Real Crispy Homemade Hash Browns

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One of our favorite Sunday breakfasts involve hash brown potatoes – not just any hash browns, we like them nice and golden brown and crispy.   Monday through Saturday breakfast is oatmeal – so Sunday’s breakfast must be special.

I start with two large russet potatoes – peeled and place into cold water in the basket of a salad spinner.   I love my salad spinner!

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Another gadget I love is the food processor.  I have an 11 quart Cuisinart.  I have no idea how old it is but this is only the second food processor I have owned in 38 years of marriage.  It is going strong.

I cut the potatoes in half, to make sure there is no yucky stuff in the center to cut out.  Then just using the grater blade – grate the potatoes.


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Then immediately back into cold water in the basket of the salad spinner.  Soak and rinse them to remove the potato starch.   The water will be milky white.

Drain and rinse with cold water again.




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If the water is fairly clear, just allow them to soak in the cold water.

In the mean time heat a cast iron or other heavy pan with 2 tablespoon oil.

Spin the potatoes dry – shake and spin again and then place into the preheated pan.


Crispy Hash browns 008DO NOT move the potatoes once they are spread in the pan.

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Once the edges of the potatoes are golden brown – season with salt and pepper or seasoning salt and using your spatula divide into four sections, for easier flipping.

Flip each section and allow to cook on medium to medium high heat until brown – again, don’t move them around a lot if you want a crispy finish.

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Perfect, crispy yet tender hash browns.

Fit for a Sunday family breakfast!


If you would like to see a video on making crispy hash browns, checkout Chef John’s recipe for Classic Hash Browns.




Hash Browns - Real Crispy
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The secret to really crispy homemade hash browns is to rinse the potato starch from the potatoes and to get them nice and dry. By using a salad spinner it is easy to both rinse and dry the grated potatoes. Once added to the hot pan don't move them until they are nicely brown. Sunday breakfast never tasted so good!
Servings Prep Time
4 10minutes
Cook Time
Servings Prep Time
4 10minutes
Cook Time
  1. Peel the potatoes and place into cold water in a salad spinner
  2. Cut each potato in half and run through the grater of a food processor, immediately return grated potatoes to cold water in the basket of a salad spinner
  3. Rinse potatoes of the excess potato starch, drain and refill with cold water and let soak in the cold water.
  4. Heat a cast iron or other heavy bottom pan - add the oil and heat on medium high.
  5. While the oil is heating - drain the potatoes using the basket of the salad spinner and spin dry. Shake and spin again.
  6. Add the potatoes to the hot pan, spread out and do NOT move until browned and crispy. Season with salt and pepper or seasoning salt.
  7. Using a spatula, divide the potatoes into four sections. Check the edges and when golden brown, carefully flip each section. Again, do not move the potatoes until the underside is golden brown.
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About Baking Nana

Each morning my granddaughter Sarah calls to ask, "Watcha doing, Nana? Are you baking Nana?" Hence my "name" Baking Nana. I am a mother to three wonderful children and a grandmother to 12 very hungry grandkids. I don't bake fancy cakes but I do make wonderful yeast bread and home cooked meals made with love.


Real Crispy Homemade Hash Browns — 30 Comments

  1. Hello, I’m going to buy a salad spinner ASAP :-). My son loves hashbrowns. My question is…would freezing fresh grated potatoes (following your recipe up to actually cooking them) be an option ?? My son would eat hashbrowns for breakfast as often as I had time to cook them . I’m so glad you shared this information. I have several lbs of potatoes that I’d like to shred and put in freezer bags if you can give a “Papi” some advice. Thanks in advance !! CJ

    • Hi there. I could have to experiment with freezing them, but I do think they would have to be partially cooked prior to freezing – otherwise I do think they will turn black.
      I am thinking that the grated potatoes could possibly be blanched – chilled in cold water & spun dry, then frozen.
      Keep in mind that I haven’t tried it though!
      Good luck!

  2. We did these following your method, combined with another crispy potato recipe I learned years ago (used on cubed taters), and rinsed the shredded potatoes in cold water with 1tbsp(ish) baking soda. They turned out fantastic. It’s something to do with a molecularchange in the remaining starches that gets extra crunchy. Top with green onion sour cream.. yum!

  3. This looks like a great way to make hash browns (especially the salad spinner part). I came across a recipe the other day where you press hash browns (using commercial ones) into a muffin cup, bake for 15 minutes , then add an egg, cheese and sausage mixture and bake again.Do you think using the raw potatoes from your method would work in this recipe? I’m thinking they would be a nice Christmas morning treat.
    Thanks so much for any suggestions.

    • They will work perfectly in that recipe. I have done that many times.
      I don’t know what exact recipe you are using but I have found that after rinsing and drying in the salad spinner, tossing the potatoes with just a bit of oil, or even cooking spray and a little salt helps them crisp up then add your filling and bake.

  4. Those look delicious! I want to try this recipe..but I am making hashbrowns for 40 plus. Can I make these ahead and reheat them in the oven?

    • Good morning Cathy. You know, I have not tried doing that.
      That is a lot of potatoes. For forty people I think I would go with oven roasted cubed potatoes.
      Cube and rinse the potatoes, dry well, toss with oil and onto a sheet pan, roast at 400 until brown and crispy.

    • I’m going to chime in here if you don’t mind :). I just wanted to say that I did as Baking Nana already suggested this morning. For my niece’s bridal shower brunch earlier this year I tossed my cubed potatoes with diced onions and colored peppers, salt, pepper, garlic powder and olive oil, spread on baking sheets and roasted at 400 or 425 until browned, turning once only after bottoms touching pan were golden. I had to transport them so I wrapped in a foil pan. They were delicious even after sitting and I received compliments. Another option for you would be a hash brown casserole but that doesn’t lend any crunchiness to the palate at all.

  5. Just finished breakfast, but this hash brown photo still makes my mouth water! That salad spinner tip is flat out the best way to get the water out of the potatoes, so you end up with really crispy potatoes. So many uses other than just cleaning/draining salad greens.

    • Good morning, Pat. I LOVE my salad spinner. I like multi- task kitchen gadgets and the salad spinner sure holds it’s own in that department.
      Thanks for stopping in.

  6. Pingback: What Does Your Favorite Breakfast Food Say About You? | Bittersweet Cuisine

    • Hi Kelly –
      We love them really crispy too – the salad spinner trick is PRICELESS – I use my salad spinner for potatoes more than salad!
      I think we should rename it! 🙂

  7. Love this recipe! Great idea to use the salad spinner, never thought of that! Thanks for this tip!

  8. Growing up on Long Island, which used to be famous for our great potatoes until farmers were forced out by high taxes and the insatiable demand for development, potatoes were a daily part of our diet. We make hash browns using Eastern potatoes(less starchy)and cubing rather than shredding them. I shred them for potato pancakes, though. Now I must try these for next Sunday Brunch.

    • Hi Christine, interesting about Long Island being a potato growing area. I wonder if the Irish immigrants had an influence. In Britain I could buy so many different types of potatoes. Here it seems to be russet, red or white skinned. Every now and then we will find some tri-colored fingerlings. The food processor and salad spinner made short work of making potato pancakes.

  9. Thanks for sharing this recipe, Penny. I always wondered how to make hash browns from fresh potatoes without them being sticky and mushy. The only time I’ve ever had success was if I had a leftover baked potato to shred. I can hardly wait to try these out…

  10. Hello, Baking Nana! I love hash browns! I know how much work goes into making a step by step process. I want you to know I appreciate the step by step process. I showed this to my daughter, who doesn’t spend a lot of time in the kitchen. She said I can do this. Thanks, for the tip! I bought a small food processor a couple of months ago. I wasn’t sure I needed one. I have used the food processor for so many recipes. I am putting a large capacity food processor on my Christmas Wish List. Thanks, Baking Nana!

    • Hi Lela. I am glad that this encouraged your daughter to make these. So easy! Doing the step by step posts is a bit more time consuming mainly because you have to stop cooking to take photos and make sure they are OK. I really like my food processor, it is a real work horse. I think the newer Cuisinart food processor comes with a storage case for all the attachments. I hope Santa brings you one!

  11. BN: Just a few months ago, I finally bought a salad spinner. Hashbrowns are one of my favorite foods! Those look delicious!