Garlic Mashed Potatoes

What do you get when you add roasted garlic to the best 4-ingredient mashed potatoes? Garlic Mashed Potatoes so good, people will sneak spoonfuls when you’re not looking!

Garlic mashed potatoes in a black bowl with a serving spoon on a blue and white striped towel.

If you’ve been making your mashed potatoes with garlic powder all this time, consider roasting some garlic. It’s really easy to do and results are, well, sneak-worthy.

Recipe ingredients:

Garlic mashed potato ingredients in bowls and labeled.

Ingredient notes:

  • Garlic: 40 cloves of garlic sounds like a lot, and it is! But I did the math: You’ll get about 20 cloves of garlic per bulb, so grab 2 bulbs (or 3 if the bulbs look small). And don’t worry, once it’s roasted, the flavor of garlic is super mellow and delicious.
  • Russet potatoes: In my humble opinion, Russets make the best mashed potatoes. That’s because they’re starchy (instead of waxy) and that makes them fluff up when mashed. However, skin-on baby red potatoes are just as delicious. (With waxy varieties, a potato ricer keeps the potatoes from getting over beaten and gluey.)

Step-by-step instructions:

  1. First, roast the garlic. Break up the cloves, but don’t peel them. Keep them in their paper. Dry roast them in a skillet over medium-low heat. Stir them occasionally, cooking until dark brown, soft, and spotted. This should take 20 to 25 minutes.
    Garlic being roasted on a silver skillet.
  2. Take the skillet off the heat, cover, and let cool for 10-15 minutes until cool enough to handle. Then peel the garlic, mince it, and set it aside. To start the potatoes, place the peeled cut-up potatoes in a large pot and fill the pot with cool water, covering the potatoes by about an inch. Bring the pot to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until fork tender, about 20 to 25 minutes. When ready, drain the potatoes, then wipe the pot dry before returning the hot potatoes back to the pot.
    Steamed potatoes in a sliver colander with someone holding a piece of potato on a knife.
  3. Mash the hot potatoes as smooth as you want by hand, or with a food mill or ricer.
    Mashed potatoes with a potato masher in a black pot.
  4. Then fold in the melted butter and minced garlic.
    Garlic mashed potatoes and ingredients in a black pot.
  5. Once the garlic is added, pour in some, but not all, of the half-and-half. Give everything a good stir. Use the rest of the cream if the potatoes are too thick for you. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper, and garnish with some fresh herbs, if you have them.
    Milk being poured onto mashed potatoes in a black pot.

Recipe tips and variations:

  • Yield: 1 pound of potatoes makes about 2 cups mashed, so this recipe makes 10 (1-cup) servings.
  • Make ahead: If you’re pressed for time, one good trick is to peel and quarter the potatoes and soak them in cold water in the refrigerator overnight (up to 24 hours, even). You can also roast the garlic a few days before you need it and store it in the refrigerator. Otherwise, here’s the perfect recipe for Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes. All you need to do is cook the garlic, peel it, and mince it up to fold into the potatoes.
  • Oven roasted garlic:  Let the oven do the roasting! Trim off the tops of the garlic bulbs, drizzle each one with olive oil, and wrap in foil. Roast in a 400-degree oven for about 40 minutes until soft. Once cool, squeeze the bulb to release the softened garlic. I go deeper in this roasted garlic how-to, in case you’re curious.
  • Lighten things up: Cooks often use chicken broth and skim milk in place of cream, and use low-fat sour cream in place of all but 1 tablespoon of butter.
  • Or make them even richer: Fold in some sour cream, heavy cream, or cream cheese instead of the milk.
  • Use an Instant Pot to cook the potatoes: Pour the peeled, quartered potatoes into cold water and cook for 8 minutes on high pressure. (It takes extra time for the pot to come up to pressure.) Then drain and proceed as directed in the recipe.
  • Garlic Mashed Potato casserole: Once you make the mashed potatoes, move them into a casserole and dot the top with butter. Cover with foil and bake at a 350 degree oven, or keep warm until dinner time. Any potluck would be lucky to have you.
  • Top them with something savory: Crumbled bacon, fried onions, chives, potato chips, grated Parmesan cheese, shredded cheddar cheese, the list goes on. Of course it will be good.

Garlic mashed potatoes in a black bowl with a serving spoon on a blue and white striped towel.

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Garlic mashed potatoes in a black bowl with a serving spoon.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes

What do you get when you add roasted garlic to the best 4-ingredient mashed potatoes? Garlic Mashed Potatoes so good, people will sneak spoonfuls when you're not looking!
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Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 10 servings
Calories: 390kcal
Author: Meggan Hill

Ingredients

  • 40 cloves garlic unpeeled (about 2 bulbs, see note 1)
  • 5 pounds Russet potatoes peeled, quartered, and cut into 1-inch chunks (see note 2)
  • 1 cup butter melted (2 sticks)
  • 2 cups milk hot
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • chopped fresh chives for garnish, optional

Instructions

To roast the garlic:

  • In a dry medium skillet over medium-low heat, toast garlic cloves until spotty, dark brown, and slightly softened, about 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Remove pan from heat, cover, and let stand until garlic is completely soft, 10 to 15 minutes. Peel and mince garlic, set aside.

To make the potatoes:

  • Cover potatoes by 1 inch of water in a large pot. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are tender and a fork can be slipped easily into the center, 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Drain potatoes in colander, tossing to remove any excess water. Wipe the pot dry.
  • Add potatoes back to pot and mash to a uniform consistency, (or process through food mill or ricer back into the dry pot).
  • Using a flexible rubber spatula, fold in the melted butter and minced garlic until just incorporated. Fold in 1 1/2 cups of milk, adding the remaining 1/2 cup as needed to adjust the consistency. 
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper and garnish with chives if desired.

Notes

  1. Garlic: 40 cloves of garlic sounds like a lot, and it is! But I did the math: You'll get about 20 cloves of garlic per bulb, so grab 2 bulbs (or 3 if the bulbs look small). And don't worry, once it's roasted, the flavor of garlic is super mellow and delicious. Be sure to leave the papery skin on while roasting.
  2. Russet potatoes: In my humble opinion, Russets make the best mashed potatoes. That's because they're starchy (instead of waxy) and that makes them fluff up when mashed. However, skin-on baby red potatoes are just as delicious. (With waxy varieties, a potato ricer keeps the potatoes from getting over beaten and gluey.)
  3. Yield: 1 pound of potatoes makes about 2 cups mashed, so this recipe makes 10 (1-cup) servings.
  4. Make ahead: If you’re pressed for time, one good trick is to peel and quarter the potatoes and soak them in cold water in the refrigerator overnight (up to 24 hours, even). You can also roast the garlic a few days before you need it and store it in the refrigerator. Otherwise, here's the perfect recipe for Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes. All you need to do is cook the garlic, peel it, and mince it up to fold into the potatoes.
  5. Oven roasted garlic:  Let the oven do the roasting! Trim off the tops of the garlic bulbs, drizzle each one with olive oil, and wrap in foil. Roast in a 400-degree oven for about 40 minutes until soft. Once cool, squeeze the bulb to release the softened garlic. I go deeper in this roasted garlic how-to, in case you're curious.
  6. Lighten things up: Cooks often use chicken broth and skim milk in place of cream, and use low-fat sour cream in place of all but 1 tablespoon of butter.
  7. Or make them even richer: Fold in some sour cream, heavy cream, or cream cheese instead of the milk.
  8. Use an Instant Pot to cook the potatoes: Pour the peeled, quartered potatoes into cold water and cook for 8 minutes on high pressure. (It takes extra time for the pot to come up to pressure.) Then drain and proceed as directed in the recipe.
  9. Garlic Mashed Potato casserole: Once you make the mashed potatoes, move them into a casserole and dot the top with butter. Cover with foil and bake at a 350 degree oven, or keep warm until dinner time. Any potluck would be lucky to have you.
  10. Top them with something savory: Crumbled bacon, fried onions, chives, potato chips, grated Parmesan cheese, shredded cheddar cheese, the list goes on. Of course it will be good.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 390kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 248mg | Potassium: 1068mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 891IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 113mg | Iron: 2mg
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  1. Tasha

    These are the bomb dot com. 5 stars

  2. CJOHN

    Another favorite that I have not tried it at home. Thank you!5 stars

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