I have some potatoes that are starting to sprout. Nothing crazy, but I'm worried about them all sprouting worse before I get the chance to turn them into breakfast.

I'm just going to be frying them anyways. I was thinking of peeling all of them and chopping them up. Perhaps just peeling them will do the trick?


In my own experience, yes you can peel and slice your potatoes if they are beginning to sprout. I know in many of the kitchens where I've worked it's common practice to store peeled potatoes and potatoes that are cut for chips submerged in cold water in the cooler. This will help the potatoes keep longer and prevent the peeled surfaces from browning and drying out, also the cold and lack of oxygen will prevent further sprouting.

  • 3
    The important part here is to make sure that the potatoes are fully submerged. Any exposed portions will get nasty-looking before long.
    – logophobe
    Feb 11 '15 at 14:09
  • How long can potatoes be kept this way?
    – Ross Ridge
    Feb 12 '15 at 20:18
  • I think the longest I've ever seen potatoes keep with this method is a week, but to be honest I wouldn't recommend that, especially with potatoes that are beginning to sprout already. Five days is probably your best bet Feb 13 '15 at 2:41

I don't know if peeling and/or chopping up the potatoes will help prevent them from sprouting but it will result in the potatoes becoming inedible much faster. The skin helps keep the moisture in the potato and protects it from pathogens. If you peel them the exposed surface will dry out quickly and they're no longer safe to store at room temperature. They should be safe for a few days stored in fridge, but that won't prevent them from drying out.

Fortunately as the answers to the question Is it safe to eat potatoes which have sprouted? show, you don't have to worry about your potatoes sprouting. As long as they don't go soft they're still safe to eat.

If you're finding that your potatoes are actually going bad before you can eat them you could freeze them, but this probably isn't worth the trouble. Just buy fewer potatoes.

  • 1
    Freezing raw potatoes is not a good idea: the starch turns into sugar and alters the potatoes' taste.
    – Stephie
    Feb 11 '15 at 6:17

As already stated, it doesn't matter if the potatoes have started to sprout, however I would argue that even soft potatoes are safe to eat even if they aren't as firm as you might like.

If you really want to stop your potatoes from sprouting, dig out the eyes. Without the eyes, there are no buds to sprout from.

When you plant potatoes, you can take any old potato and cut it into pieces so long as you leave 2 eyes on them (you can get away with 1 eye, but the failure rate is higher). The new plant sprouts from the eyes.


A good friend told me once to line a basket (any size) with towels, put your unsprouted potatoes in it and keep covered with the towel til you want to take some out to use them. I've had mine in the towel basket for over a month and none have sprouted - it works every time! They start to get a little soft, but they are still good as long as they are not mushy.


If stored potatoes are starting to sprout. Remove the sprouts and then store them in vegetable drawer in fridge.

  • Why? A good answer contains the "why" portion for an described action. This is more of a comment then an answer without it.
    – J Crosby
    Apr 20 '20 at 15:33

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