Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes are some of the best you’ll ever make. They will make your life easier for the holidays, since they cook in just one pot, with no draining required.
Why You’ll Love Them
They’re unbelievably easy. The electric pressure cooker makes things as easy as possible, because everything cooks in a single pot. No draining required!
They taste amazing. The Instant Pot is particularly good at bringing out more flavor than other cooking methods. You hardly need all of the traditional add-ins, like sour cream or cream cheese, because they are so delicious already! But, you can certainly add in any extras you love.
Clean-up is a breeze. You can sauté the garlic, cook the potatoes, and mash them together all in the same stainless steel pot. It will even keep them warm until you’re ready to serve, so you won’t have to clean this one pot until dinner is over.
They make holiday cooking easier. These mashed potatoes won’t take up any space in your oven, or on the stove! They make holidays, like Thanksgiving, easier by keeping your potatoes warm until you’re ready to deal with them. You’ll also have less dishes to do later!
Ingredients You’ll Need
What’s in Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes?
- Russet potatoes
- Olive oil
- Salt & black pepper
- Milk of choice
You can add any extras you like in mashed potatoes, such as butter, chives, or Parmesan cheese, but be sure to taste these before you add them in. They are ultra-flavorful already!
How to Make the Best Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes
Press the Sauté button on your machine and wait for the screen to read HOT.
Add in the olive oil and garlic, and stir briefly, just about 1 minute. You can press the Cancel/Off button on the Instant Pot right away, so the garlic won’t burn.
As soon as the garlic smells fragrant, add in the cup of water and use the spatula to scrape the bottom of the pot. This will ensure nothing is stuck to the bottom, and you won’t trigger a burn error later.
2. Pressure cook.
Add in the peeled & cubed potatoes, salt, and black pepper. Secure the lid on your pressure cooker and move the steam release valve to Sealing.
Cook at high pressure for 8 minutes. It will take roughly 8 to 10 minutes for the pot to pressurize, so the screen will read ON until then.
When the cooking cycle is complete, and the screen reads LO:00, you can manually release the steam pressure by moving the steam release valve to Venting.
Be sure to keep you hand away from the top of this valve, as hot steam will shoot out from the top. This is called a quick release.
When the floating valve in the lid drops, that means the pot is no longer pressurized and it’s safe to open the lid. Use a fork to test the potatoes, to make sure they are very tender. Then use a potato masher to mash the potatoes directly in the stainless steel bowl of the Instant Pot.
Alternatively, you can use an electric hand mixer, if you prefer whipped potatoes.
Add the milk, and continue mashing until they are as smooth in texture as you like. You can also add additional seasoning at this point, like extra salt, or any fresh herbs you like, such as fresh thyme leaves.
Once you’re happy with the flavor, these Instant Pot mashed potatoes are ready to serve. The pressure cooker will keep them warm for up to 3 hours, if you need to make these in advance, but be sure to check on their texture before serving. Mashed potatoes tend to firm-up and dry out as they sit, so you might need to add an extra splash or water or milk, and give them a stir, right before serving.
Frequently Asked Questions
Mashed potatoes have the best texture if you can serve them they same day they are cooked, but there are two ways you can make these in advance. The first method is to peel and cut the potatoes into chunks, then transfer them to an airtight container and submerge them in water so they don’t brown. You can do this 24 hours in advance, then drain them right before cooking according to the directions above.
If you prefer to mash the potatoes in advance, you can reheat chilled potatoes in the Instant Pot by adding a 1/2 cup of water to the bottom of the pot. I use the Saute function to heat them up again with the lid off, and stir often to break up the cold potatoes, until they are heated through. I’ve also heard you can pressure cook them for zero minutes (yes, zero!) if you’d like to try that, and then perform a quick release to open the pot again.
Russet potatoes will give you the most traditional mashed potatoes, with their white fluffy interior. If you prefer to use Yukon Gold Potatoes, you can do that, too! But, they will not require as much liquid for mashing, so you might not need all of the milk that this recipe calls for.
The Instant Pot requires a thin liquid to bring the pot to pressure. I don’t recommend using milk to cook them (as it can trigger a burn error) but you can use chicken broth or veggie broth, if you prefer. In that case, you might not need all of the salt that this recipe calls for, since the broth may already contain sodium.
Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes (No Drain!)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves , minced
- 1 cup water
- 3 pounds Russet potatoes* , peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
- 1 teaspoon salt , plus more to taste
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ to ¾ cup milk of choice (or more, as needed)
- Press the Sauté button on your Instant Pot, and add in the olive oil. When the pot has heated up, add in the 2 cloves of minced garlic and briefly stir them. I usually press the Off button right away, so the garlic doesn't burn.
- As soon as the garlic smells very fragrant, add in the cup of water to prevent it from burning. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to scrape the bottom of the pot, to make sure no garlic is stuck there. (You could trigger a burn error otherwise.)
- Add in the potatoes, salt, and pepper to the Instant Pot. There's no need to stir. Secure the lid, and move the steam release valve to "Sealing."
- Use the Manual or Pressure Cook button on your machine to cook at high pressure for 8 minutes. It will take roughly 8 to 10 minutes for the pot to come to pressure, so it will read "On" as it heats up, and then it will start the count-down as soon as the floating valve in the lid pops up.
- When the cooking cycle is complete and the screen reads LO:00, immediately move the steam release valve to "Venting" to release the pressure in the pot. Make sure your hand isn't over the vent, to avoid getting burned by the hot steam. When the floating valve in the lid drops, it's safe to open the lid.
- Use a fork to test the potatoes, to make sure they are tender, then use a potato masher to start mashing the potatoes. Add in the milk, starting with only ¼ cup at a time, until the potatoes are as creamy as you like them. I usually end up using 3/4 cup with Russet potatoes. (See notes below if you use Yukon Gold, instead.) This is also the time to taste the potatoes and add more seasonings as you like. I typically use 2 teaspoons of sea salt total for 3 pounds of potatoes, and you can add any extras you like at this point, such as sour cream, chives, or fresh thyme.
- Once the potatoes are seasoned to your liking, you can serve them warm right away. You can also use the Instant Pot's keep warm setting, to keep them warm for up to 3 hours. The mashed potatoes will firm-up as they sit in the pot, so be sure to check on them again just before serving. You may need to add an extra splash of milk or water, to help loosen them up again. See tips in this post for reheating any leftovers, or making them ahead of time.
If you try this Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes recipe, please leave a comment and star rating below letting me know how you like them.