Best Mashed Potatoes

These buttery smooth BEST Mashed Potatoes are our go-to potato side dish for every dinner and holiday get together. They’re my FAVORITE!!

These Best Mashed Potatoes ALWAYS make an appearance at Sunday dinners and holiday meals. They’re usually accompanied by more favorite side dishes, like Glazed Carrots, Green Bean Bundles, and of course Homemade Rolls!

Best Mashed Potatoes topped with butter in a dish.

favorite homemade mashed potatoes

There are few things in life better than a side of creamy mashed potatoes (name a better side dish – I dare you!)

Mashed potatoes are an iconic food in my life. I have so many great memories of sitting around the table with my family, eating and enjoying mashed potatoes together.

This is our classic Homemade Mashed Potatoes recipe, but we also love our Cheesy Mashed Potato Casserole, and Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes.

All you need to make these Best Mashed Potatoes is a good masher, lots of butter/salt/pepper, and hot cooked potatoes. Then you’re already halfway there!

Russet potatoes used for best mashed potatoes recipe.

How to Make Mashed Potatoes

Potatoes, in general, are our favorite!! And making this recipe is easier then you think. You’re going to need 5 pounds of potatoes for this recipe which feeds about 10 people!

PREP POTATOES. Make sure to wash, peel, and cut your potatoes into chunks before starting.

BOIL. Place the cut potatoes into a large pot. Add enough water to the pot to cover the potatoes. Bring the water to a boil.

Let the water simmer until the potatoes are fork tender (about 20-25 minutes). Stick them with a fork to see if they are ready.

ADD INGREDIENTS. Drain the water from the pot. Add the cream cheese, butter, cream, and salt.

If the cream cheese scares you, I promise you cannot even taste the cream cheese in this recipe. It just adds to the flavor and creaminess.

BLEND. Use a hand mixer to blend all of the ingredients together. Keep mixing until it’s as smooth as you want it. (I prefer smooth with no lumps, but take care not to over-mix!)

SERVE. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Add a few more butter slices on top before serving, because a little more butter is always a good idea. Enjoy every last bite!

Tips for the Best Mashed Potatoes

  • Use a high starch potato. The cubes will break down easier and mash together smoothly.
  • Make uniform cubes so they cook at an even rate. Cubes around 1 ½ inches are perfect. 
  • Cold water. Always add the cubed potatoes into cold water, then bring it to a boil. This helps create an even cook.
  • Mash the potatoes while they’re hot, using a potato masher or potato ricer, then blend in remaining ingredients. 
  • Use room temperature milk so that it absorbs more easily.
  • Don’t over mix as this will create a gluey texture.
  • Season. Taste and season as you go. 
Cubed potatoes on cutting board for easy Mashed Potatoes recipe.

Adding flavor

  • Cheese. Sprinkle with parmesan or cheddar cheese.
  • Add Garlic. Crush 5-6 garlic cloves. Heat the heavy cream and garlic in a small saucepan until simmering. Mix the heavy cream with potatoes as directed. 
  • Garnish. Sprinkle green onions or chives on top.
  • GRAVY! Top with Mashed Potato Gravy.

potato faq

Best kind of potatoes for mashed potatoes? Use potatoes with higher starches: Russet Potatoes or Yukon Gold Potatoes. They make for the fluffiest, and smoothest mashed potatoes. They absorb flavoring more easily than other varieties.

Red or white potato varieties are more waxy, and usually take a little more mashing to become creamy.

Stick a fork in it. This idiom means that something is finished. In cooking, sticking a fork into a dish can often indicate whether it is done or not.

Boiled potatoes are no different. Over boiling will cause too much water to be absorbed by the potato cubes, resulting in a soupy mash.

Be sure to check the potatoes at 15-20 minutes. Check by sticking a fork directly into one of the cubes. If it slides right in without any resistance, then they’re done.

Smashing cooked potatoes for best mashed potatoes.

Serving mashed potatoes

How many potatoes per person: Plan on about ½ pound for each guest, so a 5 pound bag should feed 10 people.

    • 10 people – 5 pounds
    • 20 people – 10 pounds
    • 25 people – 12.5 pounds
    • 40 people – 20 pounds
    • 100 people – 50 pounds

To keep your potatoes warm while you serve them, here’s an easy trick: Butter your slow cooker and add a few tablespoons of whipping cream to it. Keep the slow cooker on LOW, and transfer your potatoes to it.

Keep mashed potatoes in there for up to 4 hours, stirring before serving.

Whipping best mashed potatoes in a pot.

storing info

Make ahead of time. Potatoes taste the best when eaten freshly made. I like to peel and cube my potatoes beforehand, and store them in cold water until ready to boil. You can store them, covered, for a few hours right on the stove top, or place them in the fridge overnight. 

STORE cooked potatoes in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 to 5 days.

FREEZE. As long as your potatoes have plenty of butter and cream, they’re great for freezing. We recommend placing them in a freezer-safe Ziploc bag, and laying them flat (it makes it easier to store and to reheat).

How to reheat mashed potatoes:

  • MICROWAVE – The easiest and fastest way to reheat is to place them in a covered dish, and heat them in the microwave at half-power for 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • STOVETOP – Let potatoes thaw overnight in the fridge, and place in a large pot on low to medium heat. Stir occasionally until heated through.
  • SLOW COOKER – Thaw potatoes overnight in the fridge and heat on low for 2-4 hours.

For all of these, add butter or dairy (sour cream or cream cheese) and additional seasonings, if needed, when done.

Kids and adults alike will go crazy over these easy and yummy homemade mashed potatoes. We’ve enjoyed this recipe since I was little, and hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe topped with butter in a white dish.

For more potato sides, try:

Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe

5 from 99 votes
My FAVORITE mashed potatoes recipe! These Buttery smooth mashed potatoes are our Go-To potato side dish recipe for every dinner and holiday get together.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Servings 10
Calories 341 kcal
Author Lil’ Luna


  • 5 pounds russet potatoes washed, peeled and cut into cubes
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • ½ cup salted butter softened
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • teaspoons garlic salt with parsley flakes
  • pepper to taste


  • Place cut potatoes into a large pot and add enough water to cover potatoes. Bring water to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 20–25 minutes, or until potatoes are fork-tender. Drain the water.
  • Transfer potatoes to a large bowl and add cream cheese, butter, cream and salt.
  • Use a potato masher to mash potatoes and combine ingredients together until they are the consistency you prefer.
  • Season with more salt and pepper, if desired.



Best kind of potatoes for mashed potatoes? Use potatoes with higher starches: Russet Potatoes or Yukon Gold Potatoes. They make for the fluffiest, and smoothest mashed potatoes. They absorb flavoring more easily than other varieties.
Make Ahead: Here is an easy trick to keep your potatoes warm until ready to serve: Butter your slow cooker and add a few tablespoons of whipping cream to it. Set the slow cooker to low and transfer potatoes to it to keep warm for up to 4 hours. Stir before serving.

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About Kristyn

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

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Recipe Rating


  1. i use your potatoe receipe all the time, it is delicious, we use alot of potatoes for our meals, and this is the biggest hit. thanks

  2. I really love old-fashioned Thanksgiving sides. So mashed potatoes will be my go-to for this year. I have never put cream cheese in my mashed potatoes. But it sounds like it would be delicious. Now, I have to try it.

  3. Definite 5- star recipe! So good, easy and the family raved. I love the part where I could make them in advance and keep them warm in the crockpot! Game changer Luna!

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