How much salt to boil potatoes in?

In this article, we will answer the question “How much salt to boil potatoes in?”, how to serve salt potatoes, how to boil potatoes in the microwave and slow cooker, and what type of potatoes is ideal for boiling.

How much salt to boil potatoes in?

Irrespective of the type of salt, 1 1/2 – 2 Tbsp of salt per cup of water infuse your potatoes with a mild salty flavor. Small or large, red or yellow, potatoes do turn out better in terms of taste when cooked in salted water. 

To make the perfect salt potatoes, make sure to use whole potatoes. This will ensure that salt does not penetrate the center of the potatoes and only remain in the skin and 1-½ inch of the potato flesh from the outside. 

How to serve salt potatoes?

If you are a traditional person, you will like your salt potatoes tossed in melted butter and your favorite herbs. If you do not fear some extra calories, you can have a feast by frying the boiled potatoes and serving them with some melted cheese and a dollop of sour cream on top.

Another way to serve boiled salt potatoes is by roasting them in the oven at 435F for 10-15 minutes or until wrinkly and crispy on the outside. 

Last but not least, you can also crisp up your salt potatoes in the air fryer. Use the manual instructions of your air fryer for better results.

Can you boil potatoes in the microwave?

Prepare the potatoes 

Yes, you can boil potatoes in the microwave, which is as easy as it gets. Start by preparing your potatoes. This involves scrubbing, rinsing, peeling, and/or cutting your potatoes. Tiny-sized potatoes do not need to be further reduced, so, skip cutting in this case.

Trim or cut out the eyes, mushy or green areas, or spots from the potatoes. To leave the peel on is a choice of your own. We suggest leaving it intact since it contributes to some nutritional value and adds texture when the potatoes are fried or baked to crisp up.

One thing you have to be conscious of, regardless of the method of boiling potatoes, is the uniformity in the size of potatoes. This ensures even cooking. 


In the next step, grab a microwave-safe bowl and toss the potatoes in it. Then pour water into the bowl until the potatoes are completely immersed in it. Season with some salt. Cover the bowl with an oven-safe wrap. 

To let the steam escape during microwaving, you must poke holes into the wrap. Microwave the potatoes at high power for about 5 minutes.

Check for doneness after regular intervals, say 2 minutes. To check if the potatoes are done cooking, you can insert a toothpick into the potato. If it slides in easily, the potatoes are ready.

Can you boil potatoes in a slow cooker?

Opting for a slow cooker works best when it feels like you have a myriad of other dishes to prepare that need full supervision. 

We suggest using this technique when you are making mashed potatoes. Usually, a  4-quart slow cooker is sufficient to oil 3lb. Potatoes. So, let’s dig into the step-by-step guide to boiling potatoes in a slow cooker.

Prepare the potatoes 

As already detailed above, get your potatoes ready for boiling. This involves operations like scrubbing, rinsing, cutting, and/or peeling.

Let the potatoes cook 

Fill the slow cooker with 1¼ cups of water. You can also use broth in place of water or use both in half proportion. 

The broth will add extra flavor and you do not need to worry about draining the excess broth since most of it would have been absorbed and evaporated by the end of cooking. The potatoes need to be cooked for 6-8 hours on low or o 3-4 hours on high.

What type of potatoes is ideal for boiling?

The starch content of potatoes is what differentiates them in terms of cooking performance and flavor profile. So, let’s see what type of potatoes should you get if you intend on boiling them.

High-starch potatoes: Boiled and mashed, high-starch potatoes such as Russet and Idaho, turn out to be smooth and heavy.

Medium-starch potatoes: Yellow Finn and Yukon Gold fall in this category. Instead of boiling, they are more suitable for soups and salads because they tend to keep their shape after cooking or boiling.

Low-starch potatoes: This is the ‘waxy potatoes’ category. They would not lose their shape unless you try very hard, which makes them ideal for salads and as sides.



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