Potato Pancakes

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potato pancakes

I had so much fun when I made homemade tater tots a couple of weeks ago, that I thought I would whip up another batch of mashed potatoes so I could make more.

potato pancakes

Only I got side tracked when it also occurred to me that mashed potatoes pan fried into tiny, adorable, potato pancakes could also serve as a cute and delicious vehicle for shoveling in crème fraiche and lox.

potato pancakes

The little potato pancakes had a nice crispy exterior, and a hot and creamy interior. When I mixed these piping hot with a dollop of cold crème fraiche (sour cream would be just as delicious!) and that salty, velvety cured salmon? Well, lets just say that I did not need much help polishing off the whole recipe.

I shared these with you not only because they were so dang good, but also because I thought they would be a great appetizer for Holiday parties, or for anyone in charge of appetizers Christmas Eve or Christmas Night. They are easy to fry up and then place on a sheet pan and heat up in the oven at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes just before serving.

potato pancakes

For the most part this is an incredibly economical appetizer. You use leftover mashed potatoes (unless you are me and just like to make mashed potatoes in order to use them as leftovers!) and you just use a tiny bit of the crème fraiche and lox.

However, if you wanted to get really fancy, you could top them with caviar too. They sell American paddlefish caviar for $20 an ounce (which is all you need for an impressive garnish.) It is easier than you think to find- Whole foods sells it in their deli section (ask at the charcuterie counter) and I just saw it at Trader Joes of all places!

Potato Pancakes, makes 3 dozen small potato pancakes
2 cups mashed potatoes (I like The Pioneer Woman’s Recipe myself!)
1 egg
¼ cup AP flour
Kosher salt and Black pepper
¼ cup crème fraiche
2 oz good salmon lox

In a medium bowl, combine the potatoes, egg and flour, stirring until well combined. Add some Black pepper and a sprinkle of Kosher salt and stir well.

potato pancakespotato pancakespotato pancakespotato pancakes

Heat a large non-stick sauté pan over medium heat, brushing it lightly with vegetable oil.

potato pancakes

Using a spoon (or ice cream scooper) scoop out batter by the tablespoon into the pan.

potato pancakes

potato pancakes

Let the pancakes lightly brown before flipping over, about 1 minute.

Repeat on the other side, cooking another minute until hot and golden. Repeat with remaining batter.

potato pancakes

Drain briefly on a paper towel before transferring to a serving platter.

Top with a tiny dollop of crème fraiche and a tiny piece of lox. I like a sprig of dill too.

potato pancakes

Serve and enjoy!

potato pancakes

Leave a Reply


  1. how adorable are these?! i love them!

  2. Vicki B says:

    I’m so glad you made these! I loved them growing up and have not had much luck making them. They always fall apart. Your’s look perfect.

  3. These are absolutely lovely!

  4. Madonna Eikenberg says:

    Hi Heather, you are my favorite Chef!!! My daughter and I made the Tatar tots….love them!! We will try your potatoe pancakes this weekend.

  5. JulieJ says:

    This looks great! what other items would be fun to top these potato pancakes with? (picky eaters!)

  6. Kelley Taylor says:

    I was served something similar recently at a wine dinner held at Blantyre, a country house hotel in Lenox, Mass. It was a warm potato pancake just like this, topped with creme fraiche and caviar. It was so simple and wonderful – the caviar and potato are an amazing taste combination. Make sure to pair this with a non-vintage brut Champagne or a rose Champagne to get the full deliciousness effect. Thanks so much for presenting this recipe. It’s going in my “keeper” file.

  7. jenjenk says:

    this is BRILLIANT!!! just in time for all those holiday parties!!!

  8. LOVE this variation of Blini with salmon! Much easier to make than a traditional blini and I bet tastes amazing! Now you’ve got me thinking of all the things I could do with those little pancakes!!

  9. These look divine!!! I’m going to make them this weekend. YUM!

    • great! I am actually making them for appetizers on Christmas- they are that good (and easy too!)

  10. I can’t think of a better way to use up leftovers. Thanks for the inspiration!

  11. Lox, crème fraiche and a dainty potato pancake. I cannot ask for anything more.

  12. marla says:

    I am making homemade gravlax right now & I think I should serve it with these potato pancakes!

    • Please please please Post that recipe Marla!!!!

  13. Smoked salmon is my husband’s all-time favorite food – I think he’d absolutely love it served on a mashed potato pancake vessel!

  14. i like it

  15. sophistimom says:

    Oh, I want to eat those so badly. Really I do.