If you’ve hosted Thanksgiving, then you know that oven space is prime real estate. Let your other appliances help! These Crockpot Mashed Potatoes are outrageously creamy (is there any other way?), and the slow cooker makes for easy serving, portability, and less oven juggling.
Why You’ll Love This Make-Ahead Crockpot Mashed Potatoes Recipe
- A Tried-and-True Classic. This recipe for crockpot mashed potatoes is based on the mashed potatoes my mom makes every Thanksgiving. Today’s crockpot version is based on my mom’s (who bases hers off of the Pioneer Woman’s mashed potatoes), in combination with my top-rated Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes.
- More Room on the Stovetop and in the Oven. Because you know you’re going to need it. If time is also at a premium on Thanksgiving day, you can even make these slow cooker mashed potatoes ahead of time. Boom!
- Made Completely in the Slow Cooker. You do not need to boil the potatoes to make crock pot mashed potatoes. That’s right, NO BOIL mashed potatoes, meaning one less pot to wash.
- Easy to Transport. Even if you aren’t the one that’s hosting, bringing mashed potatoes in a crockpot makes it easy for them to stay warm (and your host will love you for not stealing oven space from the Roast Turkey or Spatchcock Turkey).
- A *Little* Bit Lighter. As someone who must have at least one round of everything (Sweet Potato Casserole, Cornbread Stuffing, Cranberry Orange Sauce, etc.), I appreciate that these don’t send me immediately over the edge. You can get your mashed potato fix and still have room for everything else!
5 Star Review
“Making these for the second time. They are to die for!”
— Stefanie —
How to Make Crockpot Mashed Potatoes
- Potatoes. The must-have Thanksgiving side dish. I prefer to make crockpot mashed potatoes with Yukon gold (just like my Garlic Mashed Potatoes), because their buttery taste and creamy texture give mashed potatoes a more decadent taste without the need for (as) much butter.
- Butter. This is the holidays after all! It gives the mashed potatoes classic, craveable flavor.
- Chicken Broth. Chicken broth adds extra savory goodness to the mashed potatoes.
- Cream Cheese. For extra rich and creamy mashed potatoes with a hint of tang.
- Greek Yogurt. My swap for sour cream (feel free to use sour cream instead if you prefer).
- Seasoned Salt. The secret ingredient and a simple way to add robust, salty flavor to the potatoes.
- Milk. Use as needed to reach your desired mashed potato consistency.
- Prep. Peel the potatoes for mashed potatoes for the smoothest consistency, or you can leave the skins on for something more rustic.
- Slow Cook the Potatoes. Be sure to do this on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours.
- Add (Almost) Everything Else. Add the remaining ingredients (except the milk).
- Mash. Use a potato masher to mash until everything is combined. Add milk as needed to thin your crockpot mashed potatoes.
- Finish. Keep in the slow cooker on “warm” or serve. ENJOY!
- Crockpot Mashed Potatoes With Sour Cream. If you’re a traditionalist, you can use sour cream instead of Greek yogurt in your mashed potatoes.
- Crockpot Cheesy Mashed Potatoes. You can’t go wrong with adding some cheese! Choose a variety with an assertive flavor, like Parmesan or aged cheddar, so you don’t have to add too much, and make sure it’s freshly grated so it melts smoothly into the mashed potatoes. Fold in the cheese after you’ve mashed the potatoes.
- Crockpot Loaded Mashed Potatoes. Set up a topping station next to your mashed potatoes with chives, sliced green onions, bacon crumbles (I love using my Air Fryer Bacon for this), cheese, and Greek yogurt or sour cream. Let everyone load up their potatoes with their favorite toppings!
- Crockpot Garlic Mashed Potatoes. Add minced garlic with the potatoes or stir in Roasted Garlic at the end (for a stovetop version, check out Garlic Mashed Potatoes).
How to Cook Mashed Potatoes in Advance
One of the most helpful things you can do for yourself is to use this recipe for make-ahead crockpot mashed potatoes.
The more you do in advance, the smoother the day will flow.
- To Make Ahead. Up to 1 day in advance, fully prepare the recipe as directed. Let cool completely, cover the slow cooker, and place it in the refrigerator.
- To Reheat. Return the slow cooker insert to the heating element. Stir and turn the slow cooker to the “keep warm” setting. Once the mashed potatoes are warm, stir again and add splashes of milk as needed to thin them.
What to Serve with Crockpot Mashed Potatoes
- Chicken. We already know mashed potatoes are a natural pairing with turkey, but I love them just as much with Chicken Fricassée, Baked Fried Chicken, Air Fryer Whole Chicken or Air Fryer Chicken Breast, and Rosemary Chicken Thighs.
- Pork. Crockpot Pork Roast, Crockpot Ham, and Baked Pork Tenderloin are made for serving with creamy crockpot mashed potatoes.
- Beef. I love serving Beef Bourguignon and Red Wine Braised Short Ribs over mashed potatoes. Instant Pot Roast is also perfect with these make-ahead crockpot mashed potatoes.
- Veggies. Once you’ve got your protein and your starch (that would be the potatoes!), it’s time to add a veggie side like Sautéed Green Beans, Roasted Broccoli, or Sautéed Mushrooms.
- Shepherd’s Pie. It’s perfect for leftover mashed potatoes too! Check out Shepherd’s Pie and Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie.
- Gravy. Turkey Gravy (classic), Mushroom Gravy, and Ham Gravy are mashed potatoes’ true partners.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Let the Cream Cheese Soften. Then, cut it into chunks. This helps it mix smoothly into the mashed potatoes, rather than having little lumps and clumps of cream cheese in there.
- Remember That They’ll Thicken. As the mashed potatoes sit in the crockpot to stay warm, the starches will cause them to thicken, so don’t panic if they seem a bit watery when you first mash them. You can always add more liquid if needed, but you can’t remove it once you add it, so be conservative here!
- Don’t Over-Mix. And don’t use a hand mixer to mash your potatoes! This is one of the most common reasons mashed potatoes take on a gummy texture. Use a potato masher, then switch to a wooden spoon to stir and break up any remaining chunks.
- 5 pounds Yukon gold potatoes or russet potatoes
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter cut into 1/2-inch cubes, divided
- 3/4 cup low sodium chicken broth
- 4 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese softened and cut into cubes
- 1 cup 2% Greek yogurt or full fat; I do not recommend fat free
- 1 tablespoon seasoned salt* plus additional to taste (I used Lawry’s)
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup milk (as needed) I used 1% – use whole milk or half and half for more decadence
Peel the potatoes, then cut them into 1-inch chunks. Place in the bottom of a 6-quart or larger crockpot.
Dot the potatoes with half of the diced butter (4 tablespoons). Pour the chicken broth over the top.
Cover the slow cooker and cook on HIGH, until the potatoes are fork-tender, about 3 to 4 hours.
Remove the lid. Add the remaining butter, cream cheese (I break the softened cream cheese into pieces right over the top), Greek yogurt, seasoned salt, and pepper.
With a potato masher, mash the ingredients together they until are combined and the potatoes are as smooth or chunky as you like (we keep ours a little chunky). At first, it will look a bit liquidy but will thicken a bit more as you continue and as the potatoes sit. If the mashed potatoes are too thick, add the milk as needed. Taste and adjust seasoning (depending upon your seasoned salt or chicken broth, you may need to add more).
Recover the slow cooker and turn the slow cooker to “keep warm” until ready to serve.
- I know 1 tablespoon seems like a lot of seasoned salt, but it’s a lot of potatoes! Feel free to add in increments, especially if using a different brand (I used Lawry’s).
- TO MAKE AHEAD: Up to 1 day in advance, fully prepare the recipe as directed. Let cool completely, cover the slow cooker, and refrigerate it.
- Before serving, return the slow cooker insert to the heating element. Stir and turn the slow cooker to the “keep warm” setting. Once the mashed potatoes are warm, stir again and add splashes of milk as needed to thin them.
- TO STORE: Refrigerate mashed potatoes in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days.
- TO REHEAT: Rewarm leftovers in a Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
Serving: 1(of 10)Calories: 310kcalCarbohydrates: 42gProtein: 10gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 33mgPotassium: 1011mgFiber: 5gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 383IUVitamin C: 45mgCalcium: 95mgIron: 2mg
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Frequently Asked Questions
For vegan crockpot mashed potatoes, swap the chicken broth for water. Use dairy-free milk and vegan substitutes for the butter, Greek yogurt, and cream cheese.
(For an easy vegan holiday side, don’t miss my Mashed Butternut Squash.)
Yes! You can swap the Greek yogurt in this recipe for sour cream if you prefer.