The Secret to the Best Mashed Potatoes

No matter what your preference is for mashed potatoes, whether that’s really fluffy or more on the chunky side—there is one key to getting perfect mashed potatoes every time and that is using a real, official potato masher. 

Before I had one, no matter how good the flavor of the potatoes was with all my sour cream, garlic, cream cheese, etc.—I almost always used my hand mixer out of ease of use, but they seemed to always turn out too gluey, not surprisingly. But for less than 10 bucks, I can now have all the flavor and texture for mashed potatoes that I could’ve ever dreamed of.

I really did the research and decided on purchasing a five star one from Amazon which costs $8.99 from the brand Home Hero. It is stainless steel and has been through the dishwasher plenty of times and is very heavy duty and is going to last forever, I can tell. Of course there are plenty of choices and you can make your own choice on Amazon or in a store, but I really feel like this is a good kitchen tool to achieve perfect mashed potatoes among other things.

You might be wondering if it is one of those kitchen tools that will get dusty at the bottom of the drawer. I think it is worth it for just the mashed potatoes alone, but there are so many other handy ways you can use this great tool.

Other ways to use a potato masher:

  • Egg salad sandwich. Instead of chopping and dicing up those boiled eggs, you can simply use your potato masher to quickly mash it all together and it taste exactly the same.
  • Chopped walnuts or pecans. Since walnuts and pecans or soft nuts, you can usually use a potato masher to break them into smaller bits by  using a potato masher instead of a knife. They are then ready for salads, toppings on cake, etc.
  • Broccoli or cauliflower soup. You can easily use your potato masher to break up just the right amount of potato for your next chowder type soup instead of using something like an immersion blender. You’re really in control of how chunky or smooth it ends up being.

  • Guacamole. Once again you can break up those avocados just right and make the perfect chunky guacamole with a potato masher.
  • Cookie or cracker crumbs. A potato masher is a great way to break up cracker crumbs for chicken fingers, or graham crackers to make a cream pie crust. 
  • Baby food. If your baby is ready to move beyond the puréed fruits and veggies, the potato masher will allow you great flexibility to gradually make the texture thicker for your baby to get used to real food.
  • Ground meat. A potato masher is a great tool to use to evenly break up your ground beef when you are making something like bolognese or tacos.
  • Stewed tomatoes. If you don’t have stewed tomatoes on hand for a recipe, you can easily throw in fresh tomatoes or canned whole tomatoes into your pan and break them up with the masher as they cook.
See what a versatile tool the potato masher is? If you don’t already have one, I think if you like mashed potatoes and guacamole and some of these other things, it might really be worth considering purchasing. 

Here is my favorite recipe for mashed potatoes that I make right in the instant pot. They are so flavorful and pair perfectly with my favorite ribeye steak in the air fryer and a side of roasted asparagus. Perfect meat and potatoes meal!

5 Star Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes

Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes are rich and creamy and so easy to make! Making mashed potatoes has never been quicker or tasted better than these Instant Pot mashed potatoes ready in 20 minutes! Author: Nichole Recipe Type: American

Prep time:
Serving size: 6
Calories per serving: 228

3 pounds potatoes, (about 6 medium, peeled and sliced)
water to cover potatoes (about 4-5 cups)
2 teaspoons salt, divided
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (or 1 cloved minced garlic)
1/2 teaspoon pepper

After washing a peeling the potatoes, you don't have to cut them into tiny bits. You can just slice them about 1/2 inch apart ( about 4-5 slices per potato) and they cook through just fine. Place the peeled and sliced potatoes into the bottom of the instant pot. Cover with water and add 1 teaspoon of salt.

Place the lid on the instant pot and set the valve to seal.

Cook on manual pressure for 8 minutes.

When the timer goes off, turn the instant pot off.

Quick release the pressure from the pot.

Drain the potatoes and return to the instant pot.

Add the remaining salt, pepper, garlic powder, butter, milk and sour cream to the potatoes. Mash until smooth.

Serve topped with parsley if desired.


Recipe formatted with the Cook'n Recipe Software from DVO Enterprises.

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    Mary Richardson
    Weekly Newsletter Contributor since 2014
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