By Mary McDougall
Baked potatoes are a simple yet versatile meal. They can be eaten plain or with a wide variety of toppings. Potatoes may be microwaved if you are in a big rush, but the flavor and texture of the potato won't be nearly as delicious as those baked in an oven. Our favorite potatoes for baking are the large brown-skinned russet variety.
Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 60 min
1 Preheat oven to 475 degrees.
2 Scrub the potatoes well and prick them all over with a fork.
3 Bake potatoes directly on the oven rack, for one hour. They will be fluffy and delicious.
4 I don’t recommend baking them in aluminum foil. It makes potatoes pasty, instead of dry and fluffy.
5 Make extra potatoes for leftovers. Store unwrapped in the refrigerator. Eat them cold or reheat in the microwave.
Topping Ideas: salsa, barbecue sauce, tofu sour cream and chives, baked beans, chili, pea soup, bean soup, fat-free dressings, almost any bean recipe goes great over baked potatoes.
Hints: Sweet potatoes are also delicious when baked. They should be baked at a lower temperature, about 350 degrees, for 45-50 minutes. Prick them all over with a fork and place on a baking tray in the oven. (Or place on the oven rack and put a baking tray on the shelf underneath to catch the drips.) Eat plain, either warm or cold, or try them topped with baked beans. Open your favorite can of healthy fat-free baked beans, heat, and spoon over the top of the sweet potato.