Peeling a batch of potatoes to make potato salad or mashed potatoes is a hassle. You may have seen this video before featuring Dawn Wells, better known as Mary Ann on Gilligan’s Island. Her method of peeling potatoes without a peeler must work since was on the home page of the official Idaho Potato website at the time of this writing.

First, she scores the potato all the way around with a knife and then boils places the potato in boiling water.

The potato is then dropped in ice water and swirled around for ten seconds or so. Then, voila, the skin comes off.

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Check out the video, it’s a little over a minute long.

Sadly, the video is in poor resolution because it’s old but you get the picture!

How cool is that? I did an extensive internet search and can’t find any other method for peeling potatoes that doesn’t involve a peeler.

Next time I make a big batch of potato salad I’ll try it and report back.

I bet you all do that anyway. The word on the street is also that basic potato peelers are better and generate less waste than some of the fancier versions.

If you decide to use a potato peeler, here’s what you’re supposed to do:

  1. Scrub the potato.
  2. Hold it in one hand and the peeler in the other.
  3. Slant the peeler downward and slowly peel the skin off.
  4. Turn the potato around and peel the other side.
  5. Do the same with the top and bottom.
  6. Rinse with cold water.

Don’t forget that the skin is full of nutrients, so eat it if you can.

Photo credit: istockphoto/piotr_malczyk

Katie Dillon is the managing editor of La Jolla Mom. She helps readers plan San Diego vacations through her hotel expertise (that stems from living in a Four Seasons hotel) and local connections. Readers have access to exclusive discounts on theme park tickets (like Disneyland and San Diego Zoo) and perks at luxury hotels worldwide through her. She also shares insider tips for visiting major cities worldwide, like Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Shanghai, that her family has either lived in or visits regularly (or both).

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  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention How to Peel Potatoes Without a Peeler --
  2. I have learned more from your website than my four years in college.


    I’m choosing to look at that as a good thing.

  3. Awesome 🙂 I just wash them & boil with the skin on. When they’re done you can peel it right off! 🙂 My favorite lazy way…lol

  4. Lua – lazy can be good, you know. I’ve never tried it like that perhaps I should! See you at Bluefin?