Crispy potato skins, creamy spuds, garlicky Italian salsa verde, and tangy labneh are a perfect pairing of textures and flavors — fit for a dinner party, holiday gathering, or a special weeknight meal.
I’m always on the lookout for fun potato recipes. I love a good crispy roasted potato, like my chaat masala style potatoes, but lately, I’ve been really into crispy smashed potatoes.
This method of cooking potatoes has made its rounds across the Internet over the last few years, but if you’re unfamiliar, let me break it down for you.
Boiling then baking fingerling potatoes creates an irresistibly crispy crust and a creamy interior
You take small potatoes, usually semi-waxy or waxy potatoes, and boil them in salted water until tender. Drain the potatoes, then firmly (but not aggressively) smash them with the bottom of a small bowl or a measuring cup. Bake them in the oven with lots of olive oil and salt until the outsides are browned and crispy but the interior remains soft and creamy.
Why does this work?
Boiling the potatoes in heavily salted water yields a very creamy texture, while baking them in the oven at a high temperature crisps the outsides.
The bottom line is…these potatoes have an addicting texture and flavor!
They are genuinely delicious on their own, but I like to take things to the next level by serving them with creamy, tangy labneh and a bright green sauce heavily inspired by Italian salsa verde.
Fingerling potatoes make for great smashed potatoes
I love using fingerling potatoes for smashed potatoes! Their waxy, firm texture and thin skin hold up to a good smash without falling apart. This is key.
Something like a russet potato would not be ideal, as it’s much more starchy and floury. A russet potato makes a great mashed potato but it would easily fall apart with this method.
Ingredients in this recipe
Okay, let’s talk ingredients. I highly recommend pairing the potatoes with the labneh and salsa verde, but you can absolutely just make the crispy potatoes if you’d like!
For the crispy smashed potatoes:
- Fingerling potatoes: Obviously, we know fingerling potatoes are the most important ingredient here! Additionally, you’ll want a smaller potato (again, this holds up better when smashed). Choose potatoes no larger than 2 inches in diameter and no smaller than 1 inch in diameter.
- Salt: These potatoes need a generous amount of salt while boiling for seasoning and texture. The potatoes won’t be too salty, so don’t skimp on the salt!
- Extra-virgin olive oil: Olive oil helps the potatoes crisp in the oven. I like the flavor of the oil, but you can use a neutral oil as well.
- Labneh: Labneh is a type of strained yogurt that is tangy, thick, and creamy. I often prefer it over traditional yogurt in savory dishes because it has a super smooth texture. Labneh provides a great contrast against bolder flavors, like this roasted squash with lentils and labneh. And in this recipe, I love the creamy, tart flavor with the rich potatoes and the punchy salsa verde. If I can’t find labneh, I often substitute greek yogurt thinned out with a bit of lemon juice to mimic the acidity and creamier texture.
- Garlic: Crispy smashed potatoes + salt + garlic + olive oil = a true match made in heaven. Here, I add a bit of garlic to the labneh and the salsa verde.
- Parsley: Finely chopped parsley provides a bright contrast to the roasted potatoes.
- Almonds: Almonds add a bit of nuttiness and texture to the dish.
- Lemon: A little lemon balances and brightens the salsa verde.
- Anchovy: Italian salsa verde typically has anchovies — and for good reason. The salty, umami flavor adds depth to the sauce without tasting fishy. Vegetarian? Replace the anchovies with 1/2 tablespoon capers or omit it altogether.
- Jalapeño: For a little bit of heat!
How to Make Smashed Fingerling Potatoes
Though they take a bit of time, these crispy smashed potatoes are truly worth the effort! Here’s how to do it.
- Boil the potatoes: Fill a 3-quart pot with the fingerlings, a generous amount of salt, and water. Bring to a boil, then cook for 8 to 10 minutes until the potatoes can easily be pierced with a fork.
- Drain the potatoes, then allow them to dry out on a baking sheet for 5 to 10 minutes to maximize crispiness.
- Smash the potatoes: Place the potatoes on a parchment-lined baking sheet generously coated with olive oil. The olive oil prevents sticking and maximizes crispiness, so don’t skimp here.
Using the bottom of a small, flat bowl or measuring cup, firmly press down on each potato to smash it. Ideally, the potatoes are about 1/3-inch thick to 1/2-inch thick. If they are too thin, they will fall apart or be too crispy (yes, this is possible!) and yield a tough potato. Season the tops with salt and pepper.
- Roast the potatoes: Bake the potatoes in the oven at 450°F/232°C for 15 minutes, then flip them, season them, and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes — or until they’re crispy on both sides. Again, be careful not to “overcrisp” them, as they can turn tough.
- Meanwhile, prepare the salsa verde. Finely chop the parsley…
- …until it looks like this. You want it pretty finely chopped here as it forms the base of the sauce.
- Then add the garlic, almonds, jalapeño, lemon, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, and taste to adjust any seasonings. The salsa verde should taste bright, punchy, acidic, salty, and garlicky. If it’s not acidic enough, you can add a bit more lemon juice. If it’s not punchy enough, you can add more garlic or jalapeno; I encourage you to take this recipe and make it your own!
- Allow the potatoes to cool for a few minutes, then serve them one of two ways:
1) Plated: Smear some of the labneh on the bottom of the plate, and top it with the potatoes and the salsa verde.
2) Hors d’oeuvres: Top each potato with a bit of labneh and salsa verde.
Storage and Reheating Instructions
- Leftover potatoes, labneh, and salsa verde can be stored in separate, airtight containers in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.
- The potatoes can be reheated on a parchment or foil-lined baking sheet at 350°F/177°C oven for 10 to 15 minutes until warmed through. Remove the salsa verde and labneh from the fridge about 30 minutes before serving to take the chill off.
Nope! The peel is actually what keeps the potatoes together once smashed!
Absolutely. You can use any kind of small waxy or semi-waxy potato, such as new, baby, or creamer potatoes. I don’t recommend using larger Yukon Gold or Red Bliss potatoes.
I like serving the crispy potatoes fresh, but you can make the labneh and salsa verde ahead of time! The labneh can be made 2 days ahead of time, and the salsa verde can be made 1 day prior to serving. In fact, both of these condiments do benefit from a bit of mingling in the fridge to develop the flavors.
Did you try this recipe? I would love to hear your feedback! Be sure to rate the recipe and leave a comment below.
For even more cozy recipes, be sure to subscribe to my newsletter.Happy eating! Love, Karishma
Smashed Fingerling Potatoes
- Parchment paper
- 3-quart stock pot
- 18-inch by 12-inch baking sheet
For the smashed fingerling potatoes:
- 1 1/2 pounds unpeeled fingerling potatoes, washed and scrubbed to remove dirt
- Black pepper
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
For the garlicky salsa verde:
- 1 1/2 cups flat-leaf parsley, loosely packed
- 3 anchovies, optional, omit if vegan
- 3 tablespoons skin-on almonds, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, grated or finely minced
- 2 teaspoons chopped jalapeno pepper, from about 1 small pepper or half a large pepper
- 1 lemon, zested and juiced
- 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- Salt and black pepper
For the labneh:
- 8 ounces labneh
- 1 clove garlic, grated or finely minced
- Salt and black pepper
For the smashed fingerling potatoes:
- Arrange a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 450°F/232°C.
- Boil the potatoes: In a 3-quart stock pot, add fingerlings and 1/2 cup of Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt (or 1/4 cup kosher salt or table salt). Fill the pot about 3/4 full with water, ensuring that the potatoes are fully submerged. Don't worry if it seems like a lot of salt – it won't make the potatoes too salty. The salt is necessary both for seasoning and for creamy potatoes!Set the pot over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Boil the potatoes for 8 to 10 minutes, or until easily pierced with a fork.1 1/2 pounds unpeeled fingerling potatoes, Salt
- Drain the potatoes and dry them thoroughly with a paper towel. Allow them to sit for 5 minutes on a large parchment-lined baking sheet to dry further. Toss the potatoes with the extra-virgin olive oil.1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Smash the potatoes: Using a small, flat bowl or the bottom of a measuring cup, firmly press down on each potato to smash it to about 1/3-inch to 1/2-inch thickness. Season the tops of the potatoes with salt and pepper. If any of the potatoes break apart, you can try to smush them together with your hands. Don't worry too much if you can't — you will just end up with smaller bites of crispy potato! The more firmly you smash the potatoes, the less likely they'll break apart.Salt, Black pepper
- Bake the potatoes: Roast the potatoes in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and carefully flip the potatoes (if they feel too fragile, you can flip them a few minutes later). Season again with salt and pepper.Bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, or until they're crispy and golden-brown on both sides. Allow the potatoes to cool for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.
For the garlicky salsa verde:
- While the potatoes roast, prepare the salsa verde. Finely chop the parsley to yield about 1/3 cup of packed herbs. Finely mince the anchovies until they form a paste-like texture. In a small bowl, combine the chopped parsley, anchovies, almonds, garlic, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Pour in 1/4 cup of the olive oil, then season to taste with salt and pepper, adding in the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil if desired. Set aside. Salsa verde can be made up to 1 day in advance stored in the fridge. Remove from the fridge about 30 minutes before serving.1 1/2 cups flat-leaf parsley, 3 anchovies, 3 tablespoons skin-on almonds, 3 cloves garlic, 2 teaspoons chopped jalapeno pepper, 1 lemon, 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, Salt and black pepper
For the labneh:
- In a small bowl, mix labneh and garlic, and season with salt and pepper. Set aside. Labneh can be made up to 2 days in advance stored in the fridge. Remove from the fridge about 30 minutes before serving.8 ounces labneh, 1 clove garlic, Salt and black pepper
- These smashed potatoes can be served one of two ways:1) Plated: Smear some of the labneh on the bottom of the plate, and top it with the potatoes and the salsa verde.2) Hors d'oeuvre: Top each potato with a bit of labneh and salsa verde.