America’s 10 Best Hash Browns
August 27, 2015
A plate of perfect hash browns is a work of art
America’s 10 Best Hash Browns
When hash browns are great, they’re really great. When hash browns are bad, they’re really, really bad. We tracked down the 10 best restaurant hash browns in America, and the results will have you dreaming about them for days to come.
#10 The Pan, Gardena, Calif.
Yelp/ Steve S.
Breakfast dishes and pan pizza are a weird combo for a restaurant to specialize in, but it all makes sense at The Pan. For just two bucks you can get a side order of perfect hash browns, which are thin and crispy and definitively good. But, even though we said we weren't judging add-ons, if you want the full hash brown experience here, you’ll order them loaded, topped with two eggs any style, bacon, sausage, green onions, Jack and Cheddar cheeses, and chile aïoli. It’s rich and insanely comforting.
#9 Sunset Junction Coffee Shop, Los Angeles
Yelp/ Selene H.
This unassuming Sunset Boulevard neighborhood diner is beloved for its all-day breakfast menu, anchored by dishes like biscuits and gravy, huevos rancheros, and corned beef hash. Their hash browns are a must-order, treat, however; they’re hand-formed patties that crunch spectacularly as you cut into them, and they’re so crispy and well-seasoned that a sprinkling of chives is all they need. Ordering them “fully loaded” with Cheddar cheese, avocado, sour cream, and pico de gallo doesn’t hurt in the least, though.
#8 Cream Pot, Honolulu
In this restaurant inside the Hawaiian Monarch Hotel, chef Nathan Tran focuses on using high-quality ingredients to create playful takes on traditional breakfast fare in a relaxed setting. His hash brown is simple as can be, and just about perfect: a patty of well-seasoned shredded potato, fried in a pan until crispy and almost burnt, topped with a dollop of crème fraîche and a sprinkling of scallion.
#7 900 Grayson, Berkeley, Calif.
Yelp/ Bob F
This funky café serves playful spins on breakfast and lunchtime fare, including some delicious burgers. Lots of their breakfast dishes are served with their Idaho hashed browns, in which they take a lot of pride, and with good reason: They’re stunning. These rounds are perfectly browned the whole way around, just the right thickness to be crispy on the outside and still soft on the inside, and will fill you up but leave you wanting just a little bit more.
#6 Buttermilk Channel, Brooklyn
Yelp/ Cassandra B
This Carroll Gardens brunch hotspot modestly lists their hash browns on their menu of side dishes, but they’re unlike any other hash brown you’ll encounter. The potatoes are finely shredded and formed into two small patties per order, and they’re golden brown and delicious on the outside while remaining soft and pliable on the inside. They’re served with ketchup, but they’re stellar on their own.
#5 Gravy, Portland, Ore.
The hash browns at this no-reservations breakfast spot in Portland seem to have a magical quality to them, with an ethereal and non-greasy texture that almost resembles a pile of super-skinny fries that somehow got stuck together. Perfectly browned wisps of crunchy deliciousness fly off in all directions, and while the exterior is super crunchy, the inside is soft and inviting.
#4 Barney’s Beanery, Los Angeles
Serving hungry Angelenos everything from breakfast all day to baby back ribs for more than 90 years, this comfort food icon is no slouch when it comes to hash browns, one of their not-so-well-kept secrets. These shreds of potato are loosely arranged on a flattop on top of a nice amount of clarified butter, then flipped when golden brown and seared on the other side. They’re the perfect complement to any breakfast dish there, and are also an essential component of their breakfast bagel sandwich.
#3 Joseph Leonard, New York City
Yelp/ Fazeela S
This rustic American gastropub is located in New York’s West Village, and hiding amongst the avocado toast, pain perdu Benedict, and saucisson à l’ail is an eight-dollar “Hashbrown.” This seems like a princely sum for fried potato shreds, but once it arrives at your table you’ll be in awe. This hash brown is absolutely massive, the size of a small deep dish pizza, and comes with a knife to cut off wedges; it can feed a small family all by itself. The outside is extremely crispy and the inside soft; Serious Eats’ Ed Levine called it “hash brown hall of fame material” in his review, and we agree.
#2 Jimmy’s East Side Diner, Miami
This Miami old-school retro-style diner specializes in all-day breakfasts and other diner staples like burgers, pancakes, and corned beef hash. While the home fries are thick, rustic, and loaded with peppers and onions, the hash browns are a work of art, and definitely the way to go. Oblong and fried on a well-seasoned griddle, they’re a shade of golden brown that other hash browns (or anything fried, really) can only aspire to.
#1 The Publican, Chicago
Yelp/ Not Just Brunch B
Chef Paul Kahan’s Chicago landmark is renowned for its perfectly cooked fish and other meats, but if you drop by for brunch, you’ll encounter a completely transformed menu, with standouts like red wine-poached eggs with La Quercia prosciutto and a buttermilk-glazed old-fashioned doughnut side by side with a perfect hash brown. This monster is probably 10 inches across and a little less than an inch thick, made with extra-long strands of perfectly browned potato. It’s an unexpected standout on an already stunning menu, and it’s a side dish we’d gladly eat with every meal, breakfast, lunch, or dinner.