Mashed potatoes with truffle oil - the ultimate comfort food with a touch of luxury. Creamy, rich and crowd-pleasing, these are perfect for any mealtime.
You can make them as smooth or as chunky as you like. And the best part? They pair perfectly with so many dishes, from roast chicken/turkey to grilled steak to a hearty stew.
Side note – don't just save your truffle oil for fancy dinners; it does have a fairly limited shelf life. Put it to good use. And while you do that, you've got to try my chicken and gnocchi recipe – so yum!
- Why you'll love this recipe
- An overview of truffles and truffle products
- Ingredients you'll need
- How to make mashed potatoes with truffle oil
- Choosing the best potatoes for mashing
- White vs black truffle oil: differences and best uses
- Other uses of truffle oil
- Top tips for best results
- Truffle oil substitutes
- Common mashed potato mistakes
- Recipe variations
- Delicious pairing ideas
- Methods for keeping mashed potatoes warm
- Storage and reheating
- Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Why you'll love this recipe
- Elevated version of a classic side: Truffle oil adds a touch of sophistication to the creamy buttery potatoes.
- Versatile: These pair well with a variety of main dishes. And you can customize the recipe by adjusting the truffle oil amount or adding herbs, spices, toppings.
- Crowd-pleaser: The combo of savory, buttery, and truffle notes makes this dish stand out. Your guests will be reaching for seconds.
- Simple to make: These mashed potatoes together with truffle oil taste fine-dining-dinner-level fancy, but they're actually simple to make.
An overview of truffles and truffle products
What is Truffle?
Truffles are a type of (super-expensive) edible fungi that grow underground near the roots of certain trees. They have a distinctive earthy flavor and aroma that's highly valued in gourmet cooking. And so they are often called "diamonds of the kitchen". The two most commonly used varieties of truffles are black and white truffles.
What is truffle oil?
Truffle oil is a flavored oil that's infused with truffle essence. It's made by steeping real truffle pieces (rarely) or synthetic flavorings in high-quality oil (in most cases), such as olive oil or grapeseed oil.
While I quite like the gourmet touch and aroma it adds to dishes like pasta, risotto, and mashed potatoes, I was surprised to find out that most commercially available truffle oils are not made with real truffles. Yep, that's right!
The truffle-ly taste usually comes from an artificial flavoring ingredient called 2,4-dithiapentane. Sounds chemical-laden right? But true! Plus these oils aren't exactly cheap (though much more affordable than real truffles).
Other truffle products
In addition to truffle oil, other truffle products, such as truffle salt, truffle butter, and truffle cheese, are also commonly sold. However, all truffle products should be used in moderation to prevent an overpowering taste.
Ingredients you'll need
Here are some helpful notes on the ingredients you need to make these delicious mashed potatoes that are infused with truffle oil. See the recipe card down below for the quantities of these ingredients.
- Potatoes: I (and many chefs) prefer using Yukon Gold potatoes. These strike a happy medium between the more starchy russets and the waxy red potatoes, resulting in creamy and fluffy mashed potatoes. If you don't have Yukon golds, you can use russet, but expect a grainier texture. Or, if you're using red potatoes, expect more gooiness. I have also shared regional substitutes for Yukon Gold later on.
- Unsalted butter: To control the amount of salt in the dish. If you're using salted butter, omit the additional salt. Once the mashed potatoes are ready, do a taste test and then adjust salt. For more richness, use Irish or European-style butter.
- Whole milk: Use full-fat milk. Not the recipe to cut back on fat.
- Garlic: Freshly minced or finely chopped. Fresh garlic adds essential flavor to this recipe, so do not sub with store-bought minced garlic.
- Chicken bouillon: I use bouillon paste, but powder works too. If you're using bouillon cubes, use one cube for each teaspoon of paste or powder.
- Salt: While I use table salt, you can use any variety of salt you cook with. Some ingredients, such as bouillon, may already contain salt. So don't be tempted to increase the quantity of salt in the recipe until you have tasted the finished dish.
- Ground white pepper (or black pepper): For a subtle kick without discoloring the mashed potatoes. But you can also use ground black pepper.
- Truffle oil (black or white): The hero ingredient of this recipe! I prefer using black truffle oil, but white truffle oil will work just as well. Truffle oil can vary in strength, so use sparingly. It can easily get overpowering. If you find that the flavor is too weak, you can add more, but do so gradually.
- Fresh parsley (optional)- Finely chopped. But you can also use chopped cilantro or chives if you prefer.
If you want to make a vegan version of this recipe, please refer to the FAQs section below for ingredient substitutions.
How to make mashed potatoes with truffle oil
To make these yummy potatoes, follow these easy, photo-assisted instructions. Be sure to check out the recipe card below for the printable version of this recipe, which includes detailed instructions and all the important recipe notes.
Boil the potatoes: Peel and wash the potatoes. Then, cut them into large, evenly-sized pieces. Put the potato pieces in a pot, cover with cold water, and season with 1 tablespoon of salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a gentle simmer. Cook for 16 to 20 minutes until tender when poked with a fork.
Make the milk mixture: While the potatoes boil, combine milk, garlic, chicken bouillon powder/paste, white pepper, and salt in a saucepan. Heat until hot but not boiling. Reduce heat to the lowest setting to keep warm until ready to use.
Mash: Drain the cooked potatoes and transfer them back to the same pot. Mash the potatoes while they're still hot using a potato masher, rotary food mill, or potato ricer until they're smooth. If you don't have these tools, you can use a fork instead. Avoid using a blender, food processor, or mixer, as they can overwork the potatoes, causing them to become gummy.
Add melted butter: Melt the butter in a microwave-safe bowl for 15 to 25 seconds, watching closely to prevent it from boiling over. Then add the melted butter to the mashed potatoes and mix well until fully combined.
Add the seasoned milk: Gradually stir in the seasoned hot milk mixture to the mashed potatoes, ideally in three parts.
Mix well: As you add the milk, stir continuously after each addition. This will help to ensure that the liquid is evenly absorbed and the texture is smooth.
Add truffle oil: Then, add the truffle oil to the mashed potatoes and mix until fully combined.
Serve: Taste the mashed potatoes and adjust seasoning as needed. If you prefer a thinner consistency, add hot milk or melted butter. Transfer to a serving dish, garnish with chopped parsley (if desired), and serve hot.
Boiling potatoes in an instant pot: Place the potato pieces in the pot with enough water to cover them. Add 1 tablespoon of salt to the water. Close the lid and set the valve to the sealing position. Cook on manual high pressure for 9 minutes. After cooking, immediately (and carefully) release the pressure by turning the valve to the venting position. Drain the water and follow the remaining recipe instructions as written.
Choosing the best potatoes for mashing
- Quality and condition: Look for potatoes that are firm and free of bruises or blemishes.
- Medium starch content: For a balance of fluffy and creamy texture, it's best to use potatoes with medium starch content. Potatoes with a higher starch content will yield a fluffier texture, while potatoes with a lower starch content will result in a creamier texture. Aim for a happy medium.
- Avoid using waxy potatoes: Waxy potatoes like Red Bliss or Fingerling are not ideal for making mashed potatoes. They can result in a gluey texture.
- Avoid green or sprouted potatoes: Green or sprouted potatoes can be toxic and affect the flavor and texture of your mashed potatoes.
Top varieties by region:
Here are some preferred potato varieties for mashed potatoes in different regions:
- United States and Canada: Yukon Gold, Yellow
- United Kingdom: Maris Piper, King Edward
- Australia: Sebago, Coliban
White vs black truffle oil: differences and best uses
- Flavors: White truffle oil has a milder, earthy flavor compared to black truffle oil, which has a more intense, pungent flavor.
- Best uses for white truffle oil: Use white truffle oil in dishes with delicate flavors like seafood, pasta, and salads.
- Best uses for black truffle oil: Black truffle oil is better suited for hearty dishes like steak, pizza, and risotto.
- Best choice for mashed potatoes: When using truffle oil in mashed potatoes, use black truffle oil for a pronounced truffle flavor.
- Substitution: When using white truffle oil in a recipe that calls for black truffle oil, use slightly more than the recommended amount to achieve a similar intensity of flavor.
- Moderation: Always use truffle oil in moderation to avoid overpowering the dish.
Other uses of truffle oil
- Drizzle over pizza or pasta dishes for an extra burst of flavor.
- Use as a finishing oil for grilled meats, fish, or vegetables.
- Add to popcorn, french fries, or roasted nuts for a gourmet snack.
- Use in salad dressings or marinades for a unique twist.
- Infuse into mayonnaise, aioli, or butter for a truffle-flavored spread.
Moderation is the key: Truffle oil is usually quite potent. So, always start with a little oil to avoid overpowering the dish. Then adjust as needed.
Top tips for best results
Achieving the perfect balance of creamy and fluffy mashed potatoes is a challenge for many. But fret not! I've gathered some top tips and chef secrets that are guaranteed to elevate your mashed potato game.
- Choose the right potato variety: As I shared earlier, use potatoes with a medium starch content like Yukon Gold for the best taste and texture. It's the choice of chefs like Alton Brown, Gordon Ramsay, Ina Garten, and Martha Stewart. Oh, and use just one kind of potato for even texture and taste.
- Cut potatoes evenly: Peel the potatoes, wash them, and then cut them into even-sized big pieces so they cook at the same rate.
- Salt your water: Add salt to your boiling water before adding your potatoes. Chef Gordon Ramsay suggests salting your water, as the potatoes will absorb some of the salt, enhancing their flavor.
- Don't overcook your potatoes: Overcooked potatoes can become waterlogged and mushy, resulting in a gluey texture. Cook your potatoes until they are fork-tender, but not falling apart.
- Avoid overworking the potatoes: Overworking the potatoes while mashing can result in a gluey texture. Use a potato masher or ricer for best results, and avoid using mixers, food processors, or blenders.
- Add butter before other liquids: Add warm, melted, unsalted butter to your potatoes before milk or cream. This helps the butter coat the potato starches more evenly, resulting in a creamier texture. The fat in the butter also acts as a barrier to prevent the potatoes from absorbing too much liquid, which can make them gluey.
- Warm milk/cream: Warm up the milk or cream before adding them to the mashed potatoes for a smoother and creamier texture
- Add your liquid gradually: Start by adding a little bit of liquid (milk, cream, or a combination) at a time to your potatoes. This will help you achieve the perfect consistency without making your mashed potatoes too runny.
- Pass mashed potatoes through a fine sieve: If you want your mashed potatoes to be next-level smooth, pass them through a fine sieve or tamis. This is a classic technique used by fancy chefs to get that smooth, silky, lump-free texture we all love. Personally, I don't always bother with it because it takes some serious elbow grease, but if you're feeling extra fancy, go for it.
Truffle oil substitutes
Truffle oil is a fantastic addition to mashed potatoes. But if you don't have it or can't find it, don't worry! You can use substitutes to get a similar flavor. Here are the substitutes and their approximate quantity for 2 pounds of potatoes:
- Truffle salt: Use 1 teaspoon of truffle salt instead of regular salt; omit additional salt.
- Truffle cheese: Use ⅓ cup of grated truffle cheese instead of truffle oil. The cheese will melt and distribute the truffle flavor throughout.
- Truffle zest: Use 1 teaspoon of truffle zest. Adjust the amount based on zest strength.
- Fresh truffle: Use 1 to 2 tablespoons of finely chopped fresh truffle for a subtle flavor. Adjust the amount based on truffle strength.
- Truffle butter: Use 1.5 to 2 tablespoons of truffle butter instead of regular butter, and cut down the quantity of unsalted butter in the recipe by the amount of truffle butter used.
Common mashed potato mistakes
- Gummy or gluey texture: Overworking the potatoes can cause too much starch to be released, resulting in a gummy texture. Use a potato masher or ricer instead of a food processor, mixer, or blender. And avoid over-mixing.
- Too runny or not moist enough: Adding too much liquid or not draining the potatoes well enough can cause this issue. Add liquid (milk or cream) gradually so you can control the consistency. On the other hand, if the potatoes are too dry, add more butter, cream, or milk.
- Uneven texture: Uneven texture can result from using different types of potatoes or cutting them into uneven pieces. To avoid this, use one type of potato and cut them into evenly sized pieces to ensure they cook evenly.
- Lumpy texture: Lumps can happen when the potatoes are not mashed thoroughly or when the potatoes are undercooked. To avoid this, be sure to mash the potatoes well. Also, avoid using cold butter or milk as they can cause lumps.
- Overly salty: Remember that adding other salty ingredients like salted butter or cheese can also contribute to overall saltiness. So, reduce the quantity of added salt if you are using any other salted products or toppings.
- Loaded mashed potatoes: Add caramelized onions, sautéed mushrooms, cooked and crumbled sausage, ground beef, crispy bacon bits, shredded cheddar cheese, chopped scallions, or any toppings of your choice on your mashed potatoes for some extra flavor and texture.
- Different liquid and fat variations: You can replace milk with other liquids such as vegetable or chicken broth, cream, half-and-half, or even use sour cream or cream cheese to make your mashed potatoes lighter or creamier.
- Herb-infused mashed potatoes: Add fresh herbs such as rosemary, thyme, or parsley to your mashed potatoes for extra flavor.
- Roasted garlic mashed potatoes: Infuse mashed potatoes with roasted garlic, instead of fresh cloves for a rich and savory taste.
- Parmesan mashed potatoes: Mix in grated parmesan cheese for a slightly tangy and salty taste.
- Sweet potato mash with truffle oil: Replace regular potatoes with sweet potatoes and add truffle oil for a fun twist.
- Mashed potatoes and gravy: Top your mashed potatoes with brown gravy, mushroom gravy, onion gravy, or sausage gravy, for an added layer of taste.
Delicious pairing ideas
- Grilled steak: A classic pairing with rich and flavorful mashed potatoes.
- Roasted chicken: Tender chicken pairs well with the creamy, comforting mashed potatoes.
- Chimichurri shrimp: The bright, tangy flavors of chimichurri shrimp complement the rich and earthy truffle-oil-infused mashed potatoes.
- Pan-seared salmon: The richness of the fish complements the savory truffle oil.
- Lamb chops: Perfect for a fancy dinner or a special occasion.
- Hot honey lemon pepper wings: The heat and sweetness of these wings balance out the umami flavors.
- Braised short ribs: The tender meat in braised short ribs pairs perfectly with the creaminess of the potatoes.
- Beef wellington: This classic dish of beef wrapped in puff pastry is elevated with the addition of this amazing potato side.
- Lobster tail: A luxurious pairing, the buttery lobster meat contrasts beautifully with truffle-infused flavors.
- Seared scallops: The sweetness of seared scallops pairs well with the earthy and savory flavors.
Methods for keeping mashed potatoes warm
Mashed potatoes are best served fresh but may need to be kept warm for a few hours before serving. Here are some ways to do so:
- Double boiler: Place mashed potatoes in a heat-proof bowl or smaller pot and cover it with foil. Place it on top of a large pot filled with boiling water. Make sure the smaller pot/bowl doesn't touch the boiling water in the larger pot. Adjust the heat to keep the water at a low simmer and keep the mashed potatoes warm for up to 2 hours. Refill the bottom pot with hot water as needed.
- Slow cooker: Add mashed potatoes to a slow cooker set to the "warm" or "low" setting. Stir occasionally and keep them warm for up to 4 hours.
- Oven: Cover the mashed potatoes with foil and place them in a warm oven (around 200°F or 90°C) for up to 2 hours.
Important: Be sure to check on the potatoes occasionally and stir in some milk or cream if they start to dry out.
Storage and reheating
- Refrigeration: Cool to room temperature. Then, cover tightly with plastic wrap or transfer to an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 3 to 4 days.
- Freezing: Transfer the cooled mashed potatoes to a freezer-safe container or resealable freezer bag. Store in the freezer for up to 1 month. Thaw the mashed potatoes overnight in the refrigerator before using them. Keep in mind that freezing may cause some texture and flavor changes, but the potatoes should still be safe to eat.
- Stovetop: Place the mashed potatoes in a pot or pan on low heat. Add a splash of milk or cream and stir occasionally until heated through.
- Oven: Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Transfer the mashed potatoes to an oven-safe dish. Add a little milk, and mix well. Cover the dish with foil and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until heated through.
- Slow cooker: Add the mashed potatoes to a slow cooker and add a splash of milk. Heat on low for 2 to 4 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Avoid the microwave: Using the microwave can make the potatoes dry and rubbery, so it's best to avoid it.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Yes, you can! Substitute butter and milk with vegan or dairy-free options like unsweetened almond milk or soy milk, and vegan butter. Some substitutes, like coconut milk or butter made from coconut oil, can have a strong flavor that might affect the taste of the mashed potatoes. To avoid this, choose neutral-flavored substitutes and adjust the amounts as needed to achieve your desired texture and taste. Lastly, don't forget to replace the chicken bouillon with a vegan or vegetarian one.
Yes, for sure. However, the texture may be different, and the skins will change the color and look of the mashed potatoes. If you choose to use unpeeled potatoes, make sure to wash and scrub them thoroughly and cut off any blemishes or eyes before boiling.
Instant mashed potatoes are a convenient substitute, but they won't have the same texture and flavor as fresh potatoes. Also, they may already be pre-seasoned, so only add extra seasoning if necessary. Follow the instructions on the package to prepare them, and then add truffle oil to taste. If the instant mashed potatoes are dry, you can add a splash of warm milk or melted butter to make them smoother.
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- 2 pounds (907 g) Yukon Gold potatoes - around 4 to 5 medium potatoes. (Note A)
- 8 tablespoons (112 g) unsalted butter - 1 stick of butter (Note B)
- 1 cup (237 ml) whole milk - (Note B)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced - large cloves
- 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon paste or powder - or use 1 bouillon cube (Note B)
- ¾ teaspoon salt - plus 1 tablespoon salt for seasoning the boiling water
- ¾ teaspoon ground white pepper - or use ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon truffle oil, black or white - (Note C)
- Some fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish - optional. (Note D)
- Prepare the potatoes: Peel and wash the potatoes. If you're not going to make the mashed potatoes right away, you can soak the peeled potatoes in cold water and store them in the refrigerator for up to 12 hours. Soaking will keep them from oxidizing and turning brown.
- Cut: Cut the potatoes into large, evenly-sized pieces. For medium-sized potatoes, cut them in half; for large potatoes, cut them into 3 or 4 pieces. This will help prevent them from absorbing too much water during cooking.
- Boil: Put the potato pieces in a large pot and cover them with cold water. Season the water with 1 tablespoon of salt. Bring the water to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. You should see small bubbles coming up to the surface but not a rolling boil. Cook the potatoes for 16 to 20 minutes, or until they are tender when poked with a fork. For instructions on boiling the potatoes in an instant pot, see Note E below.
- Make the milk mixture: While the potatoes are boiling, add milk, garlic, chicken bouillon paste/powder, white pepper, and salt to a saucepan. Heat the mixture until it is hot but not boiling. Then, reduce the heat to the lowest setting on your stovetop to keep the mixture warm until you are ready to use it.
- Drain: Once the potatoes are done, drain the water and return them to the pot.
- Mash the potatoes: While the potatoes are still hot, mash them with a potato masher, rotary food mill, or potato ricer until smooth. In case you don't have these tools, use a fork instead. Avoid using a blender, food processor, or mixer as it can overwork the potatoes, making them gummy.
- Add butter: Place the butter in a microwave-safe bowl and melt it in the microwave for 15 to 25 seconds, watching closely to prevent it from boiling over. Add the melted butter to the mashed potatoes and mix well.
- Add the milk mixture: Then, gradually add the seasoned hot milk mixture to the mashed potatoes (ideally in three parts), stirring constantly after each addition. This will ensure that the liquid is absorbed evenly and the texture is smooth.
- Add truffle oil: Add the truffle oil to the mashed potatoes and mix thoroughly.
- Taste-test: Taste the mashed potatoes and adjust the seasoning with additional salt or truffle oil, if necessary. If you prefer a thinner consistency, add a little hot milk or melted butter until you reach the desired texture.
- Serve: Transfer the mashed potatoes to a serving dish, garnish with chopped parsley if desired, and serve immediately while still hot. If you need to keep the mashed potatoes warm, refer to the warming methods I shared above.
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