Homemade potato chips: why make them when you can buy so many varieties? Well, it's fun to make your own and they are SO GOOD. It's always rewarding to make something that you could buy and it turns out even better than the store-bought version. These chips are flavorful, crispy, salty, and oh so delicious. This recipe calls for 1.5 lb of potatoes and you'll be amazed at how many chips it makes. You'll never need to buy chips again after you try these!
- Starchy Potatoes (Huckleberry Gold, Yukon Gold, Russet, etc.)
- Canola Oil
- Mandoline Slicer
- Cast Iron Pan or Deep Skillet
- Small Fine Mesh Strainer or Mesh Skimmer
- Wooden Spoon or Deep Fry Thermometer
- Sheet Pan with Paper Towels
How to make thin and crispy potato chips:
Slicing your potatoes very thin is the key to making crispy potato chips. Not only do they need to be thin, they need to be sliced evenly as well. I don't know about you, but I can't slice anything evenly. That's where a mandoline slicer saves the day! It slices the potatoes ultra-thin and perfectly even and is so easy to use. It's kind of a miracle, really. But slicing the potatoes thin isn't the only necessary step for making crispy chips. Here are a few tips to make the best chips:
- Slice potatoes thin with mandoline slicer. Slice them as thin as you can!
- Rinse the starch off the potatoes. Swish them around in a bowl of cold water until the water runs clean.
- Dry the potatoes very well. Let them sit on a clean kitchen towel for 20 minutes until the outsides are dry.
- Get your oil hot, but not too hot. 300°F is about perfect. If the oil isn't hot enough, they will get soggy. Too hot and they will burn. You can test it by sticking the end of a wooden spoon in the oil. If bubbles form around the spoon, the oil is ready. Or you can test it with a deep fry thermometer or fry up a test chip.
- Fry the chips twice. The first fry will bring the moisture from the center of the chip to the outside. The second fry crisps them up again. Make sure the chips are fully cooked and crisped up in the middle after the second fry.
- Lay chips on paper towel-lined sheet pan after each fry to soak up extra oil. Salt the chips after the second fry.
- Let them cool all the way before storing. Enjoy!
How to keep homemade potato chips crispy:
One of the hardest things about making homemade potato chips is getting them crispy. Once you get them crispy, you want them to stay crispy! If you follow all the instructions above, including letting them cool all the way before storing, storage is fairly simple! You can store them in any air-tight container or zippered bag to keep them fresh. Make sure you close the containers/bags completely every time you take some out. Leaving them open too long can let moisture in and make the chips soggy. Store them in a cool, dry place like any other pantry item.
Should you soak potato chips before frying?
Yes! But, why soak the potatoes? The soaking/rinsing removes excess starch from the potatoes. Removing the excess starch from the potatoes helps keep them from sticking together. It also helps prevent premature browning before the chips are cooked all the way. Excess starch on the outside of the chips browns quickly due to the Maillard reaction. The starch can burn and leave a bitter taste on your chips. Nobody wants that!
Once you've rinsed your chips fully, make sure you dry them well. Lay a clean kitchen towel on a sheet pan and place the potatoes in a single layer on the towel. Cover with another towel and pat dry. Let them sit for 20 minutes or so until they are good and dry before frying.
What kind of potatoes are the best for potato chips?
Starchy potatoes (Russets, Yukon Golds, Huckleberry Golds, etc.) are the best potatoes for making chips. You might be wondering why starchy potatoes are the best when you're supposed to rinse the starch off. But, high starch potatoes also have a low moisture content which is ideal for frying. Waxy potatoes like red potatoes are low in starch but high in moisture. The high moisture content leads to soggy chips. So when you're thinking of making chips, go for the starchy potatoes!
How long do homemade potato chips last?
Homemade potato chips are best if eaten within a week. But if you store them properly, they can last much longer (if you don't eat them first). I found some that were about a month old hidden in my pantry and you know what? They were still delicious. Now you know just about everything there is to know about making homemade potato chips. Let's get cooking!
Homemade Potato Chips
- mandoline slicer
- deep cast iron skillet or other deep skillet
- fine mesh strainer or fryer scoop/skimmer
- wooden spoon or deep fry thermometer
- sheet pan with paper towels
- 1 ½ lb huckleberry gold potatoes (or other starchy potato like Yukon gold or russet)
- 32 oz canola oil
- sea salt, to taste
- Wash potatoes and slice as thin as mandoline slicer will go. I use the very first notch which is just below 1/16" thick.
- Place sliced potatoes in large glass bowl and cover potatoes with cold water. Move potatoes around in the water with your hands to rinse the starch from the potatoes.
- Dump out water and repeat rinsing with cold water until water in the bowl is clear and not starchy.
- Lay a clean kitchen towel on counter or sheet pan. Lay potatoes in a single layer on the towel. Cover with another clean kitchen towel and pat dry. Let potatoes sit for 20 minutes to dry.
- Heat oil in skillet over medium-high heat to approximately 300°F. Oil is ready when the handle of a wooden spoon bubbles when placed in the oil.
- Line 2 sheet pans with paper towels and set aside.
- Working in batches to avoid crowding the pan, add potatoes to oil. If potatoes brown right away, oil is too hot. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove with a fine mesh strainer or fryer scoop/skimmer and place on paper towel-lined sheet pan. Continue cooking until all potatoes have been fried once.
- Lower heat to medium. Place once fried chips into pan, working in batches. If the chips brown right away, oil is too hot. Cook for 30-45 seconds or until chips are just starting to brown. Remove with a fine mesh strainer or fryer scoop/skimmer and place on paper towel-lined sheet pan. Sprinkle with sea salt. Repeat until all chips have been fried twice.
- Inspect chips before storing to make sure all chips are crisp and cooked through. Chips with soft centers will make the rest of your chips soggy. Store in an airtight container or zippered bag at room temperature. Enjoy!