Different Varieties Of Potatoes And How To Cook Them

If you have ever wondered how many types of potatoes exist, know that this is a question that cannot be quickly answered. There are wide varieties of potatoes precisely because these tubers are often the basis of the cuisine of many world countries. The qualities of potatoes are different, and each has its characteristic that makes them more or less suitable for certain types of preparation. In this list of potato varieties, you will learn how to recognize and cook them to make the most of them. Do you want to find out the best potato varieties for frying? Read on!

White-Fleshed Potatoes

Among the most known and used variants, white-fleshed potatoes have a light-colored pulp and a very floury consistency due to their large amount of starch. Very rich in potassium and mineral salts, as they tend to “fall apart” during cooking, white-fleshed potatoes are perfect in recipes in which they are usually “mashed” and then cooked: we are talking, for example, of potato gnocchi,  creamy mashed potatoes,  croquettes but also of various savory pies.

  1. Characteristics: smooth and ocher yellow skin. White and floury pulp.
  2. Use in the kitchen: creams, mashed potatoes, gnocchi, croquettes, baked in foil.

Yellow Flesh Potatoes

Unlike white potatoes, yellow potatoes are compact, firm, and not very floury. We find Agata, Spunta, and Lista among the most common types, but there is no lack of Dop varieties such as Primera di Bologna. For consistency and taste, yellow-fleshed potatoes can be used for crispy frying, potato salads, or baked side dishes: the small amount of starch prevents this type from breaking during cooking. Better if eaten without peel, quite hard and not very digestible, white potatoes are certainly among the most common and most used: but do not use them for gnocchi and mashed potatoes. They are not the most suitable quality.

  1. Characteristics: smooth and yellow skin. Yellow, compact, and not very floury pulp.
  2. Use in the kitchen: perfect for frying, baked, stewed.

New Potatoes

  1. Characteristics: small in size, with soft pulp and thin skin.
  2. Use in the kitchen: in a pan or the oven without peeling.

Red Potatoes

Delicate and, at the same time, very pronounced taste, red potatoes are very similar in texture and properties to yellow-fleshed potatoes. In reality, only the peel is bright red; inside, we find a yellow, firm, and not very floury pulp. The color is not the only peculiarity of the peel. It is rich in nutrients, so after washing them carefully, it is advisable to consume this variety without peeling it. Excellent boiled, fried, or in a pan, but if you are looking for a substantial recipe and don’t know how to use these potatoes, opt for baked stuffed potatoes, streamlined and with a pungent taste.

  1. Characteristics: red, dull, thin, and rough skin. Compact pale yellow pulp.
  2. Use in the kitchen: excellent fried and baked.

American Potatoes

Also known as sweet potatoes or “sugary” potatoes, American potatoes originated in South America and were grown as early as 5,000 years ago. They are distinguished by a sweet and delicate flavor, an elongated shape, and a decidedly above-average size. Perhaps not everyone knows, however, that American potatoes contain more potassium and vitamin C but less starch and sugars compared to other varieties: also indicated in slimming diets, they are very versatile in the kitchen, where they can be the protagonists of baked dishes, salads crispy potatoes or fries. A curiosity: American potatoes are not tubers but tuberous roots of the Ipomoea batatas plant, and you can eat not only the shoots but, in some cases, also the leaves.

  1. Characteristics: elongated shape, reddish skin, floury pulp.
  2. Use in the kitchen: baked, boiled, steamed, fried, in desserts.

Mountain Potatoes

  1. Characteristics: round-oval shape, yellow or reddish skin, yellow or white floury pulp.
  2. Use in the kitchen: creams, soups, baked in foil.

Purple Potatoes

Rich in antioxidant substances, purple potatoes have a purplish skin and pulp thanks to essential substances called anthocyanins, they are low in calories (100 grams contain approximately 80 calories, less than other varieties), and for this reason, they are also excellent in diets with low calories. The flavor of these potatoes tends to be sweet, and in the kitchen, they can be used boiled or to prepare gnocchi and dumplings with an unusual color. Please pay attention to the peel: it is always better to remove it as it is hard and not very digestible.

  1. Characteristics: small size, elongated shape, dark skin, and purple and very floury pulp.
  2. Use dumplings, sweet and savory pies, and mashed potatoes in the kitchen.


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