I cannot get enough breakfast food. There’s just something about a big platter filled with all my favorites. I find fried potatoes to be the perfect breakfast food and nothing is better than this fried potatoes and onions recipe, although they’re also delicious as a side dish for dinner!
Whether you are a turkey bacon kinda person, or enjoy a classic sausage patty, they fit right next to the potatoes. Round things out with either scrambled eggs, fruit, and yogurt and you’ll be satisfied for hours. Prefer not to fry in oil? Try out breakfast potatoes in the air fryer!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Simple to make: This is mostly hands-off in order to achieve the perfect browning!
- One-dish side: Make these in a single skillet while you have eggs going on the next burner.
- Perfect for a crowd: As long as you have a large skillet, you can make as many potatoes as fit!
Just a few key ingredients needed to make fried potatoes and onions:
- Potatoes – Red is my favorite to use in this dish. We are going to peel and slice thinly. Don’t have red potatoes or don’t enjoy their flavor? You can use Russet but it’s best to soak the slices in warm water for 15 minutes or so. Then dry thoroughly before frying.
- Onion – I think yellow onion is the mildest option, and adds just the right flavor without being overpowering. You can use white if desired.
- Oil – Reach for canola or vegetable as good frying oils. These have high smoke points and won’t burn in the skillet.
- Butter – I like salted here because it’s used as a finishing ingredient. Potatoes are also bland on their own, so the extra salt is perfect.
- Seasoning – Salt is a given, and I love to utilize fresh garlic. If you like spice, then the red pepper flakes are great! You can always use black pepper instead.
I love a cast iron skillet. Often, these don’t have a lid – so you will want to see if any of your other lids fit your cast iron skillet! It doesn’t have to be a perfect seal, but you don’t want it to fall inside. I don’t recommend nonstick as you simply can’t get an amazing crust on your potatoes.
If you have a super sharp knife and really good skills, you can slice your potatoes. Otherwise, pick up a mandolin to get truly even slices.
How to Make Fried Onions and Potatoes
*Be sure to see the recipe card below for the full ingredients list & instructions!*
Slice the potatoes while the onion cooks. You should have just enough time!
STEP 1. Heat the oil. Heat a tablespoon of cooking oil in a cast iron skillet (Image 1). Add the onions in a single layer (Image 2).
Tip: The potatoes need to be sliced to an even thickness for even cooking. You want them all to cook through at the same time so some aren’t burning. Use a mandolin for this step.
STEP 2. Brown onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are evenly browned (Image 3). Remove to a plate.
STEP 3. Arrange potatoes. Add remaining oil and once hot, begin layer the potatoes evenly in the pan (Image 4).
STEP 4. Add a lid. Cook potatoes undisturbed while covered to brown the first side (Image 5). Flip and cover again until cooked through.
STEP 5. Combine. Return onions to the pan and add seasoning (Image 6). Add butter and garlic and stir to coat (Image 7).
STEP 4. Garnish. Add green onion if desired and serve immediately (Image 8).
Recipe Pro Tips
- Peel your potatoes. I like to peel my potatoes because otherwise I find the peel comes off in a ring when cooking, which is sometimes a bit hard to eat and doesn’t look pretty.
- Correct temperature. Keep an eye on the temperature so that you aren’t burning the potatoes. Browned is perfect, black is not!
That isn’t necessary! I find it tricky to know how long to boil them to help with cooking but not make them mushy and fall apart. If you are slicing them thin enough, they will cook through just fine in the skillet.
I always use a mix. Oil has a higher smoke point so it is best for starting out the cooking process. I then use butter to finish frying, because it adds the most amazing flavor. And because we are just using it at the end, it doesn’t have a chance to burn.
When I use red potatoes, I don’t take this extra step. However, if you are using a starchier potato such as russet, you will want to soak them first to remove excess starch. They key is to then dry them completely before frying.
What to Serve with Pan Fried Potatoes and Onions
Or if you’re making this slow cooker steak, it’s delicious to pair these together!
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-5 days. They will turn soggy when cold, but can be revived on the stovetop or in the air fryer!
More Potato Recipes You’ll Love
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Fried Potatoes and Onions
- 3 tablespoons cooking oil divided
- ½ large yellow onion sliced
- 3-4 red potatoes peeled and sliced into ¼-iInch thick slices
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon salted butter
- Sliced green onions for garnish optional
- Heat a skillet over medium high heat; add 1 tablespoon of oil to the hot skillet.
- Add onions and cook for 4-6 minutes until browned.
- Once browned, remove onions from the skillet and set aside.
- Reduce heat to medium low and add the remaining oil to the pan. When the oil is hot, place the potatoes in a single layer in the skillet. Then keep layering the potatoes into the skillet until all the potatoes are used.
- Cover with a lid and cook undisturbed for 1-2 minutes before flipping so they can brown on one side. Once browned, flip and cover again. Continue to do this until most of the potatoes are browned; about 10 minutes.
- Ad the onions back into the skillet along with the salt and pepper flakes. Flip and stir to combine. Let it cook for an additional 2 minutes, without the lid.
- Lastly, add the butter and garlic. Stir and flip to coat all the potatoes in butter as it melts and let the garlic brown and become fragrant. This should take about 1-2 minutes. Be careful not to burn the garlic.
- Garnish with green onion if desired and serve immediately.
- It is important to get the potato slices as even as possible for even cooking. Using a mandolin slicer is best for this.
- If making a double portion use a large skillet so that you will have more surface area for browning.
- I like using red potatoes for this dish because they have less starch and fry easier. If using a starchier potato you can soak the sliced potatoes in water and then dry before cooking to remove some of the starch.
- For a less spicy dish substitute the red pepper flakes for black pepper or omit pepper completely.
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.