The Brown Russet Potato vs. The Red Potato

featured-red-vs-brown-potatoes

Although there are numerous potato variations out there, this post compares the two most popular: the red and the russet (or brown) potato. Of course both types have their advantages over the other, but in the end they’re both still just good ol’ tasty spuds. They both will bake, fry, mash, roast, steam, and eventually be eaten. In other words, don’t lose sleep tonight wondering if you purchased the right ones. But if you are losing sleep over it (really?), maybe this little guide can be your Tylenol PM.

Red Potatoes

These tasty spuds…

Russet Potatoes (The Brown Ones)

These multi-purpose spuds…

Nutritional Data

red-and-brown-potato-nutrition

For Both Types

Did you have a question or comment about russet or red potatos that was not answered in this post? Please write me (click here) or add them to the comments section below and I’ll do my best to respond within 24-hours, or update my post to include the answer to your question. Thanks!

Comments, Kudos, and Thoughts

  1. intensely mentions...

    I’m a huge potato fan and only recently discovered the difference between these two types of potatoes for myself. The red potato does hold up better for soups and potato salads. But,there is nothing better than a good Russet potato fried in bacon grease with a good sprinkling of yellow onions! Yum! Goes great with cornbread and navy bean soup.

  2. proudly comments...

    We grew potatoes in our garden as kids, and stored them with other foods Mom put up down in a cool cistern in our basement that we converted into a food storage room (complete with a heavy meat-locker style door).

    Each spring, we gathered up what was left of the potatoes we hadn’t used that winter. They were stored in gunny sacks. Most of them had sprouts bursting from the potatoes’ eyes.

    Then we cut them up into pieces, making sure each piece had an eye, hopefully with a sprout, and planted them in our dark Minnesota soil with the eye facing towards the sky. They grew into hundreds of potatoes by autumn.

    Harvesting potatoes is a hard, dirty job. You have to dig deep into the hard soil with a heavy spade, and dig out the potatoes by hand. Then you have to lay them out to let the damp soil dry, which makes it easier to clean. Yuck! I hated it as a kid, but we sure had a lot of great food to eat in the house!

  3. sandy blue calmly announces...

    i personally like the flavour of red potatoes better and buy them most of the time. they cost more but its well worth it for the flavour.

  4. Roy calmly expresses...

    My wife is on a low carb diet for type 1 diabetis.
    When I have served her white potato (boiled then fried) her blood sugar stayed normal.
    I preboiled some russetts then fried some the next day and she had a sharp rise in her blood sugar.
    Am trying to find out why and what the differences are.

    • spicily voices...

      That’s an interesting observation. White potatoes, from my understanding, actually have more sugars per serving than a Russet potato. However if potatoes are refrigerated or otherwise get too cold, their starches turn into sugars. It’s possible that the russet potatoes had at some point in the process had this happen. Can anyone offer a more in-depth explanation and shed some additional light on the subject?

    • Roy strikingly fleshes out...

      The russetts were refrigerated after cooking but I have been storing the white potatoes in the fridge before cooking.
      The problem is more carbohydrate than sugar (which is a carb).
      The russetts appear to be much more starchy which has a heavy impact.
      Hope to get more information as there are few things she can or will eat. For now she has sworn off potatoes which are a favorite.

  5. Kim boistrously claims...

    So green tinted skin means the potato is starting to spoil but you can still eat it? A friend once told me that you shouldn’t eat the green so I started always peeling the green skin off, but I’d much rather eat it, it’s my favorite part! Most bags of potatoes I buy are already turning green, and I’m in Idaho! I only feel like my potatoes are fresh when I’m getting the, from my garden, but

    • Kim enthusiastically mentions...

      . . . They never last long. Anyway, I’ve wondered about the green skin for a while . . . Maybe I’ll start eating it again! Thanks! :)

        • enthusiastically types...

          You are correct, but keep in mind that you’d have to eat a lot of green spuds before it amounted to anything detrimental. You can always cut that spot out or get a new potato. I don’t really care for the flavor of the green spots and cut them out.

          • Dave spicily conveys...

            Green skin is typically caused by exposure to the sun during the growing season, e.g., not enough “hilling” around the plant.

    • gloriously announces...

      Hi Diane! I replied via email to you (sorry for taking so long). For everyone else, yes you can cook, cool, and then refrigerate potatoes without having them turn brown. My wife and I do this often and then we pull them out to make a quick breakfast burrito in the morning or fried potatoes for dinner.

  6. Diana toughly scribbles...

    Love the potatoe info. As a matter of fact we are about to cook some delicious shrimp adding the red and brown potatoes to this dish. Hopefully it turns out well with some Healthy Advantages. Yum.

  7. Sharen intensely divulges...

    Chris, this comment has nothing to do with the potatoes, although I did find the information helpful. I absolutely love your choice of adverbs and verbs for your replies. I teach 8th grade and will be referring to your site when we get to narrative writing using quotes. Thanks for being so lively!

  8. chip courageously writes...

    trying to find out whether or not potatoes(russet) can be combined with fiber foods(like green peas) to slow or possibly defeat the blood sugar spike thing.

  9. Joseph Eagan energetically expresses...

    I make all natural cut fries with red potatoes in the oven it’s awesome! Spray with Pam before you bake and it’ll give you that fried taste with zero fat!

  10. helpfully states...

    Potatoes and beans are RS. Resistant Starch has R1 – R4..If the potatoes; either kind are baked or boiled first, and not cooked till mushy, then put into the fridge to cool they become R3. Good to eat or I cut them up in chunks, add a little EVOO plus sea salt, put on a flat sheet and bake at 350 till brown, then flip them over..for a bit. I turn off the over and let them sit in the over. I like then toasty.

    And there you have it – perfect food for those who do not want their glucose to rise. Also, RS is Uncle Ben’s Original parboiled White Rice…same,,cook and make sure it is then refrigerated. Then you can eat it in stir fry et al. No glucose rising. Check our.www.freetheanimal.com. All about diabetes and paleo.

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