Are Red Potatoes Dyed? Everything you Need to know about Red Potatoes in (2023)

Have you ever asked yourself “are red potatoes dyed? Red potatoes are a naturally occurring phenomenon so certainly not all red potatoes are dyed. There have been some instances of farmers dying potatoes and this has led to rumors and suspicions about red potatoes being dyed. Still, in general no, red potatoes are not dyed.

What is the difference between red potatoes and normal potatoes?

Red potatoes are different from other potatoes in a few ways. First, they have a reddish-brown skin and white flesh, which sets them apart from other potatoes that may have a yellow, brown, or purple skin. Red potatoes are also generally smaller and rounder in shape than other potatoes, and they have a thin, smooth skin that is easy to peel. They are known for their firm, waxy texture, which makes them ideal for boiling and salads. They are also lower in starch content than other potatoes, which makes them less suitable for baking and frying but more suitable for dishes where you want the potatoes to hold their shape, such as potato salad or roast potatoes.

What makes red potatoes red?

Red potatoes have reddish-brown skin. This is caused by the presence of a pigment called lycopene. Lycopene is a naturally occurring pigment that is found in a variety of fruits and vegetables, including tomatoes, watermelons, and pink grapefruits. In red potatoes, lycopene is found in the skin and contributes to the red color of the potato. The amount of lycopene in red potatoes can vary depending on the specific variety and growing conditions, but in general, red potatoes contain higher levels of lycopene than other potatoes.

Are Red Potatoes Dyed?

Red potatoes are naturally red due to the presence of lycopene but this doesn’t stop producers from wanting their potatoes to look a more impressive, deeper shade of red. Some producers have been found to spray red dye on their red potatoes to ameliorate their appearance by making them redder. This is no more common than the dying of red apples, strawberries or cherries. If you are buying red potatoes from a farmer’s market or local supplier there is almost no chance your potatoes are dyed.

How to tell if your red potatoes are dyed?

The best way to tell if your red potatoes are dyed is to soak them in warm water for 10-15 minutes and then rub them with a paper towel. If the potato is dyed the paper towel will absorb some of the dye and change color.

Are red potatoes the same as sweet potatoes?

No, red potatoes are more like normal potatoes than they are sweet potatoes. If you are looking to make a dish that requires sweet potatoes like a candied sweet potato casserole, you cannot substitute sweet potatoes for red potatoes.

Is it okay to eat red potatoes?

Yes, 100%. Red potatoes are just as safe to eat as other potatoes. Red potatoes tend to be waxy and have a lower starch content than other potatoes so they are best eaten boiled or in potato salad rather than baked or fried like potato wedges. Red potatoes also tend to have fewer calories than normal potatoes.

How to tell if a red potato is bad?

There are a few signs that a red potato may have gone bad. Here are some things to look for:

  1. Discoloration or dark spots: If the potato has developed dark spots or has turned green.
  2. Soft or shriveled skin: If the skin of the potato is soft or shriveled.
  3. Foul smell: If the potato has a strong, unpleasant smell.
  4. Sprouts: If the potato has heavily sprouted, it is a sign it is no longer fresh and should be discarded.

If you notice any of these signs, it is best to throw the potato away. It is also a good idea to regularly check your potatoes for any signs of spoilage and to use them up as soon as possible to ensure that you are always eating fresh, tasty potatoes.

Will the red color wash off red potatoes when they are boiled?

When you boil red potatoes the color may lighten a little. The potatoes may begin to look more pink than red. The color should never run into the water. If you are noticing the water you are boiling the potatoes in has started to turn pink, this is a sign the potatoes have been dyed and the dye is starting to run.

Useful Video on how to use red potatoes

Why do Producers dye Vegetables such as Red Potatoes?

Producers dye vegetables such as red potatoes to make them look more appealing so shoppers choose their brand over competitors.


In conclusion, red potatoes are a type of potato that naturally occur in a variety of shades ranging from light pink to deep red. Despite their natural color, some producers may choose to dye red potatoes in order to enhance their appearance. However, this practice is not necessary as red potatoes are naturally beautiful and flavorful.