Why Yukon Gold Potatoes Are Some Of The Best To Roast

Roasted potatoes are one of the most satisfying classic dishes you can make, and when it comes to picking the best potato for your oven, you have to reach for Yukon Golds. French fries may be showy stars of the potato world, and mashed potatoes are a comfort food go-to, but when it comes to a preparation that gives you the best of what potatoes can be, roasted potatoes can't be beaten. You get the crispy, browned exterior, and that soft, creamy interior in one bite — that's their magic. So when you're picking out your favorite type of potato, you need to get one that can do both well. That's why Yukon Gold's are the choice — they sit in the happy middle ground of potato varieties and produce the most balanced roasted potatoes that give you the best of both worlds.

Potatoes generally fall into the categories of waxy vs. starchy, with waxy potatoes being harder and smoother, like red potatoes, and starchy potatoes being softer, like russets. Each has its advantages for roasting. Starchy potatoes get nice and crisp, while waxy potatoes get a better brown color. They also have some clear disadvantages. Waxy potatoes don't get that contrast between the interior and exterior that marks the best roasted potatoes, and starchy potatoes can get too fluffy and mealy instead of soft and creamy. Yukon Golds, however, are more all-purpose, and have enough starch to get crisp while still staying soft on the inside.

Yukon Golds are an all-purpose hybrid potato perfect for roasting

Starchy and waxy are not absolute qualities in the potato world, and there is a whole range of options on the scale. Yukon Golds were created as a hybrid of richly flavored but waxy yellow potatoes, and more balanced white potatoes. The buttery taste means even the interior of Yukon Golds will be flavorful when roasting, and Yukons also inherited more sugar from the waxy side of the family, helping them brown. But waxy potatoes also normally have a higher moisture content than starchy ones, inhibiting crispiness. By maintaining the flavor and texture of yellow potatoes, but removing a little moisture and adding a little starch from the white, Yukon Gold potatoes are quite literally genetically engineered to be perfect for roasting.

Yukon golds also have a few other qualities unrelated to the starchy vs. waxy issue that make them great roasters. They are small and relatively uniform in size, which means you can cube them up nicely. Make sure you get some tasty skin on most pieces — that skin is very thin for potatoes, which helps the potatoes cook quickly and evenly. Even with nothing but a little salt, pepper, and oil, roasted Yukon Golds will turn out tender with a deep potato flavor and show you exactly why they should be your number one choice every time.