Hand-Formed Parmesan Tater Tots

By • November 18, 2013 48 Comments

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Author Notes: For a reason I can't talk about here -- envision four men loose in San Francisco at a friend's bachelor party! -- I've been thinking about tater tots.

Recipes I found varied from using mashed potatoes rolled in potato chips (ummm...no thanks!) to using shredded potatoes.

Then I received a 5-pound bag of freshly-dug red potatoes from BlackGold Farms as a thank you for participating in a week-long event that involved over 30 bloggers and 115 recipes. So, I took it as a sign to get cooking...and experimenting with homemade tater tots.
CamillaMMann

Food52 Review: The parmesan and garlic make for a tasty take on tater tots. I mashed up the roasted garlic to make a paste that would more easily distribute in the potato mixture, and I found that a quick spritz of olive oil from the oil mister helped to brown the tots (but they taste great either way). This would be a great project to do with kids, who would have fun shaping their very own tater tots. I sure did!vvvanessa

Serves 4

  • 3 large red potatoes (1 1/2 pounds)
  • 2 cloves of roasted garlic
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 dash freshly ground sea salt
  • Olive oil for greasing pan
  1. Preheat oven to 400° F.
  2. Scrub the potatoes clean and roast until they are fork tender. Cool them rapidly by plunging them in ice water. Change the water, and repeat, until the potatoes are cool.
  3. Shred the potatoes on the large holes of a box grater. You can peel them first; I didn't.
  4. Place the other ingredients into the bowl with the grated potatoes and use a fork to fully combine everything.
  5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and rub it with a layer of olive oil.
  6. Preheat oven to 425° F.
  7. Using about a teaspoon of the potato mixture, form it into a cylinder about 1 inch long. Place on baking sheet and repeat until all the tots are made.
  8. Bake about 35 to 40 minutes, turning once about 20 minutes into the cooking time.
  9. Serve hot with ketchup.
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Comments (48) Questions (0)

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5 months ago Douglas Boyce

Like candy !

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7 months ago Douglas Boyce

these were super yummy. I failed to oil the wax paper. They stuck so be sure to oil under theses tots !!!

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9 months ago pennyolsen

What about panko crumbs? Thanks.

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9 months ago chez_mere

That should work as a binder, but you might want to add a pinch more salt to make up for the lack of cheese. I'd also start out with only 1/3 c. of panko and see how it holds together (the full 1/2 c. may make it too dry). Hope it works out!

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9 months ago pennyolsen

Love to make these without parmesan.......need a dairy free substitute. Please suggest. Thanks.

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9 months ago chez_mere

I'd use nutritional yeast! It will add the same type of savory note and should help bind the mixture as well. I suppose you could look for a soy-based parmesan cheese as well, but I've never tried any and can't speak for their flavor

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about 1 year ago mlsparks

These are wonderful!! Made them tonight, I had some chicken wings baking as well, and so I roasted the tots for the same amount of time as those (approx 45 min) and they were so crunchy and delicious. YUM!! Great Recipe, Thank you!!!

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over 1 year ago cathymartin

I think the choice of reds over russets is correct; the russets are mealy and would fall apart instead of shredding. Reds and Yukon golds have a more waxy texture and hold their shape better! Just a guess--I'll have to experiment to see if my premise holds up!

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over 1 year ago Cindy A. P.

Made these tonight- delicious! The only changes I made were boiling and then mashing the potatoes instead of roasting, and I baked them at 375 rather than 400 because they were with other dishes in the oven. Fluffy, nicely browned, and very tasty! I froze half of the little unbaked tots, and then bagged them for next time.

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over 1 year ago charles harris

lol I cut up raw potatoes and bake the in olive oil salt pepper and garlic and a couple of other spices makes an excellent side dish for my Charlie's chicken

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over 1 year ago Karen Owen

OH, these really look good...could eat a whole bunch RIGHT NOW

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over 1 year ago tim

about how long do you roast the potatoes ?

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over 1 year ago Debby

Wait. I get it now. 400 to bake the potatoes and 425 for the tater tots. Sorry....Senior moment.

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

Yes, you got it!

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over 1 year ago Debby

These sound great & I want to try them, but see items #1 and #6 in this recipe. Should the oven be at 400 or 425? Thanks.

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over 1 year ago Samuel Newcomer

This is perfect! I could make all the apps for a football game, but these take center stage

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over 1 year ago Carmen

These are so so good. These are a new addition to our side dishes. Love that my kiddos are able and interested to help make these.
Great recipe...thanks!

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over 1 year ago Millie | Add A Little

They look delicious! Will definitely make these :)

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over 1 year ago Willow

I'll let you know how it goes!

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over 1 year ago SharonKay

Do they have to be red potatoes or will russets work? I can't make it to the store today and want these now!

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

Sorry for the late reply, Sharon. I am certain that other potatoes would work. I just happened to have red ones in my potato bin. Experiment away!

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over 1 year ago Patti

I made these today and did roll into a rope and cut. It was easy. But, when I baked them, the tots flattened like a potato pancake! They tasted great though. I did cut the recipe in half. Do you think I needed more cheese or less to hold the tot shape?

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over 1 year ago rmullins

Happened to me as well.

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over 1 year ago rmullins

Oh, let me add that I used potatoes that had already been previously mashed with butter added to them. I suspect the butter is what made them fall apart.

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over 1 year ago TheFarmGirlCooks

This recipe will surely be shared with my farm's CSA members. It's gonna be a long holiday break from school and idle kids' hands need some work to do.... Thanks!

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over 1 year ago chocolatesushi

What binds the potato together? Seems like it would just fall apart. I would love to try these if I thought it would work.

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

I have made these almost a dozen times. And they do not fall apart. I would guess the starch in the potatoes and the cheese hold them together.

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over 1 year ago chocolatesushi

Good to know. i am definitely going to give these a try. :)

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over 1 year ago RavensFeast

These look so good. Is there any reason you're quickly cooling the potatoes after roasting them by plunging in an ice bath? Does the quick chill affect the texture or is it to simply get on with the recipe faster?

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

The latter. I'm sure you can roast, let cool naturally, and proceed.

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over 1 year ago rmullins

what if you rolled them into a long rope and then cut them into tots using a bench scraper for a more conventional look? would that work?

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

I'm sure that would be fine! If you try it, let me know how it goes.

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over 1 year ago Patti

I made these today. I did roll into a rope and cut. It worked fine. But, when I baked them they flattened like a potato pancake!! Since it's just me I had cut the recipe in half. Maybe I needed less cheese? Even flat they were great!

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over 1 year ago emcsull

perhaps I am a philistine, but what if I just boil potatoes in their jackets and let them cool, is that acceptable ? Will it change the texture too much ?

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

Boiling would work. Whether this has any basis in reality, or not, I think roasting brings out a deeper flavor than just boiling. But, texture-wise, it should be fine.

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over 1 year ago Hope :)

Ahh! Sign me up. And congrats on your Community Pick! :)

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over 1 year ago Muse

Congratulations on your Community Pick...these sound absolutely delicious! Peace, Light and Love.

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

Thank you very much!

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over 1 year ago foxeslovelemons

Congrats on the CP! These look totally crave-able.

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over 1 year ago Alexandra V. Jones

congrats!

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over 1 year ago chez_mere

Nice! No copious amount of oil to deal with :)

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

I know! That's what I love about this recipe.

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over 1 year ago KLCannaday

Not sure what intrigues me more... the bachelor party story or the tots recipe. That said, these look awesome! Can't wait to try them out!

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

Ha! I wasn't privy to the entire bachelor party story either, but I loved that it inspired this dish.

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over 1 year ago Brussels Sprouts for Breakfast

These look awesome. I'll be testing these out this winter!

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

Fantastic! Do let me know how you like them.

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over 1 year ago Willow

Camilla... can you make these a day before and freeze? if so at what point should I freeze?

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over 1 year ago CamillaMMann

I have never done that. But I would say form and then freeze. Once you're ready, defrost and bake. That's my best guess.