These Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes are deliciously rich and creamy and make the perfect easy side dish for busy weeknights. Vegan, dairy-free, Whole30 compliant and cook up quickly in the pressure cooker. No pre-boiling required!
Updated November 2020
Easy Instant Pot Mashed Potato Recipe
When it comes to Thanksgiving and holiday side dishes, creamy mashed potatoes are always a popular choice but did you know you can make mashed potatoes in your instant pot?
These Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes come together easily in the pressure cooker in under 30 minutes. Russet potatoes are cooked to tender perfection. Use a potato masher to combine them with vegan butter, vegan sour cream, garlic and fresh herbs.
Creamy mashed potatoes are my son’s favorite side dish and we love that instant pot mashed potatoes come out creamy, delicious and don’t require boiling a big pot of water so you can even enjoy this comforting side dish on a busy weeknight. Don’t have an instant pot? Check out my slow cooker mashed potatoes or sweet potato mash recipes.
Why we love this easy side dish
- A healthy and delicious side dish made in just one pot to pair with your favorite main dishes
- Sugar-free, gluten-free, Whole30 compliant and easily vegan and dairy-free
- A great make ahead side dish that you can make in the oven or slow cooker. Cook the potatoes the day before to free up your oven during the holidays.
Ingredients you need for creamy mashed potatoes
- Russet Potatoes – you’re going to need 2 lbs of Russet potatoes, sliced into rounds
- Ghee – gives these mashed potatoes that buttery taste while still being Whole30 and paleo-friendly. For vegan mashed potatoes, sub with vegan butter or butter-flavored coconut oil.
- Unsweetened almond milk – we like using Malk Organic to make this potato mash extra creamy and delicious. You can sub with any plant milk or regular whole milk if not dairy-free.
- Garlic – minced
- Herbs – we like using fresh thyme but you can sub with dried if that’s what you have on hand.
How to cook potatoes
On the stove: Add the potatoes to a large pot and fill with enough water to cover the potatoes. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer, and cook until the potatoes are fork tender.
In the slow cooker: Place the Russet potatoes in the bottom of a 6 quart slow cooker. Cover with lid and cook on low for 5-6 hours or high for 2-3 hours (check if your slow cooker runs hot – mine are usually done at just 2 hours) or until potatoes are soft and tender. Cover with lid and cook on low for 5-6 hours or high for 2-3 hours (check if your slow cooker runs hot – mine are usually done at just 2 hours) or until potatoes are soft and tender.
In a pressure cooker: Add the potatoes to a inner pot of an Instant Pot. Lock the lid and cook on High Pressure for 8 minutes, then do a quick release.
How to make Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes
- CUT THE POTATOES:Start by washing and drying your potatoes. Then cut them into quarters. No need to peel them – leaving the skin helps to build flavor and prevents the gummy texture.
- ADD POTATOES TO THE INSTANT POT: Place the potatoes in the Instant Pot along with the salt, pepper, oregano, roasted garlic and water. Seal the lid and turn the valve to “sealing”.
- COOK ON MANUAL: Press the MANUAL or PRESSURE COOK (High) for 8 minutes (it will take approx. 10 minutes or so to get up to pressure).
- QUICK RELEASE: Once the potatoes are cooked, do a quick release after 2 minutes by pushing the valve to VENTING using a long wooden spoon. Open the lid and test to make sure potatoes are done by poking one with a knife. If they’re not done, put the lid back on and cook them on high pressure for another 2 minutes.
- DRAIN WATER: Carefully take the inner cooking pot out of the Instant Pot and drain the liquid, reserving 2 tablespoons.
- SEASON AND MASH POTATOES: Add the butter and using a potato masher, mash the potatoes until they are fluffy. Add the sour cream along with milk and continue mashing until smooth. We like ours with a little bit of chunks but feel free to make yours as creamy as you like.
- Adjust salt to taste and keep on warm until ready to serve. It’s best to eat right away, but if you’re eating them later and the potatoes get dry, add the reserved water to loosen them.
- SERVE garnished with chopped chives or parsley.
How to make mashed potatoes in the Slow Cooker
- CUT THE POTATOES: To start, you’ll want to slice the sweet potatoes into rounds or quarters to cut down on the cooking time.
- COOK POTATOES IN THE CROCKPOT: Place the potatoes in the bottom of a 6 quart slow cooker. Cover with lid and cook on low for 5-6 hours or high for 2-3 hours (check if your slow cooker runs hot – mine are usually done at just 2 hours) or until potatoes are soft and tender. Cover with lid and cook on low for 5-6 hours or high for 2-3 hours (check if your slow cooker runs hot – mine are usually done at just 2 hours) or until potatoes are soft and tender.
- ADD INGREDIENTS: Add the remaining ingredients, starting with 2 tablespoons milk, adding more as needed to reach desired consistency.
- HOW DO YOU MASH SWEET POTATOES: Use a potato masher to mash the potatoes until smooth and creamy. Alternatively, you can also use a handheld mixer for ONLY 20-30 seconds and whip until light – Do NOT overmix or potatoes will be gummy. Season to taste with salt, black pepper and more thyme if desired.
- SERVE warm topped with fresh parsley and chopped pecans if desired.
How long do you cook potatoes in the pressure cooker
Helpful tips to make the best mashed potatoes
- Use the right kind of potatoes – Russet and Yukon Golds have a high starch content and are perfect for making the creamiest and fluffiest mashed potatoes. Don’t use waxy red potatoes since they won’t break down and you’ll end up with lumpy mashed potatoes
- Leave the skins on when cooking – this helps to avoid a gluey texture and contributes to the overall flavor. Unpeeled potatoes absorb less water and help to preserve the starch
- Don’t over-cook – test your potatoes with a knife, once they are tender, drain the liquid so they don’t get too mushy
- Use a potato masher and do not over-mash – using a potato masher allows you to control how well you mash them. Over mixing with a hand mixer or an immersion blender causes the starch in the potatoes to break down and turn gummy
- Season well and taste constantly – add enough seasonings such as salt, pepper, garlic & herbs for an extra layer of flavor. Taste as you go to ensure that the flavor in your mashed potatoes did not dilute and really stand out
- Add ghee or butter first before liquid and creams – this helps to coat the starch so your potatoes remain firm before adding the cream and liquid for silkier and creamier mashed potatoes
- Do not add all the cream or liquid all at once – fold in cream and liquid a little at a time and stop once you have reached the desired consistency
What to Serve with Mashed Potatoes
Mashed potatoes are a great side for just about any main dish you can think of. It’s a nice addition to your Thanksgiving dinner or your typical weeknight plate. You should definitely try it with this Thanksgiving Turkey, Whole Roasted Chicken or Broiled Salmon. This healthy potato mash also makes a delicious snack on its own!
Instant Pot potatoes are a great make ahead dish. You can cook a batch of potatoes instantly on your Sunday or Monday meal prep and then mash or dress them with whatever seasonings or sauce you like to add to meals for the week.
How to Store Leftovers
Want to save your side dish for later? The best way to do so is:
In the fridge: Transfer mashed potatoes to resealable container and store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
To freeze: Another great way to save your leftovers is freezing your sweet potato mash. Once the mash is completely cool, place it into a freezer bag and squeeze all the air out. It will stay good for up to 3 months!
To reheat: And when you’re ready to chow down, just thaw it out and heat it on the stove at medium heat. It’s that simple!
More potato recipes:
Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes - the perfect easy side dish for Thanksgiving. Deliciously rich and creamy mashed potatoes that cook up quickly in the pressure cooker. No pre-boiling required!
- 2 pounds Russet potatoes (unpeeled) , quartered
- 1 cup water or vegetable broth
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt plus more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper or to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 3 cloves roasted garlic finely minced
- 2 tablespoons ghee OR sub with vegan butter for dairy-free
- 3 tablespoons Kite Hill sour cream (vegan) or compliant sour cream, , may also sub with plain thick vegan yogurt - can sub with regualr sour cream or plain Skyre yogurt if not dairy-free / Whole30
- 1 - 2 tablespoons unsweeteened almond milk , plus more as needed (may sub with any unsweetened milk)
Cut your potatoes into quarters and place them in the Instant Pot along with the water or broth. Add salt, pepper, oregano and roasted garlic.
- Seal the lid and turn the valve to "sealing".
- Press the MANUAL or PRESSURE COOK (High) for 8 minutes (it will take approx. 10 minutes or so to get up to pressure).
- Once the potatoes are cooked and you hear the beeping sound, do a quick release after 2 minutes by pushing the valve to VENTING using a long wooden spoon. Carefully open the lid and test to make sure potatoes are done by poking one with a knife. If they're not done, put the lid back on and cook them on high pressure for another 2 minutes.
- Carefully take the inner cooking pot out of the Instant Pot and drain the liquid reserving 2 tablespoons.
Add the butter and mash with a potato masher until fluffy. Add sour cream and milk and continue mashing until smooth.
Adjust seasonings to taste and keep on warm until ready to serve. It’s best to eat right away, but if you’re eating them later and the potatoes get dry, add the reserved water to loosen them.
SERVE garnished with chopped chives or parsley.