These Crispy Smashed Potatoes with Pesto are the perfect easy side dish!
This naturally gluten free and vegetarian recipe makes a perfect appetizer or side dish and, of course, the ultimate comfort food. Get your hands on the perfect side dish by boiling red potatoes until fork tender, before smashing and baking to perfection.
Crisp on the outside, wonderfully fluffy within and topped with creamy pesto and shredded cheese, this gorgeous twist on classic smashed potatoes will be a hit with the whole family.
Ingredients for Smashed Potatoes
- Small red potatoes
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Shredded cheese: Mozzarella, cheddar, Colby-Jack, asiago, parmesan or a mixture
How to Make Pesto Smashed Potatoes
Rustling up your Pesto Smashed Potatoes could not be easier! Simply boil your potatoes until they’re fork tender before smashing them onto a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season well. It is important not to skip this step because the oil gives a wonderful crispy texture!
Roast until you achieve that wonderfully crispy shell and soft middle, then add your pesto and cheese (or whatever your chosen topping may be!)
Even better – smashed potatoes are great for meal prep. Simply boil your potatoes in advance, then smash and roast whenever you’re ready to eat.
How to Get the Perfect Smashed Potatoes
The steps to make smashed potatoes are very straightforward, boil, smash, season, bake. However, there are a few tricks to ensure ultra delicious potatoes every time! Here are my best tips for getting the perfect smashed potatoes:
- Use small potatoes: To get the perfect smashed potatoes, pick out small potatoes so they can be smashed flat. Essentially, the flatter the potato, the crispier the texture.
- Don’t rush: Don’t rush cooking your potatoes and ensure they’re truly fork tender so they can be smashed with ease.
- Smash! Don’t simply press the potatoes down, really smash the potatoes so they are a nice, thin texture.
Other Toppings for Potatoes
One of the best things about smashed potatoes is hands-down their versatility, and the topping options here really are endless! While I love the combination of pesto and cheese, you can create many other versions of this dish! Some other topping ideas include:
- Cooked Chopped Bacon
- Chives or green onions
- Buffalo sauce
- Cheese: gruyere, asiago, parmesan, pepper-jack, sharp cheddar
- Salsa or pico de gallo
- Guacamole or chopped avocado
What to serve with Smashed Potatoes
Aside from being a great main dish or appetizer in itself, smashed potatoes are super versatile and make the perfect accompaniment for a range of main dishes! Here are some of my favorite recipes to serve with beautiful, fluffy smashed potatoes.
- Rustle up some smashed potatoes with toppings of your choice alongside these Easy Keto Chicken Tenders for the ultimate comfort food! (gluten free)
- This Salmon with Jalapeno Lime Butter is absolutely divine alongside a creamy serving of smashed potatoes.
- Another comfort food fave of mine is this low carb Broccoli Cheddar Stuffed Chicken. These cheesy Pesto Smashed Potatoes pair wonderfully with the broccoli and cheese in this dish.
- And if you’re all about Broccoli like me, why not try serving your smashed potatoes alongside these wonderful Sausage Broccoli Cheddar Foil Packs, too?
- 1 1/2 pounds small potatoes (any variety works but I like small red potatoes)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 tablespoons melted butter
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup pesto
- 1 cup shredded cheese (mozzarella, cheddar or parmesan)
- In a large pot, cover potatoes with water and bring to a boil and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and let sit until cool enough to handle.
- On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss potatoes with the olive oil. Using the flat bottom of a mason jar or potato masher carefully press down on potatoes to smash flat.
- Combine the melted butter and garlic, brush liberally on each smashed potato and season with salt and pepper.
- Bake until the potatoes begin to brown and crisp, about 20 minutes.
- Remove the potatoes from the oven and top with pesto and shredded cheese. Bake for an additional 5-10 minutes until the cheese has melted and the potatoes have achieved your desired crispness.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 2 small red potatoes
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 361Total Fat: 25gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 39mgSodium: 335mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 3gSugar: 2gProtein: 10g
To avoid any confusion I remove erythritol from the final carb count and net carb count, as it is not known to affect blood glucose levels. To calculate Keto recipes listed on this site carbs - fiber = net carbs. I use Nutrifox as my nutrition calculator. This nutrition information is an estimate based on the information provided by Nutrifox and the specific ingredients I used.