It's certainly no secret that we're HUGE Ohio State fans around here, so you know that we're totally stoked that the Buckeyes made the cut for the first ever College Football Playoff! It's been a year filled with much adversity and ups and downs, so for them to make it this far is a true testament to hard work and perseverance. We cannot wait to cheer them on against Alabama on New Year's Day!

Of course, we'll be tailgating at home for the game, and I'm already mulling over just which of our game time favorites should be on the menu. Pepperoni Pizza Rolls? Cheeseburger Con Queso? Buffalo Chicken Dip? These are tough choices, y'all!

I do know that these Loaded Potato Skins will definitely be making an appearance... Inspired by my favorite appetizer at a local establishment, they're full of flavor.

If you don't know how to make potato skins, I think you're in for a pleasant surprise. Yes, they do take some time -- but it's mostly hands-off baking time. And trust me, they are SO worth the wait!

Potato Skins Recipe

Crispy cheesy baked potato skins, topped with bacon, sour cream, chives and an optional jalapeno pepper, they're sure to please! I'd totally recommend that you make more than you think you'll need -- they disappear fast...

Loaded Baked Potato Skins

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 25 minutes

Yield: 8-10 servings

Loaded Baked Potato Skins


  • 8 small russet potatoes, scrubbed and thoroughly dried
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1-1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chives, finely chopped
  • sliced jalapeno peppers, to taste
  • salt & pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Rub the outside of the potatoes down with the olive oil. Prick each potato several times with a fork, and place them all on a baking sheet.
  3. Bake at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through and pierced easily with a fork. Remove potatoes from the oven, and let them sit until cool enough to handle.
  4. Turn the oven up to 450 degrees.
  5. Slice each potato in half lengthwise, and scoop out the insides leaving about ¼-inch of the potato intact with the skin. Brush each potato with melted butter on all sides, and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Place the potato halves back on the baking sheet skin side up, and bake at 450 degrees for about 10 minutes. Turn the potatoes skin side down, and bake for another 10 minutes or so, until the edges are crispy and starting to brown.
  7. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and immediately sprinkle the inside of each potato with shredded cheddar cheese and crumbled bacon. Return to the oven and bake for an additional 5 minutes or until the cheese is sufficiently melted.
  8. Top the baked potato skins with sour cream and sprinkle with chives and sliced jalapeno peppers, if desired. Serve warm.

Tip: Try baking your bacon in the oven for perfectly cooked bacon with less mess. I'll never cook my bacon any other way after trying this method!

Your favorite pizza brands, Tony's®, Red Baron® and Freschetta®, are kicking off Tailgate at Your Place -- a whole new tradition and virtual hub where you can earn sweepstakes entries for the chance to WIN prizes totaling $150,000! Explore recipes, college football trivia, party tips, games and more! Don’t miss out. Visit now (through 1/10/2015) and begin by designing your virtual living room! (Official Rules)

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Red Baron. The opinions and text are all mine.

by Tara | 0 comments

Building A Better Holiday Gift Basket with Better Homes And Gardens

Thumbnail image for Building A Better Holiday Gift Basket with Better Homes And Gardens

Before you grab another gift card for that hard-to-buy-for recipient on your gift list, consider a gift basket instead... No, I'm not recommending that you buy one of those prepackaged baskets of sausage and cheese or shower products -- not that there's anything wrong with those. I love to hit the clearance sales after the […]

by Tara
See what’s cookin’ →

S’mores Martini Recipe | In the Kitchen with David

Thumbnail image for S’mores Martini Recipe | In the Kitchen with David

Summer seems a long way off right now, but that doesn't mean that we can't still enjoy some of favorite warm weather flavors during the cold, winter months. Right? As soon as I saw this recipe for S'mores Martinis in David Venable's new cookbook, Back Around the Table, I knew that I had to make […]

by Tara
See what’s cookin’ →

A Home-Cooked Thanksgiving Meal Surprise #SeasonOfSurprises

Thumbnail image for A Home-Cooked Thanksgiving Meal Surprise #SeasonOfSurprises

The week leading up to Thanksgiving is always a busy one, but mine got just a little busier last week when Walmart asked if I'd be interested in hosting some deserving guys for an early Thanksgiving dinner on Tuesday. After making sure my family was on board (after all, this required all of them pitching […]

by Tara
See what’s cookin’ →

Mainstays at Walmart | Trendy Decor That Won’t Break Your Budget

Thumbnail image for Mainstays at Walmart | Trendy Decor That Won’t Break Your Budget

With all of the holiday parties and gatherings this time of year, I think it's only natural to want our homes to look Pinterest-worthy this time of year. But the problem is, with all of the extra spending on gifts, Pinterest-worthy may not be in the budget! I've shown you a few budget-friendly decor lines […]

by Tara
See what’s cookin’ →

Fab Foodie Gift Idea: Miracle-Gro AeroGarden 3SL Indoor Garden

Thumbnail image for Fab Foodie Gift Idea: Miracle-Gro AeroGarden 3SL Indoor Garden

So you may have noticed that I didn't talk much about my garden this year -- mainly because it was just not a stellar growing year. Late freezes meant we couldn't plant until nearly June, and it never really took off. I still walked away with several pounds of tomatoes and a bounty of carrots, […]

by Tara
See what’s cookin’ →

7 Healthy Cooking Gifts | Give The Gift Of Health This Holiday Season

Thumbnail image for 7 Healthy Cooking Gifts | Give The Gift Of Health This Holiday Season

I don't know about you all, but I definitely feel like I *may* have gained a pound or two over the last week with all of the wonderful holiday food we've been partaking in. 'Tis the season... right? I believe in everything in moderation, though, and as long as we balance the sweets and treats […]

by Tara
See what’s cookin’ →