Everyone loves classic mashed potatoes and they’re supposed to be easy to make, but so often they just don’t turn out as planned. Here’s a foolproof classic mashed potatoes recipe. We used Russet potatoes, kosher salt, unsalted butter and half-and-half so you’ll make perfect mashed potatoes every time.
It’s all about mashing the potatoes before you add the butter and milk. Once you add the liquids it’ll be too late! Watch my video and learn how to whip potatoes into a perfect light and fluffy dish every time.
Although there are several types of potatoes that are popular for mashing, we chose Russets. They are fluffy in texture and mild in flavor. Peel and cut them into small chunks of equal size so that they’ll cook evenly. Otherwise, larger pieces will be undercooked and you’ll have those dreaded lumps!
Classic Mashed Potatoes Recipe
- 2 1/2 lbs Russet potatoes, about 3 large or 5 medium
- 1 tsp kosher salt, add to water
- 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature and cut into 6 pieces
- 1/2 cup half-and-half, or whole milk, heated in microwave
- 1 tsp kosher salt, add to finished potatoes
- Peel potatoes, cut into 1½" chunks, rinse and place in large saucepan. Fill saucepan with enough water to cover potatoes by 1". Heat potatoes over high heat until boiling then reduce heat to simmer, add 1 tsp kosher salt and stir. Simmer until potatoes are very tender but not disintegrating (about 20 minutes). Drain potatoes completely and return to pot.
- Stir potatoes over low heat to allow excess water to evaporate—potatoes should break down easily just from stirring (the process is complete when steam no longer rises from the pot—approximately 1 minute).
- Transfer potatoes to large mixing bowl or to bowl of stand mixer fitted with whip attachment. Begin beating potatoes on low speed, gradually working up to medium speed to break down any lumps. Add butter, beat on medium speed until fully incorporated, scraping sides of bowl often. Add half-and-half or milk and beat on medium speed until potatoes are light and fluffy.
- Sprinkle surface of potatoes with salt and whip on high speed an additional 20 seconds.
- Test for seasoning, transfer to serving dish and enjoy!
Make sure all lumps are out before adding any half-and-half or milk. Your dish is doomed if you don’t!