, poke 8 to 12 deep holes all over the potato.

  4. Place in a bowl and coat lightly with oil.

  5. Sprinkle with kosher salt and place potato directly on the rack in the middle of oven. 

  6. Place a baking sheet on the lower rack to catch any drippings.

  7. Bake 1 hour or until skin feels crisp but flesh beneath feels soft. 

  8. Serve by creating a dotted line from end to end with your fork, then crack the potato open by pushing the ends towards one another. The potato will be hot and steamy so be careful!

  9. NOTE: If you're cooking more than 4 potatoes, you'll need to extend the cooking time by up to 15 minutes.
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Cooking the potato on the campfire

Campfire Cooking with KidsThe secret to cooking your jacket potato on the campfire is where you place it in your campfire.

You don’t want to put your potato in the flame.  Instead, pull some hot coals from the campfire, and place your potato in those embers.

You want to have hot coals both under and over the potato.

A keyhole shaped fire works well for this type of cooking as you can have a separate area below the main fire to pull hot coals for cooking.

If you’re in a hurry you can cheat with hot BBQ charcoal coals.

How to know when the potato is cooked

The Classic Baked Potato

Baked potatoes take a while to cook. Expect them to take at least 45 minutes.

Give them a turn every now and then or reposition them in the embers.

A good pair of BBQ tongs works well here as well as a pair of hot gloves (Hot Gloves on Amazon).

To test if the potato is cooked, don’t unwrap the foil (as you could get ash over the potato). Instead, with Hot Glove on, push your finger into the side of the wrapped potato. If the potato feels soft and your finger leaves a dent, then the potato is probably cooked.

Cooking Sweet Potatoes on a Campfire

Baked Sweet PotatoSweet potatoes can be cooked in exactly the same way as regular baked potatoes.

These take about half the time to cook, though.  They also end up a lot softer.

Personally, I prefer baked sweet potatoes on the campfire.

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Campfire Potato and Onion

Sliced Potato and Onion

This is another alternative to the regular baked potato, and again cooks in about half the time.

Slice a potato into about 1 cm or 1/4 inch slices, but keep all the slices together to keep the shape of the potato.

Put butter or marge between the slices.

Slice up some onion and place between these layers.

Wrap in foil and cook in exactly the same way as baked potatoes.

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