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Guide to Potatoes: The Casserole Guide to Potato Varieties

Learn how to use the many different types of potatoes with our easy-to-follow guide.

By: Natalie Taylor, Editor,

If you've ever felt lost in the potato aisle of the grocery store, never fear! Since there are about 100 different varieties of potatoes, it can seem overwhelming. We've created this helpful tool, Guide to Potatoes: The Casserole Guide to Potato Varieties, to help you choose the best type of potato for your recipe.

What type of potato do I use? 

Luckily, potatoes can be categorized into seven different types: russet, white, yellow, colorful, fingerling, new, and sweet potatoes. Once you get a good idea of the different categories of potatoes, try out a few of our potato casserole recipes below.

With the help of our potato guide, you will know exactly which types of potatoes to use!

Why use different types of potatoes?

You might be thinking "Potato, potah-to" but each variety of potato actually has something very unique to offer. Once you know the best type of potato to use in any given recipe, you will notice a change in your cooking. Everyone will be asking you for your secret!


Potato Varieties

  1. Russet Potaotes - These potatoes are oblong-shaped and are fairly large. One of the most common types of russet potatoes are Idaho. Since russets are somewhat dry and mealy, they aren't the best match for casseroles. However, they are great for mashing and frying.

  2. White Potatoes - While they are similar in shape to russets, their skin is smoother and thinner. This is a great go-to variety of potatoes because they can withstand baking and boiling. These potatoes are great for casseroles, so they would be good to keep on hand.

  3. Yellow Potatoes - Yukon Gold is the most popular type of yellow potato. This type of potato is fine-grained and slightly waxy, so they have a much smoother texture than russets. Yellow potatoes are great for casseroles that feature chunks of potatoes because they hold their shape very well.

  4. Colorful Potatoes - Purple and blue potatoes are marked by their colorful flesh as well as their skin. They have a signature nutty flavor, unlike the milder varieties like russets, whites, and yellows. They make great boiling potatoes. Some common types of colorful potatoes include All Blue and All Red. Red Cloud potatoes are somewhat different from their colorful counterparts. This type of potatoes make great baked potatoes because they have dense flesh.

  5. Fingerling Potatoes - The unusual name comes from the fact that they are shaped like fingers! These potatoes range from about 2-4 inches in size and have very thin skins. Since they are small they can be boiled whole. These potatoes taste best when they're roasted, so they would be great enjoyed as a side to your casserole.

  6. New Potatoes - As the name might suggest, these potatoes are actually younger versions of their more mature counterparts. Potatoes of all varieties that are harvested in early summer are known as new potatoes. These types of potatoes have a more intense flavor than their mature cousins. These potatoes have a shorter shelf life than mature potatoes.

  7. Sweet Potatoes - These potatoes are known for their signature sweet flavor and orange color. These potatoes are great in casseroles, whether they are baked or boiled.

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