While this air fryer Hasselback potatoes recipe looks chef-created, they are super easy to do, even for the newbie home cook.
You don’t even need special ingredients—with just the basics, you can present this side dish with a wow factor!
Hasselback potatoes make a beautifully plated side dish, and let’s be honest, we all love beautiful pictures of food on the internet, but now you can make this yourself.
Thankfully, these air fryer hasselback potatoes aren’t just pretty to look at.
They are SO GOOD!
I used to believe it meant the style of thin cuts that go down the length of the potato.
But hasselback really refers to the name of the Stockholm restaurant in Sweden called Hotel Hasselbacken where these were first created.
The dish was invented by a trainee chef who worked there in 1953.
The original name of the dish was Hasselbackspotatis—while it started out as a potato dish, I see a lot of foods that are sliced and cooked the same way now, like carrots and fruits.
Hassleback potatoes are also quite tasty and easy to make in your air fryer. The air fryer is great at crisping up vegetables and it’s easy to work with.
We use the air fryer to cook potatoes, potato chips, carrot fries, snacks, frozen foods and so much more. It made quick work of this air fryer hasselback potatoes recipe.
We really are big fans of our Ninja air fryer, as you can see here, here, and here.
What are hasselback potatoes?
Hasselback potatoes are a recipe created by a trainee chef at a Swedish restaurant circa 1953.
The recipe features Russet baking potatoes that are thinly sliced about halfway through width-wise and then baked until fork-tender.
The thin slices create “pockets” to hold the added fats and spices, and as they cook and soften, the slices fan out slightly.
The potatoes in this perfect side dish come out tasting highly flavored because more surface area holds the seasonings.
The word “hasselback” has become a broadly used technique for making any vegetable look a bit unique and allow for them to crisp up a bit along the cut edges.
They make for an attractive plated side dish and are a leveled-up version of a traditional fluffy baked potato that we eat most often. Who can deny that the result has a wow factor?
This gorgeous dessert is for hasselback pears and I think it looks cool as heck. Hasselback-style fruits and vegetables are a real crowd pleaser because pretty food is as good for the eyes as it is for the tummy.
About the ingredients
What I love about this recipe is that it is super easy to make, is beautiful when plated, and only requires a few ingredients.
Russet Potatoes – While you can do this with a wide range of potato types like Yukon golds, I believe that russet potatoes cook up nicely as a hasselback potato.
The reason for this is because they have a nice thick skin and hold up together well when partially sliced.
Yukon gold potatoes or even red potatoes make a super cute mini Hasselback potatoes recipe, which is an impressive side dish too.
Olive oil – My personal preference is to coat a potato in olive oil when I am baking a potato in the air fryer but you could use melted butter instead if you prefer.
Another reason that I prefer olive oil in this recipe is because I mix the olive oil in a small bowl and minced garlic together before brushing it on the potatoes.
Gotta say, though, garlic butter slathered over the outside of the potatoes before and after cooking is a win-win for everybody.
Minced Garlic – I keep a container of minced garlic in the refrigerator, which is not quite as lovely as freshly minced garlic. However, it sure makes cooking easier and quicker, so it is a compromise that I am willing to make.
And if you don’t have fresh or minced, garlic powder works great too.
The great flavor and tender middle of the potatoes will be there, no matter what, just remember to keep the proportions listed in the recipe.
Parmesan Cheese – The parmesan cheese that I use for this recipe is shredded and comes in a container. However, if you have the time, freshly grated high-quality parmesan will always be superior.
Note that even what I call “shaker cheese” that’s powdered will be tasty, too. The beauty of hasselback is that you can use what you have on hand and it still turns out pretty!
Salt and pepper – I have strong feelings about the pepper, especially. Freshly ground pepper is so much more delicious and I strongly recommend it.
More of your favorite toppings – A dollop of sour cream, bacon bits, chives, cheese of all kinds, chili, barbecue sauce, pulled pork.
Anything you might put on a regular ol’ baked potato, you can slather in, on and around a hasselback potato!
Just remember that too much heavy topping will cover up the beautifully fanned slices and crisp edges.
Equipment to make this hasselback potatoes recipe
- Air fryer (we don’t have this one, but we want it real bad)
- Sharp paring knife or filet knife
- Two large wooden spoons
- Cooking spray or air fryer liners
- Cutting board
- Small bowl
- Pastry brush
- Tongs (these are OXO brand)
How to cut hasselback potatoes
When cutting a potato hassleback style, the goal is to use a sharp knife to cut the width of the potato in thin slices but not to cut all of the way down through the bottom of the potato.
The bottom of each potato should still be connected, because you aren’t cutting them into potato chips.
A hot tip for cutting hassleback potatoes is to use two wooden kitchen spoons to aid in the process.
Take a quick glance at the photo above and notice how we positioned the potato between the two wooden spoons.
The wooden spoons will prevent your knife from cutting all the way through to the cutting board. We own this really nice set of Wusthof knives and love them all (aff link).
The result is hasselback sliced potatoes with crispy edges!
Tips & Variations
- It’s VERY important to dry the potatoes really well after you wash them. Moist potatoes steam instead of crisp.
- When removing the cooked potatoes from the air fryer basket, you may want to use a spatula in one hand to support the bottom and gently grasp the potato with tongs in the other hand. One of the potatoes broke during our cooking session, so you see three in the fryer but only three on the plate. (RIP)
- Don’t skimp on the salt. Potatoes just need it to bring out their flavor.
- Be sure to get the oil/butter liberally inside and the outside of these potatoes: The fat is what helps the air fryer get food crispy and the salt helps crisp the edges.
- Add a sprinkle of crumbled feta or julienned cheddar for cheesy hasselback potatoes.
- Use sweet potatoes instead of white potatoes; experiment with crumbled goat cheese, brown sugar, and warm spices like cloves and cinnamon.
The bottom line
We had a blast making this air fryer hasselback potato recipe, I’ll just say that.
While one of the potatoes broke because we were heavy handed getting it out of the air fryer, we still ate it with gusto.
But for a fabulous presentation, use that spatula to help you support the potato bottom while you use tongs to lift.
Without anything but oil and salt and a knife (and the air fryer, of course) you could keep this recipe as basic as it gets and end up with the prettiest potatoes ever!
If you make this recipe, snap a pic and post it on our Facebook page so we can oooh and ahhh!
- 2 Russet potatoes, large
- 4 T olive oil or melted butter
- 1 T minced garlic
- 2 T parmesan cheese, shaved or shredded
- 1/4 t salt
- 1/4 t fresh ground pepper
- Optional: Cherry tomatoes for garnish and color
- Spray basket with cooking spray or use an air fryer liner.
- Preheat air fryer to 350F.
- Wash potatoes and then dry them REALLY well. Super dry.
- Lay down two wooden spoons on the cutting board about two inches apart. See photo.
- Set one potato on the spoons lengthwise so the fat part of the potato is facing you.
- Slice potatoes into 1/4" sections but leave about 1/2" uncut on each long end. Repeat for the other potato. Set them aside.
- In a small bowl mix the olive oil or melted butter, garlic, salt and pepper.
- With a pastry brush, liberally coat the potatoes with the mixture, getting it in between the slices.
- Using tongs, gently place the potatoes in the air fryer basket.
- Bake for 20 minutes.
- Open the air fryer and baste potatoes with additional olive oil mixture, coating the inside of the cuts again.
- Cook for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, especially if these are very large potatoes.
- Using tongs in one hand and a spatula in the other, GENTLY remove the potatoes from the air fryer and immediately sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
- Serve any additional sides such as sour cream, bacon bits, green onion, or chili on the side so you don’t cover the beauty of the hasselback cuts.