Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise

Saturday 27 November 2021


Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise 

I adore potatoes in any way shape or form.  They are quite simply my favorite vegetable!  A day without a potato in it is just not a good day for me!

I love them boiled, fried, baked, steamed . . .  in the skins, out of the skins . . . plain, buttered, any which way you can prepared them. I have never met a potato that I did not like!

If I could only bring one kind of food with me to a deserted island, it would be the potato. No questions asked!

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise 
One of my favorite potato side dishes has to be Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise. This is a classic potato recipe names after the city of Lyon in France.

It is an amazing side dish that goes with just about every kind of protein . . .  meat, fish or poultry. I cannot think of a thing that it wouldn't sit nicely beside.

Not only that but it uses relatively few ingredients. You can cook it all on top of the stove, frying the potatoes, or you can bake it in the oven after caramelizing the onions.

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise 
It is delicious any way you choose to cook it. I choose to cook it in the onion.  Let me say upfront however, if cream is added you don't have Potatoes Lyonnaise.

You have Potatoes Dauphinoise which is an entirely different thing. I see so many people out there confusing the two.  They are not the same thing. Not the same thing at all!

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise 

One of the beauties of this dish is that it uses only three simple ingredients not counting the seasoning. Yes, you read that correctly.  Only three simple ingredients. 

  • Butter (I always use salted butter for cooking, unless otherwise specified)
  • Onions (A simple brown skinned cooking onion)
  • Potatoes 

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise 

The recipe requires the use of a "floury" potato. You may not be familiar with that term. A floury potato is simply a potato that breaks down when cooking and becomes somewhat fluffy.  

They are great for mashing, roasting, baking, chipping, etc.  unlike their "waxy" counterpart, which are ideal for salads or dishes in which you want your potato to maintain it's shape.

Ideally you will want to use a russet type of potato in North America or in the UK a Maris Piper or a King Edward. You don't want to be using new potatoes either.  They tend to be on the waxy side.

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise 

As mentioned this can be cooked completely on top of the stove, frying the potatoes as well as the onions, or it can be cooked in the oven.

In both instances you need to fry/caramelize the onions first.

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise 

You need to peel one onion for this small batch version. (If you are making  a larger version, double the butter and use a large onion.) 

I cut my onion into slices about 1/3 of an inch thick. You don't want to cut them so thin that they disappear.  You also don't want to chop them.

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise

Peel, cut in half lengthwise and then cut crosswise into half moons.  You will be frying these in a quantity of butter.  Some people choose not to let them brown.  I am very naughty, I want them to caramelize a bit because I adore caramelized onions.

You can peel or not peel your potato. I leave the peels on.  I like the peel of a potato.  But if they bother you, by all means peel.  If your potatoes are overly large, cut them also in half lengthwise and then crosswise into half moons. 

If you are cooking a larger amount, double the butter and the amount of potatoes as well.

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise 

These then get layered in a baking dish.  For this smaller amount I used a 9 inch Pyrex deep dish pie plate which gets buttered first.  If you are making more use a larger dish.

You want to layer in a layer of potatoes, onion, potatoes, onion and finish with potatoes.   Season each layer lightly with salt and pepper as you go. 

Once you have them all layered in the dish, pour any residual butter from the skillet over top.  Easy peasy.  Bang into a hot oven and let them bake until golden brown and the tip of a sharp knife inserts easily.

Sprinkle with parsley and serve immediately!

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise

These are so delicious and quite simply one of my favorite ways to cook potatoes, but then again . . . . potato glutton here that I am, there is no bad way to cook them.

Not that I have met yet anyways!  Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise.  A very good thing.  Enjoy! 

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise

Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise

Yield: 2 - 3
Author: Marie Rayner
Prep time: 10 MinCook time: 1 H & 45 MTotal time: 2 H & 5 M
I downsized one of my favorite potato recipes to feed the smaller family. These are easy to make, use only a few simple ingredients and are incredibly delicious!


  • 3 TBS butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and sliced
  • 1 pound (1/2 KG) floury type of potatoes, sliced (use a russet or a King Edward/Maris Piper)
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • parsley to garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 375*F/190*C/ gas mark 5.
  2. Lightly butter a 9 inch deep glass pie dish. Set aside.
  3. Melt the butter in a skillet. Add the onions. Cook gently over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes, until the onions just start to caramelize a tiny bit.
  4. Layer the potatoes and onions in the buttered pie dish, seasoning each layer with salt and pepper. You should finish with a layer of potato.
  5. Pour any butter left in the skillet over top of the potatoes. Bake in the preheated oven for 1 1/2 hours until the potatoes are tender and golden brown. (The tip of a knife should pierce them easily.)
  6. Sprinkle with parsley and serve immediately. Delicious!
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Classic Potatoes Lyonnaise
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  1. I made dauphinoise potatoes yesterday! I've never made this version of potato before, but as we love potatoes, I'll be making this soon. And caramelising those onions until they are nice and brown - otherwise what's the point?

    Have a lovely, lovely weekend with your family!

    1. I agree with you Marie. What's the point. You have to caramelize the onions. Traditionally I guess they didn't, but my oh my, what a shame as the caramelization is what makes this special! Thank you! I am waiting for them to arrive now! So excited! xoxo

  2. Sounds delicious and rich and looks lovey.

  3. To caramelize onions quicker and better, add a little bit of salt to them, always works!

    1. I will bear that in mind. Thanks for the suggestion.


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