Tater crowns are golden brown coin-shaped potato products that are perfect as part of a tasty meal or as a small, potato snack. As the name might suggest, they are closely linked to tater tots, which remain a lot of people’s comfort food.
In fact, in the midwest of America tater tots and crowns as used extensively as components in other dishes, such as tater tot casserole.
Filled with grated potatoes and rounder and flatter than traditional tater tots, tater crowns, sometimes referred to as “crispy crowns” tend to be a lot crunchier and crispier than their counterparts.
Why Make Air Fryer Tater Crowns?
Air fryers of all types are perfect for cooking tater crowns. They can easily be cooked from frozen, and the quick preheating and cooking time of an air fryer means that they are done much quicker than in an oven.
Heath benefits of air frying over deep frying
Not only is it quicker than using an oven, but thanks to the way in which air fryers can make the most of just a small amount of oil to cook your food, it is much healthier to air fry your tater crowns than to deep fry them.
Tater crowns are also made from potatoes. When potatoes and other starchy foods are cooked at high temperatures, they produce a chemical called acrylamide, which is a carcinogenic compound.
By using an air fryer instead of a deep fat fryer, you can cut down the production of acrylamide by 90%.
Air fryer tater crowns also require no draining off of oil after cooking in order to get rid of extra grease such as is required when deep frying them. This means you have perfect, fluffy, and crispy tater crowns every time!
Choosing the Perfect Tater Crowns
Different potato crown brands
The owner of the trademark for Tater Crowns is the same as that of Tater Tots, Ore-Ida foods.
However, there are other companies that create coin or disc-shaped tater tots under different names. You may find them being called crispy crowns, tater puffs, or potato puffs.
Factors to consider
Depending upon the manufacturer, and indeed the country that you have purchased the tater crowns in, you may see differences in their ingredients and appearance. For example, they may use different seasonings, potatoes, or different oil.
Some tater crowns and tater tots use flour in order to bind together the ingredients and to help to create a crispy coating, which can be tricky for coeliacs and those with gluten intolerance.
Thankfully, some brands do create gluten-free versions of tater crowns, although these may be harder to find in some stores.
Where to buy and what to look for
Tater crowns are predominantly found in the US, typically in most grocery stores’ frozen food sections. The most recognizable brand that makes tater crowns are Ore-Ida, but you may find a grocery store’s own brand or another alternative.
When it comes to what tater crowns to choose, look for products with a high potato content, and little to no artificial preservatives, colors, or flavorings.
Preparing Tater Crowns for Air Frying
Depending upon the type of air fryer that you have, you may need to set it up differently for air fryer tater crowns.
Basket air fryers are rather simple, in the fact that you can place them straight in, while other air fryers with racks will need you to place the tater crowns onto one of the air fryer trays.
For the mess-conscious, line the tray with parchment paper before putting the tater crowns on, or for basket air fryers, silicone inserts work well and can be easily washed out after use.
A fork, fish slice, or tongs work great for removing the tater crowns when they are done cooking.
Thawing and prepping the tater crowns
You do not need to thaw out the tater crowns before cooking them, as they cook straight from frozen!
However, for best results, make sure that your air fryer is preheated before placing them in, and make sure to add oil or a non-stick cooking spray if your air fryer requires this.
Some people may choose to season their tater crowns before cooking them, although this is completely optional! Choices range from the simple addition of salt and pepper, or chili for a bit of a kick.
For something different, smoked paprika adds a hit of color and flavor, or a small dusting of turmeric creates golden yellow discs that can be stars of the show for a buffet or group gathering.
Step-by-Step Guide to Air Frying Tater Crowns
It is worth noting that different brands may vary in their cooking times, temperatures, and instructions, so make sure to read the packaging of your tater crowns first.
For our guide, we are going to be basing our cooking instructions on the most popular brand: Ore-Ida’s Golden Crispy Crowns.
- Preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees. This should normally only take a few minutes.
- Place a single layer of tater crowns into the basket or onto the rack of your air fryer. Don’t be tempted to stack them!
- Cook for 10-12 minutes, making sure to flip them over r to shake the basket halfway through the cooking time.
- Once the tater tots are golden brown and have an internal temperature of around 165 degrees they are done!
- For extra crispiness, you can give them an extra 1-2 minutes, or even use the “extra crisp” option on your air fryer if applicable.
Although they are tasty on their own, tater crowns are best served along with a sauce or dip. This could be something as simple as ketchup or soured cream and chives, but the options are endless depending upon your personal preference.
If you are looking for some other ways to serve air fryer tater crowns other than just with a dip, check out some of our ideas.
Crispy crown cups
Instead of placing the dip to the side, gently creating a small recess in the top of the tater crown with the back of a spoon allows you to fill it with toppings, much like a loaded potato skin!
These make for perfect canape-style bites that are great for parties or events. The filling can either be placed cold on top of pre-cooked tater crowns, or added on a few minutes before the end of the tater crowns’ cooking time.
Tater crown sliders
Thanks to their small, disc-like shape, tater crowns can be an inventive substitute for a burger bun when making mini sliders. Simply place in your cooked mini patties and whatever fillings you like for a fun alternative.
As they are similar to hash browns in their makeup, creating a breakfast burger with egg and bacon is always a popular and tasty choice!
Frequently Asked Questions about Air Fryer Tater Crowns
Q. Can you cook frozen tater crowns in an air fryer?
A. Yes, you can! In fact, unless stated on the packaging, most tater crowns are designed to be cooked from frozen rather than thawed.
Q. How many tater crowns can you cook at once?
A. This will vary depending on the style and capacity of your air fryer. However, the rule of thumb is to make sure that you only place one single layer of tater crowns upon the cooking surface, so don’t be tempted to stack them!
Q. What is the best way to reheat cooked tater crowns?
A. If you end up making more tater crowns than you can handle, you don’t need to throw them away. Refrigerate them in an airtight container lined with parchment paper where they will keep for up to 5 days.
When you are ready to eat them, simply place them back into the air fryer at 400 degrees for around 4-6 minutes or until they are piping hot inside.
Air fryer tater crowns take out the messiness and the excess oil involved in deep frying, as well as offering a quicker cooking time than heating in an oven. Once you try them this way, it is doubtful you will go back!
The sky is the limit when it comes to how you serve your tater crowns, and when they are so quick and easy to cook up in your air fryer, we are interested to know what you come up with!