Make simple, delicious, restaurant style garlic parmesan red mashed potatoes at home for weeknight dinners and special occasions like Thanksgiving in just 30 minutes!
Everyone needs a go-to mashed potato recipe and this easy garlic mash potatoes recipe is tried and true over several years of family meals. It's so easy I can make it with my eyes closed. And if you enjoy this recipe, you'll love my balsamic potato salad!
Why You'll Love this Recipe
Quick and Easy - Making creamy garlic mashed red potatoes takes just 30 minutes with everyday kitchen tools. Impress your family during the holidays with no sweat!
Wholesome Ingredients - This homemade mashed red potatoes recipe tastes like restaurant quality because it's made with simple technique and good ingredients.
Full of Flavor - Two layers of garlic flavor, rich butter, tangy parmesan and fresh herbs--dassit!
What You'll Need for this Recipe
I make garlic parmesan mashed red potatoes with ingredients you can easily find at the grocery store. What kind of potatoes are best for mashing?
Red Potatoes - Making mashed potatoes using red potatoes is my preferred method because the skins add beautiful pops of color and they're thinner than other potato types so they easily get tender so you can eat them with peel. Red potatoes are also more dense and have a subtly sweet flavor that plays well with garlic and parmesan!
Butter and Milk add creamy texture and richness to this recipe. You can use any kind of dairy or plant-based milk and butter here, including buttermilk.
Fresh and Garlic Powder for extra garlic flavor and some texture.
Check out the recipe card below for full ingredients list, measurements, nutrition facts, and step-by-step instructions!
Substitutions & Variations
Herbs - Oniony chives and clean, earthy parsley round out these mashed potatoes but feel free to get creative and make herby red potatoes with rosemary, thyme, and more!
Pepper - I use white pepper in my mashed potatoes because I like the brighter flavor, however, you can use black pepper if that's what you have on hand.
Cheese - For the most true to recipe results, use shredded or shaved parmesan cheese. Pecorino Romano or Asiago are great substitutes, if needed.
Vegan - Yes, you can make mashed red potatoes vegan! Just use plant-based milk, butter, and cheese.
How to Make Garlic Parmesan Mashed Potato with Red Skin Potatoes
Step One: Boil potatoes in salted water until fork tender.
Step Two: Mash and smash the potatoes to your desired consistency. I like a balance between creamy and chunky.
Pro Tip #1: Drain the potatoes well to remove any extra starch. Too much starch can lead to gummy mashed potatoes!
Pro Tip #2: A good ol' kitchen spoon is all you need to mash and mix creamy potatoes or this heavy duty spatula makes quick work of breaking them down.
Step Three: Add all the remaining ingredients directly to the pot.
Step Four: Mix and mash the ingredients until just combined. Don't over mix mashed potatoes or they might get gummy.
Pro Tip #3: You can use pre-minced garlic here but for better flavor just run fresh cloves through a garlic press.
Pro Tip #4: For creamy mashed potatoes with no mixer, stir vertically from top to bottom to introduce air into the mixture with each turn. The result is fluffy without a Kitchenaid.
Step Five: Serve red potato mash with fresh chive and melted butter. No gravy needed!
Frequently Asked Questions
Nope! Potatoes with thin skin, like red or white, mix well into the mash and taste great so I don't bother peeling them.
Whatever kind of milk you use, just make sure it is room temperature or warm not cold. I've made mashed potatoes with plant based milks like almond, oat, or coconut, as well as dairy milk. You can even use buttermilk.
I like mixing parsley into my potatoes for presentation and a touch of clean flavor and garnishing with fresh chives to add a mild, slightly sweet onion flavor. For herby mashed red potatoes try rosemary or thyme, too.
Typically either too much starch or over-mixing leads to gummy or gluey mashed potatoes. Be sure to drain the boiled potatoes well to remove excess starch and stir the potatoes only until just combined.
One cup or ½ pound is the recommended serving size but if you're serving these potatoes along with other easy holiday side dish ideas, people will likely add smaller amounts of everything to their plates and you can safely account for a bit less.
Store easy mashed potatoes with skin in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will keep for to four days. Taste and texture are generally the best within the first two days.
Mashed potatoes actually freeze pretty well. For freezing, I recommend dividing them into individual portions on a sheet pan then freezing for a few hours. Transfer the frozen portions to a freezer safe container and store for up to one month.
If frozen, thaw in the fridge overnight first. Reheat in a small saucepan with a splash of liquid (like cream, milk, or broth) until steaming.
How to Serve
This is an amazing garlic parmesan mashed potatoes recipe for Thanksgiving but it's also easy enough to enjoy with any weeknight dinner.
Creamy mashed red potatoes with minced garlic and shredded parmesan pair perfectly with protein and green veggies. Try my honey mustard chicken and green beans or pair with simple salmon and yaji brussels sprouts.
Grab my Complete Holiday Dinner Guide to complete your meal this year!
More Favorite Side Dish Recipes
I hope you'll enjoy these garlic mashed red potatoes with parmesan and herbs soon and very soon. And sharing is caring so be sure to pin this buttery mashed potato recipe for later and follow me over on Pinterest. Thanks for reading!
Garlic Parmesan Mashed Red Potatoes
- 5 pounds red potatoes
- sea salt to taste
- ½ cup butter
- 1 cup milk room temperature
- ⅓ cup shredded parmesan
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 3 cloves garlic minced, pressed or grated
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley or 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- ½ teaspoon white pepper
- 2 blades fresh chive
- Add red skin potatoes, sea salt, and enough water to cover potatoes by one inch to a large pot over medium heat. Bring water to a boil and cook until you can stick a knife into the center of a potato and it easily slides off (about 20 minutes).
- Meanwhile, chop parsley and chive, mince or grate garlic, and cut butter into chunks.
- Remove red potatoes from heat and drain well.
- Smash and smooth potatoes to desired texture using a heavy spoon or spatula.
- Return pot to stove and turn heat to low. Add butter, milk, shredded parmesan, garlic powder, garlic, parsley, and white pepper to pot. Mix thoroughly until potatoes are just combined. Do not over mix.
- Cook until heated through (about 5 minutes). Remove from heat and add salt to taste.
- Garnish with chive and melted butter and serve warm.