Garlic Mashed Potatoes

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Garlic mashed potatoes are the best side dish for any meal! They’re just as easy to make as regular mashed potatoes, but with plenty of garlic flavor.

Mashed potatoes have long been a favorite side dish for me, ever since I was a kid.

Can you really go wrong with creamy, buttery mashed potatoes? Whether you load them up with turkey gravy or just more butter, it’s a comforting dish for any night of the week.

black bowl of garlic mashed potatoes with butter

Mashed potatoes are also a great simple recipe for beginner cooks. My kids love taking charge of the mashing!

Ingredients for garlic mashed potatoes

To make these creamy mashed potatoes, you’ll need just a few ingredients.

Potatoes – To ensure a smooth mash, peel the potatoes. If you want a more rustic mash, you can leave the peels on. Make sure to scrub the potatoes well with a bristle brush to remove any dirt.

Garlic – Garlic cloves vary in size a lot, so use your judgment when deciding how many cloves to use. If you like more robust garlic flavor, use more!

Butter – Use salted or unsalted butter. If using salted butter, reduce the amount of salt added later.

Heavy cream – The fat in cream helps make the best mashed potatoes. If you prefer, you can use milk or half and half for a lighter dish.

Salt and pepper – To taste, plus salt for the boiling water.

garlic mashed potatoes ingredients with labels

What are the best potatoes for mashing?

Did you know there are hundreds of different potatoes out there? 

While I am always tempted to try the many varieties I see at the farmers market, it’s important to keep in mind what you plan to make with the potatoes when you select them.

Mashed potatoes are best when made using starchy potatoes that are fluffy when baked and wonderfully smooth when mashed. 

Starchy potatoes include russet, Idaho, and Yukon gold. I love using Yukon gold potatoes, which are slightly less starchy than russet, because they have a wonderful flavor.

Waxy potatoes are varieties like new potatoes and fingerling potatoes. They’re typically smaller and have a thin, papery skin. 

Waxy potatoes aren’t great for making mashed potatoes because they hold their shape more when boiled. Perfect for potato salad, not mash.

black bowl of garlic mashed potatoes

How to make garlic mashed potatoes

Ready to make this mashed potato recipe? Grab your ingredients and let’s get started.

Wash and peel the potatoes. Cut into even-size chunks, about 1 inch in size. Make sure to cut out any eyes or browned spots as well.

Place the potato chunks in a large pot. Fill the pot with enough water to cover the potatoes. Add a pinch of salt, cover the pot, and bring to a boil.

Once the water is boiling, reduce the heat slightly and let the potatoes simmer until fork tender, but not falling apart. This will take 15-20 minutes once the water has boiled.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan combine the chopped garlic, butter, and cream. Warm over medium heat, stirring to melt the butter. Once melted, reduce to low to keep warm.

Drain the potatoes and return them to the hot pot briefly to evaporate any extra water. You can continue the recipe with the potatoes in the pot, or transfer to a large bowl.

Mash the potatoes with a potato masher to desired consistency, or pass through a potato ricer. I like a few little bits of potato in mine, rather than completely smooth.

Pour the warmed garlic cream mixture over the potatoes and fold the potatoes to blend the cream in. Don’t mix too vigorously or you can end up with gummy potatoes.

Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve!

I like to add extra butter on top when serving, as well as chopped fresh herbs. Parsley, chives, thyme, or rosemary are all wonderful additions.

overhead bowl of garlic mashed potatoes

Storage tips

Leftover garlic mashed potatoes can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Store in an airtight container such as a Pyrex or deli container.

To reheat, simply portion out the desired amount and microwave until heated through.

For longer storage, freeze the potatoes! This is a great way to make the potatoes ahead of time for Thanksgiving.

close up of butter melting on garlic mashed potatoes

How to freeze mashed potatoes

To freeze mashed potatoes, you’ll first want to portion them into a smaller size. Freezing in a giant pan makes it harder to reheat later.

Make sure the potatoes are cooled completely before freezing.

Line a baking sheet with a silicone liner or parchment paper, then scoop out mashed potatoes in approximately ½ to 1 cup portions. 

Place the baking sheet into the freezer and freeze until solid, 2-3 hours.

Then, transfer the potatoes to a freezer bag, label, and seal.

To reheat, place the potato portions in a large pot and heat over medium-low, stirring occasionally. Once heated through, add butter and seasoning as needed and serve.

You can also reheat in the oven. Place in a casserole dish and cook at 350°F for 30 minutes.

forkful of garlic mashed potatoes

More holiday side dishes

Need to round out your Thanksgiving lineup? Try these dishes:

black bowl of garlic mashed potatoes with butter

Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Garlic mashed potatoes are the best side dish for any meal! They’re just as easy to make as regular mashed potatoes, but with plenty of garlic flavor.
5 from 1 vote
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Side Dishes
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 254 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 to 6 cloves garlic
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Peel potatoes and cut into 1-inch chunks. Place in a large stockpot and add enough water to cover potatoes. Add a pinch of salt, cover, and heat to boiling.
  • Once boiling, reduce heat slightly and let simmer until potatoes are tender but not falling apart, 15-20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a small saucepan combine cream, butter, and garlic. Heat over medium, stirring to melt butter. Once melted and warmed through, reduce heat to low.
  • Drain potatoes, then return to the hot pot to evaporate any excess water. Transfer to a large bowl and mash.
  • Pour the cream mixture over the potatoes and fold potatoes to mix, making sure to not stir vigorously.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste and serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 254 kcalCarbohydrates: 28 gProtein: 4 gFat: 15 gSaturated Fat: 9 gCholesterol: 42 mgSodium: 269 mgPotassium: 667 mgFiber: 3 gSugar: 2 gIron: 1 mg
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