Want to change up boring baked potatoes? Hasselback potatoes are the way to do it! Oh my goodness! They were so much fun to make and my family devoured them. They can be topped in countless ways but since it’s St. Patrick’s Day, I decided to add pesto for a delicious “green” touch. My Cheesy Pesto Hasselback Potatoes are officially on my “family favorites” rotation and I’ll be making them year round.
What is a Hasselback Potato?
According to Wikipedia, Hasselback potatoes were created in 1953 by a chef in Stockholm, Sweden who worked in a restaurant called Hasselbacken. They are similar to a baked potato and Yukon Golds work best. They are cut in thin fan-like slices but not all the way through the potato. I love my cheesy pesto version but am exited to try other versions like cheddar bacon. Yum!
How to Make Homemade Pesto
Let’s start with the homemade pesto. Yes homemade! Could you use a jar of store bought? Sure! However, that’s not fun is it? Homemade pesto is simple to make and cheaper to make yourself.
When my kids saw me making this, they were surprised to see that there were nuts in it. They had no idea! You can use toasted pine nuts as well but walnuts are less expensive and I love the flavor that they add.
Add everything to a food processor and pulse until smooth. Add more olive oil if needed. So easy to make!
If you have leftover pesto, it freezes well. I like to add it to an ice cube tray and freeze in small portions. I’m telling you, it’s so much more economical to make your own.
Next Steps for Cheesy Pesto Hasselback Potatoes
Ok, this is where the fun begins! I loved slicing these potatoes. I know that sounds silly but this dish really was enjoyable to make.
Wash potatoes, cut off any bad parts, and pat dry. Lay on a cutting board in between two wooden spoons.
The wooden spoon handles prevent you from slicing all the way through the potato. Smart huh? (No I didn’t think of that!)
Place them in a baking dish or cast iron pan, brush with melted butter, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake uncovered for 40 minutes.
And there you have it! My Cheesy Pesto Hasselback Potatoes turned out even better than I expected. The inside of the potatoes were creamy and buttery. The pesto seeped down into the crevices and the outside was crispy and oozing with cheese. Hasselback potatoes make potatoes exciting again! They are easy but very impressive looking. You have to try them! They would be perfect anytime but definitely consider them for your Easter dinner coming up. We had them with steak and asparagus but honestly I think they’d go with chicken, ham, shrimp, fish, or roast too.
Sponsored post for Lee’s Marketplace. Items on sale the week of March 16-22: garlic, Parmesan, mozzarella, olive oil, butter. Also on sale: Family Pack Petite Sirloin Steak and Asparagus.
Cheesy Pesto Hasselback Potatoes
- 6 large Yukon Gold potatoes, cleaned and patted dry
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 1/8 cup olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For the Pesto
- 2 cups fresh basil
- 1/2 cup walnuts or toasted pine nuts
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Place one potato on a cutting board then place a wooden spoon on either side as a guide. Using a sharp knife, cut thin 1/8 inch slices down the potato, stopping at the wooden spoon. Leave about 1/2 an inch on ends unsliced. Place sliced potatoes in a baking dish or cast iron skillet.
- Brush potatoes with melted butter. Drizzle with olive oil then sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Bake uncovered for 40 minutes.
- Make the pesto by adding basil and walnuts to a food processor. Pulse until combined then add garlic, Parmesan, salt, and lemon juice. Pulse until combined well then drizzle in olive oil while processor is running. Continue processing until mixture is smooth. Add more olive oil if needed to reach desired consistency. Taste and add more salt if needed. Pour into a container and set aside.
- After 40 minutes of baking, remove potatoes from oven and spoon a couple tablespoons of pesto over each one. Top each potato with mozzarella. Place back in oven and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly.