Quick and Easy

Molly Yeh's Roasted Potatoes With Paprika Mayo

October  4, 2022
77 Ratings
Photo by Ty Mecham
  • Prep time 30 minutes
  • Cook time 30 minutes
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

There is this one little step to getting the finest, crispiest roasted potatoes: Boiling in salty water first. It seasons the potatoes all the way through in a way that a cloak of fat and salt on a raw potato can’t. But maybe more importantly, boiling brings some of the potatoes’ gelatinized starches to the surface, so they get even crispier in the oven. Molly wisely has you make double the dressing so you can dip other things in it at a Super Bowl party, or use it to dress a salad another day (maybe this time with eggs or tuna or another friend of mayo). Of course, you can halve the dressing if you prefer. But you’ll miss it when it’s gone. Adapted slightly from Food Network's Girl Meets Farm. —Genius Recipes

Test Kitchen Notes

This recipe is a part of Mayo Week—seven days celebrating all things mayonnaise—presented in partnership by our friends at Primal Kitchen.
—The Editors

What You'll Need
Watch This Recipe
Molly Yeh's Roasted Potatoes With Paprika Mayo
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 pounds red potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 small shallots, finely chopped
  • Chopped chives, for garnish
  1. Heat the oven to 450°F.
  2. Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil (Molly uses about 3 tablespoons salt). Add the potatoes and cook until slightly tender, 6 minutes. Drain and pat dry with a clean towel. Tossing the potatoes back into the drained, still-hot pot briefly can also help some of the excess moisture steam away.
  3. Scatter the potatoes on a baking sheet and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with the melted butter and toss to coat using tongs or a thin spatula. Roast until the potatoes are dark brown and crispy, 30 to 45 minutes, tossing halfway through. If the potatoes are sticking stubbornly, don’t fuss with them too much—let them keep browning and crisping till they release from the pan.
  4. Meanwhile, in a bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, vinegar, paprika, sugar and shallots.
  5. You have two choices for serving: You can either serve the salad warm right away, or, if you want to be able to set it out at a party and stay creamy and crunchy for longer, let the potatoes cool before dressing. When ready to serve, toss the warm or cooled potatoes with half of the paprika mayonnaise (save the rest for dipping or another use). Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed. Top with chives and enjoy!

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Mike
  • Alexandra Spellman
    Alexandra Spellman
  • Leslie McDonald
    Leslie McDonald
  • Little Piggy
    Little Piggy
  • Christine
Genius Recipes

Recipe by: Genius Recipes

41 Reviews

Mike August 30, 2021
Tried this recipe today for brunch. It was a great success! I changed it up a little Adding a little parmigiana cheese to the sauce. Also, my wife is not a big fan of vinegar so after making the sauce I ended up adding about a tablespoon more of mayo to mellow it out a little. Thanks for sharing. Will definitely be trying this again!
lazysusankitchen April 29, 2021
This was really delicious! Served in little individual bowls with a dollop of the yummy dressing at the side of the bowl, so people could dip as they pleased. To those having trouble lowering the potatoes into the boiling water - no need to do that. Put the potatoes in salted cold water and bring it all to the boil together. It's the way we were taught in culinary school!
Alexandra S. February 19, 2020
Excitedly making this now! Thanks to watching your video, I put my chopped potatoes in the colander and they gently slid right into the boiling water. Thank you for the neat recipe, can’t wait to taste it!
Carol F. January 6, 2020
My thoughts on the recipe - good but I’m not sure if I’d make it again. To begin with, fairly time consuming. I probably used closer to three pounds of potatoes so cutting them up into small dice took a while. Then after boiling them, I let them steam in the pot with a towel under the lid to dry them out a bit. Added a splash of olive oil to the butter and roasted them at 425 rather than 450 as I was concerned they would burn. I made only half the sauce and tossed the potatoes with half of that (so a quarter of the original recipe), and still had plenty to pass separately in a bowl. Maybe with repetition this would come together more quickly, but, after cooking them so long, the potatoes were basically little hollowed out shells with a crispy exterior so for certain I would cut them into bigger pieces.
Leslie M. January 6, 2020
Carol, I think you're working too hard. I've made this recipe multiple times, and - other than halving the sauce quantity when making a smaller batch so there's no leftover, or doubling the potatoes when making it for a large group - I'd suggest three things:
First, don't dice the potatoes so small, because they shrink and somewhat cave in when roasting - they can easily roast closer to an inch cubed. Second, keep the temp at 450F because bigger pieces can handle the heat. And third, get them out of the pot after boiling and spread them out on the sheet pan(s) so they dry out quickly, rather than going through the routine for regular boiled potatoes (using a towel to absorb the steam). Other than the dice being too small, this recipe really works as is... and I write that as a woman who never met a recipe she didn't want to mess with.
Mike August 30, 2021
I tried a similar recipe before this with baby new potatoes. End result was similar to your hollow dried out potatoes. This time I used plain old russets and cut into probably a little bigger pieces. Set timer for 15 min. Cause this recipe says turn me after cooking half time. They were great! I think I will try turning the heat down as I have a newer stove and used the roast option.
Mike August 30, 2021
Sorry, just to clarify. I did cook a second 15 min. After turning them. I thought to turn temp down as if I had not taken them out after the second 15 min. They were starting to burn.

Also I cooked on parchment paper. Makes for an easy cleanup and potatoes do not stick at all. I would have liked them a little more brown but again, they were delicious…
richbusywoman January 5, 2020
Oh, that sauce! I did a thing y'all: When the 'taters were roasted about halfway through I wondered, "What can I add so that I can just use ALL the sauce?" So I drained, rinsed and dried some garbanzos and added them to the roasting potatoes. Tossed all with The Sauce, sprinkled with chopped Italian parsley. Ah. Maze. Zing. The FOLLOWING DAY I made a half recipe of The Sauce and tossed a head of roasted cauliflower (florets) in it. GAH! Thank you Molly.
violist January 1, 2020
As to lowering food into boiling water, I use my spider. I just fill it up, lower it into the water, and everything releases. Depending on the amount you have, it might take two to three trips.
beejay45 December 18, 2019
Wish there was a way to edit comments here. I forgot to mention that this would be great with sweet potatoes, even better than with regular potatoes, I think, especially with a hot pimenton for the paprika factor. Yummm.
beejay45 December 18, 2019
My first thought on seeing this article was that it would make a great layer in one of the layered mayo salads I saw in another article here (sorry to say I don't have the link). My second was that her technique for the potatoes would be endlessly adaptable. This won't replace my general potato salad recipe, but it does sound delightful. Love paprika! Thanks!
Teresa J. November 11, 2019
OMG WOW! The sauce! Not only were the potatoes with the sauce great but I have been using just the sauce on everything else. The only thing I did different was to use hot paprika, that was all I had.
Rebecca K. August 28, 2020
That sauce is great on potatoes, vegetables, and meat! Wonderful to perk up dry chicken or bland sides.
Leslie M. October 25, 2019
I made this last winter for a friend's well-attended, annual Groundhog's Day party... of two table-top buffet spreads of offerings, my "roasted potato salad" was the first bowl emptied - and I had increased the recipe by half. Everyone raved about how delicious it was during the party, and the next day six people asked for the recipe by email. We've made it several times over the past year, and it's always well received. We love it.
tastysweet August 31, 2021
Was wondering Leslie, if the potatoes got soggy sitting in the sauce. Or did you serve the sauce on the side?
Leslie M. August 31, 2021
No soggy worries needed - roasting the potatoes sears their surfaces and essentially seals them from becoming wet/mushy. As I originally wrote, the recipe makes twice as much sauce as is needed for the amount of potatoes it calls for. So either cut the sauce ingredients by half, or double the potatoes you roast.
Little P. July 1, 2019
I too didn't find this to be as AMAZING as others. The potatoes did crisp up very well in the oven, but by tossing them in the mayo sauce they just became soft anyway. Hard to keep potatoes crispy when you are pouring a sauce all over them. Also, the flavor of the sauce wasn't all that incredible. I added salt which it needed badly... not a fan of the raw shallot either. I won't be making the sauce again or if I do, I'll skip the shallot and maybe use it in a chicken salad.
Leslie M. October 25, 2019
I'm wondering if you noticed the instruction near the end to use only half of the paprika mayonnaise and save the rest for later...? Too much dressing would indeed render this inedible.
Christine May 6, 2019
I thought this recipe was just alright. I did serve it at room temperature, and not warm, so I don't know if that had anything to do with it. It wasn't bad but to me it wasn't OMG this is great. Probably won't make again. But by doing what Molly did, my potatoes were very crispy and may use this technique in other recipes!
Jane May 3, 2019
We had vegan guests so I modified the recipe using vegan butter and mayo. It was delicious and raved about by both vegans and non-vegans. I can't wait to try the recipe with real butter and mayo. Thank you for this great recipe!
Tere February 19, 2019
Wow! Just found this, can't wait to try it.
About avoiding splashes, I use a flexible cutting mat that allows you to curl it up and drop the veggies down right over the water. Of course, I'm sure you can find really nice flexible "cutting boards," but I get 2 really large ones in a pack at Dollar Tree. They're so big, and so cheap, I cut them up in various sizes for different uses and use markers to designate one for meat, one for poultry, etc. When they get too grungy looking, just toss and go buy more. (Buy before you toss...sometimes they're temporarily out.)
Carolyn H. March 29, 2019
Best ever follow directions to the tee
Kate February 12, 2019
NUM! I followed the directions to allow the potatoes to stay crunchy by coming to room temp after removing them from the oven. Worked perfectly - the potatoes retained that crispness from roasting in the oven and was more satisfying that way. I debated making only 1/2 the sauce but all the reviews really raved about it so I made the entire amount. I used smoked paprika instead as I saw someone else mentioned using it. I LOVE smoked paprika. I only used 1 tsp as the other reviewer mentioned the full 1 tbsp was close to overwhelming. Glad I did - the 1 tsp still had plenty of the flavor and I might have eaten a spoonful all by itself. I used not even half the dressing on the potatoes and am now saving the leftovers as salad dressing and for other roasted veggies. Normally I'd swap at least half the mayo for greek yogurt but didn't this time. I will try that next time.
As for the method of boiling the potatoes to help with roasting, it seemed to work, but at 6 minutes my potatoes did start to crumble slightly. I was worried as I tossed them on the pan with the butter that they would really start to fall apart so I used a fairly light hand. Perhaps I should have boiled them for a little less time. Either way, the end result from the oven seemed perfect and the crumbliness wasn't an issue.
Pananaka February 9, 2019
Sooooo goooood
Rose L. February 8, 2019
This has just become my top favorite way to eat potatoes. What a perfect recipe in every way! the balance of flavors and textures is mind-boggling good! I don't usually eat a half pound of potatoes not to mention 1/4 cup mayo but it was worth every calorie!
Kate M. February 3, 2019
Tonight my husband and I took our first bites of Molly Yeh's Crispy Potatoes and simultaneously looked at each other and said WOW!! This is a delicious dish, easy to make. Only change I made was using some red onion not having enough shallot. We know this is a crowd pleaser side dish that we'll be adding to our favorite list. Well done Miss Molly!
jfold November 25, 2019
A year later...still obsessed with this salad. I’ve made it several times and it is better with plain paprika. Also, my husband once made this and used cider vinegar, and it just did not work. Follow the instructions and do not attempt anything fancy!
jfold February 3, 2019
Loved this! All I had on hand was smoked paprika, and although it was still fantastic, I totally understand why the recipe calls for the simplest possible ingredients. The smokiness was mostly welcome but was also a bit overpowering.
jfold February 3, 2019

Loved this! All I had in the house was smoked paprika, and although the sauce was fantastic, I totally understand why the recipe recommends keeping ingredients as simple as possible. The smokiness was mostly welcome but a bit overpowering.