The Best Way To Peel A Potato If You Don't Have A Peeler

Imagine you have all the ingredients to make the perfect steak and creamy mashed potatoes for a much anticipated romantic getaway. The bottle of red wine is open. The steak is seasoned and ready for the heat. You are digging around in the drawer of a purportedly well-stocked kitchen, and you cannot find a potato peeler. You may think that your dreamy, silky potato dreams have been dashed, but there's actually an easy, fool-proof way to peel potatoes without a peeler.

All you have to do is boil the potatoes, which is what you were planning on doing anyway! This method does work best with small to medium-sized potatoes that can be cooked whole. Start by washing your potatoes well and removing any obvious eyes or damaged spots. Using a paring knife, make a shallow cut all the way around the equator of the potato. This is called scoring and will make it easier to remove the skin later on. If you are pressed for time, you can skip this step. The potato skin might not come off as easily, and you may need the assistance of a paring knife at that point. Put the whole potatoes in a pot, cover with cold salted water, and boil until fork tender. Transfer potatoes to a bowl of ice water until cool enough to handle. Then, hold the potato, and simply twist the skin. Amazingly, the skin will slide right off!

This method isn't just a hack to use in a pinch

Consider using this method of peeling potatoes even if you do have a peeler available. This method saves the entire step of peeling a mountain of potatoes, which is perfect for when you break out the best mashed potato recipes for big holiday meals.

Another benefit of boiling potatoes to peel them is in both the flavor and texture of the end product. The skin of the potato actually holds a ton of flavor. Allowing that potato to cook with skin contact transfers some of that flavor to the flesh of the potato even though you are removing the skin later on. Also, when you cut potatoes into small pieces, they are in danger of absorbing too much water and leaving a super bland final product. By cooking them whole, you are protecting your potatoes from getting waterlogged. This way, your mashed potatoes won't turn gluey.

This process would also be great for your weekly meal prep in dishes like home fries, potato salad, frittatas, or even Indian dishes like vada pav and aloo gobi. You get to spend less time peeling potatoes and more time eating potatoes.