Easy Air Fryer Smashed Potatoes (No Par-boiling!)

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Air fryer smashed potatoes are crispy crowd pleasers! No need to par-boil the potatoes. Simply pre-cook in the air fryer, then toss with simple Greek-style flavors. Squish gently and then air fry until soft and delicious on the inside and browned and crisp outside.

These are a great alternative to roast potatoes, and perfect for easy midweek dinners.

Closeup of air fried smashed potatoes in a decorative blue dish with a decorative spoon, all on a blue terrazo trivet with lemon and parsley around it.

Why you’ll love air fryer smashed potatoes

If you haven’t tried crispy smashed potatoes… it’s time! You can most certainly make them in the oven, but if you have an air fryer they’re even simpler to make.

Really, all smashed potatoes are is roast potatoes that have been squished a bit before roasting. The oil covers a larger surface area and they become ultra crispy.

Here’s what else you’ll love.

No par-boiling. You can simply pre-cook the potatoes in the air fryer for around 15 minutes to soften them. Then air fry again after tossing in the marinade and squashing. You could call them air fryer twice cooked potatoes!

No peeling, either. No need to peel the potatoes. I love the extra crisp and tasty skins, and I think you will too!

Quick and easy. Halve the cooking time by making the smashed potatoes in your air fryer instead of your regular oven. These are a great alternative to classic Greek potatoes when you don’t want to turn on the oven.

Creamy and crispy. These easy air fryer potatoes have to be the perfect potatoes, combining the creamy inside of mashed potatoes with the crispy edges of roasted potatoes.

Simple but tasty flavors. Try my Greek style option with oregano and lemon, keep things simple with just salt and pepper, or scroll down for variations!

ingredients

Overhead of all the ingredients needed to make air fried smashed potatoes on a marble background including small potatoes, dried oregano, olive oil, a lemon and salt and pepper.

This recipe starts with a bag of humble potatoes. And you really don’t need much more. Here’s what you need to know.

Potatoes: I usually grab a bag of small potatoes to make smashed potatoes in the air fryer. Baby or ‘new’ potatoes work really well.

If you can’t find any small potatoes, simply use larger potatoes and chop them into half or more pieces. The best type of potatoes to use are ones with a creamy, waxy texture. Try Yukon Golds, red potatoes, Fingerling potatoes, baby potatoes or ‘new’ potatoes.

Olive oil: Toss the potatoes in any kind of olive oil to make them crispy as they cook. They taste deep fried, but they’re not!

Lemon juice: You’ll need the juice of around half a lemon for perfect lemon potatoes. Sometimes I add the zest as well.

Oregano: I used dried oregano for the best Greek style flavor. Substitute for Italian seasoning or other mixed herbs if you don’t have any. Here are more substitutes for oregano.

Salt and pepper: To taste.

How to air fry smashed potatoes

Here’s my magic formula for perfect crispy smashed air fried potatoes.

After washing and drying the potatoes, air fry them from raw for around 15 minutes. They’re ready for smashing when they are fork tender (you can easily push a fork into them) but they aren’t falling apart.

Meanwhile, mix together the marinade ingredients.

When the potatoes are tender, empty them into the bowl with the marinade.

Collage of 2 images showing small potatoes in an air fryer and then part cooked and being emptied into a bowl of marinade.

Toss the potatoes around in the marinade.

Then place them back into the air fryer basket. Leave a little space between each potato.

Use either a potato masher or a fork to squash the potatoes. You want them to be flattened, but not broken up into pieces. If some do break up a bit, don’t worry – all the more crispy bits!

Collage of 2 images showing someone tossing small potatoes in marinade with a spoon in a bowl and then smashing the potatoes in an air fryer with a potato masher.

Drizzle or brush most of the leftover marinade in the bowl over the smashed potatoes.

Air fry again for 20 to 25 minutes or until VERY crispy. Turn over half way through cooking, brushing with the last bit of marinade if you like.

Collage of 2 images showing someone drizzling marinade over smashed potatoes in an air fryer, and then the potatoes after cooking.

Helen’s top tips

If you have a small air fryer, you may need to reduce the amount of potatoes, or cook them in two batches.

In most air fryers, the potatoes should be perfectly crisp and golden brown in 20 to 25 minutes. If not, keep air frying for a minute or two at a time until they are.

Use a spoon or fork to place the potatoes and marinade into the air fryer, and to take them out again when cooked.

Air fried smashed potatoes in a decorative blue dish with a decorative spoon, all on a blue terrazo trivet with lemon, parsley and a black and white tea towel around it.

How to serve them

These smashed small potatoes are a favorite easy potato side whenever you don’t want to turn on the oven – or to save oven space for other yummy dishes.

They go well with almost anything – fish, meat, or a tasty veggie dish such as this amazing Greek baked eggplant (you’ve got to try it!).

Bearing in mind that you might not want to turn on the oven, try the potatoes with:

Perhaps you’d prefer to cook the whole dinner in your air fryer? Try cooking a whole rotisserie chicken in your air fryer. While the chicken is resting, make the smashed roast potatoes.

Or how about air fryer chicken meatballs, air fried chicken burgers or quick naan pizza (also air fried)?

Variations

  • Serve the smashed air fryer potatoes as a tasty appetizer with a bowl of quick homemade tsatziki on the side. You might like to sprinkle some feta cheese over the top of the crispy potatoes, too!
  • Swap the lemon and oregano for a teaspoon of garlic powder, a different dried or fresh herb such as rosemary, thyme, basil or coriander, and plenty of grated parmesan cheese. Serve with tomato salsa, spicy mayo or a mix of sour cream and sweet chilli sauce, ranch dressing, pesto, or your favorite dipping sauce.
  • Season simply with just salt and pepper, then serve nacho style with chili, cheese, salsa and guacamole on top.
  • Top with grated cheddar cheese while cooking. Then serve with sour cream and fresh chopped chives or green onions.
  • Toss the mini potatoes with pesto before smashing and air frying.
  • How about buffalo-style? Toss the part-cooked baby potatoes in hot sauce mixed with melted butter.

Or… get creative and combine different flavors to create your own unique smashed potato recipe. The possibilities are virtually endless!

Recipe FAQs

Can I bake the smashed potatoes in the oven instead?

Yes, you can. You might prefer this cooking method if you are turning on the oven anyway. Par-boil for around 15 minutes, then squish on a baking sheet and roast for around 40 minutes at 390F/200C (355F/180C fan) until crisp, turning half way.

How can I stop the smashed potatoes from sticking to the air fryer basket?

You can lightly grease the basket with oil. If sticking tends to be a big problem in your air fryer, you might like to also line it with baking or parchment paper. In general, there shouldn’t be too much sticking since the potatoes are already tossed in oil, and you turn the potatoes over half way through cooking.

How can I reheat leftover air fried smashed potatoes?

Set your air fryer to 350-375°F (175-190°C) and preheat for a couple of minutes.
Place the potatoes in a single layer in the air fryer basket, leaving a little space between each.
Air fry for 5-10 minutes, until heated through and crisp again.

More easy potato side dishes

  • If you’re putting the oven on to cook something else, it’s worth making these Greek potatoes. They really are the best! Really don’t want to turn on the oven? Try Greek potato salad instead!
  • Make this potato bake with bacon if you’re a fan of dauphinoise potatoes. They’re just as delicious but without the cream! Goes perfectly with any kind of meat or fish.

Or see all air fryer recipes.

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Closeup of air fried smashed potatoes in a decorative blue dish with a decorative spoon, all on a blue terrazo trivet with lemon and parsley around it.
5 from 5 votes

Easy Air Fryer Smashed Potatoes (No Par-boiling!)

Looking for a really tasty and easy potato side dish that you can make in your air fryer? Perfect for midweek meals or guests, these crispy air fryer smashed potatoes are drenched in simple Greek style lemon and oregano flavors. Make them in half the time compared to in your oven, with the same creamy on the inside and super crunchy on the outside results.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 35 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients 
 

  • 1.75 pounds potatoes, small, unpeeled (or larger potatoes cut into smaller pieces)
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons oregano, dried
  • ½ lemon, Juice only (but add the zest as well if you like). Plus extra segments to serve, if you like.
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

Instructions 

  • Preheat the air fryer to 400F/205C for a couple of minutes (or 390F/200C if that's as high as you can set it).
  • Wash and dry the potatoes, then air fry for 15 to 20 minutes or until fork-tender but not falling apart.
    1.75 pounds potatoes
  • Meanwhile, mix together the olive oil, lemon juice, oregano and salt and pepper in a medium sized bowl.
    ¼ cup olive oil, 2 teaspoons oregano, ½ lemon, ¾ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • Empty the part-cooked small potatoes into the bowl with the marinade. Toss well with a spoon until the potatoes are all covered.
  • Use a spoon or fork to place the potatoes into the air fryer basket. Leave plenty of space around each one.
  • Use a potato masher or fork to squash each potato so that it is flattened but not falling apart.
  • Spoon or drizzle most of the remaining marinade in the bowl over the squashed potatoes.
  • Air fry the potatoes for 20 to 25 minutes or until they are golden and crisp on both sides. Flip over half way through cooking, drizzling the last bit of marinade over the other side.
  • Serve immediately, while hot and crisp. Add extra lemon segments to squeeze over to serve if you like.

Notes

Optional: Add a teaspoon of garlic to the marinade as well.
Type of potatoes: Any small potatoes such as ‘new potatoes’, fingerling potatoes or baby/mini potatoes are great. Alternatively, you can use any with a creamy/waxy texture such as Yukon Gold, red or blue potatoes, Charlotte potatoes. 
Serving suggestions: Smashed potatoes made in the air fryer go with almost anything as a side dish! They go particularly well with a cold dinner such as a tuna salad, a stovetop meat or fish dish, or another air fryer dish like chicken burgers or naan pizza
To reheat: Leftovers reheat beautifully… in the air fryer, of course! Simply pre-heat to 350-375°F (175-190°C) and reheat for 5 to 10 minutes or until hot and crisp again. 
Variations: Switch the lemon and oregano for 2 teaspoons of garlic powder and plenty of grated parmesan cheese. Season with just olive oil, salt and pepper, then top the crispy mini potatoes with sour cream, chives, and cheese. Sprinkle with Mexican style spices, then serve nacho style topped with sour cream, salsa, guacamole and cheese. Toss with any spices you like, in fact!
To bake in the oven instead: You might prefer this cooking method if you are turning on the oven anyway, or if you want to make a large amount. Par-boil for around 15 minutes, then squish on a baking sheet and roast for around 40 minutes at 390F/200C (355F/180C fan) until crisp, turning half way.
Got a small air fryer? If you have a small air fryer, you may need to reduce the amount of potatoes, or cook them in two batches.
 

Nutrition

Calories: 279kcal, Carbohydrates: 37g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 10g, Sodium: 449mg, Potassium: 869mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 25IU, Vitamin C: 46mg, Calcium: 44mg, Iron: 2mg
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About Helen Schofield

Don't expect to find anything fussy or complicated here. Just QUICK, EASY & (mostly!) HEALTHY recipes from the Mediterranean and beyond. ENJOY!

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12 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I thought you would put feta cheese on them after the smash job, that would taste great.

    1. Oooh yes, great idea! We usually serve them with a Greek salad on the side, which is why I didn’t think of it. But yes, go for it!!!

  2. 5 stars
    Thank you for sharing an interesting recipe, I’ll try it soon for next Monday dinner.

  3. 5 stars
    It tastes DEE-LISH for potato addict like me. My favorite is butter-fried and fried mashed potatoes. Now I have an interesting recipe for my favorite dish.

  4. Thanks for inspiring me to try out the air fryer function on my countertop oven — YUM!!!

  5. 5 stars
    I love making these potatoes! They’re so easy but everyone LOVES them! Definitely a fast favorite in our house!

    1. Hello Meagen. Thank you so much for letting me know you’re enjoying these. We make them all the time too!

  6. Yummo diddley oh. On the menu and I’ll possibly hate myself afterwards.

    Happy Easter to you and yours.