Crispy Hash Browns with Chile-Fried Egg

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Over the years, I’ve had my fair share of soggy hash browns. It’s sad to be excited for some crispy breakfast potatoes only to get a soggy bite. Because of this disappointment, I’ve spent much time perfecting my crispy hash browns. 

Close-up photo of crispy hash browns covering a plate, topped with a chile fried egg.

Crispy hash browns, every time

The potato type

If you’ve tried your hand at crispy hash browns, you might have read that russet potatoes are imperative. This variety is used because russets are on the starchy side of the spectrum of starchy to waxy potatoes. Starchy potatoes inherently have less moisture than their waxy counterparts, making them easier to crisp. 

Nevertheless, using a starchy potato is not the end-all of the hash brown conversation. I prefer yellow potatoes, as you see in this recipe. These potatoes, such as Yukon gold, are more of an all-purpose potato, sitting between starchy and waxy. They typically have thinner skin, a buttery flavor, and a great texture and moisture retention balance. 

With the following tips, I find these potatoes make the best crispy hash browns. 

The starch

You could technically get away with making hash browns without the extra starch. However, adding a little extra starch helps you ensure you have enough to balance the moisture of the potatoes.

When crispness is the goal, I reach for potato starch. Corn starch would also work if that’s all you have on hand. 


Your pan should be heated just right to achieve the perfect crispy-to-cooked potato ratio. Anything too low, and your potatoes will end up soggy. Anything too high, and you risk burning patches of the potatoes while leaving other parts undercooked. 

On a cast iron skillet, I use slightly higher heat than medium–if medium is 6 on a clock and medium-high is a 9, I like to sit at around 7. Or, if you happen to own an infrared thermometer, the skillet should be around 300˚F to 325˚F. This will change depending on the type of pan you use, so it might take a bit of trial and error. 


Finally, don’t hold back on the oil when it comes to crispy items. The hot oil pulls the moisture from the potato, facilitating all the crispy goodness. Not having an even coat of oil on the skillet correlates to patchy, uneven cooking. You don’t need to go completely wild, but make sure the skillet has a solid coat of oil before adding your potatoes. 

Garlic chile sauce

While this meal is all about the crispy hash browns, it’s worth mentioning the chile-fried egg. Using chile paste to cook your eggs is a great way to ramp up flavor. I alternate what I use but always find myself using a chile-garlic sauce, such as the Huy Fong, Lee Kum Kee, or a homemade version


As mentioned, I’ve fried eggs in many chile pastes, so I recommend using what you might already have. Harissa, sambal oelek, gochujang, or ancho paste work great. I also have a space in my heart for frying eggs in this garlic achaar.

Close-up photo of crispy hash browns covering a plate, topped with a chile fried egg.
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Crispy Hash Browns with Chile-Fried Egg

1 serving
A diner-like hash brown with golden edges and crispy sides- a perfect companion for chile fried eggs and scallions.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
20 minutes
Hash Browns
  • 2-3 scallions
  • 1 (220 g) medium gold potato
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons potato starch or cornstarch
  • Avocado or sunflower oil (for frying)
  • 1-2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1-2 tablespoons garlic chile sauce
  • 2 eggs
  • Salt for finishing
  1. To prep the hash browns: Have a small bowl of ice water nearby. Trim the ends from the scallions and thinly slice through the whites and greens. Place the whites and light green pieces in a medium bowl, and transfer the sliced dark greens to the bowl with ice. Set aside.
  2. Give the potatoes a good scrub and pat dry. Grate the potatoes into the bowl with the scallion whites using a box grater. Add the salt and toss until well-coated. Let the potato mixture rest for 15-20 minutes.
  3. To cook the crispy hash browns: Scoot the potatoes to the side of the bowl, tilt the bowl, and begin to squeeze the potatoes. Pour out any liquid and repeat the process until you can wring no more liquid from the potatoes. Add in the potato starch and stir until well combined.
  4. Drizzle a thin layer of oil in a 10” or 12” heavy-bottomed skillet, such as cast iron, over medium heat. Once hot, transfer the potatoes to the skillet and press down with the back of a spatula. The potatoes should form a thin layer across the skillet. Cook until the potatoes are golden and crispy for 2-3 minutes, flip, and repeat the process. Transfer to a plate once both sides are crisp.
  5. For the eggs: While the potatoes are frying, place the butter and chile paste in an 8” skillet over medium heat. Crack the eggs in once the butter begins to sputter and the skillet is hot. Cook, spooning some of the butter mix over the eggs. Cook until the egg yolks are your desired doneness.
  6. To Assemble: Layer the cooked eggs on the hash browns and drizzle with any remaining chile paste and butter. Drain the scallions from the ice water, pat dry, and sprinkle over the eggs. Finish with salt as desired.
Crunch Factor: I'm a thin and crispy kind of potato girl and as such, my hash browns and quite thin- there's not much non-crispy potato to have here. If you prefer slightly thicker hash browns, press down enough to make a cohesive hash brown but not so hard that it completely flattens. 
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time :10 minutes
20 minutes

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Welcome to my little internet nook. On this site you'll find over a thousand vegetarian recipes, pantry knowledge, and more. I'm ever obsessed with food from gardening, cooking, and preserving. I hope you'll find endless inspiration on these pages and visit often. 

Virtual hugs, Erin (aka: e.l.l.a.)

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