Learn the secret for the perfect, crispy oven baked potato. It’s simple, delicious, and will elevate your baked potato night to something special!

fully loaded baked potatoes

Baked potatoes are a classic – they’re affordable, easy to make, and everyone loves a good baked potato.

The only catch with baked potatoes is that most people don’t know the secret to making them perfectly crispy and flavorful! If you’re wrapping them in foil before cooking, microwaving them, or cooking them in a slow cooker then you’re missing out on all sorts of flavor and texture that will change the way you look at baked potato night forever!

Thankfully, a delicious, perfectly-cooked oven baked potato doesn’t require a ton of extra effort or time on your part. After a quick 5-minute prep time, you just step back and let the oven do the rest of the work for you!

So, what’s the secret for a perfect oven baked potato?

The key to making a perfectly flavored and baked potato with a delicious, crispy skin is to bake it UNCOVERED in the oven, directly on the rack.

Wrapping it in foil only allows the potato to steam and leaves the skin a little soggy and not at all crisp. Instead, leave it completely uncovered to allow for a crust to form on the skin. If you leave it on the rack and don’t even place it on a cookie sheet, it allows the potato to get crisp all the way around, not just on the top and sides.

In addition to leaving your baked potato unwrapped in the oven, you’re going to want to generously season the potato with olive oil and salt prior to cooking it. It adds so much flavor to the skin of the potato, and if you’ve never tried it before you might be surprised to find it’s the first time you actually want to eat the entire baked potato, and not just the inside!

man's hands seasoning a baked potato
oven baked potatoes with a salted skin

But, doesn’t it make a mess in the oven?

I know what you’re thinking – if I just place the potato directly on the rack, it’ll make a huge mess in the bottom of my oven, right?!

Not if you take the right precautions!

Before you toss your potato in the oven to bake, line a cookie sheet with foil. Then, place it on the bottom rack of the oven. Then, place the potatoes on the rack above it. Any dripping oil or salt will land directly on the cookie sheet, and your oven will stay clean.

What are the best baked potato toppings?

Most of the time, we like to keep it classic! When it’s baked potato night in our house, we always have these toppings available for a fully loaded baked potato:

  • Sour cream
  • Butter
  • Cheese
  • Bacon
  • Chives

When we want to amp it up, though, we love to add some more fun toppings too. Here are a few of our go-to’s:

The sky’s the limit – you can add just about anything to your baked potato.

Just promise me you’ll never wrap it in foil again, okay?

How to Make the Perfect Baked Potato

a fully loaded oven baked potato with a text overlay on the image - "the perfect baked potato"
Yield: 1 serving

The PERFECT Baked Potato

The PERFECT Baked Potato

The secret to baking the perfect baked potato - you'll never find baked potato night boring again!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes


  • 1 large Russet potato
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Desired toppings (cheese, bacon, chives, sour cream)


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Use a fork to poke holes in the potato all the way around it. This allows steam to escape as it is baking, and allows some of the flavor from the salt to reach the inside of the potato.
  3. Over a bowl, drizzle about a tablespoon of of olive oil on the potato and use your hands or a pair of tongs to thoroughly coat it.
  4. Sprinkle salt on all sides of the potato and use your hands to coat the entire potato.
  5. Place a cookie sheet lined with foil in the bottom rack of the oven.
  6. Place the potato directly on the top rack of the oven.
  7. Cook for one hour.
  8. Cut your potato open, add your favorite baked potato toppings and enjoy!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 409Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 624mgCarbohydrates: 64gFiber: 7gSugar: 3gProtein: 8g

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