‘Potatos’ or ‘Potatoes’: What is the Plural of ‘Potato’?

By
Shanea Patterson,
updated on
October 19, 2022

What's the plural form of 'potato'? The standard rule in the American English language for plurals is to add the letter ‘s.’ Sometimes, you might even have to add an ‘es,’ depending on the word.

The plural form of potato is ‘potatoes’ not ‘potatoes.’ Potato is one of those special cases where you have to add an ‘es,’ rather than just an ‘s.’

What are Standard Plural Rules?

 As stated before, the standard rule for plural nouns in the American English language is adding an ‘s’ to the end of the word.

Here are some examples:

  • Book > Books
  • Chair > Chairs
  • Stars > Stars
  • Kid > Kids
  • Cup > Cups

In some cases, however, you must add an ‘es’ to the end of the word (when a word ends in ‘s,’ ‘sh,’ ‘ch,’ or ‘z.’) If the word ends in ‘y,’ you have to first change the ‘y’ to an ‘i’ before adding ‘es’ (unless the ‘y’ is proceeded by a vowel).

For example:

  • Carry > Carries
  • Marry > Marries
  • Berry > Berries
  • Cherry > Cherries

But there are also cases where words end in ‘y’ that you don’t add ‘ies’ to.

For example:

  • Buy > Buys
  • Pray > Prays
  • Stay > Stays
  • Bay > Bays
  • Day > Days

And some words just plain change in their plural forms, such as words:

  • Mouse > mice
  • Ox > Oxen
  • Child > Children
  • Knife > Knives
  • Wife > Wives
  • Leaf > Leaves

Is ‘Potatos’ Ever the Correct Way to Pluralize the Word 'Potato'?

No matter what you’re writing or whom you’re writing for, the word ‘potatos’ is not an acceptable way to spell the word. You should always spell it ‘potatoes.’

What is the Plural Possessive Form of ‘Potatoes’?

You know that ‘potatoes’ is the plural form of ‘potato.’

The plural possessive form of ‘potato’ is ‘potatoes.’’

To use three different forms of the word in a sentence, use the following examples:

  • Singular: I bought a potato.
  • Plural: I bought two potatoes.
  • Plural Possessive: The potatoes’ aroma wafted throughout the room.

‘Potato’ Is and ‘Potatoes’ Are

When using ‘potatoes’ in a sentence, make sure your subject agrees with your verb.

For example, when talking about a singular potato, use the phrase ‘potato is.’ (i.e., my potato is boiling).

When using ‘potatoes’ in a sentence, you’d say ‘potatoes are.’

You wouldn’t say, “my potato are rotten” or “my potatoes is boiling.”

Whenever there’s more than one potato, always use “are.”

Remember:

  • She (one person) is going to the movies.
  • We are (multiple people) going to the movies.
  • She has one potato.
  • She has two potatoes.

Final Thoughts on Using ‘Potatos’ Versus ‘Potatoes’

The plural version of ‘potato’ is always ‘potatoes’ and never ‘potatos.’ Similar words, like tomato and hero, follow the same plural rules.

It might be a little confusing at first, but reading and writing regularly can help you retain the correct plural forms of words subconsciously.

To help you remember the plural form of potato, just remember that all potatoes have toes!

For more clarification about confusing English words and commonly misspelled words, be sure to check out our other articles explaining confusing words.

Written By:
Shanea Patterson
Shanea Patterson is a writer based in New York and loves writing for brands big and small. She has a master's degree in professional writing from New York University and a bachelor's degree in English from Mercy College.

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