Pepper Jack Potatoes

Side DishCheesePotatoes

Boiled potatoes with melted Jalapeno pepperjack cheese and cream.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

My father is a meat and potatoes person. And as such, you can almost always count on potatoes as part of the dinner meal at our home, most often boiled.

Usually I skip them (more for dad) in favor of something green. The other day though, my mother made a cheesy boiled potato dish that I couldn’t stop eating.

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The star ingredient? Jalapeño pepper jack cheese. Melty, stringy, spicy, peppery cheese.

Melt the cheese over russet or Yukon gold boiled potatoes and then douse with a little cream. Fabulous!

Pepper Jack Potatoes

The only issue is that with russets especially, it’s pretty easy to overcook the potatoes, making it harder for them to continue to hold their shape while they sit in their own heat waiting for the cheese to melt.

The first time I tried these following my mom’s instructions, I took my eye off the pot and sure enough, the potatoes were falling apart. I made the recipe anyway, just mashed all the ingredients together and the potatoes were stunning that way too.

Since then I’ve made them with Yukon Golds which hold their shape better and are a little more forgiving on cook time.

Pepper Jack Potatoes Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

You can use either russets or Yukon gold for this dish. The russets are trickier to keep from overcooking, the Yukons hold their shape easier. If you end up overcooking the potatoes, mash them for pepper jack mashed potatoes.


  • 1 1/2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • Salt
  • 4 ounces pepper jack cheese, thinly sliced and cut into strips (or you can use shredded)
  • 1/2 cup cream


1 Boil the potatoes: Place peeled, cut potatoes into a 2 quart-sized pot. Cover with an inch of cold water. Add a tablespoon of salt to the water. Cover and bring to a boil. (Keep your eye on the potatoes, it's easy to overcook them.)

As soon as the water is boiling, uncover and boil for 6 minutes, or until the potatoes are just tender enough so that you can insert a fork into them. The potatoes should be on the slightly underdone side.

2 Drain potatoes, cover with cheese: Drain the potatoes and put them immediately into a serving bowl. Layer the cheese slices over them and put a plate over the bowl to cover, so that the steam from the potatoes melts the cheese.

Let sit for several minutes, then gently fold over with a spoon to spread the melted cheese around.

3 Add cream: Pour cream over the potatoes and cover again until served.

If the potatoes are on the over-cooked side and fall apart as you toss them in the cheese, you can add the cream anyway and mash them for spicy, cheesy mashed potatoes. If the potatoes are still not quite cooked enough and the cheese is not quite melted enough, you can put them in a microwave for 20 seconds or so.

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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18 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Marian

    I loved these potatoes when I made them the other night! The first night they were my only course and the next night I had some shredded beef with them. Cooking 6 mins. exactly worked perfect! We used the yukon but I want to use russets to compare. The yukons we’re very creamy. Great recipe, thanks!


  2. John

    Tip on the potatoes – add a little vinegar to the boiling water and they won’t fall apart, ever.

  3. Lisa S.

    I made these last night to go with meatloaf and salad. The potatoes turned out perfectly and were the highlight of the meal!


  4. Sheila

    These were interesting to make. I think I will shred my cheese next time, because my cheese clumped a lot and was hard to spread to all the potatoes. Really yummy idea!

  5. Nancy Singleton Hachisu

    That is so funny, I have recently been thinking about your cauliflower (or was it broccoli) cheddar cheesy gratin. But at the same time I’ve been thinking about new potato dishes because I get tired of rice. We don’t have pepper jack here, but I keep Organic Valley mozzarella (and cheddar) stocked in my fridge at all times. And cream. I have hot peppers in my freezer, so I can do this. Thanks. Looking forward.

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