parmesan garlic smashed potatoes

Guess what? It’s Saturday afternoon, and I’m off work early today! I’ve been working every day straight since November 1st, but today I was able to leave work in time to enjoy a bit of the gorgeous late fall sunshine and 75 degree weather we’re having here in North Florida.

Even though my work is crazy right now, and I won’t have a full day off for another week, I’m really very happy. I’m working with some great people – residents and medical students – who are proving to be fantastic young doctors. We’ve been doing lots of serious work, and the hours are long, but I’ve loved every minute of it.

Plus, they let me talk food with them. How great is that?

Last week I baked up a batch of Jennie’s chocolate chip cookies for my team. The cookies really don’t take all that much time to make and are SO much better than store-bought cookie dough. I think the bribe was successful. They let me go home early today. See? It worked.

One of them asked me last night about the first thing I planned to cook when I had my first day off. I was stumped. I have stacks of food magazines sitting around, waiting to be flipped through and pages torn out or earmarked. Even with all that inspiration lying around, I didn’t have a recipe in mind. And then I realized that it’s almost Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving! The thing about working for 19 days straight (13 so far) is that the time just flies by. It was just Halloween last I checked.

Time to put on my Thanksgiving Thinking Cap and come up with some menu ideas.

For now, I’ll share a mashed potato recipe with you. Our traditional Thanksgiving mashed potatoes are made by my dad. He’s our resident Mashed Potato Genius. His recipe is rich and creamy, and when the bowl of potatoes is set out on the table, I can’t keep my finger out of it. Just to taste it, you know, for seasonings. And maybe a second or third taste. And then I realize I’ve gotten out a tablespoon, and it’s all down hill from there.

This recipe is not that one, but it’s a close second. Just assume it’s calorie- and fat-free. Which it’s not. But you can pretend it is.

Yield: Serves 6 to 8.

Parmesan Garlic Smashed Potatoes

Adapted from this recipe from Ina Garten. Her version of the recipe can also be found in her cookbook, which I love, The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook. To try to cut down on at least a little of the fat, I used nonfat Greek yogurt instead of full-fat sour cream in these potatoes. I didn't notice any difference in the flavor or texture.


3 pounds red potatoes, unpeeled
1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup whole milk
1 stick (4 ounces; 8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Place the potatoes and 1 tablespoon of salt in a 4-quart saucepan with cold water to cover. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer covered for 25 to 35 minutes, until the potatoes are completely tender. Drain.

In a small saucepan, heat the half-and-half, milk, and butter.

Put the potatoes into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix them for a few seconds on low speed to break them up. Add the minced garlic to the potatoes, then slowly add the hot cream and butter mixture to the potatoes, mixing on the lowest speed (the last quarter of the cream and butter mixture should be folded in by hand to avoid splattering). Fold in the yogurt, Parmesan cheese, remaining salt, and pepper; taste for seasoning and serve immediately.

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18 Responses to “parmesan garlic smashed potatoes”

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  2. 2
    Kristen — November 13, 2010 @ 10:21 pm

    I don’t envy you your schedule! Those potatoes sound just wonderful. I love garlic in my mashed potatoes (and I don’t mind the skins, either!)

    • 2.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — November 14, 2010 @ 7:13 pm

      Kristen – I’m a fan of garlic in just about anything, so it was pretty much a given that I’d work it into my potatoes. 🙂

  3. 3
    Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction — November 14, 2010 @ 11:10 am

    Sorry to hear you’re working so much, but glad that it’s going well! Love these potatoes… They are beautiful! I have some potatoes from our CSA that I need to use, so now I’m dreaming of some smashed potatoes.

    • 3.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — November 14, 2010 @ 7:13 pm

      Your CSA potatoes would be perfect for this, Jen.

  4. 4
    Chris @ The Peche — November 14, 2010 @ 1:53 pm

    I gave out a little gasp when I read the title because it sounds amazing. Then your pics sent me over the edge. This must be on our holiday table. Perfect.

    • 4.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — November 14, 2010 @ 7:12 pm

      Thanks, Chris!

  5. 5
    Jason Phelps — November 14, 2010 @ 9:47 pm

    There is no way this dish is ever going to dissapoint. I have made variations on plain old mashed potatoes a few times and parm cheese has come up a winner several times. Isn’t thinking about holiday cooking fun?

    I almost tried to take a spoon to the computer screen and get a sample!


  6. 6
    RavieNomNoms — November 15, 2010 @ 11:24 am

    You know it has been ages since I had mashed potatoes and these look so incredible! Just yummy!

  7. 7
    Kim Beauchamp — November 15, 2010 @ 8:39 pm

    These look wonderful–everything you want mashed potatoes to be. Warm, comforting, with some real texture to them. Yum.

  8. 8
    Lynda — November 15, 2010 @ 9:04 pm

    I love all of this. Especially the smashed part – give me texture any day. Rich and tart with the yogurt… yum.

  9. 9
    Nancy@acommunaltable — November 16, 2010 @ 12:50 am

    So glad that you got a day off!!! I can completely see why you shared this recipe.. it is comfort food at it’s finest – garlic, parmesan, creamy potatoes. What’s NOT to like??

  10. 10
    Brian @ A Thought For Food — November 19, 2010 @ 12:37 pm

    You’ve nailed this one… smashed, not mashed. There’s a huge difference and I love my potatoes mashed with garlic and cheese (and lots of butter).

    And GREAT job on making these photogenic… really, it’s beautiful!

    • 10.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — November 19, 2010 @ 4:25 pm

      Thanks so much, Brian!

  11. 11
    Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite — November 20, 2010 @ 6:45 pm

    So, so good. It’s with a recipe like that I converted Neil into a mashed potato lover.

  12. 12
    Chris @ The Peche — November 24, 2010 @ 7:42 am

    It’s official. We’re making these for Thanksgiving.

  13. 13
    LivedinItaly — November 3, 2011 @ 7:42 pm

    Hi there,

    For Jennie’s chocolate chip cookies does one use brown or granulated sugar as the recipe only says ‘sugar’?

    Thank you. 🙂

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