No Hanukkah celebration is complete without crispy golden latkes, but frying up a big batch can often result in a grease-covered kitchen. Enter the air fryer, which gives you perfectly cooked potato pancakes in a contained mess. There is some oil involved—as there should be for the tradition and flavor of this recipe—but it's significantly reduced. This means fewer calories and grams of fat so you can enjoy more without the added guilt.
The latkes are prepared in the traditional way by grating the potatoes and onions, squeezing out the liquid, and preparing the binding ingredients. Then the last step is simply done in the air fryer. We brushed the basket of the air fryer and the top of each latke with olive oil for flavor and extra crunch.
Serve them with sour cream and applesauce and a few chopped chives for a little zing. You can enjoy potato latkes year round as a side for your favorite roast, vegetables, and other hearty sides. There’s lots of different techniques used in making latkes. Everyone has their tried and true method—we’ve included a few tips below that we think are useful if you need some help.
- 3 to 4 russet potatoes
- 1 medium yellow onion (peeled and quartered)
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons matzo meal (or unseasoned breadcrumbs)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- For serving: sour cream, apple sauce, chopped chives
Gather the ingredients.
Scrub the potatoes and grate them on the large holes of a box grater. You can also use the grating blade in your food processor.
You can chop the shreds into smaller pieces if you wish. This will make for smaller pieces in the latkes and can help you make them more compact rounds.
Grate or chop the onions. Combine the potatoes and onions. Rinse the shredded mixture with water.
Drop the mixture onto a few layers of cheesecloth and squeeze the liquid out over a bowl. Twist and squeeze as hard as you can until almost all of the liquid has been removed. Put the potato and onion shreds into a separate bowl.
Let the liquid settle, then pour off most of the liquid to leave behind the starchy, thick fluid that gathers at the bottom of the bowl. Discard the liquid that you pour off.
Whisk together the egg, matzo meal, salt, pepper, and potato starch.
Add egg mixture to the potato and onion shreds and combine until evenly distributed.
Generously grease the bottom of your air fryer with olive oil.
Dollop 1/4 cup portions of the latke mixture onto the greased basket. Make them as thick or as thin as you would like. Sprinkle them with more salt. Brush the top of each latke with more olive oil.
Cook in the air fryer at 400 F for 8 minutes.
Flip and cook for another 5 minutes or until golden brown and crisp.
Re-grease the air fryer and cook in batches until all of the latke batter is cooked.
Keep them warm in a 200 F oven on a cooling rack over a baking sheet. When they're all done, serve hot with applesauce and sour cream.