Here’s how to make mashed potatoes that are smooth and creamy! They are the perfect side dish for a holiday dinner or a weeknight meal.
My family loves mashed potatoes but their one requirement is that they be smooth. So I decided to figure out how to make mashed potatoes they would like more than the instant ones and wanted to share the resulting recipe!
Start by peeling and then rinsing the potatoes.
What kind of potatoes should I use?
I chose russet potatoes because they are readily available. Another popular choice for making mashed potatoes is Yukon gold. Both russet and Yukon gold potatoes have a high starch content and are good for mashing.
Cut the potatoes into large pieces that are roughly the same size so they cook evenly.
Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover them with cold water. Add one tablespoon of salt to the water.
Bring the water to a boil and then reduce the heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes, until tender.
While the potatoes are cooking, warm the milk, butter, minced garlic, and thyme.
What other seasonings can I use in my mashed potatoes?
If you want to make plain mashed potatoes you can skip the garlic and thyme. Simply warm up the butter and milk. Other popular seasonings include rosemary, parsley, oregano, and basil.
Strain the milk mixture and discard the garlic and thyme. Set the warm milk aside.
Check the tenderness of the potatoes with a fork. It would easily pierce the potatoes.
Drain the cooked potatoes and pass them through a potato ricer.
What is the secret to making smooth mashed potatoes?
I’ve tried making mashed potatoes in many different ways using different tools and the secret to making smooth, fluffy mashed potatoes is using a potato ricer (this is the one I have). It is surprisingly easy to use and only took a few minutes to do all of the potatoes.
Can I use a masher or mixer instead of a ricer?
Yes, of course you can opt to use a potato masher or a stand mixer instead of the ricer. But keep in mind that the texture of your potatoes may not be as smooth.
Add the warm milk mixture to the riced potatoes.
Stir the potatoes until smooth. Taste them and add salt and pepper as needed.
Top the mashed potatoes with a little melted butter and minced thyme.
What other toppings can I use?
There are so many toppings choices with the classics being butter or gravy. Other popular ways to top potatoes include:
- bacon bits
- shredded cheese
- sour cream
Looking for a gravy recipe? Try one of these:
This White Gravy recipe is a basic white sauce that is easy to make and can be used in so many ways. Serve over biscuits or on top of potatoes.
Ham drippings are perfect for Homemade Ham Gravy and it is easy to make. We always serve it with holiday dinners.
How else can I make mashed potatoes?
Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes are an easy, hands-off way to make mashed potatoes. The potatoes cook while you concentrate on other dishes or tasks!
This Cheesy Potato Puffs recipe is a great side dish or appetizer. Crunchy cheese crackers coat these little delicious puffs.
This Baked Mashed Potatoes recipe makes fluffy, cheesy potatoes that are perfect for sharing at Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter.
Want more side dish recipes? Try these next:
This homemade Dressing Recipe is so much better than the boxed kind! Use it as a holiday side dish or as stuffing for a turkey.
Slow Cooker Green Bean Casserole is the EASIEST way to make this classic side dish. Plus, cooking green bean casserole in a crockpot frees up oven space!
This classic, easy-to-make Sweet Potato Casserole is as delicious as a dessert with a brown sugar and pecan crumb topping. A MUST MAKE for Thanksgiving!
This Corn Casserole recipe, aka corn pudding, is a traditional Thanksgiving side dish. It’s a creamier, cheesier version of cornbread!
- 2 lbs russet potatoes peeled and quartered
- ½ cup salted butter
- ½ cup whole milk
- 3 sprigs thyme
- 2 teaspoon minced garlic
- ½ teaspoon salt to taste
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoon butter melted
- Garnish with thyme and black pepper
- Place the potato pieces in a large pot. Cover with cold water and add a tablespoon of salt. Bring the water to a boil. Then, reduce heat to medium and simmer for 20-25 minutes, until tender.
- When the potatoes have about 5 minutes left to cook, warm the milk, butter, thyme, and minced garlic. Strain and set aside.
- Drain the potatoes and press through a potato ricer. Add the warm milk and butter mixture. Stir until smooth. Taste and then season with salt and pepper, as needed.
- Transfer to a serving dish. Top with melted butter and garnish with a sprinkle of thyme and black pepper.