Extra Crispy Garlic Smashed Potatoes Recipe (Air fryer or oven)

Extra crispy smashed potatoes recipe with wild garlic pesto – a favorite healthy side meal. Perfectly easy and fresh – these extra crispy smashed potatoes recipe can be made in an air fryer or oven.

Extra Crispy Garlic Smashed Potatoes Recipe

Crispy smashed potatoes with herbs and garlic, topped with some wild garlic pesto (see pesto recipe here) – these potatoes are a dream light (spring) side. Or even main accompanied by a good salad or soup. Can be enjoyed also with roasts and fish if one prefers. 


1) Choose (fresh) small potatoes (we call them golden baby potatoes – the first potatoes that come out in spring) that are similar in size. That ensures cooking time would be similar for all potatoes. Also skin of baby potatoes is much more thin than regular potatoes this making it extra crisp and delicious at the end & fluffy on the inside. 

These crispy smashed potatoes however can be made with all types of potatoes (even Russet Potatoes) – simply choose the smaller ones, similar in size.

Tip: If you buy potatoes in bulk and cannot choose by size at the store (or your own garden) then hand pick the ones that are similarly sized and leave the rest for another type of meal.

2) Coat with oil and herbs mix to enrich flavor and create a crisp, tasty coating (see below for variations). 

3) Cook on ventilation – in the oven or in the air fryer. Ensuring hot air circulation on all sizes gives these smashed potatoes that extra crispness we all love.  

4) Use dry, powder-like herbs (like garlic powder, paprika, black pepper,  etc.) – as herbs get to burn a bit when baking potatoes. If you do not like the taste of burned herbs on top, but still want to add extra flavor make sure to use powdered – like herbs instead of fresh. Once boiled, smash potatoes unevenly and coat well with oil – herb mixture. That aids the crispness of potatoes even better.  

Extra Crispy smashed potatoes recipe with garlic herb pesto


These crispy smashed potatoes can also be made in the air fryer instead of oven.

  1. Boil small golden baby potatoes one stove top as usual
  2. Let cool and crush with a fork (on a wide surface – like cookie sheet or parchment paper)
  3. Then, coat generously with oil and herbs mix to add extra flavor
  4. Place potatoes in the air fryer basket- one or two layers will be best. If you layer multiple layers stir once or twice during the cooking process to ensure even crispiness on all sides.
  5. Cook for 10-20 minutes on 200 C/ 400 F in the air fryer.

Like anything cooked in the air fryer, it’s recommended to check on the potatoes within 5-10 minutes, especially if you cook them like that for the first time. That way, you would not burn them out.


The beauty of these crispy smashed potatoes is that they are highly customize-able depending on your taste. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Use duck fat for coating smashed potatoes instead of butter / vegetable oil. In fact many European families preserve duck fat for cooking purposes in the fridge.
  • make vegan crispy smashed potatoes by using vegetable oil (like canola, sunflower oil) or
  • add cheese topping – like crumbled feta cheese or Parmesan cheese
  • top with some fresh lemon juice to get a deeper taste
  • chop some fresh sage and spring/red onions and add as topping
  • make yogurt sauce – in a separate bowl add plain Greek yogurt, salt, fresh dill and a tbsp olive oil. Top smashed potatoes with the yogurt sauce before consumption.
Perfectly crispy smashed potatoes with garlic pesto, paprika, lemon or cheese - how to make the best smashed potatoes with yogurt sauce





Extra Crispy smashed potatoes recipe with garlic herb pesto

Crispy Smashed Potatoes with herbs and wild garlic pesto

The European Dish
Fresh smashed (crushed) potatoes, packed with herbs and garlic. Baked to the crispiest perfection. Topped with wild garlic pesto (optional). Vegan, gluten free and perfect for air fryer too.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, European
Servings 4 people


  • 14 lbs / 700 g small fresh baby potatoes
  • pinch of salt for boiling optional
  • 3-4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • salt to taste, optional
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Boiling water


  • Wash potatoes under cold water. Use kitchen brush if needed to remove dirt from skin.
  • Then bring water to a boil ( add salt) and boil potatoes until soft ( approx. 20-30min) – check with fork and do not worry if they crush while cooking. Alternatively steam potatoes.
  • Drain potatoes and let cool slightly on the side. In the meantime in a small bowl mix olive oil, paprika, garlic powder and black pepper.
  • Then place potatoes onto cooking tray ( non-stick or covered with baking paper) and crush potatoes with fork or potato masher.
  • Then using kitchen brush coat each potato on both sides with the herb-oil mixture.
  • Place in the oven / air fryer on ventilation for about 15-20 min or until desired crispness is reached


For tips and tricks please head over recipe and photos.
Keyword baby potatoes, crispy smashed potatoes
Did you make this recipe?Mention @theeuropeandish on Instagram or tag us so we can see what you’ve made #theeuropeandish!

This post may contain affiliate links. See full disclosure here.

5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating