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Pimento Cheese Potato Skins

2013-01-06

If there’s anything better than the perfect baked potato, it would have to be a twice baked potato. I’m sure everybody’s Mom, Grandma or next-door neighbor has a recipe for double-stuffed potatoes; after all, if you can bake a potato and make mashed potatoes, you’re pretty much halfway there. See, it’s not so much about how you make them, as it is about what’s inside.

Ingredients:

  • 6 medium russet potatoes
  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 teaspoon red bell pepper, diced into 1/4 inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3 tablespoon fresh chives, chopped
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (optional)
  • 4 slices bacon, cooked until crispy and crumbled (optional)
  • Kosher salt & pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil (oil the potatoes)

How to make it:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Wash the potatoes really good under water to clean off any debris.  Pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Toss a little bit of olive oil over the potatoes and generously cover all sides.  Place on baking pan.  When oven has reached 350 degrees, place potatoes in oven and bake for 1 hour.
  3. While potatoes are baking, chop up red bell peppers and chives.
  4. When the timer goes off for the potatoes, pull out and let them cool slightly.  Cut them half length-wise and take a soup spoon to scoop out the potatoes out of the shell of the skin.  Leave enough skin so that it will have a strong wall to fill mixture again.
  5. Toss the potatoes that you scooped out into a medium bowl.  Add half the sharp cheddar cheese, cream cheese, butter, salt and pepper -then mix well.  Fill each potato skin with this mixture.  Sprinkle the rest of the sharp cheddar cheese on top.  Bake for 10 more minutes -or until you see the cheese bubbling on top of the potatoes.  Top each baked potato with chives, sour cream and cooked bacon bits (entirely optional).

Note:  This recipe can be made vegetarian if you leave out the bacon.

 

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