Summer 2017 Potato Hack…Shopping Day

We’re getting closer and closer to our group potato hack!  Have you all been shopping yet?

Here’s what you need to buy to make next week’s potato hack a success:

shopping list


bag potato

Try to get the best potatoes you can find. Perhaps there’s a farmer’s market nearby where you can find locally grown organic potatoes. It seriously does not matter what type of potatoes you use; red, white, purple, or yellow. They’re all good.

Sweet Potatoes and Yams

yams potato diet

I know that in my book I do not give sweet potatoes much time. I think this was a big mistake. I now believe that sweet potatoes and yams should be a part of the menu when potato hacking. I would not go full-on with all sweet potatoes, but half-and-half would be OK. Or none. If you like sweet potatoes and/or yams, have at it! And don’t even worry if you have the right type, it can be very difficult telling a sweet potato from a yam. Both are extremely healthy and add a nice variation when eating an all-potato diet.

Prepared Potatoes

If eating from a can or freezer makes your life easier, go for it!  Just be sure to check the ingredients! Any frozen food that’s billed as “crispy” will undoubtedly be full of crazy oils and weird chemicals. If there is more than “potatoes” and maybe some salt…do not use for the potato hack!


And well, if you want to get all fancy there’s always:

shopping list

20 Comments on “Summer 2017 Potato Hack…Shopping Day”

  1. kbseddon August 11, 2017 at 3:46 am #

    I like Taro/Cocoyam too.

    I think anyone who gets bloating/pain from sweet potatoes would do well to substitute with cocoyam instead. Has a nice taste. Not tasteless, like cassava and yam (imo).

    Personally I find cassava and yam inefficient to prepare. Lots of hacking and peeling. The potato hack suits the busiest of lifestyles. Extremely efficient. I understand why people enjoy to cook but right now I want pure efficiency. 1 minute prep, few minutes eat, 1 minute clean up. Then back to business 😀

    Potatoes are the easiest of course. 9 times out of 10 I don’t even so much as rinse them before baking. Rarely I may need to slice off some green or sprouting parts.

    Man… I’ve eaten my share of starch living in Uganda, lol.
    Potato, green banana, cassava, yam, sweet potato, maize flour (posho), and rice.
    Bread is barely even a thing there.
    Some people think cutting out gluten is too limiting.
    There are entire cuisines that don’t have a single bit of gluten in the first place.

    P.s. LOL at the first picture, Tim!


    • Dave August 11, 2017 at 4:14 am #

      I’ve found taking Calms (an stress,anti anxiety and sleep herbal aid in the UK) helps with bloating and wind.I take one now and then as a sleep aid and found after taking Potato starch the next day had no wind.Whether it’s a good idea I don’t know as it must be affecting the gut bugs.The day after am right back to gale force again.


      • kbseddon August 11, 2017 at 8:50 am #

        Thanks for sharing this for others to try out.

        Another thing I’ll add: I think – once a gut is completely healthy – gas should not be an issue from any (natural) food type and/or volume. I think the precautions need to be taken only for those with some kind of dysbiosis (common). I think if sweet potato gives gas then avoidance is a quick solution, but not the *fundamental* solution – which would be correction of the gut flora.


        • Wilbur August 11, 2017 at 11:34 am #

          Karl –

          My experience is what you describe. Gas is not an issue for me. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t have gas! Having gas is normal. What is abnormal (IMO) is painful bloating, gastric discomfort, or uncontrollable farting. The abnormal things have gone away for me. But I still have the occasional “gale force” one.

          I personally think excess gas, diarrhea, and “interesting” bowel movements might be part of a healthy gut. When I first started my project nearly 4 years ago, I had incredible gas. I had stools that were, ahem, impressive. I just accepted it as part of the process. Even after my gut was much better, dandelion root and yacon still gave me gas and diarrhea. Mushrooms too.

          I didn’t like this hole in my gut. I thought I should be able to digest anything. So I incorporated each into my diet and suffered the consequences until they stopped. Which took about a week for each one.

          I think a large part of the process is mental. If you think you are doing good, you can tolerate more than if you are uncertain. If you’re uncertain, every little thing gets magnified. I often use the example of my eating lots of rawish garlic for breakfast. A couple of hours later, I have intense burning and burping, etc. It felt great! Because I knew it was good for me. But one day I realized that someone who wasn’t as sure might describe it as excruciatingly painful. The mental framing might be as important with gas. What I feel is normal and right might be someone else’s hell. Dunno.


          • Wilbur August 11, 2017 at 11:56 am #

            Shoot – “might be part of obtaining a healthy gut!”


          • Dave August 17, 2017 at 4:29 am #

            I have to take PPIs twice a day and I think this affects the bugs.Cutting down on stomache acid probably allows more less beneficial bugs to survive and multiply.I can go to bed blown up like billy bunter but am much slimmer in the morning.I think they call it SIBO.


  2. gina August 11, 2017 at 4:48 am #

    I have started my hack today since I will be traveling a couple days next week.

    Something I have done in the past (not Tim approved) is dice potatoes real small, dice an onion (not an approved addition) add in a small amount of beef or chicken broth (amount depends on the amount of potatos. Right now I have a full pan of potatoes with about 3/4 inch of broth in the bottom of the pan.) add salt and pepper and cook until the liquid is absorbed. I can eat these cold or reheated. It’s a flavorful variation that has worked for me.

    Bring on the spuds!



    • Jill August 11, 2017 at 10:12 am #

      I thought onions were okay. I read that in his book (The Potato Hack, p. 42). It shows onions in the list of acceptable additions. I started my hack Monday and so far have lost 4 pounds — and I’ve used the additions he shows on p. 42, including onions. I also love his potato starch gravy (p. 82) — yum!


      • Tim Steele August 11, 2017 at 10:23 am #

        Onions (and garlic, leeks, chives, and most all other veggies) are OK and “allowed” as long as you keep the line clear between “spicing things up” and “side dish,” if you get my drift. Finely diced onions make a potato much more enjoyable with just a few calories.


  3. gina August 11, 2017 at 10:35 am #

    My bad! Good to know – thanks for pointing that out.



    • Tim Steele August 11, 2017 at 10:40 am #

      Your recipe sounds awesome! I’m actually just getting stuff around for next week and forgot to buy broth, lol. I have a chicken to barbecue this weekend, maybe I will save the bones and make my own broth.


  4. Jeffrey August 11, 2017 at 12:15 pm #

    Good to find both Tim and Karl here! So… I’m down with starting this hack on Monday. All set. I also just received (today) a round of Elixa that will be my first course ever. Would you recommend taking the Elixa during the potato hack, or beginning the course immediately after the hack?


    • Tim Steele August 11, 2017 at 1:59 pm #

      Dang! Good question. I would say do the hack without any supplements, probiotics included. Curious to hear what Karl might think.


  5. Jill August 11, 2017 at 12:40 pm #

    I made my potatoes using Gina’s directions above, and they are delicious! I used chicken broth — Wow! Thank you, Gina. I sprinkled in some potato starch since I was basically cooking my potatoes in the allowed gravy. Delicious and moist.
    This is the easiest way of eating while shedding weight that I’ve ever tried. I’ve always thought potatoes were a no-no food — fattening. Here I am eating all the potatoes I want, and I’m really enjoying it and losing weight slowly but steadily. I plan to take off the weekend and re-start the hack Monday – Friday. I probably ate too many potatoes on Day One (Monday), but I settled down Tuesday because I was not very hungry. I continue to feel little hunger and this is Day 5. There seems to be something almost magic in potatoes — they keep my appetite away! I’m probably dreaming, but I’d love to lose about 50 pounds — hope springs eternal.


    • gina August 11, 2017 at 3:23 pm #

      Glad you liked the recipe, Jill. This is kind of a spin-off from something similar my German MIL used to make. She diced the potatoes and put them in the pan, diced the onion and put it on top, added a small amount of water and some cooking oil, added salt and pepper and put the lid on and cooked until the liquid was gone. Sometimes the potatoes on the bottom actually brown up a bit. Anyway, when I started hacking awhile back, I thought why not try this with bone broth and see what happens. I like it a lot. When I am not hacking, I mix some of these potatoes cold from the fridge with some sauerkraut and it is almost like a German potato salad. It’s good too.

      Great idea, Tim on making your own bone broth.

      Let’s raise our forks to taters!


  6. Mainer August 14, 2017 at 5:13 pm #

    Tim, could you be so kind to elaborate on the change regarding sweet potato on the hack, I would be interested in how that evolved? I’m going to stay old school the first 3 days as that’s usually where I shed most of the weight and then the try some roasted sweet potato for dinner only on the fourth day. I think I may have a sweet potato and two yams that I want to try out. I don’t claim to be confident in knowing the difference but they do look different from each other for sure and 1 was labeled as sweet potato, 1 was labeled yam, and the third labeled Chinese sweet potato. I could post a pick that I took after roasting if there is anyone reading this that may help identify as I don’t think some of the grocery stores around here know much about the difference either.


    • Tim Steele August 14, 2017 at 5:22 pm #

      I originally just wanted to make it easier by using only regular white potatoes (white, red, Russet, blue). These are all the same species and easily identified as “potatoes.” This was the Irish way, and worked. However, Andrew “Spudfit” Taylor did not make such a distinction and ate “potatoes” for a year. He did not differentiate between white potatoes, yams, or sweet potatoes, and it worked well for him.

      So, even though not technically “potatoes,” sweet potatoes and yams are similar enough to potatoes to be allowed on the Potato Hack, I feel.


      • Rachel Namery January 14, 2018 at 7:04 am #

        Hey Tim! I just listened to Joe Rogan’s latest Chris Kresser interview and he discusses your Potato Hack and book which I recently purchased and started reading. I have two questions…
        1) The only kind of white potatoes I ca stomach are Yukon Gold as I just don’t enjoy white potatoes much but i LOVE sweet potatoes and yams and actually enjoy them better cooled. I saw the chart in your book showing that sweet potatoes have way more sugar and less starch than white potatoes but since I cool them does that make it ok for weight loss still/ ok to use for the 3-5 day potato hack?
        2)Also, I am on the leaner side and eat very low calories becase of my hypothyroidism (1300 roughly) which makes it hard to lose the last 10 lbs I want to lose so would this diet still work for someone like me or no?


        • Tim Steele January 14, 2018 at 7:22 am #

          Hi Rachel – 1) An all sweet potato diet would most likely not work as well in terms of satiety and weight loss, but a 50/50 mix would probably be OK.

          2) Your “last 10” might be incredibly hard to lose with thyroid problems. Try.


  7. Ales Lowry May 12, 2019 at 1:08 pm #

    I saw in a blog that you tongue in cheek answered a question about hacking with plantains needed to start with years of spamming nutrition blogs. Thought that was hilarious. Great site and book keep it up 🙂


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