Rosemary Potatoes ♥ Recipe & Roasting Tips

Just in time for roasting fall vegetables, four tricks for roasting starchy vegetables like potatoes and winter squash using less oil without compromising on texture or flavor.

Here in St. Louis, we're caught in that lovely 'bridge' between summer and fall. There's no deciding whether to slice up a quick Insalata Caprese to get the final fill of summer tomatoes or to tip over into autumn's vegetables. The solution? Salad for lunch, potatoes for supper! These Rosemary Potatoes, talk about comfort food when paired with Meatloaf. Turns out, however, that the technique used here for the potatoes can be applied to roasting other vegetables as well.

Roasting vegetables, it's the number one way to draw out flavor and sweetness. But over the years, I've watched various recipes call for so much oil. Where A Veggie Venture allows for 1 tablespoon of fat per pound of vegetables (for most although not all recipes), other recipes call for four to eight times that. No wonder those vegetables taste so good!

So here are four tricks to roasting vegetables with less oil, ones that can be applied to one vegetable after another:

DIRTY A DISH If you drizzle oil over top of the vegetables right on the baking sheet, you'll need more, it's just not as easy to cover the cut surfaces. So to reduce how much oil is used, toss the vegetables and oil together in a bowl, tossing well, more than one or two turns. You really want to distribute the oil.
ADD A LIQUID Extra liquid helps distribute the oil further. In this recipe it's balsamic vinegar, but you could use chicken stock too. I even wonder about buttermilk though haven't tried it. (Has anyone?) I might also mix good mustard into some chicken stock.
ADD FLAVOR The balsamic vinegar is a brilliant touch in the flavor department, for it adds color, and sugars that caramelize and the great complementary acid that works so well with the creaminess of the potatoes. With that touch of rosemary, too? Delicious. An added benefit? These potatoes are filling and satisfying, the portion size doesn't seem skimpy.
ALLOW TIME So many recipes call for roasting at a medium temperature for a short period of time, hardly enough to cook the potatoes through let alone drawing out flavor. Instead, use a high temperature and toss often, distributing moisture and heat and letting more than one surface take the brunt of the heat.


Hands-on time: 10 minutes plus occasional attention during the roasting
Time to table: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Serves 8

2 pounds small red potatoes, some times labeled 'new' potatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves, chopped small

Additional kosher salt

Set oven to 400F. Wash the potatoes well, remove any blemishes and anything sprouting from the potato eyes. Cut into quarters. (If you're in a rush, the smaller the pieces, the quicker the potatoes will cook.) In a large bowl, toss the potatoes with the remaining ingredients -- use your hands, it'll go quicker and you'll get tactile confirmation of how well the oil is distributed. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet and roast for about an hour, tossing every 15 minutes. During the last 15 minutes, be sure that a cut-side of each potato piece is touching the pan. If needed, roast further until at least some of the pieces are quite dark and caramelized. If needed, season with additional salt. Serve and savor!

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this is what's making my kitchen smell like a tomato factory this week!
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SPUD FUN (because I can't resist)
Well, a Girl Potato and A Boy Potato had eyes for each other, and finally they got married, and had a little sweet potato, which they called “Yam”. Of course, they wanted the best for Yam. When it was time, they told her about the facts of life. They warned her about going out and getting half-baked, so she wouldn't get accidentally mashed, and get a bad name for herself like 'Hot Potato,' and end up with a bunch of Tater Tots. Yam said "not to worry, no Spud would get her into the sack and make a rotten potato out of her!" But on the other hand she wouldn't stay home and become a Couch Potato either. She would get plenty of exercise so as not to be skinny like her Shoestring cousins. When she went off to Europe, Mr. and Mrs. Potato told Yam to watch out for the hard-boiled guys from Ireland. And the greasy guys from France called the French Fries. And when she went out west in the USA, they told her to watch out for the Indians so she wouldn't get scalloped. Yam said she would stay on the straight and narrow and wouldn't associate with those high class Yukon Golds, or the ones from the other side of the tracks who advertise their trade on all the trucks that say, 'Frito Lay.' Mr. and Mrs. Potato sent Yam to Idaho P.U. (that's Potato University) so when she graduated she'd really be in the chips. But in spite of all they did for her, one-day Yam came home and announced she was going to marry former NBC news anchor Tom Brokaw. Tom Brokaw!!! Mr. and Mrs. Potato were very upset. They told Yam she couldn't possibly marry Tom Brokaw because he's just... well he's just a... A COMMONTATER !!!

Looking for healthy ways to cook vegetables? A Veggie Venture is home to hundreds of quick, easy and healthful vegetable recipes and the famous Alphabet of Vegetables. Healthy eaters will love the low carb recipes and the Weight Watchers recipes.
© Copyright 2009

Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. Karen, Miami FLSeptember 16, 2009

    I love roasted vegetables - potatoes of course, but also beets, young turnips, asparagus, kale ... all good. And you are so right about "less is more" with oil. I find that I get the best caramelization and flavor when I use a beat up old plain metal 11 x 17 jelly roll pan, not any of the newer heavier "non-stick" pans. The low sides let steam escape better too. And a 450 convection oven helps!

  2. I'm not a huge fan of rosemary, but I love roasted potatoes made with thyme from my garden.

  3. i do like rosemary it adds a lovey nutty and bold flavor. these are often the type of potatoes i like to make. i just add a bit of garlic too.

  4. Spud Fun-Hysterical-very clever.

  5. i made this on saturday and yuuuuuummmmmmm!!!!! :) Had it with some roasted plantains.

    I must try roasted beets, karen. Never had those before.

    I used tarragon vinegar instead since I'm not a fan of balsamic.

  6. I never tire of rosemary roasted vegetables. Ever.

  7. I love crunchy potatoes and the addition of rosemary, I'm sure, adds a great scent to the taters.

  8. I love roasted potatoes, it's my favorite way to fix them now....and rosemary is a great touch. I do like you and use a bowl to toss them with the oil and it works great.
    Love the "spud" story!

  9. This is a wonderful blog and I need to keep on readin' - I am not a fan of veggies and hopefully some of your recipes can spruce them up for me. :)

  10. This was great! I added some butternut squash, but I wasn't a fan. The vinegar and squash combination was a bit weird.


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe, whether a current recipe or a long-ago favorite. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. ~ Alanna