Prepping Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes you can freeze is a great way to save time, money, and kitchen clean-up; it’s perfect comfort food to keep on hand for nights when you need a quick and starchy side.
Serve these make ahead mashed potatoes with Meatballs and Gravy or with Roast Chicken. They are delicious as a side dish at a holiday meal, Sunday dinner, or any night you want some good old fashioned comfort food. It’s a great side dish for ham.
Mashed potatoes are one of life’s ultimate comfort foods. There’s nothing like creamy, smooth mashed potatoes alongside a roast chicken and vegetable dinner.
Make-ahead mashed potatoes you can freeze are a boon to home cooks. You can make mashed potatoes in advance, freeze them, and enjoy them whenever you want, saving time, avoiding food waste, and reducing dishes on a busy night.
It’s well worth your while to keep a dish or two of mashed potatoes stashed away in the freezer.
Why Make This
You save money when you prep make ahead mashed potatoes you can freeze. Benefit from bulk pricing or a killer sale price and make several batches to stash for later.
Avoid food waste. While you might not be able to go through a big bag of potatoes at a regular pace before they sprout and go weird, you can make bulk batches of these freezer-friendly potatoes to enjoy for weeks to come and avoid wasting food.
The trick to freezing potatoes is making sure that you’ve mixed enough fats (butter, cream, cheese, or cream cheese) into the potatoes to keep it from getting mealy.
Here’s what you need for make-ahead mashed potatoes:
potatoes – I use russet potatoes but Yukon Gold also work well.
seasoning – You can stick with simple salt and pepper or ramp things up with some garlic powder or even Seasoned Salt.
cream cheese – Cream cheese makes these extra creamy, and adds some extra fat to help keep these a nice smooth consistency even after freezing and reheating. You can use full fat cream cheese or the lighter neufchâtel cheese.
butter – You’ll need a ½ stick of butter, and then cut into cubes so it melts faster into the hot potatoes.
milk – I use regular milk, but you could also use heavy cream or half-n-half if that’s what you have in the fridge.
There are lots of different things that you can add to mashed potatoes, including:
- roast garlic
- sautéed onions
- sautéed mushrooms
- shredded or crumbled cheese
- sour cream or Greek yogurt
- finely chopped kale or spinach
- any number of seasonings such as Cajun Spice Blend, mushroom salt, or nutritional yeast
1. In the metal insert of an electric pressure cooker, place the cubed potatoes and 1 cup of water. Seal the lid and set it for ten minutes manual pressure. When the time is up, release the pressure. (Alternatively, you can cook the potatoes on the stovetop. In a large pot of cold water, bring the potatoes to a boil. Simmer until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain the water.)
2. Mash the cooked potatoes with a potato masher or hand mixer. Do not add any of the fats until the potatoes are mashed very fine.
3. Once smooth, mix in the cream cheese, milk, salt, and pepper. Stir until smooth. Transfer this mixture to a casserole dish.
4. Chill the potatoes in the fridge and then dot with pats of butter. Cover, label, and freeze.
To serve: thaw the dish in the refrigerator until completely thawed. Bake in a 350° oven for about 45 minutes or until hot through. Fluff with a fork before serving. (Add a little milk or cream if you think it’s too dry.)
FAQs & Recipe Costs
Yes you can! If you want to get an even better jump start on this dish. The night before you plan to make this recipe go ahead and peel your potatoes and then submerge them in cold water. You can cut them up or keep them whole. The next day, drain the water and start with fresh cold water and if you haven’t quartered or chunked them yet, do so before boiling.
Prepped food is good for up to 4 days, so, of course, you can make mashed potatoes in advance. You can prepare mashed potatoes for the freezer up to 4 to 6 weeks in advance.
If frozen, thaw the potatoes in the refrigerator. Reheat in a 350-degree oven for 45 minutes or microwave until hot. Stir the potatoes to recombine and serve.
A slow cooker is a great appliance for keeping this side dish warm for an extended period of time. Grease the crock and spoon the hot mashed potatoes into it. Add more butter and milk or cream. This extra liquid will be absorbed into the potatoes over time and prevent them from drying out. A crust of potato may form on the surface of the crock.
Leftovers are delicious reheated with butter and seasoned salt, but you can use them in other recipes as well. You can stir small amounts into soup as a thickener.
Form the potatoes into patties, dip in flour or seasoned bread crumbs, and fry in oil until crisp. Top a savory meat and gravy filling with mashed potatoes for a Shepherd’s Pie. Stir them into a favorite bread dough, like this one.
Knowing how much it costs you to prepare a recipe can help you decide if it’s the type of recipe to make regularly or one you might want to save for special occasions. Let’s crunch some numbers and see how this recipe pencils out.
- russet potatoes – $2.00
- cream cheese – $0.99
- milk – $0.17
- salt and pepper – $0.02
- butter – $0.38
While your costs may vary depending on where and how you shop, you can expect to pay about $3.56 for a big batch of Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes, about $0.45/serving.
How to make this good and cheap:
Here are some of the strategies you can use to make this recipe more economical:
- Stock up on ingredients when they are on sale. When I find regular kitchen staples on sale, I buy a lot. I’m currently using a price book to track prices and that’s saving me money. For this recipe, keeping an eye on the price of potatoes, cream cheese, and butter can help keep the price down. Hint: potatoes often go on great sale in March and November, so keep your eyes open!
- Buying in bulk – Often times you can get potatoes for a better price the more potatoes you buy. You might not normally make your way through ten pounds of potatoes before they go bad, but you can make good on the deal by stocking the freezer with make-ahead mashed potatoes.
More Great Recipes You Can Freeze
Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes
- potato masher
- 8 russet potatoes peeled and quartered
- 8 oz cream cheese cut into cubes
- 1 cup milk or cream
- black pepper
- ¼ cup butter cut into cubes
- In the metal insert of an electric pressure cooker, place the cubed potatoes and 1 cup of water. Seal the lid and set it for ten minutes manual pressure. When the time is up, release the pressure. (Alternatively, you can cook the potatoes on the stovetop. In a large pot of cold water, bring the potatoes to a boil. Simmer until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain the water.)
- Mash the cooked potatoes with a potato masher or hand mixer. Do not add any of the fats until the potatoes are mashed very fine.
- Once smooth, mix in the cream cheese, milk, salt, and pepper. Stir until smooth. Transfer this mixture to a casserole dish.
- Chill the potatoes in the fridge and then dot with pats of butter. Cover, label, and freeze.
- To serve: thaw the dish in the refrigerator until completely thawed. Bake in a 350° oven for about 45 minutes or until hot through. Fluff with a fork before serving. (Add a little milk or cream if you think it’s too dry.)
This post was originally published on November 13, 2018. It has been updated for content and clarity.