Southwest Grilled Red Potatoes

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My recipe for grilled red potatoes is simple, accessible, and bursting with flavor. Zesty garlic, smoky chili powder, fiery red pepper, and aromatic rosemary team up to transform humble red potatoes into insanely tasty grilled potato treasures. 

closeup: grilled red potatoes on metal skewers over fresh herbs

Grilled potatoes are easy to make, fantastically flavorful, and incredibly versatile. I like to make a batch of these mouthwatering potato skewers anytime I am firing up the grill. Whether I am making Grilled Turkey BurgersGrilled Ribeye, or Grilled Pineapple Salmon, grilled red potatoes always seem to pair perfectly. 

extreme closeup: grilled red potatoes on metal skewers on a wire rack

With most all of the ingredients in my pantry, it’s easy to make this recipe at least once a week. It shows us just how much we can accomplish with simple, quality ingredients and a little bit of time. Plus, these spuds are naturally vegetarian and gluten-free. 

For more extravagantly easy potato recipes, check out my Pesto Potato Salad, Hasselback Potato, and these Creamy Scalloped Potatoes.

Ingredient Notes and Substitutions

  • Red Potatoes – Feature a thin skin, waxy texture, and a slightly sweet flavor. Red potatoes are the ideal choice, or you can substitute a variety like Yukon Gold. 
  • Vegetable Oil – Choose an oil with a versatile flavor and a high smoke point like peanut, grapeseed, canola, or avocado oil. 
  • Garlic – Perks up the recipe with a zesty, peppery punch. 
  • Rosemary – This piney, aromatic herb brings a complex flavor with hints of lavender, sage, pepper, and mint. If none is available, choose another herbaceous gem like thyme, oregano, or a savory blend of Italian spices. 
  • Salt – A dash of kosher salt perks up the whole recipe with its harmonizing flavor. 
  • Red Pepper Flakes Adds an invigorating pop of red, fiery heat. 
  • Chili Powder – This savory, smoky, and spicy blend gives these grilled potatoes their Southwest flair. Shop in the spice aisle or click the link for a stellar DIY version.
overhead: red potatoes in marinade in a plastic bag on top of a wire rack

Tip From Kevin

Choose Your Skewers Wisely

You can use either wooden or metal skewers to make this recipe. If using wood, remember to soak them before you add the potatoes. And, if you use metal, watch out! They can get really hot after grilling.

overhead: uncooked red potatoes on skewers on a wire rack

How to Make Southwest Grilled Red Potatoes

  1. Boil the Potatoes. Bring a pot of water to boiling and cook the potatoes for 10-12 minutes. Drain and cool until ready to handle.
  2. Make the Marinade. Add 1 tablespoon of rosemary along with the oil, garlic, salt, red pepper flakes, and chili powder to a small bowl and mix to combine. 
  3. Marinate the Potatoes. Combine the potatoes and the oil mixture in a bowl or sealable bag and toss to coat. Cover or seal and set aside to marinate for 30 minutes. 
  4. Prepare the Grill. Get the grill or smoker ready by preheating to 425-450 degrees F.
  5. Assemble the Skewers. To prevent burning, soak wooden skewers in cold water for 5 minutes prior to skewering. Alternatively, you can use metal skewers. Just remember they get hot! Thread the marinated potatoes onto the skewers of your choice. 
  6. Grill the Potatoes. Transfer the potato skewers to the grill or smoker. Turning frequently, grill for 25-30 minutes. Once the potatoes are very soft with a bit of char, remove from the grill. Sprinkle the remaining rosemary on top and serve.
overhead: grilled red potatoes on skewers on a wire rack

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Frequently Asked Questions

Should I boil red potatoes before grilling?

Yes, you should boil red potatoes before grilling. This step will ensure that your grilled red potatoes are soft and creamy on the inside with an irresistible crispy, crunchy exterior. It also helps the potatoes absorb all the flavor of the Southwest marinade.

Do you peel red potatoes before boiling?

I like to keep the skins on for this grilled potatoes recipe. It adds a lovely dash of color and an enticing texture. 

However, it is perfectly okay to peel your potatoes if desired. If you choose to do this, use a peeler to remove the skins prior to boiling. This is much easier than trying to remove the skins from the already-cooked, hot potatoes.

How long do you soak potatoes before grilling?

This recipe for grilled red potatoes does not require any soaking time. Instead, the potatoes are parboiled, which accomplishes the same goal in much less time. 

Soaking potatoes is done to remove excess starches from the vegetable, which helps it cook more evenly and gives it a lighter, crispier texture. This process can take anywhere from 20 minutes to a few hours — after which a parboil would still be needed. 

Parboiling, on the other hand, is a quick method of removing starches and softening the potatoes just slightly. Smaller or chopped potatoes need 10-15 minutes, while larger, whole potatoes need about 25-30 minutes. 

Although it isn’t required, there certainly isn’t any harm in giving your red potatoes a quick soak before parboiling them. In fact, it might just take this grilled potatoes recipe to the next level of crispiness! 

To do this, simply soak the potatoes in a bath of icy salt water for about 20 minutes before transferring to the boiling pot. Continue with the rest of the recipe instructions as usual.

closeup: grilled red potatoes on skewers over fresh herbs
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Southwest Grilled Red Potatoes

These savory, smoky, and spicy Southwest grilled red potatoes are melt-in-your-mouth tender with an irresistibly crispy crunch.
Servings: 4
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Marinate Time: 30 minutes
Total: 1 hour 15 minutes



  • Cook the potatoes in boiling water for 10-12 minutes. Drain and let cool enough to handle.
  • Mix together the oil, garlic, 1 tablespoon of the rosemary, salt red pepper flakes and chili powder.
  • Transfer the red potatoes to a sealable bag or bowl and pour oil mixture over, tossing to coat. Seal in bag or bowl and let rest for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat grill or smoker to 425-450°F.
  • Thread marinated potatoes onto skewers. If using wooden skewers, soak them in cold water for 5 minutes first so they don’t burn on the grill. I use metal ones myself (be careful they get hot).
  • Place the skewered potatoes on a rack in the grill or smoker and cook for around 25 to 30 minutes, turning frequently, until very soft and slightly charred, remove from the grill and serve with remaining rosemary sprinkled on top.


Calories: 85kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 0.3g | Saturated Fat: 0.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.04g | Sodium: 615mg | Potassium: 543mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 260IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 1mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Course: side dishes
Cuisine: American, Southern
Have You Made This Recipe? Let Me Know on InstagramTag @keviniscooking or tag me #keviniscooking!
titled image (and shown): southwest grilled red potatoes


Whether in the kitchen or on the grill, you’ll find me cooking American favorites with a love for BBQ, Mexican and Tex Mex. I’m passionate about making tasty food because life’s too short to be bland!

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  1. 5 stars
    Made this last night and they were so good! I served them alongside your Cracker Barrel copycat meatloaf. Everyone loved both and the red potatoes were so creamy inside with a crispy outside. Will def keep this recipe for more summer grillin.

  2. Can’t wait to try these potatoes! And what great photography!
    One question: the recipe says to boil 10-12 minutes. I’ve always heard that potatoes should be put in cold water then warmed to boiling (not sure if this is a cooking myth my mom passed along?). Should I drop the potatoes in boiling water or warm the water & potatoes and then start timing it once it’s boiling?
    Thanks for your help!

    1. Thanks and good question Carolyn. It’s important to add potatoes to cold water and allow the water to come to a boil because the potato starch reacts as soon as it comes in contact with hot water, which will promote uneven cooking and possibly mealy textured potatoes. You can do this if you prefer, but since these are then skewered and then grilled, I do not. The potatoes are not completely cooked when boiled, it’s just a process to assist in cutting down time on the grill. Hope this helps.