Rich, buttery and SO easy to make! Once you try these awesome Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes you’ll never go back to making them the “old” way! This simple side dish is perfect for Thanksgiving and you can make them ahead of time!
Easy Crockpot Mashed Potatoes
While we were in college, my sister was the queen of the crock pot — she made the most amazing dishes without spending hardly any time in the kitchen!
My own crockpot is woefully underutilized, so I’ve been looking for simple recipes that will get dinner on the table quickly on busy days or save time when we host holiday gatherings.
Mashed potatoes are a tradition for every holiday meal in our family, and these Garlic & Herb Mashed Potatoes are the perfect accompaniment to ham, turkey, roast chicken, you name it! And they couldn’t be easier to make!
Why Use a Slow Cooker?
- It’s Easy! — While cooking mashed potatoes in a slow cooker takes longer than the stovetop method, I like it because it is pretty much foolproof.
- No Boiling Needed! — Cooking potatoes the old fashioned way on the stove top requires a bit of muscle…a pot full of potatoes and water is heavy and hard to handle! With a slow cooker, you just add the potatoes, cook, and mash! Everything is contained in the slow cooker.
- Saves Time! — Another benefit is that you can make these mashed potatoes ahead of time and keep them warm in the slow cooker.You could make them the night before Thanksgiving and simply reheat the day of, or you can pop the potatoes in to cook on Thanksgiving morning and everything will be ready right at dinner time!
Garlic Mashed Potatoes Ingredients
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- Potatoes — You’ll need about 4-5 pounds. It’s not an exact science, but you don’t want to overfill the slow cooker. See our notes below about he best type of potato to use.
- Chicken broth or Vegetable Broth — We used this in place of milk because it makes our recipe lactose free. You can always add a touch of milk or sour cream to the finished potatoes if you like.
- Butter — Either salted or unsalted butter is fine; if you use salted butter you won’t need as much added salt.
- Garlic — We used a couple teaspoons, but you can add up to a Tablespoon if you’re a big garlic fan and want a more robust flavor.
- Italian seasoning
- Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
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What Kind of Potatoes Should I Use for Mashed Potatoes?
We used to use Russet potatoes for our mashed potatoes and a lot of our other potato recipes. However, once we tried Yukon Gold potatoes we were blown away by how amazing they tasted!
Yukon Golds are denser and have a smooth, buttery flavor. They’re less starchy than Russet potatoes, so they won’t absorb as much liquid and are less likely to taste gummy or grainy.
You can use either type for mashed potatoes, and you can see in some of our photos that we used Russet when we originally wrote this recipe.
However, with Yukon Gold there is less chance of user error. Plus, a buttery potato is exactly what we’re going for, so why not start with a potato that tastes like butter?
It’s really up to you, as either will work well in this recipe!
How Do You Make Mashed Potatoes in a Slow Cooker?
Prep by peeling and cutting potatoes. They don’t have to be in small pieces, just break them down a bit so they will cook easier. Place potatoes into slow cooker and sprinkle with herbs.
Add chicken broth and minced garlic, cover and cook. Here are cooking times depending on which temp setting you choose:
- LOW — 6-8 hours
- HIGH — 3-4 hours
Note: Depending on your slow cooker, some potatoes may cook quicker than others, so it’s a good idea to check them at the 6 hour mark. If you can easily insert a fork into the potatoes with ease, they are ready for the next step.
Once done cooking, remove the lid and add half of the butter to the crock pot. If it looks like there is a lot of liquid inside, don’t worry — it will get absorbed by the potatoes as we work them.
With a masher, begin the mash the potatoes as fine as possible.
Add the rest of the butter, and continue to mash so they are smooth as possible. If you have an immersion blender, feel free to use it for this step for extra fine potatoes.
NOTE: Once your potatoes are mostly smooth, without big clumps, you can stop mashing. Too much mashing could make them gummy or gluey in texture. It takes a while to get to that point, but something to keep in mind.
Serve finished potatoes with a dollop of butter and a sprinkle of parsley if desired.
How Long Can Mashed Potatoes Stay in the Slow Cooker?
This is a great make-ahead dish because the mashed potatoes can stay in the crockpot for as long as you need them to, on the “keep warm” setting.
Depending on how long they’re on hold, you may want to add a bit more butter or broth/milk to soften before serving.
Make sure to transfer any leftovers to a food storage container, and then the fridge. They’ll keep for a few days when refrigerated.
Can You Reheat Mashed Potatoes in a Slow Cooker?
If your mashed potatoes are still in the insert pot itself, just pop that back into the slow cooker and reheat on low until warmed through.
If your mashed potatoes are in a food storage container, just transfer them back to the slow cooker pot and reheat on low until warm.
Be sure to add a bit or broth or milk and butter, as needed, to refresh your potatoes before serving.
What to Serve with Mashed Potatoes?
We keep our Thanksgiving turkey simple. Sometimes we buy a fried turkey, but usually we roast our own with a simple Butter Roasted Turkey Recipe. This little trick makes the turkey extra juicy and flavorful!
Top your potatoes with our KFC Gravy Recipe! This easy brown gravy tastes just like the real deal!
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Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes with Garlic and Herbs
- Slow cooker
- 4 lbs potatoes peeled and cut into chunks
- 1 cup chicken broth
- ¼ cup butter
- 2 teaspoons garlic minced
- 1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning
- salt and pepper to taste
- Peel and cut potatoes into chunks. Add to slow cooker and sprinkle with Italian seasoning.
- Add garlic and broth. Cover and cook for 6-8 hours on low OR 3-4 hours on high. Check potatoes at the 3 hour mark (on high) or 6 hour mark (on low). If you can easily insert a fork into the potatoes, they are ready for the next step.
- Add butter to crock pot, adding only ½ of the portion at first. Mash the butter into the potatoes.
- Add the remaining half of the butter, salt and pepper to taste, and continue to mash until they are smooth as possible. You can also use an immersion blender for this step.
- Serve finished potatoes with a dollop of butter and a sprinkle of parsley if desired.