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All about Baked Potatoes!

Baked Potatoes for a Crowd

50 large russet baking potatoes
2 c. extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbsp. salt
4 tsp. white pepper 

4 - 5  lb. sour cream
1 lb. bacon bits
2  lb. butter
4-5 bunches of green onions, finely chopped

2 lb. grated sharp cheddar cheese

If you are having a baked potato bar more toppings can be added accordingly.

Scrub the potatoes with a wire brush to remove all dirt and rough patches of the skin. 
Use a fork to poke holes into the potatoes (minimum 8 per potato) but don't do this ahead of time, or the potatoes will be full of brown marks from oxidation. 
In a shallow bowl whisk oil and seasonings, roll the potatoes in the oil then tightly wrap the potatoes in a 12 inch foil square (SEE SAFETY NOTE BELOW) 
Preheat oven to 400F, loosely arrange the potatoes on a baking sheet (insure that none are touching) and bake the potatoes for 30 minutes. Remove the potatoes from the oven and use tongs to turn the potatoes, return to oven and continue to bake for an additional 30 minutes. Check the potatoes for doneness with a toothpick. The potatoes should be tender through to the center.

If you are cooking for many people and can't fit all of the potatoes in the oven at one
 time try this. Preheat the oven to it's highest setting (minimum 500F), bake the
 potatoes in the oven for 30 minutes. Remove the potatoes and place immediately in
 plastic insulated ice chest. Bake the next batch and when done add to the first batch.
 The potatoes are not completely cooked when they are removed from the oven, they
 require a minimum of 45 minutes in the ice chest to finish cooking. The potatoes can
 be kept in the chest for up to six hours unopened!

NOTES: The cooler doesn't know if it is to keep food hot or cold. Potatoes will stay hot for
 hours! Great to serve volunteers and officials at "hospitality" at swim meets. 
We serve with chili, onions, sour cream, shredded cheese, (anything that you can 
think of will work!). This will cover meat and non-meat eaters! 
Salad with a large choice of dressings will complete this meal. 

I am doing baked potatoes for 140 on Wednesday and am trying to decide whether to wrap them in foil or not. Why wrap or why not? I was thinking we would not since we do not need to keep them hot - they can be served immediately. Also can I keep them hot in electric roasters for 20 minutes or so while we bake the rolls? Or is this the reason to wrap them - would they stay hot that long in bowls wrapped.

While your potatoes are baking, fill a cooler with hot water, when you are about to take your potatoes out, empty the water and dry out the cooler. Load the potatoes into the pre heated cooler. Your potatoes will stay hot for a long time.


 there is no need to wrap your potatoes. Some people feel that wrapping actually steams the potatoes instead of baking them. They will stay hot for quite some time, especially if you put them in your cookers.

I would not wrap potatoes in foil, if held too long, you run the risk of breeding botulism.

SAFETY NOTE: It's not recommended that the potatoes be wrapping in foil.  This moist area between the outside of the potato and the foil can be a breeding ground for bacteria.

Half Baked Potatoes for 50
half a potato per serving

25 large Baking potatoes, (80-count) (15 pounds, 8 ounces)   
Garlic salt teaspoon   
Celery salt teaspoon 
White pepper teaspoon 
Black pepper teaspoon 
Paprika 1 tablespoon, 1 teaspoon
Salt 1 teaspoon  
Vegetable oil cup 

Wash potatoes well and cut in half lengthwise, skin on. Mix spices and place in spice shaker. 
Spread 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) of oil in each 12" x 20" x 2 " steam table pan. Place 13
 potato halves in each pan, cut-side down, to lightly coat potato surface with oil. Turn cut-side up. 
Sprinkle spice mixture over potatoes. Turn potatoes cut-side down for browning. 
Bake at 450 degrees F for 25 to 30 minutes (conventional oven)
 or 425 degrees F, 20 to 25 minutes (convection oven). 
Bake until the surface is golden brown.

Serving: 1/2 potato, with skin


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