Not in the mood to stand over a pan of hot oil babysitting latkes? Make this oven-fried version where the latkes basically fry themselves in the oven and come out almost exactly like pan-fried latkes. Plus, a simple tip for easy cleanup.
Can it really be so? Latkes without the frying? Well, these are extremely, extremely close. They're definitively crispy-edged and soft in the middle, like any self-respecting latke should be. I'd say they're crispy in a slightly different way than are pan-fried latkes. And they're a lot less patchke (though still a bit of a patchke, what with the shredding of the potatoes and the wringing out; but, worth it).
This recipe will make 10 large or 15 smaller latkes, and is easily multiplied depending on how many latkes you need (note: the operative term here is "need"). You'll need one sheet pan for the base recipe, two for a double recipe, and so on.
The master potato latkes recipe
Oven-fried latkes, in terms of ingredients, are identical to my master recipe for Classic Potato Latkes: just potatoes—two large Russets (Idaho type) or four medium yellow potatoes, your choice; we like them both ways—plus an onion, eggs, a little flour and optional potato starch, plus salt and pepper. As with that recipe, the potatoes and onion are grated either in a food processor with the standard shredding disc (the larger holes in the photo at top left—or you can do it on a box grater by hand). They're then wrung out in a kitchen towel—twice. (I know, I know, this seems like just too much, but the crispiness is worth it, and you can just rinse off the towels and throw them in the laundry and that's that.) See the post linked above for more step-by-step photos of the process.
The recipe for oven-fried latkes only differs in the method of cooking the latkes once you've got the batter made. Here, we're going to be roasting the latkes in the oven in a thin layer of olive oil on a sheet pan. You shape them all at once and put them all in the oven at once.
Prepping a sheet pan for oven-fried latkes
For easier cleanup, I recommend lining your sheet pan (you'll need just one for this recipe, unless you're making a double or triple batch) with aluminum foil all the way around the rims, and then topping the foil with parchment paper. This way you can ball up the extra oil in the aluminum foil and discard. My sheet is usually dry as a bone after I take the (cooled) foil off.
How much olive oil you drizzle over the sheet is up to you; the latkes will taste more like fried latkes the more generous you are, but you can also made these with a minimum amount of oil (I actually prefer them that way, but I'm in the minority in this house). I definitely suggest sticking to olive oil here, because the flavor is great, plus symbolism.
Oven-frying the latkes
The latkes go into the oven at 375F / 190C and bake for 25-30 minutes on the first side, and another 20 after flipping. Flipping the latkes should be easy, because the parchment paper and oil mean they don't stick. The photo to the left above shows what the latkes look like after 25 minutes in the oven, with browned bottoms; the photo to the right above the latkes right after flipping, before they go back into the oven.
Looking for more Chanukah treats?
- Beet Latkes with Fresh Thyme (parve)
- Carrot Latkes (parve)
- Bakery-Style Sufganiyot (dairy)
- Peanut Butter Gelt Blossom Cookies (parve)
Oven-Fried Latkes (parve)
- Food processor with coarse grating disc
- 2 absorbent kitchen towels you don't mind getting dirty
- 2 Russet potatoes - or 4 medium yellow potatoes
- 1 small onion
- 2 eggs - beaten with a fork
- 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour - 25 g
- 1 Tbsp potato starch - omit it if you don't have
- 2 tsp salt
- pinch white or black pepper
- ⅓ cup olive oil, for frying - or more, to cover the entire bottom of your frying pan
- sour cream - optional
- applesauce - optional
- Preheat oven to 375°F / 190°C.
Grate and wring out the potatoes and onions:
- Peel the onion and process using the coarse grating disc of your food processor.
- Peel your potatoes and cut them as needed for your food processor's feed tube. (Mine has a wide option, so I only have to cut my Russets in half.) Process the potatoes using the same coarse grating disc. If your food processor is large enough, you need not take the onion out before grating the potatoes.
- Dump the grated potatoes and onions out onto the first kitchen towel. Gather up the four corners of the towel and, working over the sink, wring out as firmly as you can.
- When the towel is saturated, transfer the potatoes and onions to the second towel and wring out again, until no more water drains. Place the potato-onion misture into a mixing bowl. (At this point, I usually rinse off the towels under running water in the sink and put them in the washing machine.)
Make the latke batter:
- To the mixing bowl, add the beaten eggs, flour, potato starch (if using), salt, and pepper.
- With your hands, knead the ingredients together thoroughly.
Oven-fry the latkes:
- Line two sheet pans with aluminum foil, generously enough to go over the rims. Add a sheet of parchment paper to the bottom of the pan. On top of this, drizzle a thin layer of olive oil.
- Shape the latke batter into smaller or larger patties and place on the prepared baking sheets.
- Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes, until golden and crisp on the bottom. Flip using a spatula and return to the oven to brown on the second side, about 20 minutes.