The Best (And Easy) Mashed Potatoes Recipe

The Best (And Easy) Mashed Potatoes Recipe

Creamy, buttery, steamy, and lighter than a cloud, is there anything better than perfect mashed potatoes? We can’t think of anything. Can you? Like all the best comfort food, our easy mashed potatoes recipe takes next to no effort or time.

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All you need is your favorite spuds, a masher, a pan, and some elbow grease. Nothing could be simpler.

Everyone has their own variations on this tried-and-true classic – endless arguments can ensue about the right amount of butter or whether you should use butter, cream, or even sour cream. Some people argue you should keep the skins on; others swear by peeling them.

The only thing we know for sure is that our mashed potatoes recipe is delicious, creamy, and perfect for a Thanksgiving feast or as a simple weeknight comfort food.

May we humbly introduce the best mashed potatoes recipe in the world – let’s get started.

Easy mashed potatoes recipe

Learn how to make delicious, fluffy mashed potatoes in two simple steps:

Prep time: 25 minutes

Cook time: 15 to 20 minutes

Servings: 10 to 12


  • 4 lb. Yukon gold potatoes, peeled, chopped into quarters
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup whole milk or heavy cream
  • Freshly ground pepper and salt


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  1. Place potatoes in a large saucepan, cover with cold water and add the salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a medium-low, and simmer for 10 minutes until tender. Potatoes should break apart easily when pierced with a fork. Drain potatoes in a colander.
  2. Return the potatoes to the saucepan. Begin to mash the potatoes until no lumps remain. Add in the butter, pepper, and salt, and continue mashing, pouring in the milk or cream until the potatoes are smooth and creamy.

Now you’ve got lighter-than-air mashed potatoes. But while we love this recipe, there are plenty of ways to mix things up a bit.

What potatoes to use?

We use Yukon gold potatoes in our recipe – they’re the best. However, they’re not the only potatoes you can use. Seasoned mash makers may prefer russets; they’re the most common choice. However, russets have a high starch content that makes for a watery mashed potato.

Waxy potatoes are another popular choice. They have a lower starch content and higher moisture, making them challenging to mash. You should leave these varieties for potato salads and other chunkier dishes.

Yukon Golds, however, are moderately starchy and have more flavor than russets. As the name suggests, they also produce a golden yellow mash that everyone loves. For us, they’re the obvious choice.

Mashed Potato Variations and Tips

Skin on or skin off?

Most people peel their potatoes before boiling – us included. That’s not to say it’s the only way. Many mash enthusiasts swear by the skin – it adds extra flavor, fiber, and nutrients and saves time peeling all those potatoes.

For the smoothest mash, we say skin off. But if you’re trying to be a little healthier, you’ll definitely want to keep the skin on.

Go full fat

Mashed potatoes are all about that sensational combination of carbs and fats. Leave out any low-fat varieties of cream or milk; it just creates dry, bland mashed potatoes. It doesn’t have to be Thanksgiving to use the thickest, full-fat milk or cream.

Butter, butter, and even more butter

Butter is the secret ingredient in the mash. It transforms the color into a golden yellow and tastes simply sublime. You can melt your butter into the milk beforehand – some say it produces an even more velvety mash.

We always use unsalted butter. That way, you can control the level of seasoning you want.

Heavy on the seasoning

Mashed potatoes need a heavy dose of salt and pepper! Salt is a flavor enhancer, bringing out the buttery flavor and ensuring your mash isn’t a disappointment.

Load Up Your Mashed Potatoes

Mashed potatoes are amazing as they are. But, to go one better, how about loaded mashed potatoes? There’s an endless variation you can try.

Here’s our version:

  1. Add ¾ cup of sour cream and only add ½ cup of milk.
  2. Once you’ve mashed the potatoes, stir in ½ pound of sliced bacon, 2 cups of cheddar cheese, and 3 sliced green onions.
  3. Top with a little extra grated cheese and bake for 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted.

Some people top the finally hot, gooey mash with chives for optional freshness. Oh, and don’t forget to season as you cook.

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