A perfect make-ahead mashed potatoes side dish for Thanksgiving or Sunday dinner.
Thanksgiving Dinner Rebel
I have a confession. Last year, our Thanksgiving dinner was a pepperoni pizza.
I know, totally un-American. While the rest of the country chewed on turkey, cranberries, yams, and green bean casserole, we indulged in the cheesy heaven that is Papa-Murphy’s take-out.
I bought one the day before, then, when Thanksgiving dinner-hour rolled around, I pulled it from the fridge and popped it into the oven. And voila. Dinner in 20 minutes with no prep; all I had to do was unwrap the plastic and preheat the oven. We even used paper plates so I had no dishes (well, except the pizza cutter).
I spent my Thanksgiving luxuriously NOT in the kitchen. It was marvelous and I don’t regret it one bit.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a cooking fanatic. I test out at least 2-3 new recipes every week (this greatly irritates my husband, he doesn’t like variety to his tried-and-true menu). But I don’t care for the traditional, Thanksgiving dinner menu.
We don’t live near family, so I only cook for my small family of 4. I don’t get excited to slave away for hours making extravagant food I don’t enjoy, to feed only 2 adults and 2 toddlers, then to spend the next 3 days cleaning it all up.
Not worth it!
Also, my husband’s favorite food is pizza.
So, I had a relaxing holiday—free of cooking and cleanup—and my husband got his favorite dinner; win-win.
An Easy Mashed Potatoes Side
However, while I may be content with take-out pizza (or really anything I don’t have to slave away for), others plan ahead and search for the perfect Thanksgiving dinner menu. So here’s a perfect side dish to complement that ham and turkey this holiday season. Or for your next Sunday dinner, a midday snack, or a side for your next Papa Murphy’s pizza; whatever suits your fancy.
Thanksgiving or not, Mashed potatoes are my jam. The kicker? They can be made ahead of time and warmed in the oven when needed! Pre-make them in the morning—or prepare them the day before—and pop them in the oven before go-time.
Any suggestions of what I should make for my un-American Thanksgiving dinner this year? Tacos? Pasta? Cold cereal?
A perfect make-ahead mashed potato side for Thanksgiving or Sunday dinners.
15 minPrep Time
30 minCook Time
45 minTotal Time
- 3-4 medium russet potatoes
- 3 Tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 oz cream cheese, softened
- 2 Tablespoons sour cream
- 1 Tablespoon parmesan cheese
- 2 Tablespoons milk
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- Dash of Paprika
- Preheat oven to 350°F (if making ahead to use later, skip this step).
- Wash and scrub potatoes. Peel, if desired (I like to keep the peels on).
- Cut into 1 inch cubes (try to cut them all to the same size for even cooking).
- Place cubed potatoes into a large stockpot and cover with water so the water line reaches about 1 inch above the potatoes. Salt the water well. Bring to a boil and cook for about 20-25 minutes or until tender when pierced with a fork.
- Drain and place potatoes back into the large stock pot.
- Add 2 Tablespoons of butter and cover with the hot steamy potatoes. Let sit for a minute so the butter melts.
- Then, using a potato masher, mash potatoes to desired texture (Alternatively, place the cooked potatoes in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add remaining ingredients—except for the Paprika and the last Tablespoon of butter—and mix until combined).
- Add cream cheese, sour cream, parmesan cheese, milk, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Mix well.
- Serve with a sprinkle of Paprika & melted butter. If making these for later, spoon them into a 1.5 quart baking dish, cover tightly with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator until ready to use (up to 24 hours). When ready to bake, take dish out of the fridge, remove and discard plastic wrap, and bring to room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°. Top with 1 Tablespoon butter and a sprinkle of Paprika. Place in oven and bake uncovered for about 25 minutes.
Make Ahead Tip: If making these for later, spoon them into a 1.5 quart baking dish, cover tightly with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator until ready to use (up to 24 hours). When ready to bake, take dish out of the fridge, remove and discard plastic wrap, and bring to room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°. Top with 1 Tablespoon butter and a sprinkle of Paprika. Place in oven and bake uncovered for about 25 minutes.
Adapted from Six Sisters Stuff
to save for later
Check out more of our recipes here.