If someone asked me to think of my favorite comfort food, these would be the first thing that would come to mind. They are a delicious side dish for meatloaf, barbecued chicken or grilled steaks!
One of the things I love about these Loaded Twice-Baked Potatoes is that they can be made ahead of time. So they’re perfect for a party or get-together (or just your regular family meal.) They are really simple to do. I bake the potatoes in my crock-pot overnight and in the morning, I make these and stick them back in the fridge until I’m ready to bake them. (You could also bake your potatoes the traditional way in the oven too.)
This recipe makes 4 large potatoes. You can double or triple it as necessary. I like to make a few extras and keep them in the freezer. My husband even likes them for breakfast!
Start by washing and scrubbing 4 large russet potatoes. Wrap each potato individually in foil and place them in the crock pot. Cook on the low setting for 6 hours. When the potatoes are done, remove them from the crock-pot and allow them to cool slightly.
The easiest way I have found to scoop out the inside of the potato is to use a Melon Baller. Start by slicing off the top of the potato. Use the Melon Baller to scoop out the insides, leaving a shell that is about ¼” thick. This will keep the potato from breaking when you fill it.
Put the contents of the inside of the potatoes into a bowl. Mash the potatoes, butter, salt and pepper with a fork. I prefer do this with a fork, because I like a chunky texture. (If you would rather the filling is creamier, you can use an electric mixer when adding the butter, milk and salt & pepper.) After mashing with a fork, use a spoon to stir in the milk and rest of the ingredients.
1 T. butter
1/2 t. salt (more or less, depending on your taste)
Dash of pepper to taste
4 strips of cooked and crumbled bacon
¾ c. grated cheddar cheese
2 green onion tops
2 T. milk
Divide the filling into 4 equal portions.
Spoon the filling into the potato shells. The filling will be heaping up over the top of the potato. Cover with a piece of aluminum foil that has been sprayed with non-stick spray and bake at 375° for 20 minutes. Remove foil and top with more grated cheese and bake uncovered an additional 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly!
Save any leftovers in an airtight container or freezer bags and freeze for up to 3 months. To use the potatoes that have been frozen, allow the potatoes to thaw in the refrigerator overnight & bring them to room temperature before baking. Then bake as usual.