Out of the blue last weekend, my husband announced he was in the mood for potato skins. I think it may be because we talked about having them on Super Bowl Sunday, but then changed our minds.

The potato skins I’ve made in the past have always been edible – it’s hard to go wrong with potatoes, cheese and bacon – but they always lacked the oomph the ones in restaurants are known for.

After poking around the web, I determined that baking the potatoes, then baking the skins again before filling them, was key to a crispy appetizer.

I must say these were exceptionally good – even restaurant quality. And the best part is I now have leftover potato flesh to turn into mashed potatoes later this week.

LOADED POTATO SKINS

5 small russet potatoes, baked

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1/2 teaspoon chopped parsley

1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

5 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

1/4 cup chopped green onions

1 1/4 cups shredded Cheddar cheese

Sour cream for serving

When potatoes are cool, cut them in half lengthwise. Using a small spoon, scoop out the flesh leaving a 1/4-inch shell (save the flesh for another use).

Combine butter, parsley, seasoned salt and garlic powder in a small bowl. Brush both the inside and outside of the potatoes with the butter mixture. Place potatoes cut side down in a baking dish. Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Turn potatoes over and bake an additional 5 minutes or until slightly browned and crisp.

Remove from oven and divide cheese and bacon evenly among potato shells. Return to oven for another 5 to 7 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from the oven, top with green onions and serve with sour cream.

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