Ultimate Potato Skins

Football season is here! Whip up this classic appetizer for a big halftime hit.

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Recipe and photograph by Kimme Hargrove

10-12 small russet potatoes
2 Tablespoons bacon grease (or canola/vegetable oil will do)
3 Tablespoons butter, melted
10-12 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
2 cups shredded cheese of choice (something bold like cheddar, Jack or Mexican blend)

For garnish:
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
Sour cream, for dipping

Heat oven to 400°F.

Wash potatoes under cold, running water, and set out to dry.

Coat the outside of the potatoes with grease/oil using your hands, and bake for 30-35 minutes on a baking sheet. The potatoes need to be crisp on the outside, yet soft on the inside (a fork should poke through easily).

When potatoes have cooled, slice in half vertically. Using a large spoon, carefully scoop out the inside of the potato making a “bowl” with the skin*. Leave a sturdy enough “lip” (about ¼-inch thick) so the potato can hold the filling.

Place potato skins back on the baking sheet, skin-side down. Brush melted butter on the inside of the potatoes. Bake 6 more minutes, flipping them over halfway through baking. You want to ensure the outsides are crispy.

Flip back over (skin-side down), and sprinkle cheese and crumbled bacon in each potato. Salt and pepper generously. Bake for another 5 minutes until cheese is melted and edges are crispy.

Immediately sprinkle on green onions, and serve with cold sour cream for dipping.

*Keep the inside of the potatoes for later use – perfect for mashed potatoes, potato soup, etc.

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