Classic Cheddar and Bacon Potato Skins turned vegan. You are going to fall in love with these vegan potato skins. Serve them for a delicious and easy appetizer at your next family BBQ.
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Summer days mean spending as much time outside as possible. You will find me and my family outside soaking up the sun in the pool and around the garden. We love being outside so much that no one wants to come inside for meals. And that means we do a lot of grilling.
This vegan potato skin recipe is perfect for the grill. While you can make them inside, they are absolutely amazing on the grill and the perfect vegan barbecue appetizer. They make a yummy start or side for any main dish like these Hawaiian Tofu Skewers or Blackened Tofu Steaks. For more casual eating or entertaining like a potluck, you could always skip the main dish and put these out with a spread of vegan appetizers.
Any way you choose to serve these potato skins, I know you and your family will love them!
Recommended Ingredients & Equipment
These vegan potato skins are incredible! They are cheesy, smokey, creamy, and just as you remembered. This recipe requires a handful of specific ingredients but many of them can easily be swapped out for substitutions.
Here is everything you need.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Potatoes- I recommend russet potatoes.
- Tofu Bacon - For the vegan bacon you will need tofu, soy sauce (use Tamari for gluten-free), tomato paste, vegan Worcestershire, maple syrup, liquid smoke, and pepper. You could also make this recipe with coconut bacon, eggplant bacon, or store bought tempeh bacon.
- Non-Dairy Milk - I used soy milk but you could use any neutral flavored non-dairy milk.
- Daiya Cutting Board Cheddar Shreds - Daiya is of the best vegan cheese substitutes you can buy. It's melty, creamy, and delicious. Read more about Daiya's vegan shreds below.
- Vegan Sour Cream - Free free to use either homemade sour cream or store bought.
- Olive Oil
- Salt and Pepper
Best Vegan Cheese
When it comes to substituting the classic taste and texture of traditional cheese, I choose Daiya.Thanks to the great tasting, high quality, plant-based ingredients, Daiya's line of dairy substitutions stands out above the competitors.
What is Daya?
If you’ve been a plant-based eater for a while, then I’m sure you’re familiar with Daiya’s products.
When they came on the market about 10 years ago, their products were revolutionary. In the past decade, Daiya has become an industry leader committed to delighting senses with its line of delicious, better-for-you foods. As one of the founding members of The Plant-Based Foods Association, Daiya remains passionate about celebrating delicious food that is dairy, gluten, and soy-free.
Daiya offers a range of crave-worthy vegan products including cheeses, yogurts, salad dressing, and desserts. Whether you’re seeking crispy thin-crust pizza, the nostalgic comfort of a grilled cheese, or even the decadent indulgence of ice cream bars, Daiya will be sure to satisfy.
Daya Cutting Board Cheeze Shreds
One of the things I love most about Daiya is that they continue to improve their products. Recently they launched a Cutting Board Collection with new and improved shreds. These new shreds taste even more like dairy cheese than ever before.
With similar melt and stretch of dairy cheese, the new Cutting Board Cheeze Shreds are available in four varieties: Cheddar Style, Mozzarella Style, Pepperjack Style and a new Cheddar Mozzarella blend. They perfectly melted into the vegan cheese sauce I used on my vegan potato skins.
Be sure to look out for the bright red circle on the top right of the package when you’re in the grocery store..
How to Make Vegan Potato Skins
Step One - Marinate and Cook the Tofu
In a medium bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, vegan Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, liquid smoke, maple syrup, and black pepper. Slice the tofu into ¼ inch thick slices and place the sliced tofu in the marinade in a single layer. Let it marinate for at least 1 hour.
Pro Tip: Look for high-protein extra-firm tofu. This particular tofu does not need to be pressed. If you can only find water-packed tofu, make sure to thoroughly press out the water with a tofu press. Softer tofu will crumble and not give you the same chewy texture.
Once the tofu is ready, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Place the tofu strips into the pan and cook each side for about 5 minutes or until brown and crispy. Remove from heat and set aside until you are ready to assemble the skins.
Step Two - Prepare the Potatoes
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
While the oven preheats, poke holes all around the potatoes with a fork. Place them in the microwave and cook for 8 to 9 minutes or until they are easily pierceable. Be careful not to overcook! If they are too soft, the potatoes will lose their shape when hallowed out.
Let the potatoes cool for 10 minutes before cutting them in half. Carefully scoop the flesh of the potatoes out leaving about a ½ inch shell.
Brush the potato skins with two tablespoons of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake for 20 minutes. Flip the skins halfway through cooking them. Remove when they are golden brown along the rim and cooked all the way through.
Step Three - Make the Cheese Sauce
While the potato skins bake, prepare the cheese sauce in a medium pot. Pour the non-dairy milk into the pot and bring to a simmer. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese. Keep stirring until it is completely melted.
Time Saving Tip: You can skip this step and sprinkle the cheese directly onto the potato skins. It won't be quite as melty but it will taste nearly the same.
Step Four - Bake and Assemble
When everything is ready, it's time to assemble and bake them.
Divide the cheese sauce evenly between the shells, about 2 to 3 tablespoons of cheese sauce each. Top with the tofu bacon and place the skins on a large cookie sheet. Cook the skins for about 3 to 4 minutes or until they heated all the way through.
Remove the skins from the oven and top with vegan sour cream and chives. Serve and enjoy!
How to Grill Potato Skins
Potato skins are perfect for outdoor grilling. To make them on the grill, microwave the potatoes as described and follow all the directions to make the tofu bacon and cheese sauce.
When the potato skins are prepared, preheat your grill to 450 degrees. Place the potato shells on the grill and cook them for 5 minutes with the skin side down. Flip them and cook for an additional 3 minutes.
Assemble the skins, adding about 2 to 3 tablespoons of the cheese sauce and bacon. Carefully place the skins on the grill and cook until the skins warm through or about 1 to 2 minutes.
Remove from the grill and serve to your family and friends around the barbeque.
Serving and Storing
Serving - Serve these potato skins fresh from the oven or grill. I love sharing them while relaxing outside in the shade at the end of a long summer day.
Storing - Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for about 2 to 3 days. Before storing them, allow the skins to completely cool.
Make in Advance - You can also prepare the potato shells the day before so that you just need to assemble and bake them. Follow all the instructions to make the shells and then wrap and store the shells in the fridge overnight.
Tips and Tricks
- Feel free to prepare the tofu bacon the day before. This can save you some time and allows you to just assemble the skins once the shells are ready. You can also save time by buying store bought vegan bacon.
- Don’t overcook the potatoes in the microwave. If they get too soft, they will fall apart and won't form good skins.
- Save the scooped out potato flesh and make vegan mashed potatoes, vegan gnocchi, or potato pancakes. You can freeze the potato flesh in an airtight container for up to 2 months until you are ready to use.
- For an extra kick, use Daiya Cutting Board Pepperjack Style Shreds
Frequently Asked Questions
Look for high-protein extra-firm tofu. This particular tofu does not need to be pressed. If you can only find water-packed tofu, make sure to thoroughly press out the water with a tofu press. Softer tofu will crumble and not give you the same chewy texture.
I find russet potatoes work best. They have a good shape and are firm enough texture to hold the cheese sauce, bacon, and sour cream.
Yes, if you would rather use a premade vegan bacon, you can. Just add it when you fully assemble the potato skins.
Daiya’s selection of plant-based foods can be found in more than 25,000 grocery stores in the U.S., including Sprouts, Kroger, Safeway and Publix, as well as most natural food retailers.
More Vegan Appetizer Recipes
Get all my vegan appetizers and snack recipes.
Vegan Potato Skins w/ Tofu Bacon
- Begin by marinating the tofu. In a bowl mix together the ingredients for the marinade. Cut the tofu into ¼" strips and place in a shallow dish. Top with the marinade, making sure the tofu is completely covered and place in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour. While the tofu marinates, prepare the rest of the dish.
- Preheat the oven to 450F. Poke holes through the potatoes and microwave them for 8-9 minutes, until they are easily pierceable with a fork. Be careful not to overcook the potatoes or they will fall apart. Let cool for 10 minutes before cutting in half and carefully scooping out the flesh, leaving a ½" shell.
- Brush the potato skins with two tablespoons of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake for 20 minutes, flipping halfway through.
- While the potatoes bake, prepare the tofu and cheese sauce. Heat the remaining one tablespoons of oil in a large skillet, Once hot, add tofu and pan-fry for about 5 minutes per side, until browned and crispy. Remove from skillet and set aside.
- To make the cheese sauce, place non-dairy milk in a small saucepot over medium heat. Once simmering remove from heat and add the cheeze shreds. Stir constantly until the cheese is completely melted.
- Evenly divide the cheese sauce, adding about 2-3 tablespoons in each potato skin. Top with tofu bacon and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes until everything is heated all the way through. Remove from the oven and top with vegan sour cream and chives.