I begin mentally planning my Thanksgiving menu in July. The hot weather and the constant sun make me yearn for the cooler weather of fall, a little rain, and the comforting foods that you’re only allowed to make when the weather sucks. I’m so excited that fall is finally here and I can begin plotting my recipes in earnest.
Needless to say, I’ve been thinking about these mashed potatoes for a while. They’re the only thing on my menu that doesn’t change. Cream cheese brings a fluffy richness to mashed potatoes that plain butter and milk can’t, and once you’ve tried them you’ll never go back.
The recipe is simple: yukon gold potatoes (I find that their texture for mashed potatoes is preferable to any other variety), one package of cream cheese, salt and pepper, whole milk (or half and half, if you want to get a little crazy) and butter.
I forgot to picture the butter, and it may be a first in the history of this blog. Usually it’s the first thing on my mind.
Begin by scrubbing and rinsing the potatoes. Peel off the skins if you must, but I like to leave them on for a little texture. Slice each potato lengthwise…
..and then turn and slice again.
Place potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold, lightly salted water. Bring to a boil and cook just until the potatoes are fork-tender and the skins begin to separate themselves.
Drain, pour into the bowl of your stand mixer and mash with a hand masher.
Next, add the cream cheese, butter, and half of the milk. Mix with the paddle attachment until you achieve the consistency that you like, adding more milk gradually if you need to. If you like them really light and fluffy, switch to the wisk attachment and continue mixing (I like mine a little lumpy, but to each her own). Season with salt and pepper to taste.
And there you have it. Perfectly creamy, perfectly decadent mashed potatoes. I wouldn’t trade them for any horseradish, bacon, blue cheese or sour cream mashed potato recipe in the world.
And come Thanksgiving day, you can bet these suckers are going to grace my table. They’re champs at gravy volcanoes, experts at mingling with the cranberries, pros at hanging with the turkey.
What’s your favorite mashed potato recipe?
Cream Cheese Mashed Potatoes
Using reduced fat or low fat cream cheese is fine, but nonfat doesn’t work as well. Serves 6-8 as a side dish.
- 3 lbs yukon gold potatoes, scrubbed, rinsed and quartered
- 1 8 oz package cream cheese, room temperature
- 1/2-1 cup whole milk, warmed
- 1/2 stick butter, softened
- 1 tsp kosher salt plus more to taste
- freshly ground pepper to taste
Place potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold, lightly salted water. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are easily pierced with a fork and their skins begin to come off, about 10-12 minutes. Drain and mash with a potato masher.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine potatoes, cream cheese, butter, and 1/2 cup of the milk. Mix on medium-low, adding more milk if needed, until they reach desired consistency. Add salt and season with pepper to taste.