Brown Butter and Thyme Potato Torte

Brown Butter and Thyme Potato Torte is a fantastic side dish for dinner parties or brunch! Thin layers of potatoes cooked with butter and fresh thyme!


A Potato Side Dish For Dinner Or Brunch

And if it’s too much for one day we pack it up to go. In our lunches or the kids lunches – our kids definitely win in the lunchroom for the best lunch box food! Not too many peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for them…it’s usually something left over from the night before.

This Brown Butter and Thyme Potato Torte is a perfect example of a side dish for dinner turned into a light lunch the next day. And no need to worry about heating this one up, it’s just as tasty cold, I promise you.

What makes this potato torte out of control good is the brown butter combined with the balsamic glaze. We looked at a lot of these torte recipes, sometimes called “Potatoes Anna” and they looked amazing but had TONS of butter.

Not that anyone around here is opposed to tons of butter, but we wanted to try and lighten it up a little and that’s where the balsamic glaze comes into play. It adds tons of flavor without all the extra calories and it works perfectly in this recipe.

How To Make This Brown Butter & Thyme Torte

Start out by slicing 4 pounds of potatoes into about 1/8″ thick slices. If you have a mandoline slicer this will go really fast, or a food processor with a slicing blade will work. Or just a good ol’ sharp knife. This recipe is worth a little slicing, just wait until the end.

Melt some butter in a 10″ cast iron skillet until it’s bubbling and then start layering in the potato slices in overlapping circles.

After you get a couple of layers going, add in some salt and pepper and fresh thyme.


Now we’re going to add store bought balsamic glaze to this layer and then keep repeating layers of potatoes and seasonings until you get to the top.


Press down slightly with an 8″ cake pan or a small plate and then get the skillet into the oven.

Bake for 30 minutes then carefully remove the skillet from the oven and press down with the cake pan again then it goes back in.

Another 15 minutes and this Brown Butter and Thyme Potato Torte is done.

I mean just take a look at all those crispy potato layers! We peeled off all the crunchy top pieces of potato before it even hit the table. Once you taste it you won’t believe there’s only a few tablespoons of butter in the whole recipe.

Serve this Brown Butter and Thyme Potato Torte alongside dinner then pack it up for lunch the next day. Or before that, even with your eggs in the morning. So good you can’t stop at one slice!


Looking For More Potato Side Dishes?


Brown Butter and Thyme Potato Torte

  • Author: Dan
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 8 Servings 1x

This impressive potato torte is perfect as a side dish to dinner or brunch!



  • 4 lbs. yukon gold potatoes
  • 6 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 3 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1/4 cup balsamic glaze (store bought, right by the vinegar)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Peel the potatoes then slice on a mandoline into 1/8″ slices.
  3. Pour 3 tablespoons of the melted butter in a 10″ cast iron skillet over medium heat.
  4. Start layering the potatoes into concentric circles in the skillet until you have a couple of layers down. Then sprinkle in some salt, pepper and 1 tablespoon of the fresh thyme.
  5. Working quickly, add in another couple layers of potatoes, more salt and pepper and thyme and now a drizzle of the balsamic glaze.
  6. Repeat with the potatoes, salt, pepper and thyme, then when you get about halfway down pour in the three tablespoons of melted butter.
  7. Repeat with the reaming potatoes, glaze, salt, pepper and thyme until you’re done.
  8. Press down firmly with an 8″ dinner plate or cake pan and then transfer the skillet to the oven for 30 minutes.
  9. Carefully remove the skillet to the stove and press down once again with the cake pan.
  10. Return to the oven and cook another 25 minutes.
  11. After the torte has cooled slightly, run a knife around the edges of the skillet and then flip out onto a large plate and cut into wedges. See note*

Recipe Notes

To flip the torte out of the pan, place a dinner plate on the top of the torte with one hand and grab the skillet with the other hand (use a hot mit!)
Then flip the skillet upside down and now the torte will be on the plate. Slide off to a cutting board to slice.

  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Oven / Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

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36 Responses
    1. Dan

      I think the leftovers would freeze ok but I don’t think it’s a make ahead recipe if that’s what you’re asking.

  1. Martha

    Tried this last night, absolutely the best! My very picky husband loved it. The truly amazing part was that I actually had some balsamic glaze in my pantry! (no fresh thyme, freeze-dried though!)
    This has also unleashed my creative potato tort creativity. I didn’t even know I had one, but….. maybe a parmesan, garlic next? Love to find an excellent recipe that enables me to enjoy as is or switch it out.
    Many, many thanks!
    PS, many more great recipes to try on your site.

  2. Sabrina

    During this time of quarantine I can’t get out to grab some balsamic glaze…wondering if coconut nectar might work? Your thoughts?

    1. Dan

      I don’t think so? But if you have balsamic vinegar you can reduce that until it’s thick and syrupy and then add a drop or two of honey.

  3. Jackie

    Love the idea of the spring form pan. I can’t imagine flipping a 10′ cast iron skittet with one hand! lol Making this tonight .

  4. Hope

    Going through a rough patch right now and I just wanted to make something I was proud of. Made this and it was magical, beautiful recipe. Thank you for sharing!

    1. Dan

      I do hope you’re doing ok Hope! I’m so glad that you could use one of our recipes as a way to being happiness, it’s a method that we use all the time! Good luck to you!

      1. Dan

        Not sure what you mean Carol, in step 8 it say to bake for 30 minutes, then in step 10 you bake for another 25 minutes.

        1. Mona

          I think the confusion is that at the very beginning the recipe says 10 minutes prep time, 25 minutes cook time, for a total of 35 minutes. The cook time needs to be adjusted to 55 minutes for a total of 65 minutes. But I am looking forward to trying it.

    2. Jean

      I saw that you said this is not a make ahead recipe, does it travel well if I make it and keep it warm to take to a party? It would go well with the crab Louie’s we’re having at friends for the Super Bowl.

      1. Dan

        You can make it ahead of time, yes. Since posting this recipe I have done it a few times and it really is still delicious. The best way that I have found to do it is either keep it warm if you’re not going far and will be eating it fairly quickly, or warm it back up in the oven right on a sheet pan to crispy it back up. Enjoy!

  5. Mary

    Has anyone made this with margarine or another vegan substitute for the butter? I believe butter is best, but my son thinks it is evil. I would love to make him something like this that he would enjoy

  6. Jacine Harrington

    I’m looking forward to trying this recipe. I love anything potato! Just wondering, 3 Tbs of thyme seems a lot to me. Is the taste of thyme overpowering?

    1. Dan

      Just to note: it’s fresh thyme not dried, so it’s not as much as you might think. The thyme is spread out through the layers, but if you’re hesitant you can cut it down for sure!

  7. Hilda

    Sounds fabulous thank you, will try it tomorrow
    Is it safe to line the cast iron skillet with parchment paper for easier unmoulding because it goes on the top of the stove?

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