How many russet potatoes make 2 lbs?

Quick Answer

On average, about 3 medium russet potatoes make up around 2 pounds. The exact number can vary a bit depending on the size of each potato. Generally though, 2 pounds is equivalent to 3 medium-sized russet potatoes.

Calculating How Many Potatoes in 2 Pounds

To figure out how many potatoes make up 2 pounds, we first need to look at the average size and weight of individual russet potatoes. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the average medium russet potato weighs 6.5 ounces (184 grams).

With 1 pound equal to 16 ounces, that means around 3 average medium potatoes would be needed to make 2 full pounds. Here’s the math:

– 1 medium russet potato = 6.5 ounces
– To make 1 pound = 16 ounces
– So for 2 pounds = 32 ounces total
– Dividing 32 ounces by 6.5 ounces per potato = approximately 3 potatoes

Therefore, on average, 3 medium-sized russet potatoes should weigh about 2 pounds.

Factors That Affect Potato Size

While an average of 3 russet potatoes per 2 pounds is typical, the exact number can vary somewhat based on a few different factors:

Potato Variety

There are over 200 varieties of potatoes, each with their own typical size ranges. Russet potatoes tend to be on the larger side, while red, white, yellow, purple, and fingerling varieties are often smaller. Very small potato types may take more tubers to make up 2 pounds.

Individual Potato Size

Potatoes can range from very small to extra large, even within the same variety. Larger individual potatoes will mean fewer are needed per 2 pounds, while smaller potatoes will mean more are required. Terms like “medium” or “large” are subjective.

Moisture Content

The moisture content in a fresh potato can impact its weight. Drier potatoes may be lighter, requiring more to make up 2 pounds. Potatoes sold in grocery stores are often sprayed with water misters to increase moisture.

Trimming and Peeling

If the potatoes are trimmed or peeled before weighing, this removes some flesh and decreases the overall mass. More untrimmed potatoes would be needed to equal 2 pounds if peels and ends are removed.

Cooking Method

Cooking techniques lead to changes in moisture content which affects the final weight. Boiling, frying, roasting and other prep and cooking methods can alter moisture levels in the final potatoes.

How to Confirm with Hands-On Weighing

Since potato sizes can be variable, the most accurate way to tell how many you need for 2 pounds is to simply weigh and count them yourself.

You can follow these steps:

1. Gather medium russet potatoes from your pantry or grocery store. Select potatoes that appear similar in size to start.

2. Choose a kitchen scale and place a large bowl on top.

3. Tare or zero out the scale with the empty bowl on it.

4. Begin adding potatoes to the bowl one at a time. Allow the scale to reset between each potato.

5. Keep track of the number of potatoes and stop when the scale reads around 32 ounces or 2 pounds.

6. The final number of potatoes is how many medium russets are in 2 pounds for the batch you measured.

While time consuming, this hands-on approach accounts for individual size differences and provides a customized answer for that particular group of potatoes.

Typical Ways 2 Pounds of Russet Potatoes Are Used

Knowing approximately how many russet potatoes are in 2 pounds allows you to purchase and prepare the right amount for many common recipes and uses. Here are some examples:

Mashed Potatoes for 4 People

To make mashed potatoes for 4 servings, you typically need about 2 pounds of russet potatoes. After peeling and boiling, 2 pounds breaks down into a good amount of mash to accompany a meal.

Homemade French Fries

Making baked or pan-fried french fries to serve 3-4 people takes roughly 2 pounds of potatoes. The potatoes are washed, trimmed, cut, and then cooked resulting in crisp fries.

Roast Potatoes for a Meal

Roasting chopped russet potatoes in the oven takes around 2 pounds to generate enough roasted potatoes to accompany a main course for 4 people. They are seasoned and roasted until browned and tender.

Potato Salad for a Party

For a potato salad serving 6-8 people such as at a barbecue or potluck, you generally need about 2 pounds of russet potatoes. The potatoes are boiled, sliced, then mixed with mayonnaise and other ingredients.

Twice Baked Potatoes

Up to 3 large russet potatoes about 2 pounds total are ideal for making twice baked potatoes. The potatoes are baked whole, hollowed out, and filled with cheese, bacon, and scallions.

Hash Browns

Shredding 2 pounds of russets makes enough hash brown potatoes to feed 4 for breakfast. The potatoes are shredded then fried or baked into patties or shredded piles.

As you can see, 2 pounds is a convenient amount for making many typical potato dishes.

Tips for Storing Potatoes

When storing your russet potatoes:

– Keep them in a cool, dark place around 45-50°F if possible. Avoid direct light which can cause them to turn green.

– Do not refrigerate raw potatoes. The cold converts their starch to sugar giving an unpleasant taste.

– Store potatoes in a basket or paper bag. Avoid plastic bags which can trap moisture and lead to rotting.

– Remove any potatoes that are damaged, shriveled, or sprouting as they can cause other potatoes to spoil faster.

– If peeling ahead of time, place peeled potatoes in water with a splash of vinegar or lemon juice to prevent browning.

Proper storage keeps potatoes fresh and tasty, avoiding having to discard any excess from a 2 pound bag before use.

Prices Per Pound for Russet Potatoes

Russet potato prices fluctuate somewhat based on season, location, and promotions at grocery stores. Here are some general guidelines on pricing:

Source Average Price Per Pound
Grocery Store $0.79 – $1.99
Bulk Warehouse Store $0.49 – $0.79
Farmers Market $0.69 – $1.29
Online Retailer $1.49 – $2.99

As you can see, prices range widely from $0.49 per pound at large warehouse stores to up to $2.99 per pound for online specialty retailers. Sales prices can dip as low as $0.33 per pound at certain times of the year.

Knowing the average cost per bag or per pound helps estimate the price for the 2 pounds needed if making a potato dish. Consumers can also look for bulk savings opportunities when buying larger 5-10 pound bag quantities.

Recipe: Baked Russet Potato Fries

Here is an easy recipe to serve 4 people using the 2 pounds of russet potatoes:


– 2 pounds russet potatoes, scrubbed clean (about 3 medium)
– 2 Tbsp olive oil
– 1/2 tsp garlic powder
– 1/2 tsp paprika
– 1/4 tsp salt
– Black pepper to taste


1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Cut potatoes into 1/4 inch thick fries, about the size of a finger.

3. In a large bowl, toss potatoes with olive oil, garlic powder, paprika, salt and pepper until evenly coated.

4. Arrange fries in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake 25-30 minutes, flipping halfway, until crispy and browned.

5. Serve immediately while hot, or keep warm in a 200°F oven for up to 30 minutes before serving.

Enjoy these easy oven-baked crispy fries using just 2 pounds of russet potatoes! Adjust seasonings to taste.


On average, 3 medium-sized russet potatoes weighing about 6-7 ounces each will make up around 2 pounds total. Factors like moisture content, trimming, and cooking can all affect the final number. Weighing the potatoes yourself provides the most accurate result for that particular batch. Knowing how many potatoes are in 2 pounds allows you to plan recipes accordingly and estimate costs using average per-pound pricing. With the right storage, 2 pounds of russets can be kept fresh until you are ready to use them in your favorite potato dishes.

Leave a Comment