Salt and vinegar potato chips are a crunchy, salty, tangy classic. Here’s how to make them at home.
Salt and vinegar potato chips are a classic for a reason—and this homemade version is no exception. You can fry or bake them— either way, they’re spectacularly crunchy, tangy, salty, and impossible to stop eating.–Angie Zoobkoff
Salt and Vinegar Potato Chips
- 2 large russet potatoes unpeeled
- 2/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- Frying oil (such as vegetable or peanut) enough to fill a fryer or to brush slices before baking
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
- Using a mandoline, thinly slice the unpeeled potatoes to a 1/8-inch (3-mm) thickness. Place the potato slices in a bowl, pour the 2/3 cup of cider vinegar over them, and stir to coat all the slices. Let the potatoes soak while you are preparing your frying pan or preheating the oven, which will probably take about 30 minutes or so.
- To fry your salt and vinegar potato chips, fill a deep fryer or a deep saucepan with about 6 inches (15 cm) of oil and heat to 350°F (175°C). In a colander set in the sink, drain the potato slices. Gently blot them completely dry with a clean towel. Carefully lower a few slices at a time into the oil and fry until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Take care not to crowd the chips or they won’t cook evenly. Repeat with the remaining potatoes, ensuring that the oil maintains a steady temperature of 350°F (175°C). Remove the chips and place them on paper towels or a brown paper bag to drain and cool for a few minutes, then toss with 1 tablespoon cider vinegar and sprinkle with sea salt. To bake your salt and vinegar potato chips, preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with aluminum foil and lightly slick the foil with oil. In a colander set in the sink, drain the potato slices. Gently blot them completely dry with a clean towel. Place the potato slices in a single layer on the prepared baking sheets and then brush each slice with some oil. (If you can’t fit all the chips in a single layer on the 2 sheets, go ahead and prepare a third sheet while the first batch is baking.) Bake until golden and crisp, 15 to 35 minutes, depending on the desired degree of brownness. Some slices may be ready more quickly than others; remove the chips as they are finished and let the thicker ones continue to cook. Place the baked potato chips on paper towels or on a brown paper bag and let cool for a few minutes. Then toss with 1 tablespoon cider vinegar and sprinkle with sea salt.
- Devour immediately. (Seriously. These homemade salt and vinegar potato chips don’t keep particularly well so go ahead and demolish the entire batch in a single sitting.)
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
As much as we love fried potatoes, I decided to try the baked version and was pleased with the result. I do oven fries frequently but the family loved this version as the vinegar taste really shined through. I soaked the potato slices for about 30 minutes prior to baking. Group decision to soak the slices from now on! Some potato chips baked up fluffy and very crisp while others baked flat but still crisp. It required 23 minutes baking time to get the degree of crispness we like–some pale and others golden brown but all with a nice crunch. The tablespoon of sea salt was generous but what we would do anyway. The vinegar could easily be changed to malt vinegar for a excellent side for fish and chips. Definitely a keeper!
One of my and my husband’s all-time favorite flavors for potato chips is salt and vinegar. This homemade version is not only simple, quick, and easy, but also quite delicious. As a healthy alternative, I chose to bake the chips. I found that I needed 15 minutes for the small pieces and 20 minutes for the larger pieces. I knew that they would be crispy and done when some of the edges of the chips turned brown upon inspection. If not, then the chips were a little soft and soggy. I used 2 large russet potatoes and found that I needed 3 baking sheets in order to bake all the chips and I ended up baking them in batches.
The first time I ever had freshly handmade potato chips was about 20 years ago on the island of Petit St. Vincent in the Caribbean. The owner of the resort invited all the guests to his residence for a welcome cocktail party and when we arrived, there was a table covered with homemade potato chips that were warm and salty. A perfect accompaniment to cocktails. It is amazing how many potato chips you can make from just 2 large potatoes. I tossed them in a large bowl with the apple cider vinegar. My oil was 6 inches deep. It took 15 to 20 minutes to come up to temperature. I used a candy thermometer to measure the temperature. I removed all of the potatoes and dried them with paper towels. I started with a really small batch that were done in about 3 minutes. I increased the size of my following batches and they cooked about 4 minutes. I cooked the whole batch and tossed in a bowl with 1 tablespoon of vinegar and sprinkled with about 1 1/2 tsp Himalayan sea salt. The chips were crisp with just a hint of a vinegar taste. I would recommend serving within an hour or possibly kept warm in the oven. It serves about 6 to 8 as hors d’oeuvre.
I really loved these potato chips. I began trying to bake them but ended up frying in some vegetable oil. Baking seemed like a good alternative for this weight watcher but after about 20 minutes with the crisps still quite limp I pulled them and fried them in the proper fashion. I thought pouring the remaining vinegar would be a disaster but thankfully I was wrong and these babies worked like a charm! I will not bother baking these in the future but I am left wondering, what would these taste like fried in duck fat? OMG.
Originally published July 06, 2017