Papas Arrugadas (Wrinkled Potatoes)

Spanish whole wrinkled potatoes with a bowl of bright red hot sauce to the side

The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 20 mins
Servings: 4 to 6 servings
Yield: 2 1/2 pounds
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
176 Calories
0g Fat
40g Carbs
5g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 176
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 2134mg 93%
Total Carbohydrate 40g 15%
Dietary Fiber 4g 15%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 5g
Vitamin C 18mg 91%
Calcium 30mg 2%
Iron 2mg 11%
Potassium 1012mg 22%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Papas arrugadas, wrinkled potatoes, is a typical dish of the Canary Islands, where potatoes have been cultivated since the 1600s, when they were first brought back to Spain by the conquistadores. Residents of the Canary Islands, called Carnarios, call potatoes papas—the indigenous peoples' name for them—while in the rest of Spain, they are called patatas.

This dish requires only two ingredients: small potatoes—rather than the huge monsters we’ve gotten used to seeing in the supermarkets—and coarse sea salt. Traditionally, the potatoes were boiled in seawater, but adding a generous amount of sea salt to the water will create a similar effect both in terms of taste and developing the wrinkled exterior. That being said, you don't peel the potatoes—just be sure to clean them well before cooking. 

Serve the papas arrugadas as a small plate, a side dish with fish or meat, or as an appetizer along with the traditional Canary Islands sauces mojo picon or mojo cilantro.

"A perfectly salty, easy and quick potato recipe. It can be a great side dish to any protein and you can serve it with basically any sauce that you want. I served mine with homemade creamy cilantro sauce and it was great." —Tara Omidvar

Papas Arrugadas (Wrinkled Potatoes)/Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for Spanish wrinkled potatoes recipe gathered

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  2. Wash any dirt off the potatoes and remove “eyes,” if any.

    Whole unpeeled potatoes in a colander

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  3. Place the potatoes in a large pot and add water to just cover; add the salt.

    Potatoes in a pot of water

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  4. Boil potatoes for 15 to 20 minutes until cooked.

    Potatoes in a pot of boiling water

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  5. Remove from heat and pour off the water.

    Drained potatoes in a pot

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  6. Return pot with potatoes to the stove, letting the steam evaporate. You should see a layer of salt form on the dry potato skins.

    Potatoes in a pot with a layer of salt forming on the skins

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  7. Serve hot with red pepper sauce (mojo picon) or cilantro green sauce (mojo cilantro) on the side.

    Spanish wrinkled whole potatoes served with a bowl of bright red hot sauce on a plate

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga


  • Select small, thin-skinned potatoes, lower-moisture potatoes such as Yukon Golds, new potatoes, multicolored baby potatoes, or fingerlings. This is not a dish for russets.

How to Store and Freeze Papas Arrugadas

Any leftover wrinkled potatoes will keep in the refrigerator for three to four days, as long as they are well wrapped. You can reheat them in a skillet or wrap in foil and place in a 350 F oven until heated through.

You can freeze boiled potatoes, and ones with thin skins and low moisture content (such as new or Yukon) tend to freeze the best in terms of their texture when thawed. Frozen potatoes will last at least six months in the freezer as long as they are well wrapped.

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