Hash Browns in Victoria = Variety

It’s pretty hard to mess up hash browns — or so you’d think. They are simply fried potatoes either diced, shredded, patty shaped, or oven baked. Throw in a few extra spices, some sweet onions or a side of hot sauce, and you’ve just stepped it up a notch. But over cook your hash browns, under cook them, under salt, twice cook, or deep-fry the life out of them and you’ll be in a world of hash brown hurt (#hurt). 

I will be the first to admit that I am a full-blown hash brown snob. I’m Irish. I love me a good helping of potatoes (really, any kind will do) as long as they are prepared right. I make no claims as to how your tater should be shaped; some prefer the shredded kind, while others are the rough cut type. Just so long as you get the crisp on the outside and the velvety buttery inside, you’re doing the hash brown thing right in my books.

There are two important steps in making the perfect hash browns, depending on your chosen style. For the shredded method: squeeze the potato to drain as much liquid as possible before cooking. This helps to make the hash brown extra crispy and to cook the potato thoroughly. For the country-style, pan-fried, or oven-baked method: parboil the potatoes for at least 3-4 minutes before cutting them into chunks or bite sized pieces. This will prevent burning on the outside and under cooking the inside Finally, if you want to knock your spuds out of the park, it’s best to use butter (or vegan butter) not oil. This will crisp up your hash browns, and adds a nice rich flavour.

Bottom line, when it comes to hash browns, you really don’t want to mess around. You want crisp on the outside, creamy on the inside, and less grease is a bonus too.

If you’re not into tackling the complexities of the hash brown, however, skip all the fuss and try these following Victoria restaurants for their version of the ultimate breakfast potato.

Hash browns with Chef's Triple Benny (Heron)

Heron Rock Bistro

435 Simcoe Street, website.

Topped with caramelized onions and served with house made Chokeslam hot sauce, these pan-fries are a total knockout. All the right points are hit with these tasty taters; crispy, creamy, savoury and extra tasty with that hot sauce kick. Try them along side the Chef’s Choice Triple Benny and you’ll have yourself a bona fide party on a plate.

Jam Hash Browns

Jam Cafe

542 Herald Street, website.

The old school shredded style hash brown. These are top notch as far as home fries go, perfectly seasoned, nice and crispy, and not dry at all. No ketchup needed here! Instead, Jam tops their taters with house-made slow roasted tomatoes. No oil here either; straight-up clarified butter gives these potatoes the perfect mouth feel. Dive in and enjoy these classic hash browns.

Fernwood hash browns

Fernwood Inn

1302 Gladstone Avenue, website.

A pleasant surprise here. Not only are they thick and crispy, these browns are also extra-creamy. With the addition of sweet potatoes, parsnips, red skinned potatoes, and shallots, these hash browns have a slightly sweet and nicely spiced flavour.


Mo: Le`Restaurant

554 Pandora Avenue, website.

Mo: Le` gets extra points in my books for the brilliant decision to add pesto to their hash browns. Potatoes and pesto: a match made in heaven. Vegans and nut-free folks need not worry; the pesto is made with garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, basil and oil. Delicious!


Do you have any hash brown tricks or tips to share? Have we missed your favourite hash brown hot spot in Victoria? Comment on the post on our Facebook page or tweet and let us know!

Written By:

Holly Brooke is a true B.C. gal. Having lived on the west coast most of her life, except for several years in the Kootenay's where she canoed and fished and lived in a tipi, she's very much at home outdoors and in the kitchen. ...

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