Mashed potatoes are a classic comfort food, but perhpas no recipe is as good as this – the famed Pioneer Woman mashed potatoes recipe. These potatoes are flavorful, decadent and super creamy.
What makes the Pioneer Woman mashed potatoes so creamy? They are loaded with cream cheese, cream and butter!
While traditional mashed potatoes are always a crowd pleaser, this recipe is next level.
After mashing they’re baked with more butter on top resulting in mashed potatoes so good you’ll never make them any other way.
If you’re planning to make mashed potatoes as a Thanksgiving side dish or to serve alongside meatloaf, roast, or short ribs, you’ll need to figure out how many potatoes to use, but first you’ll need to choose the right potatoes for mashing.
Which Potatoes are Best for Mashing?
Our pick for the best potatoes for mashing are russet or Yukon gold potatoes. Both varieties have more starch as compared to their red or white potato counterparts, meaning they result in a fluffier mashed potato.
Russet potatoes are mild flavored, but high-starch potatoes that easily break down when cooked, making mashing them very easy.
Extra mashing ruins the texture of mashed potatoes, so you want to avoid that when possible.
Likewise, Yukon gold potatoes are also high in starch but a bit more flavorful, which we also like. They result in seriously delicious mashed potatoes.
If you use waxy potatoes, such as red potatoes, they often equire extra mashing. All that extra mashing will result in sticky, gluey mashed potatoes, which nobody likes.
How Many Potatoes You Need
This Pioneer Woman mashed potatoes recipe calls for five pounds of potatoes, which yields 10 servings. That said, many mashed potato recipes call for three pounds of potatoes, yielding six servings.
If you have a kitchen scale, weigh your potatoes to see how many you need.
If you don’t have a scale, you can estimate that three medium potatoes weigh a pound, so you’d need nine medium potatoes for three pounds.
If your potatoes are large, estimate two potatoes per pound.
Of course, you can always make a smaller batch of mashed potatoes. If a recipe calls for three pounds of potatoes, you can use just 1 ½ pounds and halve the remaining ingredients.
How Many Pounds of Potatoes Per Person?
For mashed potatoes, you can estimate you’ll need ½ pound of potatoes per person. This allows for a decent serving, but if you know people will want heaping portions (or seconds), you can estimate ¾ pound per person.
If you are making these Pioneer Woman mashed potatoes for Thanksgiving, you may want to account for leftovers. In that case, estimate ¾ to 1 pound of potatoes per person.
Pioneer Woman Mashed Potatoes Ingredients
- Potatoes – This recipe calls for five pounds of potatoes. We suggest Yukon gold or russet potatoes, or a mix of both if you prefer.
- Butter – You’ll need quite a bit of butter for mashing into the the potatoes and for topping the potatoes when baked.
- Cream cheese – A block of softened cream cheese is added to create super creamy mashed potatoes.
- Cream – We use half and half for these potatoes instead of the milk called for in many mashed potato recipes.
- Lawry’s Seasoned Salt – This seasoning blend incorporates salt, tumeric, paprika, onion, garlic and more adding loads of flavor to your mashed potatoes.
- Black pepper – Because black pepper makes everything better, you’ll want some to balance to seasoning in this recipe.
How to Make Pioneer Woman Mashed Potatoes
- Begin by peeling and quartering five pounds of potatoes. They will cook best if all the chunks are approximately the same size.
- Add potatoes to a large pot and top with water. The potatoes will cook for a while so make sure to fully submerge them with a couple extra inches of water.
- Bring to a boil and cook until fork tender, roughly 30 minutes. You’ll know they’re done with a fork inserted slides out easily and the potatoes nearly fall apart.
- Drain the cooked potatoes well then return them to the pot over low heat.
- In the meantime, preheat oven to 350° F.
- Use a hand masher to begin mashing the potatoes then turn off the heat.
- Add butter, cream cheese and half and half then continue mashing.
- Add Lawry’s Seasoned Salt and black pepper and stir well.
- Transfer mashed potatoes to a baking dish and top with a few pats of butter.
- Bake until the butter is melted and potatoes are nice and warmed through, about 25 minutes.
Storing Mashed Potatoes
Keep in mind, you can store leftover mashed potatoes in the refrigerator in a covered container for up to four days. This makes it easy to keep leftovers or used them in other dishes such as Shepherd’s pie.
Mashed potatoes freeze well, if made with lots of fat such as butter and cream. Store them in resealable freezer bags, with the air squeezed out.
Pioneer Woman Mashed Potatoes Recipe
- 5 Potatoes
- 0.75 Butter
- 8 Cream Cheese softened
- 0.75 Cream (Half & Half)
- 0.5 Lawry’s Seasoned Salt
- 0.5 Black Pepper
- Peel and cut potatoes into pieces that are about equal size.
- Bring a large pot of water to a simmer and mix in the potatoes.
- Bring to a boil and cook for approximately 30 minutes.
- When they’re cooked all the way through, the fork should readily slide into the potatoes with no resistance… without potatoes falling apart.
- Drain the potatoes in a colander.
- When they have finished draining, put them back into the dry pot and place pot on the stove.
- Mash the potatoes over low heat, permitting all the steam to escape, before adding in all the other ingredients.
- Turn off the stove and add 1.5 sticks of butter… an 8-ounce package of cream cheese… and about .5 cup of half-and-half.
- Mash away!
- Add about .5 teaspoon of Lawry’s Seasoning Salt and .5 teaspoon of black pepper.
- Stir very well and place in a medium-sized baking dish.
- Toss a few pats of butter over the top of the potatoes and place them in a 350-degree oven.
- Heat until butter is melted and potatoes are warmed through.