Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes

October 22, 2020
Love mashed potatoes, but don't love mashing them up at the last minute when working to get other dishes to the table?  Then make Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes instead!  Prepare them a day in advance, pop in the refrigerator overnight, then bake up before serving time. Straight from oven to table, they're deliciously fluffy mashed potatoes with no last-minute mashing.

Pan of Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes Image

Mashed potatoes are a favorite staple of so many meals, whether an everyday dinner or a special holiday meal.  And I, for one, go for those creamy mashed potatoes first thing every time.  They're one of my absolute favorite comfort food sides.

But as the cook of the meal? -- Mashed potatoes are definitely not one of my favorites.

Why?

Because when you're the cook, there's a lot going on right at the end of any meal preparation to get things on the table. And whenever mashed potatoes are involved, mashing them up last-minute is one of those things.
Straight from oven to table, Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes are deliciously fluffy mashed potatoes with no last-minute mashing.

It can be hectic sometimes to mash up those potatoes when you're also trying to finish up other dishes, and deliver everything hot to the table at the same time.

What's a great solution to this last-minute mashed potato problem? -- These Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes.

Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes are prepared a day in advance and popped in the refrigerator overnight.  Then, you bake them up for about an hour before serving time and you're good to go!  Straight from the oven to the table, they're deliciously fluffy mashed potatoes with no pesky last-minute mashing.

And believe me, the perk of the mashed potatoes already being prepared is a huge win when preparing big meals like Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, for sure.

Serving Spoon of Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes Image

Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes Ingredients

To create make-ahead mashed potatoes that have a nice fluffy texture after being stored overnight and reheated in the oven, two things are super important:  

1. Using the right potato for the job.  In this case, Russets work best.
2. Mixing fats into the potatoes so they will retain their fluffiness.  The fats prevent the mashed potatoes from becoming dense and dry.

To this end, to whip up a fluffy-textured pan you'll need:

  • Russet potatoes - Not all potato varieties are well-suited for mashed potatoes, especially make-ahead mashed potatoes.  Russet potatoes work best for this make-ahead version.   I do not recommend other potato varieties (and have had this turn our quite glue-like with some others). If you absolutely cannot get Russets, use Yukon Gold instead. 

  • Cream cheese & sour cream - A combination of cream cheese and sour cream adds the fats needed for the potatoes to retain their fluffy texture as they're stored overnight and reheated. I recommend sticking with regular cream cheese and sour cream, rather than using lower-fat versions.

  • Milk - Brings creaminess to the mashed potatoes.

  • Minced onion - This is dried minced onion (shown in the photo below this ingredients list) that you buy in the spices section of the grocery store.  This may seem like an unnecessary or strange ingredient to add to the mashed potatoes, but it adds wonderful flavor. -- And is actually much-needed seasoning to bring flavor to the cream cheese and sour cream that's added to the potatoes. 

  • Salt & pepper - Standard mashed potato seasonings that bring out and brighten their flavor.

  • Melted butter - Butter added directly into the mashed potatoes themselves can leave them with a grainy texture after they've been refrigerated overnight.  Melted butter drizzled on top right before baking, rather, gives the potatoes that tasty little touch of butter flavor without negatively impacting their texture.  It also helps the potatoes develop a nice golden brown color on top as they bake.

Container of Minced Onion Image

How to Make Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes

The beauty of make-ahead mashed potatoes is just as their name says -- they can be made ahead!  Because of the fats added to the potatoes in the form of cream cheese and sour cream, the mashed potatoes retain their fluffy texture when refrigerated overnight and reheated in the oven.  The fats prevent them from becoming dense and dry.

To whip up a pan, start just as you would for regular mashed potatoes -- by peeling and boiling potatoes until they're tender.

Boiling the potatoes in salted water helps flavor the potatoes all throughout as they absorb water while they cook.

Start with 5 pounds of Russet potatoes.   Then once the potatoes are peeled, cut them into chunks, quartering the larger potatoes and halving the smaller ones.  You just want to make the potato chunks all roughly around the same size so they cook in about the same amount of time.

Place the potatoes in a large pot and fill the pot with water to just cover the potatoes.  You don't need to fill the pot the whole way.  Then, add about a 1/4 teaspoon of salt to the water. Boiling the potatoes in salted water helps flavor the potatoes all throughout as they absorb water while they cook. 

Bring the pot to a boil over medium-high heat. Then reduce the heat and simmer the potatoes until they're tender, about 15 minutes. Pierce a couple of chunks with a fork to test for doneness -- the fork should easily pierce into the potatoes when they're done.

Pot of Boiled Potatoes to Make Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes Image

Drain the potatoes in a colander, and then place them in a large mixing bowl or return them to the pot they were cooked in.

Using a fork or a rubber spatula, smash the potatoes up just a bit. -- You're not mashing them completely at this point, just breaking the big pieces down into smaller ones a bit.  This helps the remaining ingredients get more easily incorporated without having to overwork the potatoes when mashing.

Add some cream cheese, sour cream, milk, dried minced onion, salt, and pepper to the potatoes.

How to Make Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes Image

Then mash the potatoes with a hand-mixer or potato masher until all the ingredients are incorporated and the potatoes are your desired consistency. 

Add a little bit more milk, if needed, to reach a good consistency.

Potatoes Mashed with Hand Mixer Image

Spoon the mashed potatoes into a greased 9x13-inch baking dish. Then cover and refrigerate them for up to 24 hours.

Mashed Potatoes Spooned Into Baking Dish Image

When you're ready to reheat the potatoes the next day, melt some butter and drizzle it all over the top.

Pouring Melted Butter on Mashed Potatoes Image

Pop the pan of mashed potatoes in the oven and bake them up for an hour, or until they're heated through and very lightly beginning to brown on top.

Then you're ready to dig in and enjoy the fluffy make-ahead mashed potato deliciousness!

Pan of Baked Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes Image

So if mashed potatoes is one of your favorite side dishes but you don't like their last-minute mashing, give these Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes a try.  

They offer fabulous convenience, especially for those big holiday meals. Prepare them a day in advance, pop in the refrigerator overnight, then bake them up before serving time. Straight from the oven to the table, they're deliciously fluffy mashed potatoes with no last-minute mashing.

That perk of the mashed potatoes already being prepared is a huge win when preparing big meals like Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, for sure!

Serving Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes With a Spoon Image
Thank you for stopping by The Kitchen is My Playground. We'd love to have you back soon!

make ahead mashed potatoes, mashed potatoes recipe, overnight mashed potatoes
Side Dishes
American
Yield: 10-12 servings
Author: Tracey | The Kitchen is My Playground
Print
Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes

Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes

Love mashed potatoes, but don't love mashing at the last minute when working to get other dishes to the table? Make Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes instead! Prepare them a day in advance, pop in the refrigerator overnight, then bake up before serving time. Straight from oven to table, they're deliciously fluffy mashed potatoes with no last-minute mashing.
Prep time: 30 MinCook time: 1 HourTotal time: 1 H & 30 M

Ingredients

  • 5 lbs. Russet potatoes
  • 1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 c. sour cream
  • 1/2 c. to 1 c. milk
  • 1 tsp. dried minced onion
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/16 tsp. pepper
  • 1/4 c. butter, melted

Instructions

  1. Peel potatoes and cut into chunks, quartering larger potatoes and halving smaller ones. Place in large pot and fill with water to just cover, adding about 1/4 teaspoon salt to water.
  2. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Piece with a fork to test for doneness -- the fork should easily pierce into the potatoes when done.
  3. Drain potatoes in a colander.
  4. Place drained potatoes in a large mixing bowl, or return them to the pot they were cooked in.  Using a fork or rubber spatula, smash the potatoes up just a bit (not mashing them completely, just breaking the big pieces down into smaller ones a bit).
  5. Add cream cheese, sour cream, 1/2 cup milk, dried minced onion, salt, and pepper. Mash with a hand-mixer or potato masher until ingredients are incorporated and potatoes are desired consistency. Add up to another 1/2 cup milk, if needed.
  6. Spoon into a greased 9x13-inch baking dish. Cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.
  7. When ready to bake, drizzle top with melted butter. Bake at 350℉ for 1 hour, or until heated through and very lightly beginning to brown on top.
TRACEY'S NOTES:
  1. Not all potato varieties are well-suited for mashed potatoes. -- And Russet potatoes work best for these make-ahead mashed potatoes.   I do not recommend other potato varieties (and have had this turn our quite glue-like with some others). If you absolutely cannot get Russets, use Yukon Gold instead. 
  2. Boiling the potatoes in salted water helps flavor the potatoes all throughout as they absorb water while they cook.  Be sure to salt the water for the best flavor result.
Created using The Recipes Generator


Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes ~ Prepare a day in advance, pop in the refrigerator overnight, then bake up before serving time. Straight from oven to table, they're deliciously fluffy mashed potatoes with no last-minute mashing. A huge win when preparing big meals like Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, for sure! #makeaheadmashedpotatoes #mashedpotatoes #mashedpotatoesrecipe  www.thekitchenismyplayground.com


This post is linked with Weekend Potluck, Meal Plan Monday.

3 comments

  1. Making the mashed potatoes ahead is a great idea for those busy times when it would take too much time to do it just before the meal. Good idea!

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is a great idea! I hate having to mash the potatoes at the last minute when trying to prepare a big meal. I've taken to making them the morning of and then using a crock pot liner I keep them warm in the crock pot while cooking and just give them a stir now and then but this is a great solution too!! Pinned.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Congratulations!
    Your awesome post is featured on Full Plate Thursday,509 this week. Hope you have a very special week and thanks so much for sharing with us!
    Miz Helen

    ReplyDelete

I love your comments ~ I read and appreciate each and every one. When you choose to leave a comment, we collect and display your name, as provided by you. Clicking "publish" to submit your comment indicates your explicit consent for name collection. If you click the "notify me" checkbox {which is optional}, your e-mail is also collected. Clicking the "notify me" checkbox indicates your explicit consent for e-mail collection. Thank you so much for visiting The Kitchen is My Playground!

Blog Design: Tracimichele.com. Powered by Blogger.