How to Make Mashed Potatoes With Milk and Butter

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Serve mashed potatoes as a side dish with dinner.
Serve mashed potatoes as a side dish with dinner. (Image: püree image by Silvia Bogdanski from Fotolia.com)

Mashed-potato recipes vary according to personal tastes and preferences. The potatoes can be mashed with a food mill, potato masher, ricer, fork or a hand mixer. Once the potatoes are mashed, ingredients such as milk, cream and butter are added to help improve the texture and flavor. Seasonings like salt, pepper, garlic and parsley also aid in adding flavor to the mashed potatoes. The key to making mashed potatoes is to boil the potatoes until they are tender, because overcooking the potatoes will give them a gummy or glue-like texture.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 lbs. russet potatoes
  • Vegetable peeler
  • Knife
  • Large saucepan with lid
  • Salt
  • Colander
  • Butter
  • Whole or low-fat milk
  • Potato masher
  • Pepper
  • Serving dish

Peel 2 lbs. of russet potatoes with a vegetable peeler. Rinse the potatoes under cool running water, and remove any eyes, blemishes or discolorations with a knife.

Cut the potatoes into small 2- to 3-inch pieces. Place them in a large saucepan and cover them with water. Add 1 tsp. of salt to the water.

Place the saucepan over high heat to bring the potatoes to a full boil. Cover the pan and boil the potatoes for 15 to 20 minutes or until you can poke a fork through them with ease.

Drain the potatoes in a colander. Place them back into the saucepan over low heat.

Add 4 tbsp. of butter to the potatoes. Mash them with a potato-masher to remove all the large pieces.

Mash the potatoes and add 1/2 to 3/4 cup of whole or low-fat milk slowly. The amount of milk that you add will depend on the consistency of mashed potatoes that you prefer. Stop adding milk once you reach the desired consistency.

Add salt and pepper to the mashed potatoes to suit your taste. Scrape the mashed potatoes into a serving dish.

Tips & Warnings

  • You can use an electric mixer instead of a potato masher.
  • Add 1/2 cup of sour cream to the mashed potatoes to give them a creamier texture.
  • Watch the potatoes as they boil because the water can boil over the saucepan easily. Once you notice the water rising, reduce the heat on the stove top to prevent it from spilling.

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