Homemade Tater Tots

Lighter Tater Tots Recipe!

This week, I’ve made you feel something, sad or happy, not once, not twice, but three times.

All I’ll say is that I am-I am






in love with you.

Yep, you.

For all of the fire you’ve set to my heart, you deserve two things. Several moments of my silence being one.

Tater tots being the other. Golden and doughy and heavily salted.

Lighter Tater Tots Recipe!


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*We both know that never works out like I promise.

Lighter Tater Tots Recipe!

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Lighter Tater Tots Recipe!

Lighter Tater Tots Recipe!


Tater Tots

serves 5, as a side dish

3 medium potatoes, finely grated and dried well

1/4 cup all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt, plus more for serving

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 cup canola oil


Mix the potatoes with the flour, salt, and pepper. Form into 1” logs.

Heat oil in a large pot until it is so hot that dripping a drop of water on the surface immediately sizzles and spatters. Add tots and fry until all sides are golden brown.

Serve hot with extra salt and an endless supply of ketchup.


Nutrition info per serving (1/5th of entire recipe): Calories: 201.6, Fat: 11g, Carb: 24g, Fiber: 1.5g, Protein: 2.4g



72 thoughts on “Homemade Tater Tots

  1. Johnny

    Wow, first to comment, must be up extra special early. Your tater totted tater tots look so good I want some for breakfast!

    Love you for this journey! This is by far the best book I’ve ever gotten lost in! :)

  2. Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat

    Oh my goodness, these look so cute and perfect!! My mum and dad used to feed my sister and I tater tots when we were kids.. but not this kind. They were the frozen McCain kind which only tasted good because of the endless amounts of ketchup I put on them. (“Want some tater tots with that ketchup??”) But now, every time I see tater tots I think of the scenes in Napoleon Dynamite!!

  3. Elisa

    Oh man, the fiance is going to FLIP when he sees this recipe! Supex excited to try this one out… thank you!

  4. Kerry

    Delectable… and surprisingly easy to make. Maybe I will make these with the oven fries I’m attempting next week? A lot of starch…. but totally worth the splurge?

  5. Sarah

    Well we ADORE you…so the feeling is mutual! :)

    Those tots look amazing! I do love me some mini puffs of potato goodness but I always wonder what exactly comes in those big plastic bags in the freezer at the market. I mean besides the potato innards there HAS to be all sorts of yucky preservatives and other yuck stuff. SO…I am thrilled to have found this recipe on your blog. A new version of tots…au naturale!

  6. hollie

    Hey Napolean, give me your tots!! Haha… These look great. I’ve often wondered how to make them. My son says he hates potatoes, but ironically LOVES tator tots. Maybe we’ll have to make these together!

  7. Stacy

    I didn’t know Tots were that easy to make! We had fish and tots just this week – we’ll have to do it again but with yummier tots!

  8. Dana

    Well, if this is how you say thank you, I’m going to post more lovely things as we go on… :) Honestly, those 3 pieces were so well done, I actually went back and reread them after I posted. And homemade tater tots?! My kids love you too!

  9. Megly

    OMG yum!! I saw something like this on The Kitchn a while back, only made with (leftover) mashed potatoes…do you think that would work, too?? These look fantastic, my boyfriend would go berserk.

  10. Elena @ GagaForGrapefruit

    i’m glad you know how much we love you :) because we DO! (i may love you a litte TOO much!)(in the least creepy way possible)(i promise) but anyway, about the tots. i saw it on your twitter and couldn’t wait to see. and of course, you never disappoint. i’m currently trying to reach through my macbook to eat the tots. it isn’t working. looks like i know what i’ll be doing tonight… :)

  11. Sophiegoose

    I had tator tots for the first time in years a couple of weeks ago. It reminded me of my high school cafeteria. Wonderfully bad! Homemade ones would be special for a summer bbq get together.

  12. iscribbler

    I think you’re just spiffy! :)

    Love this! I didn’t know you could make them at home so easily – thought you needed a special press thingy. I’m just going to have to try it and freeze a bunch of them for later. :) Did you just grate them with a cheese grater? Or did you use a special tool? Cold or cooked?

  13. Bee

    Oh wow, these look PERFECT! They’re gorgeous little tots, and absolutely positively tot-shaped! Any secrets for getting perfect little potato-mallows like these?

  14. Rachel

    I love, love, love your site! I have made numerous recipes you’ve generously posted, and they are WONDERFUL! My family is nuts about the Petite Lasagnas. Keep going strong!

  15. Caitlin

    So…you know Pittsburgh is home to Heinz ketchup right? And what goes better with tots? You can fly to Texas, we can go to Pittsburgh, visit Jessica and eat cupcakes until they have to roll us back to the airport. Sound like a plan?

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  17. Jenn

    Just found you today – EmilyBites.com mentioned you, and I hopped over… love your story. Incredibly inspirational.. I love that you quit running – I run b/c I have to for work (military) so I’ve tried to turn it into a hobby that I enjoy and still struggle most of the time. Anyways – I’ll be stopping by on a regular time.. and trying a couple of your recipes tonight!! BTW – where are those pics of you and Leo?

  18. ami

    I made these today and they were so good. They were crispy and salty and way better than the kind you get in school cafeterias. If anyone is concerned about the amount of oil, it works perfectly. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  19. Carla peters

    wow these look amazing!!!! I haven’t made them yet but am wondering how they would work baked rather than fried anyone tried that yet?

  20. colette

    Cannot wait to try these! I have been searching for ages for an easy tatertot recipe. I’m quickly becoming obsessed with your blog!

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  22. ruth

    So i just made these but they turned out a bit gooey on the inside. Tips?? I didnt think they cooked too fast but maybe I’m wrong.

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  24. Linda Clark

    I had this different type of ice tray and made these for yrs. My kids loved them. Just use the same recipie and stuff them in a old ice tray. Back then the ice trays froze larger pieces of ice. It worked for me.And I could freeze them after workds.

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  27. Cara

    I made these tonight and it was all I could do not to eat every last one before putting them into my tater tot casserole. (It gave me a sweet little thrill to know that every last morsel was homemade.) A couple notes for people who like extra detailed recipes: 1) Be careful to keep the tots separate from each other in the pan so they won’t stick to each other. 2) Tongs work well for nudging and turning. 3) These cook up fast – only 1-2 minutes a side. Maybe even less depending on how dark and crisp you want them to be. 4) I thought the teaspoon of salt added to the mixture was sufficient, so I recommend tasting before adding additional salt post-frying. 5) I only had a small pan to work with, so I did these in two batches. I only used 1/4 cup of oil total for both batches, just took the first batch out and added the second. Thank you, thank you, for this simple, tasty recipe!

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  29. Jenna

    I really like the photos you posted for this, especially the second one with the diet Pepsi. I don’t really drink pop, but that photo makes me want to sit down, eat those tater tots, drink that diet Pepsi, and look out the window.

  30. reco5256

    thank u so much for this recipe. we love tater tots bu have always settled for the frozen kind (there was no other) and drowned them in catsup and mustard. but now we will enjoy the flavor of the TOT.
    :):) connie

  31. susie

    AMAZING!!! Seriously, who knew tator tots could be home made? I never knew. I know I know, silly me. Thank you so much! I can’t wait to use this recipe!!

  32. motherlovin3

    We made these tonight. We did not think the 1/4 cup of oil would be enough so we added more. Our oil was too hot. Some were really borwn, but they turned out good. Next time we will add cheese, bacon and chives.

  33. Teresa S.

    Made the mistake of grating my potato too fine and ended up with very chewy gelatinous tots. :( They weren’t horrible, but the texture would be greatly improved if I had gone with a courser grate. Live and learn!

  34. jesuslovesus

    Try it with 1/4 box of Velveeta. Cut into cubes. Melt in microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring after each. After it is sufficiently melted add 1 or 2 very finely diced jalapenos peppers. Leave the seeds in them if you can stand the heat. Also add one small jar of drained pimentos. Wear gloves when cutting peppers or grease hands with Crisco before handling the jalapeños. Yummmmmmm!!!

    1. Andie

      Thanks Megan! I’d say cook them first; let them cool completely; freeze them; then reheat them straight from their frozen state at 400 degrees F until they’re crispy–maybe about 15 minutes?


  35. lj

    I love tater tots and can’t wait to make these (tho I will be using GF flour).
    They look delish!
    I plan on cooking the tots in a rosemary infused oil and then serving them with a homemade ketchup (found the recipe on “pickyourown.org”)…I just can’t wait to taste these!!!!
    Thank you so much Andie for sharing this recipe with us!

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