The versatility of spuds is shown by the astronomical number of potato recipes as there are virtually endless way to use them. What do you do when a recipe asks for potatoes by weight, not by number, and you don’t have a scale? Good news! You can find out how many potatoes are in a pound even without a scale!
Even if you look at potatoes of the same type, you’ll notice they have an irregular shape and their size and weight varies significantly.
The diversity is even higher among different types, but don’t let that bring you down. We can rely on our eyes and hands to assess the weight of potatoes.
How Much Does The Average Potato Weigh?
An average potato weighs between 5 and 10 ounces (0.31 lbs – 0.61. lbs or 140-285 grams) regardless of type.
However, some species produce larger potatoes such as the white varieties, while the red ones are usually smaller.
How Big Is The Average Potato?
An average potato has a diameter between 2.25 and 3.25 inches crosswise. You can test this yourself by weighing a potato and measuring its diameter.
Potato Weight By Size
Let’s break potatoes down to three common sizes: large, medium, and small. Here’s the average weight for each:
|Large||3.25-4.25 in||>10 oz./0.61 lbs./285 g|
|Medium||2.25-3.25 in||5-10 oz./0.31-0.61 lbs. /140-285 g|
|Small||1.75-2.25 in||<5 oz./0.31 lbs/140 g|
Most Popular Types Of Potatoes And Their Size
Knowing the average weight of a certain type of potato can be of great help when you’re trying to figure out how many you need.
|Russet||⅜ – ½||6-8||170-226|
|Sweet Potato||⅜ – ¾||6-9||50-250|
|Red Potato||¼ – ½||5-7||80-200|
|Baby Potatoes||⅛ – ¼||2-4||50-150|
Russet potatoes commonly weigh 6 to 8 ounces (0.375 – 0.5 pounds or 170 – 226 grams).
The size and weight variation is much wider, though. Russet potatoes can range between small (approximately 75 grams or 0.16 pounds) to extra-large which can weigh one pound (453 grams) or more.
Sweet potatoes also range in size from small (about 50 grams or 0.11 pounds) to large weighing up to 200 grams (0.44 pounds).
The average sweet potato weighs approximately 0.33 pounds (150 grams). How much you’re left with after cooking depends on the method used, among other factors.
Red potatoes have a firmer texture when cooked, so they are excellent for salads and other dishes where you need potatoes to hold their shape.
Like all other types of potatoes, their size and weight varies a lot. Small red potatoes weight about 0.17 pounds (80 grams) while extra large ones can weigh as much as 0.77 pounds (350 grams).
The average weight of a red potato is around 0.37 pounds (170 grams).
Don’t miss making Grilled Baby Potatoes with Garlic using small red potatoes.
Yukon Gold Potato
The average weight of Yukon Gold potatoes is approximately 173 grams (0.38 pounds). These medium-starch potatoes will give you a dense and creamy texture if mashed.
In comparison, russet potatoes are high-starch potatoes and mashed potatoes made with them will be more fluffy and airy.
Yukon Gold potatoes range from small, weighing approximately 82 grams (0.18 pounds) to extra-large, weighing up to 355 grams (0.78 pounds).
Small Potatoes (Baby, Fingerling, New Potatoes, Purple Potatoes)
Small potato varieties are usually sold in bags weighing 1 or 5 pounds. Their individual weight ranges between 1-3 ounces (0.06-0.18 pounds or 28-85 grams).
How Many Potatoes Are In A Pound? (By Type)
Potatoes are not uniform, and having a scale will make it easier to find out how many are in a pound. Nevertheless, you can totally do it without a scale once you learn how large the average potato is.
Whatever type of potato you’re working with, the general rule is two medium-sized potatoes weigh approximately one pound. You should be able to hold both in your hand, even if they will barely fit.
Perhaps the potatoes you have are not medium-sized, in which case the same rule applies: grab as many as will barely fit in one hand and you have a pound of potatoes.
Use the formulas below as a guideline:
3 Small potatoes = 1 Pound
1 – 1½ Large potato = 1 Pound
Depending on the variety of potato, they will have a different average size and weight.
Measuring how many will fit in a pound can be difficult, especially for small potatoes such as baby potatoes, fingerling potatoes, and blue or purple potatoes.
Use the guidelines below and your senses to figure out how many of them are in a pound:
- Russet potatoes – 2
- White potatoes – 3-4
- Yukon Gold or yellow potatoes – 5
- Red potatoes – 7-9
- Fingerling potatoes – 10-12
- Baby potatoes – 12-15
- Blue and purple potatoes – 15-18
How Many Potatoes Are In A 10 Pound Bag?
Knowing the approximate number of potatoes in a 10 pound bag can be of further help when you’re trying to figure out how many you need for a specific recipe or when planning to feed a crowd.
Here are some general estimates you can use as a guideline:
- Russet or Idaho potatoes – 16-20
- Yellow or white potatoes – 18-22
- Red or Yukon Gold potatoes – 25-30
- Fingerling potatoes – 60-70
- Baby potatoes – 80-100
How Many Potatoes Per Person For Mashed Potatoes?
Mashed potatoes are a staple potato recipe and easy to scale for feeding a crowd. The general recommendation is to use ½ pound of raw potatoes per person.
It might seem like a small serving but consider for mashed potatoes, they are boiled (so they don’t shrink), and you will also add other ingredients (milk, butter, heavy cream) that will increase the total weight of your dish.
Using the rule of ½ pound of potatoes per person, here’s how many you would need for your guests:
2 People: 1 Pound = 2 medium potatoes
4 People: 2 Pounds = 4 Medium potatoes
6 People: 3 Pounds = 6 Medium potatoes
10 People: 5 Pounds = 10 Medium potatoes
If you’re serving appetizers, or other mains and/or sides, you can make a little less. If mashed potatoes are the only side, you can always throw in some extra potatoes for those who might want a second helping.
How Many Potatoes Per Person For Roasted Potatoes?
Roasted potatoes are another excellent dish that’s well loved by everyone and perfect for family dinners, holidays, birthdays and any other event.
Compared to mashed potatoes, you will need more raw potatoes for the roasted variety. Besides the weight loss that comes with peeling and cleaning the potatoes, roasting also eliminates a good amount of water.
When you’re trying to figure out how many potatoes you need for roasting, aim for 10-12 ounces of raw potatoes per person. This also applies to baked potatoes. Here’s the math:
2 People: 1¼ -1 ½ pounds (3 medium potatoes)
4 People: 2½ -3 pounds (6 medium potatoes)
6 People: 3¾ – 4½ pounds (9 medium potatoes)
10 People: 6¼ – 7½ pounds (15 medium potatoes)
Feel free to adjust the numbers based on other dishes or sides you might be serving.
There are thousands of potato varieties, but they all fit into three main categories: starchy, all-purpose, and waxy.
Starchy potatoes – Some of the most common starchy potatoes are Russet and Idaho potatoes. They have high starch and low moisture, which results in a crispy exterior and a fluffy interior when roasted or fried. The high starch also makes them perfect for boiling and mashing.
Good for: Roasting, baking, frying, boiling, mashing.
Waxy potatoes – High in moisture and with a low starch content, waxy potatoes hold their shape when cooked. You can use baby potatoes, red potatoes, fingerling potatoes, and yellow potatoes for recipes that don’t require mashing or pureeing.
Good for: Roasting, grilling, steaming, stewing, boiling, slicing.
All-purpose potatoes – The medium-starch content makes all-purpose varieties like white potatoes, Yukon Gold potatoes, and blue/purple potatoes can be used instead of both waxy and starchy types.
Good for: Roasting, grilling, baking, steaming, frying, boiling, mashing.
The weight of potatoes does change when they’re cooked and whether they become lighter or heavier depends on the method used.
Boiling potatoes allows them to absorb water so their weight will increase. Baking causes some of the water potatoes naturally contain to evaporate so they will become lighter.
Recipes calling for potatoes by weight usually refer to raw potatoes unless otherwise specified. Measure or weigh your potatoes before cooking if you want to stay true to the recipe.
One cup will hold about 225 grams (almost 8 ounces or 1/2 pounds) of potato which is the approximate weight of a medium-sized potato.
Obviously, we can’t fill a cup with a whole potato and the way it’s processed will influence how much you need for a cup. Here are some approximations to use as a guideline:
1 Cup of sliced or shredded potato = 1 Medium potato
1 Cup of diced potato = 1¼ Medium potatoes
1 Cup of mashed potatoes = 2 Medium potatoes