This baked potato soup is smooth, creamy, filling and loaded with flavour!
Plus, I’m going to share with you a nifty little trick to using up the baked potato skins. Clue – you don’t need a spoon to eat this soup! Follow me…
Crispy Potato Skins
A lot of potato soup recipes simmer the potato in a pot and then blend it into a soup. However, I’m here to show you that baking potatoes is a much superior method. By baking the potatoes you end up with super fluffy potato AND you get the bonus of ultra crispy, seasoned potato skins, which just happen to be the best soup dunkers in the world.
Let me be honest with you – when I was younger, potato skins really freaked me out. The thought of eating them seemed… Odd? Yes, I had my fussy tendencies as a child 😅. But now, genuinely, the skin of a baked potato is my favourite part.
What kind of potatoes to use?
You’ll want to use starchy baking potatoes like Russets (US) or Maris Pipers (UK). I find the floury texture blends much easier into a soup, as opposed to waxier varieties of potato.
Using crispy potato skins for soup
Once you’ve baked your spuds, you’ll want to quarter them and scoop out the potato. From there, oil them up and roast the heck out of them until they’re super crispy. You can then use the skins to scoop the soup 😋
Process shots: coat potatoes in oil, salt and pepper (photo 1), bake (photo 2), add to chopping board (photo 3), quarter and scoop out potato (photo 4), add to baking tray with more oil, salt and pepper (photo 5), roast until crisp (photo 6).
Baked Potato Soup
When it comes to making the soup, we’re going to start with bacon, like most good things in life do. After you’ve fried the bacon you can then use the leftover fat to fry celery, onion and garlic. These will add a body of flavour to the soup.
A lot of potato soup recipes use flour to thicken the soup, but I really don’t think it’s needed. Just reduce the amount of liquid and allow the potato itself to thicken the soup. I also like to make the soup fairly thick in the first instance. Reason being it’s much easier to melt the cheese into a thick soup than it is a thin, watery soup. You can then thin out the soup more as needed.
Process shots: fry bacon then remove (photo 1), fry onion, celery, garlic (photo 2), add baked potato (photo 3), pour in milk and chicken stock (photo 4), blitz until smooth then add cream and seasoning (photo 5), stir in cheese (photo 6).
Baked Potato Soup FAQ
Can I prep this ahead of time?
You could make the whole thing and tightly store in the fridge until needed. You can also prepare most of it ahead of time by baking the potatoes. Just scoop out the potato, allow it to cool and tightly store it in the fridge until needed. You can even make the skins, then reheat them in the air fryer or at a low temp in the oven until crisp again.
Do I have to bake the potatoes?
Strictly speaking, you could microwave the potatoes, but they won’t have the fluffy centre. I have actually made this soup with leftover mashed potato (800g/1.8lb) and it comes out great. You just lose out on the potato skin dunkers that’s all.
Do I have to blitz the soup until smooth?
If you’d prefer to have more texture, you can remove some of the potato and dice it up, then stir through at the end so you’ve got some potato chunks through the soup.
Serving Loaded Potato Soup
When it comes to serving up, this is where you can go wild and create that ‘loaded’ soup you’re looking for. My favourite toppings are:
- Sour Cream
Alrighty, let’s tuck into the full recipe for this loaded baked potato soup shall we?!
How to make Loaded Baked Potato Soup (Full Recipe & Video)
Loaded Baked Potato Soup
- Large Baking Tray (for baking potatoes)
- Large Pot & Wooden Spoon (for soup)
- Hand/Stick Blender (for blending soup)
- Ladel (for serving)
- Sharp Knife & Chopping Board
- 3.3lb / 1.5kg Baking Potatoes (Russets or Maris Pipers)
- 2 1/2 cups / 625ml good quality Chicken Stock
- 1 cup / 250ml Heavy/Double Cream, preferably at room temp
- 1/2-1 cup / 125-250ml Whole Milk, preferably at room temp (see notes)
- 1 cup / 100g Cheddar, plus more to serve (see notes)
- 6 slices of Streaky Bacon
- 2 ribs of Celery, finely diced
- 1 medium Onion, finely diced
- 1 large clove of Garlic, finely diced
- Sour Cream, to serve
- finely diced Fresh Chives, to serve
- Salt & Pepper, to taste
- Olive Oil, as needed
- Add the potatoes to a large baking tray and stab each one a few times with a fork. Coat in a drizzle of oil and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Bake in the oven at 200C/390F for 1 hour, or until deep golden, crispy and soft right through the centre (timings will depend on the size of potatoes, so just be vigilant).
- With about 20mins to go, add the bacon to a large pot over low-medium heat and fry until crispy with most of the fat rendered down. Remove bacon and dice just before needed, leaving the excess fat in the pot. Raise heat slightly to medium and add in celery, onion and garlic. Gently sweat it all down until soft and just starting to pick up colour, adding a dash more oil if needed.
- Once the potatoes are cooked and are cool enough to handle, slice each one into 4 wedges (consider 6 if the potato is very large), then scoop the potato out of each wedge and place it into a bowl to one side. Place the leftover skins back on the baking tray and coat in a drizzle of olive oil and a good pinch of salt & pepper. Place back in the oven at the highest temp it goes for around 5mins, or until visibly crispy.
- Add the potato to the pot and pour in all of the chicken stock and 1/2 cup milk (save the rest). Use your wooden spoon to break up the potato, then use a hand blender to blitz everything until smooth. Don’t over blend otherwise consistency can turn gluey. Stir in the cream and bring to a gentle simmer, then season with 1/2 tsp salt & 1/4 tsp black pepper (or to taste). Turn off heat and stir in 1 cup cheddar, then use the extra milk to thin out the soup to your liking.
- Serve individual portions with cheddar, bacon, a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkling of chives. Enjoy!
b) Consistency – I like to keep the soup fairly thick in the first instance, and then adjust later with the rest of the milk (much easier to thin out a soup than to thicken it). I also like to keep it thick in the beginning because the cheese melts easier.
c) Cheese – I like using a nice sharp/mature cheddar, just to add a punch of flavour. I stir in 1 cup at the end just to add some flavour, but you could add in more if you wanted, just remember there’s more going on top too!
d) Hand Blender – As you blend the soup I recommend doing it in short bursts. Also don’t blitz the soup into oblivion, a few tiny lumps and bumps are fine. If you over-blend the soup the starch from the potatoes can sometimes give the soup a gluey texture.
e) Calories/Serving – This soup will give 5 fairly big portions or 6 small portions. Calories assuming 1/2 cup extra cheddar 5 tbsp sour cream to serve and 2 tbsp olive oil for the potatoes. Calories based on 5 servings.
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