Twice-baked potatoes are a versatile and delicious dish that can be prepared in advance for your convenience. This recipe, shared by home cook Michelle ‘FLAME’ Kelley, offers a creamy and fluffy potato filling with a hint of smoky bacon. The lightly seasoned potatoes can be customized with additional toppings when serving, making them a perfect side dish. By following the steps below, you can easily create a batch of these twice-baked potatoes to enjoy at any time.
16 large baking potatoes, washed well
2 baking pans (a sided cookie sheet works well)
8 oz sour cream
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup butter
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1/4 cup minced fresh onion
1/2 cup shredded colby jack cheese
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon thyme
1 tablespoon bacon bits
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup dry potato flakes
Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Thoroughly wash and scrub each potato, taking care not to remove the peel.
Use a fork to poke holes in each potato all the way around, then place them on the baking sheet.
Bake the potatoes for approximately two hours, or until they are completely cooked through.
Test the doneness of the potatoes by inserting a skewer or toothpick into the center of each potato. If it goes in easily without resistance, the potato is cooked enough.
Once cooked, transfer the potatoes to a wire rack and allow them to cool until you can handle them comfortably.
Slice each potato lengthwise and carefully scoop out the flesh, being careful not to tear the skins. Place the potato flesh in a large mixing bowl.
Return the empty potato skins to the baking sheets. Sprinkle a small amount of salt inside each skin, taking care not to use too much. Bake them for an additional 10 minutes to firm them up.
While the skins are firming up, mash the potatoes in the mixing bowl. Add the sour cream, 1/2 cup milk, butter, minced garlic, minced onion, shredded colby jack cheese, salt, pepper, thyme, and bacon bits. Mix well using a potato masher and hand blender. Adjust the consistency by adding potato flakes if the mixture is too soupy, or milk if it is too stiff.
Fill each potato skin with the mashed potato mixture. Top with a sprinkle of pepper and shredded mozzarella cheese. Place the filled skins back on the baking sheet.
Once all the skins are filled, wrap the baking sheet in plastic wrap and place it in the freezer for three hours.
After three hours, remove the potatoes from the baking sheet and transfer them to zippered sandwich bags, removing as much air as possible. Return the bags to the freezer, where they can be stored for up to a month.
When you’re ready to enjoy the twice-baked potatoes, simply remove the desired number of servings from the freezer. Microwave them for 3 minutes or until heated through, or bake them in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for 10 minutes.
Serve the hot and delicious twice-baked potatoes as a side dish, snack, or even a small dinner.
Twice-baked potatoes are a delightful make-ahead option that can be enjoyed by the whole family. With a little planning and preparation, you can have a batch of these creamy and flavorful potatoes ready in the freezer for whenever you need them. Whether as a side dish or a standalone meal, these twice-baked potatoes are sure to impress. Give this recipe a try and savor the convenience and deliciousness it offers.