Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, these waffle iron hash browns contain one ingredient: potatoes!
For years, my daughter’s favorite after-school snack was Ore-Ida hash brown potato patties. They were made of shredded potatoes with no oil added, and it was a tight squeeze, but two of them fit in our little Foreman grill (they often came out fused together in one mega-patty). They were a healthy treat for a growing girl with a large appetite, one that she learned to make herself, with a little supervision. But then there came a day when our local grocery stores stopped carrying them, and eventually, I learned, the company stopped making them completely.
I hadn’t thought about them in years until I started seeing photos of potatoes cooked on waffle irons in the McDougall Friends group on Facebook. Most of these were whole, pre-cooked potatoes, smashed and browned between the plates of a waffle iron. So I decided to see if I could make shredded hash brown patties using the waffle iron. I did a Google search, of course, but every one of the top search results for “waffle iron hash browns” used oil. I knew from our Ore-Ida experience that they didn’t need oil in order to get crispy on the outside while tender on the inside, so I decided to give a fat-free version a try. And they were great!
Since this is a one-ingredient recipe that requires few words to explain, I thought I’d give it to you in pictures:
I started with 4 small red potatoes, weighing about 5 ounces total, which I washed well and dried. I began heating my George Foreman Next Grilleration on high. This large Foreman grill has removable plates so that you can switch between a grill set-up and a waffle iron. I used the waffle iron plates and wiped them a few drops of oil on a paper towel (most of the oil stayed on the paper towel). Any waffle iron should do, and if you know for sure that yours won’t stick, you can skip the oiling. I found out the hard way that oiling is necessary for mine.
While the waffle iron was heating, I shredded the potatoes in my food processor. It took 5 seconds.
I piled the potatoes in two circles on the Foreman’s large waffle iron grill. If you are using a regular waffle iron, just spread them evenly over the whole surface. Close the waffle iron. If yours has a temperature control, turn down the heat to between medium and high. If there’s no temp control, don’t worry about it. Set your timer for 15 minutes.
Open the waffle iron slowly, checking to see that the potatoes aren’t sticking to the top. If they aren’t quite brown enough, close the iron and give it a few more minutes. Remove from the grill and serve with your choice of condiments.
After I made the first batch, my daughter came in for a sample and pronounced them a winner. Then she quickly made–and devoured–a couple more.
Then I tried to get fancy and made a batch with red pepper and red onion–that’s them you see on the grill in the photo above. Unfortunately, that batch was not a success. It took so long to cook on the inside that it burned on the outside; and then to make matters worse, it stuck to the waffle iron so badly that it had to be soaked for an hour to get all the pieces off (I hadn’t oiled the grill) . If I ever try that again, I will blot the vegetables with a kitchen towel to absorb the excess moisture.
This spud’s for you!
Please pin and share.
NadegeAugust 18, 2014 at 10:02 pm
Brilliant idea. Thank you!
moonwatcherAugust 18, 2014 at 11:37 pm
Susan, theses are just the prettiest hash browns I’ve ever seen! I love the imprint of the waffle iron, and they sound delicious. Simple pleasures are the best. Makes me wish I still had a waffle iron! I usually just make mine in a non-stick pan with the cover on, but they don’t look nearly as lovely as these. And thanks for the heads up about the McDougall Friends on facebook. That looks like a fun group to join.
ps: loved “this spud’s for you”!
Millie l Add A LittleAugust 19, 2014 at 12:02 am
These look crispy and super tasty!!
ElisabethAugust 19, 2014 at 12:13 am
Yum, these look great! I do the same thing with the bags of shredded hashbrowns from the grocery store. They are just potatoes and I think some sort of starch to keep them from sticking together in the bag. I don’t use any oil, but my waffle iron is nonstick. My husband and I each have a potato waffle for breakfast everyday. I want to try ones with veggies in them now.
matmedmeraAugust 19, 2014 at 12:29 am
Brilliant idea! I think my children would like it too!
LindaVAugust 19, 2014 at 3:52 am
Thank you for this recipe! It looks soooooo good, I can’t wait to try it!
StephanieAugust 19, 2014 at 7:29 am
Oh, yum! What a brilliant idea, Susan.
Looks like sweet potato latkes are back on the menu this year.
TeresaAugust 19, 2014 at 7:47 am
So, just to be clear – you didn’t have to blanch the potatoes before you cooked them?! I have always wanted to shred and freeze potatoes to be able to use for hash browns, and in that process everything I’ve read says you need to blanch them first before you freeze them. It was just too much work, so I gave up on the idea. But, if I could make these without having to blanch, that would be so great!
Susan VoisinAugust 19, 2014 at 8:36 am
I didn’t blanch them, but then, I was cooking them right away, not freezing them. The blanching thing has to do with stopping the enzyme action so they don’t go bad while frozen. Since I was cooking them immediately, that wasn’t an issue. If you wanted to freeze them, you could probably cook them first, freeze them, and then reheat them in an oven later. I can’t promise they would still be crispy, though.
KristyAugust 19, 2014 at 1:30 pm
Yum! I will definitely be making these soon! I have had trouble cooking hashbrowns in a pan with no oil. They always burn on the outside and not quite cooked in the middle. Maybe it will work better on the waffle iron! : )
WernerAugust 19, 2014 at 2:20 pm
“…so I decided to give a fat-free version a try. And they were great!” YES these are great! Gave up years ago on crunchy potato attempts in all forms after going oil free. But, ran right to the kitchen and gave these a try – quick, easy, crispy – fabulous. Used gold potatoes shredded in food processor, then super brief spray of Spectrum high-heat canola oil with first hash batch in the waffle iron, 8 minutes on med-high. Perfection, will be a regular brunch staple.Thank you for your genius, always laced with simplicity.
nagila oliveiraAugust 19, 2014 at 7:41 pm
What blade you use to make the potatoes look this way, can u post a picture. I’m new with the food processor. Tank you
DawnAugust 22, 2014 at 11:17 am
Sharon HerbitterAugust 22, 2014 at 12:03 pm
FYI — Ore-Ida DOES make oil-free hashbrown patties: https://www.oreida.com/Products/S/Shredded-Hash-Brown-Patties#.U_d3aPldWSo
Anne McGuiganAugust 23, 2014 at 3:55 am
These looks very tasty and crispy. I like the notes you include about what worked for you and what didn’t. I have a non stick waffle iron, so I think that I will give these a whirl.
Many thanks, Anne
fern reedAugust 23, 2014 at 9:27 pm
Interesting!! Thank you!!! I am going to try it one day next week!!
KyraAugust 24, 2014 at 1:07 am
Yum! One of our favourite weekend breakfasts has been hash browns, but I try not to buy them anymore as they are quite oily (and expensive!). I love how you made these on a waffle iron, they look awesome <3
TracyAugust 26, 2014 at 12:31 pm
I made these on a non stick (Breville) Panini press with no oil and they came out great and clean up was a breeze, just an fyi 🙂
NicoleAugust 27, 2014 at 12:35 pm
These are delicious! Thanks for sharing. For my second attempt I added a bit of chickpea flour to see if it would hold together better. Made it crispier! Next time I’ll add some Indian spices too for waffle iron sort of pakora 😀
Nancy A.August 28, 2014 at 9:37 am
This recipe hits it out of the park! I have made them several times now since you posted this. My waffle iron hasn’t seen this much of a work out in years! What a great way to make hash browns! Thanks!
CherylAugust 28, 2014 at 7:31 pm
I read about these, so tonight I wanted something quick and stopped at the store for a bag of shredded potatoes and a bag of steamable veggies… worked like a charm and we really enjoyed them! We’ll be doing this often 🙂
katiejayneAugust 30, 2014 at 5:39 pm
Thank you for posting this! I made these this morning and they are so good. I made one with just potatoes and one with potatoes and shredded zucchini. I shredded the zucchini, salted it and put it in a colander to get some of the liquid out then squeezed it before mixing it with the potatoes.
CindySeptember 2, 2014 at 6:52 pm
I just made these this weekend and they worked great-everyone enjoyed! With my waffle irons (yes, plural) they were perfectly cooked and crisped by 8 minutes (thanks for the comment below!). What a wonderful dish to point out that being vegan can SAVE you money. I linked your recipe to my site and will recommend it to my friends. Thanks for sharing! http://www.veganaugusta.com/bread-sides/
Randi (laughfrodisiac)September 5, 2014 at 2:05 pm
Hah I love it! It’s so adorable! Waffle irons really are so versatile. Between this and the falafel waffle that was going around, it’s like every meal can be made in an iron.
JacSeptember 10, 2014 at 2:30 pm
OMG. Susan, I think you just changed my life. These look delicious. Thank you so much for sharing.
Mack the SporkSeptember 23, 2014 at 9:39 am
I just made these last night with scrambled tofu for a breakfast dinner! I think I turned my waffle iron down too far because they took a lot longer; next time I’ll leave it on high or between medium & high.
But they turned out GREAT and so easy! I have got to use my George Foreman more. Thanks for the idea!
AudreySeptember 26, 2014 at 1:38 pm
When making hash browns they were suppose to be soaked first after shredding them?
Susan VoisinSeptember 26, 2014 at 2:21 pm
No soaking. In fact, you might want to dry off any of the natural moisture that forms when they’re shredded to help them cook faster.
ShawnaSeptember 28, 2014 at 5:21 pm
omg, this is a *genius* idea! I love hashbrowns but hate how greasy they are – can’t wait to try this out!
RebeccaOctober 19, 2014 at 3:58 pm
Susan, I tried this for the first time today, and it was an overwhelming success! So fast, so easy, so tasty and crispy. Thank you so much for sharing.
DanOctober 29, 2014 at 4:43 pm
So, not oil-free then, since you are oiling the waffle iron.
Susan VoisinOctober 29, 2014 at 5:53 pm
[sigh] Yes, I oiled the waffle iron because I wanted to actually be able to eat what I had cooked. As I said in the post, if you know for sure that your waffle iron won’t stick, you can skip the TWO DROPS of oil it takes to oil the iron.
The Vegan JunctionFebruary 27, 2015 at 2:18 pm
A one ingredient, waffle-hashbrowns recipe, I like it! 😉
JoyceJuly 6, 2015 at 10:42 am
I’ve made these several times and they never fail. Thank you for sharin!
SunniAugust 25, 2015 at 10:02 pm
Cool idea to use a waffle iron. Tested it out today and it worked! It did stick a bit much though, even with some coconut oil smudged over the waffle iron with a napkin. Bummer on that, but the hash browns were yummy!
StacySeptember 20, 2015 at 2:30 pm
Thank you so much for this awesome recipe. I don’t have a waffle maker but do have a pizzelle baker and it worked great. They were super thin and crispy and worked perfectly as the bread for my vegan BLT breakfast sandwiches.
AbiDecember 17, 2015 at 8:54 am
Hi there! Thank you for this! I was wondering if I could use the frozen shredded potatoes for this? Would I have to thaw them first? Your thoughts would be much appreciated.
Susan VoisinDecember 17, 2015 at 9:17 am
I think that frozen potatoes actually work better than fresh. No need to thaw them first.
AbiDecember 17, 2015 at 9:18 am
Excellent!!! Thank you so much for your super quick reply. 🙂
plasterer bristolMay 31, 2016 at 11:35 am
Sounds delcious. great recipe. Thanks for sharing.
DeniseJuly 20, 2016 at 7:13 pm
Chef AJ steams those little potatoes until done, then places them in the waffle iron and squashes the lid down. The potato skin keeps them from sticking. 10 mins and they are nicely browned. I tried this and it was a big success. Just wish I could make them faster!!
Hilma JonesDecember 25, 2016 at 2:27 pm
This is really really good! It’s so simple, yet simply delicious!
Sabina CharlesApril 3, 2017 at 10:40 am
Sounds really yummy! Im a long time vegan and now going to make Dr Mcdougalls plan my new goal to WFPB and hopefully all organic too. This sounds like it will fit the bill! Thank you
JaniceMay 13, 2018 at 9:04 am
Going to make this this morning. Sure it will work based on our instructions and al the comments. Then on the second batch, will add some squeezed and dry chopped frozen spinach, to the potatoes, with a poached egg for a Florentine-styled breakfast.
SMMay 23, 2018 at 9:45 am
I loved this! I made it for breakfast, and topped it with mashed avocado. Yum! And the next time I made it, I used the hash browns as the “bread” for my veggie burger.