adapted from the Kitchn
4 medium russet potatoes* (3 1/2 to 4 pounds total)
6 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
1 cup full-fat sour cream, divided
1/3 cup whole or 2% milk
1 1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
1/4 cup scallions, green parts only, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives
1 teaspoon garlic powder (no-salt)
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus more for seasoning
1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 425°F.
2. (*I can't get Russets here, so I just used large yellow potatoes.) Scrub the potatoes well and pat dry. Rub the potatoes all over with a thin coating of oil and season with salt and pepper. Wrap each potato in aluminum foil and place directly on the oven rack. Bake until fork-tender, flipping halfway through, 50 to 60 minutes total.
3. Place the potatoes on a wire rack. Open the foil packets and let the potatoes sit for about 5 minutes, until they're cool enough to handle but still very warm. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F.
4. Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise. To make them easier to handle if still hot, hold in a clean dish towel. Carefully scoop the flesh into a medium bowl, leaving about 1/4-inch of potato and skin as the shell. Place the potato skins skin-side down on a rimmed baking sheet; set aside.
5. Add the butter and 1/4 cup of the sour cream to the bowl with the potato flesh. Use a fork or potato masher to mash together until soft and well-combined. Do not overwork the potatoes. Fold in the remaining sour cream, milk, 1 cup of the cheese, scallions, chives, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Divide the filling among the shells, then sprinkle with the remaining 1 cup cheese.
6. Bake until the cheese is melted and the peaks of the mashed potatoes are crispy, 15 to 20 minutes (with an additional 5 to 10 minutes for potatoes that were made ahead). Serve immediately.
Make ahead: The potatoes can be baked and filled up to 1 day in advance and stored in a covered container in the refrigerator until ready to bake the second time. Add an additional 5 to 10 minutes to bake time when made ahead.
Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
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