Holiday Help: Simplify Making Mashed Potatoes

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Learning this little potato trick changed my mashed potato making life forever. 

Instead of preparing your potatoes to be mashed on the day of your big holiday meal…prepare them the day before.

Scrub them (or peel them, whichever you like to do)….chop them…and throw them into your cooking pot.

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Cover them with cool water.

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Put a lid on your pot. 

When it’s time to cook your meal, boil your potatoes and mash your potatoes, then serve your potatoes (with lots of melted butter!). 

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I’m telling you, this little trick will save so much back pain on Thanksgiving day.  I always prep my potatoes on the Wednesday before.  They sit in the water waiting patiently until it is time to cook them Thursday. 

Between prepping my potatoes the day before and cooking my bird several days before I need to serve it…I practically have nothing to do on Thanksgiving day. 

Okay, not really nothing. 

You know what I mean.

P.S.  I use this little trick almost every time I make mashed potatoes any day of the year.  If we’re having mashed potatoes for dinner…I prep them in the morning or whenever I have a spare minute during the day.  Then, when it’s time to cook dinner, all I have to do is turn on the burner to cook the taters.  Love it!
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This post is linked to Kitchen Tip Tuesdays.

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Comments

  1. Jan says

    Anytime I have prepped potatoes early they turn brown/black. How do you keep yours from turning brown?

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    I just make sure they are completely covered with water. Otherwise “oxidation” happens and they turn brown. Ick!

    [Reply]

  2. Sandee says

    Jan, add some salt to your water.

    I cook mine in a pressure cooker. With the insane altitude around here (7700+) it takes forever for water to boil and potatoes to cook. But with the pressure cooker, once up to pressure (10 mins max) the spuds only have to cook for 9 minutes. Much better than the hour that it takes the traditional way!

    [Reply]

    Danielle Reply:

    An hour??? Mine take 15-20 mins. Otherwise they are glue.

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  3. says

    One of my fave holiday recipes is Crockpot Stuffing. I prep everything the night before, then throw it all in the pot first thing in the morning. The stuffing is always moist and flavorful, and ready whenever we are. I would be happy to share the recipe if you like. Everyone raves about it, even those who say they don’t like stuffing.

    And thanks for the tip on the taters. I am sooo doing that this Wednesday!

    [Reply]

    Jessica Reply:

    I would love this recipe!

    [Reply]

    elle Reply:

    Oh, so would I!! I’m always looking for ways to use my crockpot!!

    [Reply]

    elle Reply:

    Would love that crockpot stuffing recipe!! Any other crockpot recipes to recommend?

    [Reply]

    Lisa Reply:

    Please send your crockpot stuffing recipe to me. I would love to try it this year. Thanks.

    [Reply]

  4. Rhonda says

    Love your ideas! I look forward to Thanksgiving every year. Good food and friends to share with, what could be better!! We also spend time sharing how God has blessed us over the previous year. A great way to see how God moves in our lives.

    [Reply]

  5. Homeblessings says

    Does this still work if you peel the potatoes? Just checking. Also I would like the crockpot stuffing recipe.

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Yes, it works just fine if you peel the potatoes!

    [Reply]

  6. Danielle says

    Yup butter AND milk are the key to great taters!

    [Reply]

    elle Reply:

    Half and half, a healthy splash of vegetable stock, and the sour cream and garlic if you like (and rosemary or/and parsley, fresh) are the keys to awesome potatoes. Adds an addtional 5 seconds. Time well spent.

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  7. elaine says

    The few times I have tired something like this I ended up with glue. Do you drain the water the spuds have soaked in and start with fresh water to cook them in or just cook ‘em in the water they soaked in?? I would love it if this would work – such a time saver!

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    My only thought is just that you make sure that your water is cold! I just cook them in the water they’d been soaking in and haven’t ever had any trouble.

    When I have had trouble is when I’ve cooked the potatoes, but not drained them and mashed them right away. THEN I had glue. Yuck!

    [Reply]

    elaine Reply:

    Thanks! I can’t wait to give this another try!!

    [Reply]

  8. Serenity says

    Thanks for the tip! I could REALLY go for some mashed potatoes right now, unfortunately they are not on our Thanksgiving menu :( Everyone else likes the potato casserole with “cream of what ever was on the floor in the factory” soup. GROSS!!!!! I might make these anyway since I can do them the day before :)

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  9. Julie H. says

    Another trick is to make up your mashed potatoes in advance and freeze. They reheat very well (either on stove or in mircrowave). I usually reheat and then add milk as needed to desired consistency. You can freeze at least a month ahead of time, maybe longer. Ours never last that long though, lol. :)

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    [Reply]

    Julie Reply:

    I had no idea I could freeze mashed potatoes…thanks for the tip!

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    I’ve occasionally had trouble when I freeze mashed potatoes…they like to turn pretty liquidy. I think if you stir some sour cream into them before freezing, they tend to do better.

    [Reply]

  10. Amie says

    You can also make your potatoes earlier in the day and keep them warm in the crockpot on low. Many of my Thanksgiving items are crockpot friendly-I use one for gravy, one for mashed potatoes, and one for stuffing.

    [Reply]

  11. Julie says

    We peel our potatoes, slice them then put them in the crockpot on high. Then they
    are done whenever everything else is and you just have to mash them. If you are
    going to put themon all day use med.

    [Reply]

    Amie Reply:

    Do you only put in the potatoes or do you add water, butter, milk or anything else?

    [Reply]

  12. Jean says

    Sour cream is very important for any left over potatoes. If you stir in sour cream before refrigerating the potatoes reheat without being lumpy. (We just stir it in with the butter and milk.) :)

    [Reply]

  13. dena says

    soaking your potatoes, bringa all the potassium out of them. we had to soak ours for my dad because he was a kidney dialysis patient. i would recommend not doing it so advanced to not loose all the vitamins.

    [Reply]

  14. Jean says

    When potatoes sit in water overnight do u put the pot into the refridge or just leave out at room temperature?

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Room temp is best!

    [Reply]

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