Vegan Smoky Fried Potatoes

These potatoes are a building block for many other things around here. I make them to go in breakfast burritos, tacos, as a side for whatever meals seem to be screaming out for potatoes (like a nice tofu scramble) and as a base for things like vegan chili. If you get them extra crunchy, they make tacos and burritos super special.

  • however many potatoes, peeled if desired and diced. I use 1 small russet per person.
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • seasoning mix (see note below)
  • granulated garlic or garlic powder
  • salt and pepper


  1. Heat the oil in a skillet (that has a tight fitting lid) on medium high and add the onions. Cook for 1-2 minutes until onions are just soft.
  2. Add the potatoes and spread them out, making sure that they are in a flat layer in the skillet so each one gets a nice crunchy side.
  3. Add seasonings mix and garlic powder just to the top of potatoes. Do not stir. Reduce heat to medium low and cover. Did I mention the not stirring part? Keep covered for 15 minutes.
  4. After 15 minutes, remove lid and stir. Add more seasoning mix if desired. Cook for 5 minutes longer, raising heat to medium if necessary to add more crunch. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Note: I use different seasoning mixes based on what I'm going to use the potatoes for. Costco has this crazy delicious mesquite rub, for example, that really lends a nice smoky flavor to the potatoes. Almost like BBQ. I use that when I'm pairing it with a BBQ seitan sandwich, for example.

On taco nights or for breakfast burritos, I use taco seasoning. This one is vegan, but be careful, some of them aren't. They might have meat flavoring, butter flavoring or whey in them. Sometimes I combine both the mesquite and the taco seasoning.

Other times I use just garlic and onion powder and maybe parsley, Italian herbs or herbes de provence. Then I add a little dill and Earth Balance at the end, then swirl the potatoes with some Tofutti sour cream or a spoon of Vegenaise for some "Ranch" potatoes. They're pretty versatile and I find that I'd rather have these potatoes than fake meats. They stand in very well for me in that way. If I have to choose between say, seitan or tofu tacos and bean and potato tacos, I'd pick the bean and potato every time.


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