When it comes to casual Friday menus there are only three rules: quick, easy and delicious. The Loaded Baked Potato (aka:Potato Jacket) checks all three boxes. I had sort of forgotten just how great loaded baked potatoes are. We made them often when we were first married for the reasons listed above, plus they are very budget friendly, which is something most newlyweds appreciate. You know what made me want to put loaded baked potatoes back into our meal rotation? Our trip to Ireland in 2015. The Irish call loaded baked potatoes ‘Potato Jackets” and they are quite popular there. 
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Two Loaded Baked Potatoes on white plate with red and white dish towel in background



Loaded Baked Potato (aka: Potato Jacket)

So how did we stumble upon the potato jacket on our trip? On one of our last few days in Ireland (a gorgeous country BTW) my husband said “Today I am taking you to the beach!” I was so excited I put on my Irish bathing suit…

Another Casual Friday Menu: Irish Potato Jackets

Yup. That’s it. Covered from head to toe and I still froze. The beaches were stunning, but very cold and very wet. When we left the beach to warm up and have lunch, we were lucky enough to stumble upon a little cafe that served only Potato Jackets! The restaurant had a ton of options for toppings so you could ‘build your own’! Those potato jackets were just what we needed, warm, nourishing, good old fashioned comfort food. Our potatoes were served with a side of Irish Coleslaw (<- my recipe)


It All Starts With The Perfect Baked Potato:

A delicious loaded baked potato starts with a perfectly baked potato. I use Russet potatoes brushed with olive oil, sprinkled with sea salt and baked on a metal pan on high heat until the skin is nice and crispy and the inside has a creamy texture. After baking, I slice the potato not quite end to end, and then squish the ends towards each other so the potato opens right up!

Another Casual Friday Menu: Irish Potato Jackets

The Fillings:

 First, I  place a generous helping of pasture butter right into that spud (I use Kerry Gold from those grass fed cows in Ireland!) 

Another Casual Friday Menu: Irish Potato Jackets



Next I add chunks of  leftover roasted chicken or rotisserie chicken from the grocery store and steamed broccoli, then I drizzle with a homemade cheese sauce and garnish with bacon and chives. Yum!

Two Loaded Baked Potatoes garnished with bacon and chives on white plate


The Cheese Sauce: 

I love a homemade cheese sauce and think knowing how to make one is a basic skill every cook should have. To make a cheese sauce you simply melt butter in a sauce pan, add a little flour, stir to form a roux (this thickens your sauce) add warm milk and finally the grated cheese. You stir until smooth and voila! You have a creamy cheese sauce to top your baked potato. If you love cheese sauce, be sure to check out my homemade mac and cheese or cauliflower with cheese sauce!

Put It All Together!

When all the components come together you have the magic that is a loaded baked potato!

Loaded Baked Potato (aka: Potato Jacket) garnishes with chives on white plate

The Recipe: Loaded Baked Potato (aka: Potato Jacket)

Tips, serving suggestions and what you will need: I use Maldon Flaked Sea Salt to ‘finish’ food. I buy the tub to save money.

Loaded Baked Potato (aka: Potato Jacket)
Prep Time
1 hr
Cook Time
5 mins
Total Time
1 hr 5 mins

A delicious traditional Irish potato jacket!

Course: dinner, lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: American, Irish
Keyword: loaded baked potato, potato jacket
Servings: 2 servings
For potatoes:
  • 2 medium to large russet potatoes
  • 1/2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt
  • 2-4 tablespoons good quality butter
  • 1/2 cup diced or shredded rotisserie chicken
  • 1/2 cup steamed broccoli florets
  • 1 slice bacon, cooked until crispy and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chives, chopped
For Cheese Sauce
  • 1/2 cup warm milk
  • 1/2 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 tablespoon flour
  • generous pinch sea salt
  • a few turns of freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
For potato:
  1. preheat oven to 400 degrees

  2. brush both potatoes on all sides with olive oil, sprinkle generously with sea salt

  3. Set on metal baking sheet and bake for one hour or until a fork goes in easily

  4. 20 minutes before potato is done begin prepping toppings and cheese sauce:

  5. Dice chicken (warm in microwave if needed), start cooking bacon, when crispy, allow to cool, then chop. Steam broccoli until tender (5 minutes) and chop chives, shred cheddar cheese

Make cheese Sauce:
  1. Warm milk in the microwave or in a small pot. Heat a small sauce pan on medium heat, add butter, melt. Add flour, whisk. This is your roux, it will thicken your sauce. Add a pinch of sea salt and a few turns black pepper. Now, slowly add milk while consistently whisking. Allow the roux and milk mixture to thicken a bit while stirring occasionally. Once the milk thickens a bit, add cheese in thirds, whisking until smooth. Turn off heat.

  2. Remove potatoes from the oven. Slice almost end to end, then smush the ends toward each other (pictured above), load with butter and use a fork to mash the bitter into the potato, sort of creating mashed potatoes inside the skin. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Add chicken and steamed broccoli florets, pour desired amount of cheese sauce over the top. Garnish with chopped bacon and chives. Eat!


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