Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

bowl of roasted garlic mashed potatoes topped with melted butter, fresh chives and black pepper
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Roasted garlic lends its heady, sweet fragrance to classic, buttery mashed potatoes in this luxurious side dish.   

These Homemade Mashed Potatoes are Creamy, Comfort Food at its Finest.  

Mashed potatoes are the ultimate comfort food, and these roasted garlic mashed potatoes take treating yourself to a whole other level. Thanks to the flavor powerhouse that is homemade roasted garlic, our creamy mashed potatoes are the quintessential sidekick to the best meals your table will ever see.

How To Make Mashed Potatoes:

The best garlic mashed potatoes begin, obviously with the best homemade mashed potato recipe. What do we look for in our mashed potatoes? 

  • Fluffy. Airy, whipped and light—never dense or gummy. 
  • Ultra-creamy. Thanks, butter. 
  • Perfectly seasoned. Not too salty, not too bland. 

What Are The Best Potatoes to Mash?

For creamy, mashed potatoes, we love to use russet potatoes. They are our favorite kind of potatoes for mashing as they are starchier than waxed potato varieties (like Yukon Golds). This means fluffier potatoes (so long as they aren’t overcooked!) in the end.

  1. Roast your garlic.
  2. Add your peeled potatoes and bay leaves to large pot of cold water and bring to a boil. Cook until fork tender and drain well, removing the bay leaves.
  3. Peel your roasted garlic and add to the boiled potatoes. Use a ricer or masher to incorporate all that garlic flavor into your homemade mashed potatoes and mash until smooth.
  4. Heat your butter and milk in small saucepan, then incorporate into the potatoes.
  5. Salt and pepper to taste.
bowl of roasted garlic mashed potatoes topped with melted butter, fresh chives and black pepper

How Long To Boil Potatoes for Mashed Potatoes: 

Boiling russet potatoes for making mashed potatoes is an art unto itself. Here’s how to do it with ease: 

  1. Peel your potatoes and cut them into small, two-inch pieces so they cook quickly and and uniformly. 
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. 
  3. Add the potatoes, and boil them for about 20 minutes, or until just fork-tender. Take care to not overcook them. If they cook too long, all of that pleasant starch we admire so much about the russet potato will go wild, and you’ll be left with potato paste. 
  4. Drain the potatoes and return them to the pot.
  5. Over the lowest heat setting, allow the potatoes to dry out completely. Dry potatoes are better able to absorb that lucious milk and butter. 
bowl of roasted garlic mashed potatoes on a plate

How To Roast Garlic: 

Roasting garlic takes this assertive allium from spicy and sharp to pure caramelized sweetness. In addition to mixing it into mashed potatoes, we love to serve it as part of a cheese platter, toss it into pasta, and even spread it straight onto good, crusty bread. Here’s how to roast garlic: 

  • Preheat your oven to 400°. 
  • Peel off the loose papery husk on the outside of the garlic head. 
  • Slice off the top to reveal the tops of the raw cloves.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and wrap the head of garlic in foil. 
  • Roast until carmel-colored and tender, about 40 minutes.  
  • Squeeze onto bread, into mashed potatoes, or just straight into waiting mouths.
bowl of garlic mashed potatoes topped with melted butter, fresh chives and black pepper

Tips for Making Mashed Potatoes:

This is inherently a simple side dish, but a little bit of extra know-how will ensure that your potatoes come out perfectly: 

  • Ricing your potatoes before you add your warm dairy helps get them smoother without over processing them. 
  • Speaking of warm dairy—don’t add your dairy straight from the fridge. The shock of the cold fat will negatively alter the texture of your potatoes. 
  • Using an electric mixer can be tricky. If you decide to go this route be careful not to overmix, or those starches will activate and you’ll be left with a sticky paste. 
  • If you really want to go for broke, try replacing half of the milk with heavy cream.
  • Don’t be afraid to season your mashed potatoes. Salt is this homemade roasted garlic mashed potato recipe’s best friend. Salt, then taste, then salt again if necessary. 

How To Keep Mashed Potatoes Warm: 

To keep your mashed potatoes warm before eating (or to reheat if they’ve been made ahead) we recommend using a double boiler. Warming your potatoes using this method of indirect heat will help prevent them from drying out or becoming overworked. Don’t have a double boiler? No worries! Just simmer water on the stove and place potatoes in a heat resistant bowl atop the pot. Stir occasionally and until the roasted garlic mashed potatoes are warmed through. 

Tools You’ll Need to Make Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes: 

  • A ricer is extremely helpful for ensuring that your mashed potatoes are airy and fluffy, instead of dense and gummy. We love this one. 
  • A large stock pot

Other Potato Side Dishes: 

Ready for some more potato inspo? We’ve got you covered. 

It’s Just Better With Roasted Garlic, Isn’t It? 

So, now you’ve been to the otherside. You’ve seen the promised land, tasted those creamy, smoky, fluffy, garlic mashed potatoes of your dreams and you’ll never go back. Do us a favor, and the next time you whip up a batch of the world’s best mashed potatoes, snap a picture and post it to Instagram tagging @themodernproper and #themodernproper so we can pat ourselves on the back for a job well done. Happy eating! 

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Serves 6

Ingredients

3 lb russet potatoes, peeled and 2" cubed
2 sticks butter
1 cup whole milk
3 bay leaves
2 garlic heads
salt & pepper

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Peel each garlic clove off the head and remove the dried skin down to the last layer. Spread out in a single layer on a baking sheet. Roast for 15 minutes until garlic is golden brown and tender. Set aside.
  3. Peel the potatoes and cube into 2-inch pieces. Fill a large pot with cold water and add potatoes and bay leaves. Bring the water to a boil and continue to simmer until potatoes are just fork tender, but not falling apart.
  4. Completely drain the potatoes and place it back on the heat. Keep the burner on the lowest setting until the potatoes have completely dried out. The dryer the potatoes, the more liquid they will reabsorb. Remove the bay leaves at this time.
  5. One at a time, discard the outer layer of each garlic clove and add it to the pot of potatoes. Using a ricer or potato masher, mash potatoes with garlic until smooth.
  6. In a small sauce pan melt butter into the milk until both are hot. Using cold dairy will compromise the texture of the potatoes. Add the milk and butter to the potatoes stirring quickly with a large spoon until fully absorbed. Salt and pepper to taste.