Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes

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These creamy and smooth Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes can be made in as little as 13 minutes, smashing the record for how quickly you can make this dreamy side dish.

» Try these potatoes on the side of a Pork Roast, Turkey Breast or Brisket.

Mashed potatoes in a bowl with an Instant Pot behind it.
 

If you’ve forgotten to start the potatoes an hour in advance of dinner, that’s no longer a problem. The Instant Pot makes perfect mashed potatoes in a fraction of the time you’d need on the stove top.

Not only do the potatoes cook quickly, they mash up easily into a creamy and smooth dish in no time. Depending on how much you make, you might not even have to drain the water. It’s truly the simplest way to make mashed potatoes. I guarantee you won’t want to go back to making them any other way.

Potatoes

Since mashed potatoes go with everything, this will likely become one of your most-used recipes. You can pair them with meatballs and gravy, serve then on the side of a pork roast, or mix up a huge batch for Thanksgiving dinner.

The Instant Pot is a great way to make potatoes of all kinds. We love these simple baked potatoes because you don’t have to preheat the oven.

What You Need

The ingredients list is small, as usual. It’s a quick list of things you probably already have on hand.

  • Potatoes – You can use any type of potato you like, but I find that non-waxy varieties work best to get that fluffy creamy mash without them being gluey. Reach for the russets, red potatoes, Yukon gold, or white potatoes. Whether you remove the skin or leave it on is also up to you. I always remove the skin from russets but leave it on for red potatoes.
  • Water – You can adjust the water depending on how many potatoes you’re making at once. A 6-quart Instant Pot requires at least 1 cup of water, while an 8-quart requires 1 1/2 cups of water. I find that one cup is perfect for 1-3 pounds of potatoes. If you make more than 3 pounds, you’ll need to add additional water.
  • Butter – As Julia Child once said, “butter makes everything better”. That’s definitely the case with these mashed potatoes. The butter will help give them a creamier, richer flavor. I use salted butter. If you use unsalted, you might need to increase the amount of salt you add.
  • Milk or cream – The milk also helps give creaminess to the potatoes. You can add milk, half and half, or cream. While the cream does make it slightly richer, it also adds extra calories. I find that 2% or whole milk is perfect.
  • Salt – You’ll want to add salt to the potatoes as they cook and another dose of salt to the potatoes before you mash them up. Potatoes need salt for flavor, so don’t skip out on this. You can add more to meet your tastes.

» Check out our Instant Pot Cooking Times Cheat Sheet so you never have to look up times again for your favorite foods you make in the pressure cooker. Print or bookmark it so you always have it handy!

Mashed potatoes in a bowl

How to Make Mashed Potatoes in the Instant Pot

The biggest reason to make the potatoes in the Instant Pot is how quickly they cook under pressure.

While it usually takes anywhere form 15-30 minutes to cook the potatoes in water on the stove top, it only takes 8 minutes to reach the perfect softness in the Instant Pot. Of course, you also have to add the 5-8 minutes it takes to come up to pressure, so, so it’ll take around 13-16 minutes total.

Start by putting the cubed potatoes and water into the Instant Pot. The potatoes should be cut into chunks or around 1-2″ cubes. I don’t put much time into it. They don’t have to be perfect – they just need to be uniform so they all cook at the same rate.

Raw chopped potatoes in the Instant Pot

Add half the salt and stir it all together. Then place the lid on the Instant Pot and set the valve to sealing.

Press the pressure cook button and set the time for 8 minutes on high pressure. If you’ve added cold water, it will take between 5-8 minutes to come up to pressure. For warm or hot water, it might take a few minutes less.

When the time is up, you can do a quick release of the pressure and turn off the machine. You don’t want to let the pressure release naturally because the potatoes will just turn into mush.

Drain any excess water from the potatoes. If you’ve cooked the 1.5 pounds of potatoes that this recipe calls for, there will be a bit of water to strain off. If you’ve cooked 3 pounds, there might not be any water to drain.

Mashed potatoes being blended with beaters

Add the milk, butter, and remaining salt to the pot. Mash the potatoes with a potato masher, or a hand mixer on low speed for a quick 15 seconds. You have to be quick with it because the potatoes will become gluey if you over mix them.

Additions You Can Make

As you know, mashed potatoes are incredibly versatile and can be used in so many dishes. But they don’t have to be served plain. There are tons of options for dressing up the potatoes to make them something a bit different.

  • If you want to make super decadent potatoes, double or even triple the butter and reduce the milk. If you’ve ever had mashed potatoes at a Joel Robuchon restaurant, you know how amazing they can be drenched in butter.
  • Add shredded cheddar cheese and cream cheese to make cheesy potatoes.
  • Add some bacon bits and sliced green onions to make a loaded potato dish.
Mashed potatoes in a bowl with a spoon

Tips for Making Perfect Potatoes

  • Do make sure to cube the potatoes into similar sizes before adding them to the pot, so they all cook evenly. If you’re using baby potatoes, you still have to cut them at least in half, don’t just add the whole potato.
  • You will need additional water if you cook more than 3 pounds of potatoes. You can double and make 6 pounds, but you’ll need at least 2 cups of water. Similarly, you need at least 1 1/2 cups of water for an 8-quart Instant Pot.
  • Don’t overmix the potatoes or they will become gluey.
  • Don’t leave the potatoes in the Instant Pot for a natural pressure release after the time is up. Do an immediate quick release and turn the pot off, so it’s not on warm.
  • It’s best to drain the water, then add the additional ingredients and mash the potatoes right away while they’re still warm.
Mashed potatoes in a bowl

Main Dishes to Serve This With

This is a great side dish to serve with just about any main dish protein. I like to serve it with chicken and pork. Here are a few options to enjoy:

I only buy pasture raised chicken and meats. I love Farm Foods Market online. They deliver hormone-free, non-GMO, antibiotic free chicken, plus all other types of meat, right to your door. You can order whatever you want, whenever you want – no membership or pre-selected box.

Why Use An Instant Pot?

The Instant Pot is one of the most useful kitchen appliances you can buy, because it drastically cuts down on the cooking time for developing flavors in soups and stews, getting tough cuts of meat tender, and even baking a cheesecake. And there are many accessories that will help you get more out of your Instant Pot.

If you don’t have one yet, check out our guide on which one to buy. Also see our guide to How to Use an Instant Pot for more information.

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Mashed potatoes in a bowl

Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes

These creamy and smooth Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes can be made in as little as 13 minutes, smashing the record for how quickly you can make this dreamy side dish.

Note: Made in a 6-qt Instant Pot

5 from 25 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 8 mins
Pressurize Time 5 mins
Total Time 23 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 Servings
Calories 95 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 1 1/2 pounds potatoes peeled and cubed
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon salt divided
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 2 tablespoons butter plus more for garnish if desired
  • Chives for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Put the potatoes and water into the Instant Pot. Add half the salt and stir.
  • Place the lid on the Instant Pot and set the valve to sealing.
  • Press the pressure cook button and set the time for 8 minutes.
  • When the time is up, do a quick release of the pressure.
  • Drain the water from the potatoes. Add the milk, butter, and remaining salt to the pot.
  • Mash the potatoes with a potato masher, or a hand mixer on low speed for a quick 15 seconds.

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 95kcalCarbohydrates: 20gProtein: 3gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 405mgPotassium: 494mgFiber: 2gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 23IUVitamin C: 22mgCalcium: 29mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Potatoes
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Mashed potatoes in a bowl

2 thoughts on “Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes

  1. Dave S. says:

    Hi Laura
    A question. Would it help to take the finished potatoes and use a rice rather than a potato masher? I guess that’s for people who like creamier potatoes and wouldn’t that also solve the problem of gluey potatoes from mixing too much?

    Also, America’s Test Kitchen says this for their recipe:
    “…we added melted butter first and then half and half. Melting, rather than merely softening the butter enabled it to coat the starch molecules quickly and easily, so the potatoes turned out creamy and light.”

    “When the 1/2 and 1/2 is stirred into the potatoes before the butter, the water in it works with the starch in the potatoes to make the mashed potaotes gluey and heavy. When the butter is added BEFORE the half-and-half, the fast coats the starch molecules, inhibiting their interaction with the water in the half-and-half added later and thereby yielding silkier, creamier mashed potatoes.”

    • Laura says:

      Using a ricer will definitely help reduce the chance of gluey potatoes. I haven’t tried the melted butter trick yet, but I will to see if it helps too. I’ve found that not using waxy or high-moisture potatoes does the trick. Russets are good dry potatoes. Red and white potatoes are not.

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