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How to Wash Potatoes for Cooking

Should you wash potatoes before cooking? How? Learn how to clean potatoes, including a very unusual way!

Do you know the best way to wash potatoes? It’s not as straightforward as you might think. In this blog post, we’ll teach you the proper way to clean your spuds so they are ready for cooking. Follow our tips and you’ll have perfect potatoes every time!

golden potatoes - how to clean potatoes

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Potatoes are a great source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, making them a great addition to every diet. Whether you want to indulge or have a healthy meal, you’ll never run out of ways to eat potatoes.

But before you enjoy them, you need to do one important thing. Clean them and make sure that they are safe to eat. Wash the potatoes the right way and enjoy their incredible health benefits!  

Before you can make easy recipes like cheddar bacon ranch smashed potatoes, you need to clean the potatoes well.

russet and red potatoes

Should You Wash Potatoes? 

Potatoes are harvested from the ground, so they carry dirt and continue to pick up germs as they find their way into the supermarket and your household. It’s important to clean them before cooking and eating them.

Even if you’re using organic potatoes, washing is essential to remove even the slightest traces of contaminants.

So when is the best time to wash them? Do it right before cooking! Potatoes can easily collect dirt again after washing, so make sure to prepare them minutes before you prepare your meal.

If you do need to prepare them ahead, it’s okay to wash them and let them sit in water in the refrigerator for up to an hour. However, soaking them for longer may result in a mushy texture and loss of flavor.

How to clean a potato

First, wash your hands in soap and water for about twenty seconds. Once your hands are clean, get the potatoes and rinse them under running water to get rid of dirt and bacteria. I put mine in a colander while I’m washing them.

Take the potato and gently scrub it in circular motions. You can also use a clean kitchen towel or vegetable brush to loosen dirt stuck in its skin. Don’t use bleach, soap, or any chemicals. 

Water and cleaning tools like brushes are enough to clean produce. Once all surface debris is gone, pat the potato dry with a paper towel.

peeled potatoes in bowl

Can you wash potatoes in the dishwasher?

Have you heard of this method to clean potatoes?! The easiest, fastest way to wash a potato is still, by hand, in the kitchen sink minutes before preparing your food. But, you can also try washing them in your dishwasher. 

First, make sure that the dishwasher does not contain soap. Place the potatoes on the topmost rack and wash them using a rinse-only cycle. The rinse-only function cleans the dishes inside the machine with very little water. No soap or detergent. Use this setting in your soap-free dishwasher to rinse potatoes and other fruits and vegetables.

Several people choose the dishwasher method because washing a lot of produce uses a lot of water. If you’re cleaning your potatoes with other vegetables, arrange them properly, so nothing falls through. 

Do you peel potatoes? 

Potatoes are highly nutritious, especially if you eat them cooked and unpeeled. The skin is actually an excellent source of fiber and other vital nutrients.

Many people eat unpeeled potatoes to preserve the nutrients, which may leach out during the cooking process. In the end, wash the potatoes thoroughly, whether or not you want to peel them.

Best potato peelers

Some recipes call for peeled potatoes, like homemade mashed potatoes. Do you use a potato peeler?

I prefer to use a paring knife, maybe because my mom did it that way. Here are some great options:

red potatoes and russet potatoes

More potato recipes