Garlic Mashed Red Potatoes – perfectly creamy, buttery and easy mashed red potatoes with roasted garlic, thyme, sour cream and milk. Makes an easy side for your regular weeknight or holiday meat dish!
Mashed potatoes are my go-to side dish for protein. Aside from the fact that it’s easy to prep, that smooth texture pretty complements well with the doneness of the meat. I love how it melts in your mouth and the flavors linger in your palate. Absolutely a joy to eat!
It’s a wonderful side to any proteins, especially steak and pork chops. Vegetables are great with mashed potatoes, too.
Are red potatoes good for mashing?
Most people would agree that peeled Russet or Yukon potatoes make the best mashed potatoes just like this Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes recipe as they are buttery and tasty. But they also tend to have the thickest skins which makes a chewy mashed potatoes when left unpeeled.
However, that additional earthy flavor and texture derived from skin-on mashed potatoes is nothing to be shrugged off. PLUS, potato skins also contain vitamins like C and B6, minerals ,fiber and iron which is a great immune booster during a cold Thanksgiving night.
If you want to take the skin-on route this time, the best choice for that would be red potatoes as they have slightly higher starch content that compensates their slightly tougher skin. And it’s visually appealing, too, with that specks of red in a creamy white mashed potato.
How long to boil red potatoes for mashed potatoes?
Waxy red potatoes retain their shape, so it’s advisable that you bring them to a boil until they appear to be tender or fork tender and start to fall apart. Don’t forget to drain it very well to avoid super mushy and watery mashed potatoes. If you like, you can gently reheat the potatoes on the stovetop to remove moisture from the potatoes.
Can you make mashed red potatoes ahead of time?
As much as I love to prepare ahead the dishes like you do, especially on a very busy Thanksgiving Day, I’d strongly advise you to leave this one behind and make it on the day of serving. I know, refrigerating them overnight sounds like a great idea, but I’ve tried it once and it pretty much tasted like cardboard. Not enjoyable to eat, if you’d ask me.
Buuut, if you don’t want to get caught up with all the cooking on Thanksgiving, you can prepare the boiled potatoes and hold them in a heat-proof bowl covered with a plastic wrap and over on a simmering pot of water for up to 2 hours. Or if you have a slow cooker with a warm setting, that would work, too. You can place them in there before you mash ’em up!
Pair this lovely, tasty and fluffy garlic mashed red potatoes with some of these Thanksgiving meat dinner recipes to feed a crowd. For a veggie option, you can choose between this balsamic baked brussel sprouts or green beans here.
Tips and Notes:
- Be gentle with your potatoes. Mashing them vigorously for too long will release its starch which leads to unfluffy and uncreamy result.
- Make sure to drain them well after boiling to avoid watery and mushy mashed potatoes ( say with me mushy mashed… 😉 )
- Never skip roasting the garlic since it brings out the garlic flavor when added to the mashed potatoes.
- If you use salted butter, you have to cut back a pinch of salt during the mashing step.
- The key to fluffy mashed potatoes is using a potato ricer. It creates the right texture by breaking the potatoes into small, flaky tiny, pieces which makes it light and fluffy. You do not want gluey mash potatoes.
- If you do not have a potato ricer, then mash them up in a stand mixer with a wire whip. Take note: be gentle with your potatoes.
Garlic Mashed Red Potatoes
- 2 medium or 1 large garlic head
- 1-2 sprig of thyme
- 1-2 teaspoon salt
- 2 -2 1/2 pounds red potatoes
- 3- 4 ounce soft butter
- ⅓ cup sour cream (room temperature)
- salt and freshly ground black pepper or white pepper to taste
- ¾ – 1 cup or more warm milk
- chopped parsley for garnishing
- Preheat your oven to 400° F
- Cut the top ¼” to ½” off of a whole head of garlic, so that each individual clove should be visible. Make sure every garlic clove is exposed.
- Place the head of garlic on foil paper together with the thyme. Drizzle the top of the garlic with a bit of oil, about 1 teaspoon. Wrap it up and place it in the oven to roast for about 30 minutes or more. It should be soft, fragrant, and golden. Let the garlic cool, then squeeze individual cloves out of the skin.
- Scrub potatoes , clean and remove any spoiled spots, such as bruising and discoloration. Cut into big even sized chunks.
- Wash the potatoes and rinse until water runs clear. Place the potatoes in a large pot with about 1 -2 teaspoons of salt and enough water to cover the potatoes.
- Bring to a boil. Cook until potatoes are fork tender. Be sure to drain the potatoes after cooking. Then gently reheat the drained potatoes on the stovetop to remove moisture from the potatoes.
- Transfer potatoes into a large bowl. Then, add soft butter, sour cream, garlic, and black pepper. Start mixing while adding warm milk as you go until the mashed potatoes are soft and fluffy. You may add more milk if desired.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper.