Cook confidently with a handful of tricks to easily and quickly thicken mashed potatoes! These methods take no more than a few minutes and just one ingredient.
What Makes These Methods So Good
- They’re perfect for when you’re short on time! Simply and effectively use any of these five methods to thicken mashed potatoes and have them on the dinner table in no time.
- Some require no additional ingredients. We include five options so that anyone with any ingredients or cooking equipment is able to salvage their potatoes.
- They won’t affect the taste of your delicious mashed potatoes! The only thing these do is thicken the texture. Therefore, you can use any of these methods confidently, knowing they won’t at all ruin your potatoes.
The 5 Methods
Use a Thickening Agent – Thickening agents such as corn starch or flour are super effective in, you guessed it, thickening recipes. I recommend corn starch when thickening mashed potatoes as it does very little to affect the taste of your side dish. Flour, on the other hand, can sometimes give potatoes a chalky taste/texture. To use a thickening agent to thicken mashed potatoes, simply add just one tablespoon at a time until you’ve reached your desired consistency.
Heat in a Pot – Place thin mashed potatoes in a pot over medium heat and stir every minute or so. Leave the pot uncovered to allow moisture to evaporate, until you’ve reached your desired consistency.
Add Dehydrated Potatoes – My personal favorite quick and easy method involves stirring one tablespoon of dehydrated potatoes into your mashed potatoes at a time until you’ve reached your desired consistency. Dehydrated potatoes not only do an amazing job at thickening mashed potatoes in mere seconds, but they enhance that delicious, smooth flavor.
Bake in a Shallow Dish – This method works similarly to heating the runny potatoes in a pot. By baking them, uncovered, in a shallow baking dish, we encourage moisture to evaporate out of the potatoes. To do this, transfer your mashed potatoes to a baking dish and place them in a 350° Fahrenheit oven. Leave them to cook for about 10 minutes or until you’ve reached your desired consistency.
Cook Additional Potatoes – Another one of my more preferred thickening methods is adding in extra cooked potatoes. For this trick, peel and boil/cook potatoes exactly how you would to make mashed potatoes. Once super soft, give them a quick mash before adding them straight into your thin mashed potatoes. Continue adding cooked potatoes until you’ve reached your desired consistency.
- Avoid over-mixing and mashing your potatoes! Over-worked mashed potatoes will cause them to take on a gluey and unappetizing texture.
- Learn from your mistakes and avoid runny mashed potatoes next time you make them. My trick for this is to mash the potatoes before introducing any liquid. Boiled potatoes will hold on to a surprising amount of water that will only become visible once mashed. Therefore, give them a “dry” mash to determine their consistency before adding any milk or butter.
- Whatever you do, don’t give up and throw away your mashed potatoes! Unsalvageable thin mashed potatoes can be turned into a delicious soup and/or added to a casserole.
Other Helpful How Tos
- How to Cook Turkey Bacon in the Oven
- How to Reheat Mashed Potatoes
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- How to Brine Chicken Wings
- How to Boil Artichokes
How to Thicken Mashed Potatoes (5 Ways)
- Medium pot
- 9×13 baking dish
- 4 cups runny mashed potatoes
- cornstarch optional
- dehydrated potatoes optional
- additional potatoes peeled, boiled, and mashed; optional
Method 1 – Use a Thickening Agent
- Add one tablespoon of corn starch at a time until you've reached your desired consistency.
Method 2 – Heat in a Pot
- Stir in a pot over medium heat, uncovered until moisture evaporates and you’ve reached your desired consistency. Stir every minute, but be careful not to over-stir as this can result in gummy mashed potatoes.
Method 3 – Add Dehydrated Potatoes
- Add one tablespoon at a time until you reach your desired consistency.
Method 4 – Bake in a Shallow Dish
- Bake in a shallow baking dish at 350° Fahrenheit, uncovered for about 10 minutes, allowing moisture to evaporate.
Method 5 – Cook Additional Potatoes
- Cook additional potatoes, then mash them and stir into your runny mashed potatoes until you’ve reached your desired consistency.