Loaded twice baked potatoes are a great appetizer or even dinner. (Yes, we have made “stand-alone” twice baked potatoes for dinner!!!) Usually, twice baked potatoes are made with a “regular size” baking potato, but we decided, “why not try the walnut sized potatoes???”. AKA, the perfect size for an appetizer.
After trying these twice baked potato bites you’ll never want those large potatoes again or, as far as that goes, a regular baked potato again! These bites are loaded with cheese, bacon and Ranch seasoning. It’s a super easy appetizer or side dish for dinner. So simple to make!!!!!!
Small Loaded Twice Baked Potato
The small potatoes cook faster than a large baking potato, so it’s easy to make most of it ahead of time and just do some quick steps right before you’re ready to eat. One quick trick: Make a large amount of potatoes then when you want them during the week it takes just a few minutes to make.
Next Game Day!!!
Yes, we’re making these for our next game day. Now, for us, that could be every weekend since we love so many sports. We usually only do game day appetizers for Football and sometimes during Stanley Cup playoffs. Best part, as I mentioned, we can make them a day or two ahead and just finish the final steps up a few minutes prior to the game.
Making Loaded Twice Baked Potato Bites
First steps are to wash the potatoes, dry them with a paper towel, then toss them with some olive oil to coat, and sprinkle with chunky (or coarse, we call it chunky 😃) sea salt. Put them in the air fryer or oven. Bake until done, approximately 20 minutes in the air fryer and 30 minutes in the oven. The potatoes are done when a fork can be easily inserted.
For the bacon, place in the air fryer basket and air fry for about 15 minutes or until done. To make the bacon in the oven, place the bacon on a foil lined baking sheet and bake at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes (the foil is only there to help make clean up a breeze…What can I say, we’re lazy.).
Cut the cooked bacon into small chunks. You can leave the bacon out if you want to trim some calories, but we highly recommend the little splurge because the loaded twice baked potato bites are soooooo good with the bacon!
Tip for Making the Bacon
NOTE: The bacon turns out great both ways (oven or air fryer). I actually prefer making the bacon in the oven only because I can make more bacon at one time. The clean up of the bacon in the oven is much easier as long as the foil is up along the sides of the cooking sheet. Just let the bacon grease cool and then just wrap it up and toss the foil with the grease.
Let the potatoes cool for 15 minutes or so. You want the potatoes cool enough so you can hold the potato in your hands. Cut the potatoes in half. Take a spoon and scoop out the “meat” of the potatoes. Leave a small layer of the potatoes attached to the potato skin.
NOTE: When making the loaded twice baked potato bites for a future time make sure to place them in an air tight container.
If making them now, place the potato skins back in the air fryer for 8 minutes until the potato skins are crispy or in the oven for about 10 minutes at 375 degrees.
Mix together the scooped out potato, cheese, ranch seasoning, onion, milk and salt. (the onion is optional). Using a hand mixer or a potato masher mix all ingredients together. This takes about 3 to 5 minutes. NOTE: If making the Loaded Twice Baked Potato Bites for another time. Place the mixture in an air tight container and keep in the refrigerator.
Final Steps for loaded twice baked potato
After the potato skins are crispy, using a spoon, fill the potato skins with the potato mixture. Place them in the air fryer for 5 minutes until the filling is heated and the cheese is melting. Place 1 ounce of cheese on top of the potatoes and place back in the air fryer (or under the broiler) for about 2 minutes until the additional cheese is melted.
Top potatoes with the bacon bits and jalapenos and ENJOY!!!! Serve the loaded twice baked potatoes with a ranch dressing or hot sauce.
Loaded Twice Baked Potato Bites
- 12 Small Potatoes
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Coarse Salt
- 1 1/2 Ounces Cheddar Cheese Grated
- 2 Tablespoons Milk
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 1 Tablespoon Ranch Seasoning
- 1 Medium Onion Chopped
- 1 Ounce Cheddar Cheese Grated
- 2 Slices Bacon or use Bacon Bits
Rinse off potatoes and cut out any bad spots. Dry the potatoes with a paper towel.12 Small Potatoes
Toss the potatoes with olive oil. Then toss in the coarse salt and coat the potatoes with the salt1 Tablespoon Olive Oil, 1 Tablespoon Coarse Salt
If Air Frying: Place the potatoes on the air fryer basket and cook at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until the potatoes are done.
If Baking: Place the potatoes on a baking sheet. Put in a pre-heated 375 degrees oven for 35 to 40 minutes until the potatoes are done.12 Small Potatoes, 1 Tablespoon Coarse Salt, 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
The potatoes are done when a fork can easily be pushed into the potato.12 Small Potatoes
Let the potatoes cool for about 15 minutes. If making bacon, cook the bacon while the potatoes cool12 Small Potatoes, 2 Slices Bacon or use Bacon Bits
After the potatoes cool cut them in half.12 Small Potatoes
With a spoon scoop out the inside of the potatoes and place in a mixing bowl. Be sure to leave a small boarder of potato in the skin.12 Small Potatoes
If Air frying: Place the potato skins on the air fryer basket. Air Fry for 8 minutes at 400 degrees. Until the potato skins are crispy.
If using the Oven: Place the potato skins on a baking sheet. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes in a 400 degree oven. Until the potato skins are crispy.12 Small Potatoes
With a hand mixer. Mix together the scooped out potato, cheese, milk, salt and ranch seasoning. After it’s mixed together, stir in the chopped onion. (Onion is optional)12 Small Potatoes, 1 1/2 Ounces Cheddar Cheese, 1 Tablespoon Ranch Seasoning, 1 Medium Onion, 1/2 teaspoon Salt, 2 Tablespoons Milk
When the potato skins are crispy. Fill them with the potato mixture.12 Small Potatoes
Place the potatoes back into the air fryer or oven.
Air fry 5 minutes at 400 degrees.
Bake in oven for 8 minutes at 400 degrees.12 Small Potatoes
Sprinkle the additional cheese on the potatoes and place back in the air fryer or oven for 2 minutes until cheese melts. Can be placed under the broiler but make sure to keep an eye on them so they don’t burn.1 Ounce Cheddar Cheese
Top with Bacon, Jalapeno and/or green onion (All are optional)2 Slices Bacon or use Bacon Bits
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