Irish Potatoes

I have a very distinct memory of being in elementary school during our homeroom St. Patrick’s Day party, and someone handing me something they called an “Irish Potato.” Being a fan of potatoes, I happily popped it in my mouth, only to find it was really just a glob of cream cheese and coconut, two ingredients I despised at that point in my life. I made it a point to avoid the candy potato impostors after that. But this year, when it was suggested I make some Irish Potatoes as a St. Patrick’s Day treat, I figured I’d give them another chance. Even though my tastes have matured, the Irish Potatoes didn’t do it for me. I prefer my cream cheese frosting to be on top of a cupcake. But if you are looking to make some for your holiday festivities, here is a super easy recipe. 

Fun fact brought to you by wikipedia: Apparently Irish Potatoes are a Philly thing. We make them with cream cheese and coconut and roll them in cinnamon. However, there was a time when these candies were actually made with dried potatoes. Both sound pretty weird to me.

Irish Potatoes

  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temp
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups flaked coconut (sweetened)
  • 3 tbsp ground cinnamon

In a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add the vanilla and confectioners’ sugar. Mix on low speed until well combined. Using a spatula, mix in the coconut. Place the cinnamon in a large ziploc bag. You may use as much cinnamon as desired to coat the potatoes. The amount needed will depend on how large you roll out the potatoes. Working in small batches, roll the cream cheese mixture into balls and place them in the ziploc bag. Shake the bag to coat the potatoes. Set aside on a tray lined with silpat or parchment paper. Place completed potatoes in a cool area, or refrigerate, to set. I got approximately 50 potatoes from this batch.


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