Twice Baked Potatoes (Make Ahead and Freeze)
These classic Twice Baked Potatoes have a delicious sour cream and butter mashed potato filling loaded with cheddar cheese and bacon. Freeze a batch to reheat whenever the craving strikes!
- 3 pounds russet potatoes 4 large or 8 small, scrubbed clean
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 6 slices bacon
- 4 tablespoons butter softened
- ½ cup sour cream
- ½ cup milk divided, you may not need it all
- ¾ teaspoon all purpose seasoning like Lawry’s Seasoned Salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1 ½ cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese divided
- 4 green onions thinly sliced, divided
The First Bake
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place the potatoes on the prepared baking sheet and poke them several times on each side with the tines of a fork. Pour a small amount of olive oil on each potato and use your hands to rub it all over, coating all sides. Bake for 60 to 70 minutes, or until very tender through to the middle.
Remove the potatoes from the oven (don’t turn the oven off) and let them rest on the baking sheet for 20 to 30 minutes.
Cook the Bacon
Meanwhile, line a second baking sheet with foil. Place the stips of bacon on the prepared baking sheet and transfer to the 400 degree F oven. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, or until crisp. Remove from the oven and transfer the bacon to paper towels to drain and cool. Crumble the bacon and set aside.
Make the Potato Filling
For Small Potatoes - With a sharp knife, slice a thin layer off the top of each potato. Scrape out the insides and place in a large mixing bowl, being careful not to tear the shell. Leave a small rim of potato intact for support.
For Large Potatoes - With a sharp knife, cut each potato in half lengthwise and scrape out the insides as directed above.
Lay the hollowed out potato shells back on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
Add the butter, sour cream, half of the milk, all purpose seasoning, and pepper to the mixing bowl with the potatoes. Beat with an electric mixer to combine. Add half of the bacon, half of the cheese, and half of the green onions and stir with a spoon to combine. If the mixture seems too thick, add as much of the remaining milk as needed to reach a creamy consistency.
Since the size of russet potatoes can vary, your 3 pounds may consist of 8 smaller potatoes or 4 large potatoes. If your potatoes are large, instead of cutting a thin slice off the top, slice them in half to create 8 servings.
Don't throw those thin slices from the tops of the potatoes away! Place them on the baking sheet with the stuffed potatoes, skin side down. Drizzle them with a little olive oil and season with some salt and pepper, and bake them with the potatoes. If needed, you can leave them in the oven a little longer until they are crisped. So yummy!
Follow the recipe all the way through to stuffing the potato mixture in the potato shells but don't top them with cheese. Allow the stuffed potatoes to cool completely.
Wrap each stuffed potato in a sheet of plastic wrap and then in foil and transfer them to the freezer. If desired, you can transfer the wrapped potatoes to a freezer safe plastic storage bag and label it with the date before freezing. Use the frozen potatoes within 3 months for the best quality.
Baking Frozen Potatoes
To bake and serve Twice Baked Potatoes directly from the freezer, remove the foil and plastic wrap and rewrap each potato with foil. Bake at 375 degrees F for 15 to 20 minutes or until thawed. Remove the foil, sprinkle them with the cheese and bacon, and return them to the oven for an additional 15 to 20 minutes or until warmed through and the cheese has melted. Garnish as desired and serve.
Baking Thawed Potatoes
Thaw the potatoes in the refrigerator overnight. Remove and discard the foil and plastic wrap and place the potatoes on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Top with cheese and bake as directed. It’s okay if they are still a little icy in the middle, they may just take a bit longer to bake. Garnish as desired and serve.
Serving: 1potato | Calories: 384kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 535mg | Potassium: 833mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 517IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 220mg | Iron: 2mg