How to Make the Best Mashed Potatoes

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Learn how to make the best creamy mashed potatoes that will melt in your mouth!

Mashed potatoes in a bowl.

Creamy Mashed Potatoes

Experience the velvety goodness of these creamy mashed potatoes that promise to melt in your mouth. This mashed potatoes recipe is perfect for any party and will surely make your guests rave!

Let’s dive into the realm of comfort food, exploring the secrets and nuances of creating the perfect creamy mashed and best potatoes. Buckle up as we uncover the magic behind this timeless dish that has graced family gatherings, festive celebrations, and dinner tables worldwide.

There’s something inherently comforting about a spoonful of velvety, creamy mashed potatoes. The smooth texture, the rich flavor, and the satisfying warmth make it a culinary masterpiece that stands the test of time. Whether served alongside a hearty roast or as the star of the show, mashed potatoes will elevate any meal.

Allow me to share my cherished family recipe (Poles love potatoes!), a staple on the Polish table during Christmas and Easter celebrations and a go-to-recipe. This is a very easy mashed potatoes recipe. The Yukon gold potatoes, the infusion of garlic, and the generous amount of butter play a crucial role in crafting the perfect bite. These mashed potatoes’ irresistible flavor and texture are too good not to share. They are also ideal for Thanksgiving dinner!

Secrets for Making the Best Creamy Mashed Potatoes:

  1. Opt for golden Yukon potatoes (russet works, too), peeled and cooked whole, ensuring they aren’t watery. Smaller pieces may result in a loss of texture and increased water retention.
  2. Cook garlic with the potatoes, approximately one clove per potato, for a creamy and subtly flavorful blend.
  3. Drain the potatoes thoroughly, shaking the colander to remove excess water.
  4. Be generous with the butter! Room-temperature butter, not melted, adds silkiness and enhances the overall taste. You can also add heavy cream if you prefer. Just make sure that they are not too watery. Heating dairy facilitates quicker and smoother absorption, requiring less agitation than its chilled counterpart. They tend to integrate less effectively when incorporating cold butter and cream into potatoes, necessitating more vigorous stirring to blend in cold milk. However, excessive stirring risks overworking the potatoes, resulting in a sticky texture rather than the desired soft, fluffy consistency that defines an irresistible mash.
  5. Avoid using mixers; opt for a potato ricer or food mill to maintain the perfect texture. But if you don’t have those, use a potato masher. Squeeze the hot potatoes through the potato ricer.
  6. Salt the potatoes at the end to prevent them from falling apart during cooking.

Ingredients for Best Mashed Potatoes:

  • Three pounds of potatoes – Yukon gold or russet potatoes peeled
  • Unsalted butter at room temperature
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • Fresh garlic
  • Fresh parsley or chives for garnish – optional
  • Crispy onion for garnish- optional


  • Type: Yukon gold or russet potatoes are commonly used for their creamy texture and mild flavor.
  • Preparation: Potatoes are peeled and cooked whole to preserve their natural starch content, contributing to the desired creaminess.


  • Quantity: Approximately one clove per potato.
  • Preparation: The garlic is poached alongside the potatoes during cooking, making it tender and infusing its flavor into the dish..


  • Type: Unsalted butter is preferred to control the dish’s overall saltiness.
  • Quantity: A generous amount of room-temperature butter (not melted) adds richness and silkiness to the potatoes.


  • Usage: Salt is added to taste, typically towards the end of the preparation, to prevent the potatoes from falling apart during cooking.
  • Function: Besides enhancing flavor, salt also plays a role in maintaining the texture of the dish.

Black Pepper:

  • Usage: Ground black pepper is added to taste, typically towards the end of the preparation.
  • Function: Black pepper contributes a subtle heat and complements the overall flavor profile.

Fresh Herbs (Optional):

  • Types: Parsley or chives are commonly used.
  • Preparation: Finely chopped fresh herbs are sprinkled on the potatoes as a garnish, adding freshness and color.

How to Make Mashed Potatoes:

  1. Peel and clean potatoes, cutting them in half if large. Boil in a covered pot with garlic until tender.
  2. Drain and use a potato ricer to squeeze the potatoes and garlic.
  3. Gently mix in softened butter until whipped and fluffy. Season with salt and black pepper.

To keep the potatoes warm until serving, place them in a lasagna pan, cover with parchment paper, and keep in a warm oven.

5 Essential Tips for Crafting the Perfect Mashed Potatoes

1. Opt for a Russet or Buttery Yukon Potato:

  • Or you can combine them together if you want. This combination offers the best of both worlds, enhancing your mashed potatoes’ overall texture and flavor.

2. Prevent Waterlogging:

  • Cut your potatoes into evenly sized pieces before boiling to ensure uniform cooking. Make sure that you used salted water.
  • Avoid overboiling by closely monitoring the potatoes. Once a dinner knife easily pierces a potato with minimal resistance, they are ready to be drained.

3. Pan “Dry” Post-Boiling:

  • Drain potatoes and return them to the hot stockpot immediately after draining on low heat.
  • Shake the pan for about a minute to release steam and excess moisture from the potatoes. This step ensures a drier and fluffier mashed potato consistency.

4. Mindful Mixing:

  • Resist the urge to overmix your mashed potatoes, which can lead to an undesirable gummy texture.
  • Gently stir the liquids into the potatoes until combined for the ideal creaminess and buttery flavor.

5. Seasoning Matters:

  • Season your mashed potatoes with fine sea salt at two key points—while boiling and during the addition of butter.
  • Taste as you go, adjusting salt levels throughout the preparation process.

Bonus Tip:

Invest in the Right Masher:

  • Choose a masher based on your preference for potato consistency. For slightly chunky mashed potatoes, the OXO masher is recommended, while a smoother texture can be achieved with the smooth OXO masher.


Potato Ricer or Food Mill:

  • Purpose: Achieving the ideal texture is key to exceptional mashed potatoes. A potato ricer or food mill is your go-to tool for this task. These gadgets delicately press the potatoes, ensuring a silky and lump-free consistency without the risk of overmixing.

Paring Knife

Large Pot

  • Boiling potatoes to perfection requires a spacious and durable pot. Look for one with a secure lid to cover the potatoes during cooking. This will ensure that the potatoes become tender without absorbing excess water.

Spatula and Wooden Spoon


Lasagna Pan and Parchment Paper:

  • Purpose: To keep your mashed potatoes warm until serving. Cover the potatoes with parchment paper and place the pan in a warm oven, maintaining their temperature without sacrificing quality.


1. Immediate Storage:

  • Cooling Time: Allow your mashed potatoes to cool at room temperature for about 30 minutes, then after that, transfer them to storage containers.
  • Containers: Opt for airtight containers to lock in freshness and prevent the absorption of odors from the refrigerator.

2. Refrigeration:

  • Timeline: Mashed potatoes can be stored in the refrigerator for up to three to five days.
  • Avoid Overcrowding: Spread the mashed potatoes evenly in the container to promote even cooling and minimize the risk of bacterial growth.

3. Freezing for Long-Term Storage:

  • Timeline: For longer storage, mashed potatoes can be frozen for up to two months.
  • Freezer Bags or Containers: Use freezer-safe bags or containers, leaving some space for expansion as the potatoes freeze.
  • Thawing: Allow frozen mashed potatoes to thaw in the refrigerator overnight for optimal texture retention.

4. Reheating Tips:

  • Microwave: Reheat small portions in the microwave, adding a splash of milk to maintain creaminess.
  • Oven: For larger quantities, consider reheating in the oven at a low temperature, covered to prevent drying.
  • Stovetop: Reheat on the stovetop over low heat, stirring frequently to maintain a consistent texture.

5. Avoiding Watery Leftovers:

  • Patience is Key: Whenever you reheat the potatoes, take your time and use low heat to prevent the release of excess water.
  • Adjust Consistency: If needed, add a bit of milk or butter while reheating to restore the creamy texture.

6. Serving Suggestions:

  • Fresh Garnishes: Sprinkle fresh herbs or a touch of grated cheese upon serving to enhance the flavors.
  • Reinventing Leftovers: Transform leftover mashed potatoes into delicious croquettes, patties, or shepherd’s pie for a delightful second act.

What to serve Mashed Potatoes With

Beef Bourguignon:

  • Why It Works: The hearty and savory flavors of Beef Bourguignon perfectly complement the creaminess of mashed potatoes, creating a harmonious and comforting combination.

Roast Chicken or Turkey:

  • Why It Works: The classic pairing of roast chicken or turkey with mashed potatoes is a timeless favorite. The juicy, succulent meat pairs wonderfully with the creamy potatoes, creating a quintessential comfort meal.

Grilled Salmon or Trout:

  • Why It Works: The richness of grilled salmon or trout provides a delightful contrast to the creamy potatoes. Consider a lemon-dill sauce for the fish to add a burst of freshness.

Vegetarian Mushroom Gravy:

  • Why It Works: For a vegetarian option, a robust mushroom gravy adds depth and umami to the mashed potatoes. The earthy flavors create a satisfying and flavorful pairing.

Sautéed Greens:

  • Why It Works: Incorporate a touch of freshness and crunch with sautéed greens such as spinach, kale, or Swiss chard. The vibrant greens provide a balance to the creamy potatoes.

Meatballs :

  • Why It Works: The comforting and savory notes of meatballs create a homey and satisfying meal when served alongside creamy potatoes.

Chicken Marsala:

  • Why It Works: To sum up, the sweet and savory flavors of Chicken Marsala give the dish a wonderful flavor while the wine-infused sauce complements the creaminess of the potatoes.

Polish Stuffed Cabbage (Golabki):

  • Why It Works: The combination of flavorful ground meat, rice, and spices wrapped in cabbage leaves pairs exceptionally well with mashed potatoes. The textures and tastes create a delightful contrast.

Vegetarian Lentil Stew:

  • Why It Works: A hearty vegetarian lentil stew, rich in spices and vegetables, brings depth and substance to the meal. The stew’s robust flavors enhance the creamy mashed potatoes.

Braised Short Ribs:

  • Why It Works: Tender, succulent short ribs braised to perfection create a luxurious pairing with creamy mashed potatoes. The rich, savory flavors complement the potatoes’ creaminess.

Hunter Stew:

  • Why it works: Lastly the Juicy stew that goes perfectly with mashed potatoes.

Try this best-mashed potatoes recipe as a side dish for dinner today with roast turkey and turkey gravy, Salisbury steak, or with a dollop of sour cream!

Did you make this recipe?

Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #thetastesoflifeholisticblog

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Mashed potatoes in a bowl with butter.

Best Creamy Mashed Potatoes

Experience the velvety goodness of these creamy mashed potatoes that promise to melt in your mouth. These whipped potatoes are perfect for any party and will surely make your guests rave!
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Course: Dinner, lunch, Side Dish
Cuisine: American, European, Polish
Keyword: Best Mashed Potatoes,, Mashed Potatoes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 146kcal


  • 4 lbs Potatoes Yukon gold or Russet, peeled
  • 10 cloves Garlic Peeled
  • 2-3 Butter Sticks, at room temperature but not melte
  • salt To taste
  • Black pepper To taste
  • Chives or parsley For garnish, optional


  • Peel potatoes (cut potatoes in half if very large). Remove all the impurities with a paring knife. Place potatoes in a large pot, add 1 tbsp. salt and cover potatoes with water. Bring to a boil and cook partially covered until tender for 25-30 minutes, depending on the size of your potatoes.
  • Drain well in a colander, shake it, and move to the bowl. Grab your potatos and squeeze the potatos with garlic.
  • Add softened butter and mix it gently with a spatula. Potatoes should be whipped and fluffy. Add salt and black pepper to taste.


Serving: 10g | Calories: 146kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 0.3g | Saturated Fat: 0.2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.05g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 0.4mg | Sodium: 13mg | Potassium: 776mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 9IU | Vitamin C: 37mg | Calcium: 27mg | Iron: 1mg

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