The Best and Easiest Ways on How to Thicken Mashed Potatoes

Mashed potatoes is the go-to comfort food of a lot of people. After all, they are creamy, flavorful, and thick—how can you resist, right? Sadly, not all mashed potatoes are created equal. Some are too runny for your own good.

The runny consistency of mashed potatoes is brought about by a lot of cooking factors like adding too much milk, overboiling the potatoes, or failure to drain all the water from the potatoes.

If you end up with thin and runny mashed potatoes, don’t fret! There are plenty of ways on how you can remedy that! In this article, you can find the most effective ways on how to thicken mashed potatoes.

4 Ways on How to Thicken Mashed Potatoes

You will be surprised as to the number of ideas on how you can thicken mashed potatoes. In this section, we will tackle five effective methods to boost your mashed potatoes’ consistency.

Technique #1: Thicken Mashed Potatoes By Heating it in the Stovetop

This is probably the simplest way on how you can thicken mashed potatoes. Sometimes, the first instinct of a lot of people, when they see that their mashed potatoes end up runny, is to throw them out. But sometimes, this dish just needs further cooking to achieve the thick texture that we all want.

What You Will Need:

  • Stove
  • Fork
  • Pot

Step #1: Heat the potatoes in the stove.

Put the runny mashed potato in a large pot. Do not cover it. Place it over medium-low heat.

Step #2: Stir the potatoes occasionally.

Using a fork, stir the potatoes from time to time. Do this until the extra moisture has evaporated and you have already achieved your desired consistency. Doing this can help prevent the potatoes from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

Pro Tip: Do not stir the potatoes consistently. This is because doing so can lead to potatoes that have starchy and gummy texture and you would surely not want that too.

Technique #2: Thicken Mashed Potatoes By Microwaving It

If you think that heating the mashed potatoes in the stovetop is a bit of a hassle, you can simplify the method by microwaving it instead.

What You Will Need:

  • Microwave-safe bowl
  • Microwave

Step #1: Place the mashed potatoes in a microwave-safe bowl.

Leave the bowl uncovered.

Step #2. Microwave the bowl.

Place it inside the microwave and heat it for a minute. After that, remove the bowl from the microwave and take a look at its consistency. It is recommended that you keep on heating it in the microwave in increments of 1 minute until you have achieved your desired thickness.

Technique #3: Thicken Mashed Potatoes by Adding More Potatoes

If you have more potatoes in your kitchen, then you can use those to thicken your mashed potatoes.

What You Will Need:

  • 1 to 2 pieces of Raw potatoes
  • Skillet
  • Cheese Grater
  • Colander

Step #1: Shred the potatoes.

Thicken Mashed Potatoes by Adding More Potatoes

Using the medium-sized holes of the cheese grater, shred the potatoes finely.

Pro Tip: The potatoes should look like that of hash browns. They should be finely shredded and not chunky so you can easily incorporate it into your mashed potatoes.

Step #2: Add the potatoes to the skillet.

Afterward, add the amount of water enough to cover the shredded potatoes. Place the skillet over medium-high heat and bring the mixture to a boil.

Pro Tip: The pot should be uncovered to allow some of the water to evaporate.

Step #3: Once the potatoes have softened, drain the water from the potatoes.

Once the mixture comes to a boil, use your fork to check the tenderness of the shredded potatoes. If the potatoes are already tender enough, drain the water right away. If you think that they are still not soft enough, you can cook it for one minute more and check on the tenderness again after that.

Step #4: Use the fork to mash the shredded potatoes.

After draining the water, use a large fork to mash the potatoes to your desired consistency. Please avoid over-mashing them  because it will lead to the thin and runny consistency that you did not like in the first place.

Step #5: Add the freshly mashed potatoes to your watery mashed potatoes.

Mix them well using a spoon. This can thicken your mashed potatoes significantly. If the mashed potatoes are not thick enough, you can add more potatoes and repeat the entire process.

Technique #4: Thicken Mashed Potatoes By Adding Thickening Agents

Various ingredients can thicken your mashed potatoes. These thickening agents can improve the consistency of your mashed potatoes without altering its taste and flavor.

What You Will Need:

–    Thickening Agent of your choice

These thickening agents include flour or cornflour, tapioca, arrowroot starch, corn starch, and potato starch. Cornstarch is perfect for gluten-free recipes. It has twice the thickening power of flour so you will not be using much of it. On the other hand, potato starch is another gluten-free ingredient that is recommended for Passover cooking.

If you want to add flavor to your mashed potato, you can use hard cheese like Parmesan. If you want to make the mashed potatoes creamier, you can use powdered milk.

  • Mixing bowl
  • Tablespoon
  • Fork

Step #1: Add a tablespoon of the thickening agent of your choice to the mixing bowl with mashed potato.

Use a fork to incorporate the thickener into the mashed potato. If the mashed potato already thickened, you are good to go.

Step #2: If the thickness of the mashed potato is not yet enough for you, add one more tablespoon of the thickener. Stir.

Repeat this step until you achieve your desired consistency.

In Summary

The thicker the mashed potatoes are, the more comforting they are. But there will come a time when you will end up with runny and watered-down mashed potatoes. If you experienced this, don’t be disheartened.

The methods on how to thicken mashed potatoes mentioned will surely come to your rescue!

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