Air Fryer Loaded Baked Potatoes: Made Easy
If you’re a fan of crispy, flavorful potatoes loaded with delicious toppings, then you’re in for a treat! Today, we’re diving into the world of air fryer cooking to create a mouthwatering dish: Air Fryer Loaded Baked Potatoes.
Who doesn’t love a fluffy baked potato? My son that’s who! But, if I pull out all of the potato flesh and mix it with butter, sour cream, cheddar cheese, and bacon, suddenly he’s on board. Who can blame him right?
Let’s dive in and discover just how easy it is to make these irresistible loaded baked potatoes in the air fryer!
What is a loaded baked potato?
The magic of loaded (otherwise known as twice-baked) potatoes lies in their unique preparation method. It begins with baking potatoes until they are perfectly cooked, rendering them tender on the inside and allowing the skin to crisp up.
Once baked, the potatoes are carefully hollowed out, and the fluffy interior is mixed with a medley of delicious ingredients. This mixture is then returned to the potato shells and baked again until golden brown, creating a delectable combination of flavors and textures.
This easy recipe is incredibly versatile and can be enjoyed in various ways. It makes a delicious side dish for any occasion. It can be paired with a juicy steak, grilled chicken, chicken wings, or pork chops. Use your favorite toppings and make it your own.
Here are some excellent choices:
As a main dish, it can be the star of the show, especially when accompanied by a fresh salad or steamed vegetables. Additionally, it is perfect for gatherings and dinner parties because it can be made in advance and finished off in the oven once your guests arrive.
Try one of these delicious salads to pair it with:
Tips for making the perfect air fryer loaded baked potatoes
- Select the best potatoes– Look for starchy varieties like Idaho or Russet potatoes, because they yield a fluffier texture.
- Bake the potatoes evenly– Make sure to poke holes in the potatoes before baking to allow steam to escape and prevent them from bursting.
- Customize the filling– Experiment with different combinations of ingredients, balancing flavor and texture.
- Size matters– Make sure your potatoes are relatively the same size. If they are different sizes, they will have different cook times.
Why you should use the air fryer to bake your potatoes
This is my favorite way to bake potatoes and here’s why:
- Potatoes cook faster in an air fryer than they do in an oven. Baking a potato in the oven takes about an hour. However, in an air fryer, you can bake a potato in about 30-40 minutes, cutting your cooking time almost in half! This means less time in the kitchen.
- Air fryers do a great job of crisping up the skin while maintaining a fluffy interior.
- Air fryers use less energy than your oven.
- One of the best things about using your air fryer is that it eliminates the need to heat up your entire kitchen. This is a lifesaver in the summer months!
Using your air fryer is the best method of baking potatoes. Especially if you are cooking in your RV kitchen like me. Trust me it’s a game changer. Once you try this method, you’ll never go back to regular oven-baked potatoes again.
Let’s Gather up the Ingredients
- Whole Potatoes– Russet or Idaho
- Olive oil– or cooking spray
- Black pepper
- Garlic Powder
- Onion Powder
- Mix in’s of your choice– The possibilities are endless, but in our house, we like to use butter, sour cream, cheddar cheese, green onions, and lots of bacon!
Now Let’s Get Cooking
Prep the potatoes
Start by preheating your air fryer to 400°F (200°C) for a few minutes. While it’s heating up, thoroughly wash the potatoes to remove any dirt. Pat them dry with a paper towel. Then, using a fork, poke several holes into each potato. This allows steam to escape during cooking and helps prevent the potatoes from bursting.
Season and air fry
Next, it’s time to add some flavor. Rub the potatoes with a small amount of olive oil to help achieve that crispy skin. Sprinkle salt all over the potatoes, ensuring even coverage. Place potatoes in the air fryer basket in a single layer. If your air fryer is smaller, you may need to cook them in batches. Cook the potatoes for 35-40 minutes, checking on them halfway through and giving the basket a shake to ensure even cooking. You will know they are done when a fork or knife easily glides through the center and you have tender potatoes.
Scoop out the insides
Once the potatoes are cooked, carefully remove them from the air fryer. They’ll be piping hot, so be sure to use oven mitts or tongs. Allow them to cool for a few minutes before handling. Then, cut them in half lengthwise. Gently scrape out the insides into a mixing bowl, being careful not to tear the outer shell. Leave a small rim of potato intact. This will help support all of the goodies you are going to put back inside.
Make the potato mixture
Now comes the fun part—Get creative and customize the add-ons to your liking. Add milk and butter to the potatoes and smash them all together. Now add in your fixings. Some popular options include cream cheese, sour cream, shredded cheese, chives, or some crispy bacon bits. Feel free to experiment and add any other toppings that make your taste buds happy.
Stuff and bake again
Once everything is mixed, fill the potato shells with the potato mixture. Top each potato half with more grated cheese and pop them back into the air fryer until the potatoes are warmed through and you have ooey, gooey, melty cheese. If you are cooking for a crowd, you could always use a baking sheet and pop them under the broiler before serving.
With your potatoes ready to go, it’s time to indulge in this comforting and satisfying dish. Serve them hot, and savor the delightful contrast of the crispy skin and creamy, flavorful interior.
Using only a few simple ingredients, these fantastic potatoes can be enjoyed as a great side dish or as a hearty main course. They are guaranteed to impress your family and friends. Yes, even your teenager who doesn’t like baked potatoes!
From weeknight dinners to special occasions, this recipe is a crowd-pleaser that will leave everyone asking for seconds. So, grab your air fryer and get ready to enjoy the ultimate comfort food experience with this easy-to-make and incredibly delicious recipe.
As always, if you decide to make these Air Fryer Loaded Baked Potatoes at your next gathering or family dinner, please be sure to leave a rating and let me know how they turned out. I love hearing your feedback and I will do my best to answer any questions as quickly as possible.
I will be back next week with more delicious recipes from my RV kitchen to yours!
Air Fryer Loaded Baked Potatoes
- 1 Ninja Foodi or whatever brand of air fryer you own
- 4 large russet potatoes, about 1 lb each
- extra virgin olive oil
- ½ cup sour cream
- ½ cup milk
- 2 tbsp softened butter
- 1 cup grated cheese, your favorite variety
- 4 strips bacon
- 2-3 chopped green scallions
Prep the potatoes
- Thoroughly wash the potatoes to remove any dirt. Pat them dry with a paper towel. Then, using a fork, poke several holes into each potato. This allows steam to escape during cooking and helps prevent the potatoes from bursting.
Season and bake the potatoes
- Preheat your air fryer to 400℉.Rub the potatoes with a small amount of olive oil to help achieve that crispy skin. Sprinkle salt all over the potatoes, ensuring even coverage. Place potatoes in the air fryer basket in a single layer. Cook the potatoes for 35-40 minutes, checking on them halfway through and giving the basket a shake to ensure even cooking. You will know they are done when a fork or knife easily glides through the center and you have tender potatoes.
Scoop out the insides
- Once the potatoes are cooked, carefully remove them from the air fryer. They'll be piping hot, so be sure to use oven mitts or tongs. Allow them to cool for a few minutes before handling. Then, cut them in half lengthwise. Gently scrape out the insides into a mixing bowl, being careful not to tear the outer shell. Leave a small rim of potato intact. This will help support all of the goodies you are going to put back inside.
Make the potato mixture
- Place the scooped out potato flesh, sour cream, milk, and butter into a large bowl.Mash with a potato masher or fork until you have acheived your desired consistency. You could use and electric beater if you wanted a creamier texture, but don't over-beat. The potatoes can become glue-y if you do.
- Mix in the extras with the potato filling. Reserve some of the extras to sprinkle on the tops of the potatoes. Spoon the mixture back into the potato shells. Sprinkle with cheese and bacon.
- Put the now stuffed potatoes back in your air fryer basket. Bake at 400℉ for about 10 minutes or until the cheese has melted and they are heated through.