Mastering the Art of Perfectly Crispy Lyonnaise Potatoes: A Step-by-Step Guide

Lyonnaise potatoes, or pommes de terre sautées à la Lyonnaise in French, are a culinary delight that transforms humble spuds into a dish that’s far greater than the sum of its parts. In this article, we’ll dive into the secrets of crafting the perfect Lyonnaise potatoes and address common questions about this classic dish.


The Two-Stage Cooking Technique

Best Lyonnaise Potatoes Recipe - How To Make Lyonnaise Potatoes

To achieve the coveted silky smooth interior and crispy golden exterior of Lyonnaise potatoes, you must master the two-stage cooking technique. Here’s how it’s done:

1. Boiling for Tenderness

  • Start with 2 lb. of Yukon Gold potatoes (about 6 small), peeled, and sliced into ¼"-thick rounds.
  • In a medium Dutch oven or heavy pot, bring the potato slices to a boil with 3 Tbsp. of Diamond Crystal or 1 Tbsp. plus 2¼ tsp. of Morton kosher salt, 3 Tbsp. of distilled white vinegar, and 8 cups of cold water.
  • Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the potatoes are fork-tender, which usually takes around 7–9 minutes.
  • Drain the potatoes and transfer them to a prepared baking sheet lined with paper towels or a kitchen towel. Pat them dry.

2. Pan-Frying for Perfection

While the potatoes are boiling, the magic happens with the onions:

  • In a pan, cook the onions until they turn a beautiful golden brown and become jammy. This step requires patience but is absolutely worth it.

Once both components are ready, toss them together to create the perfect balance of flavors—sweet, salty, savory, and rich.

Serving and Pairing

Best Lyonnaise Potatoes Recipe - How To Make Lyonnaise Potatoes

Lyonnaise potatoes make a fantastic side dish for hearty mains such as roast chicken or pork. Alternatively, enjoy them as a simple and satisfying treat whenever your craving for buttery potatoes kicks in.


Lyonnaise potatoes are a classic French dish that elevates the humble potato to gourmet status. With the two-stage cooking technique and a bit of patience, you can create a dish that’s both comforting and elegant. So, the next time you’re in the mood for some culinary indulgence, try your hand at making Lyonnaise potatoes and savor the delicious results.

Remember, great Lyonnaise potatoes are all about balance, technique, and a touch of French finesse.

Perfecting the Cooking Technique

How do you cook Lyonnaise potatoes?

To prepare Lyonnaise potatoes, a classic and delicious dish, follow these simple steps:

  1. Preheat your Oven: Begin by preheating your oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

  2. Prepare the Potatoes:

  • Peel the potatoes and cut them into uniform 1/2-inch slices.
  • Place the potato slices in a pot and cover them with water.
  • Bring the water to a boil and let the potatoes boil for 2 minutes.
  • After boiling, drain the potatoes and set them aside.
  1. Heat an Oven-Proof Skillet:
  • Heat a large oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat.

Now you’re ready to continue with your Lyonnaise potatoes recipe, which typically involves pan-frying the boiled potatoes with caramelized onions for a delightful dish. Enjoy your cooking!

How thick should Lyonnaise potatoes be?

Achieving the ideal thickness for Lyonnaise potatoes is crucial for their perfection. The recommended thickness typically ranges from one-quarter to one-half of an inch, providing that perfect balance of tenderness and crispiness. However, the precise thickness can also be adjusted according to the cook’s preferences, allowing for a personalized touch to this classic dish. Experiment with the thickness to find the Lyonnaise potatoes that suit your taste best.

What are Lyonnaise potatoes?

Lyonnaise Potatoes:

Lyonnaise potatoes, known as pommes de terre sautées à la Lyonnaise in French, are a culinary delight. This dish showcases Yukon Gold potatoes, sliced into ¼-inch thick rounds, cooked to a golden brown crispiness. They are then delicately combined with sweet and jammy caramelized onions, and finally adorned with a generous sprinkle of chopped parsley. The result is a harmonious blend of flavors and textures that make Lyonnaise potatoes truly remarkable.

What is a buttery Lyonnaise?

The Buttery Lyonnaise Secret:

A buttery Lyonnaise is a delightful marriage of crispy potatoes and onions that practically melt in your mouth. This dish achieves its buttery essence through the use of clarified butter, known for its high smoke point and the clean, rich flavor it imparts to Lyonnaise potatoes. The inclusion of sweet onions further enhances the experience, introducing a gentle yet vibrant flavor profile.

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