Make- Ahead Mashed Potatoes

Yield: 12 servings

Prep Time: 15 min

Cook Time: 50 min

Make- Ahead Mashed Potatoes

This is a terrific recipe for those who get nervous about preparing a lot of recipes on Thanksgiving Day. If you have a crockpot, you can make them ahead of time and just warm them in a buttered crockpot until they're ready to serve. So easy!


5 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, boiled & mashed
6 ounces cream cheese
8 ounces sour cream
1/2 cup milk or half & half
2 teaspoons onion salt
ground black pepper to taste


1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl; mix well using an electric mixer. Place in a large, buttered casserole dish.

2. If serving right away, cover and bake in a preheated oven at 325°F. for 50 minutes.


*It's ok to lighten this recipe up a little by using low fat cream cheese and light sour cream.
*You can make this recipe several days ahead and store in the fridge. If baking cold, let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes first.
*If you're lacking oven space, start warming this in a well-buttered crockpot earlier in the day.


27 Responses to “Make- Ahead Mashed Potatoes”

  1. postedNov 14, 2010 7:25 AM

    I’m sorry if this is a naive question, but do you skip the oven step in the recipe if you are using the crockpot?

    • postedNov 14, 2010 8:31 AM

      @Stephanie, yes, I should have been more clear about that. You can warm it entirely in the crockpot if you’re going that route instead of the oven. Just be sure to give it plenty of time as the crockpot will take much longer to warm than the oven.

    • postedNov 14, 2010 5:54 PM

      @Lori Lange, Thank you! I plan to make these Thanksgiving!

  2. postedNov 14, 2010 12:22 PM

    Lori, can you use another potato besides Yukon Gold?

  3. postedNov 17, 2010 12:17 PM

    I love the idea of warming them in the slow cooker since oven space on the holidays is always at a premium!

  4. postedNov 12, 2011 2:07 AM

    Hi. Quick question: if I make this ahead of time except for the baking, as you suggested, does that mean that I have it completely done (all ingreds in the baking dish) and then just pop in oven for the full cooking?

  5. postedNov 15, 2011 4:43 AM

    Can I make these in the food processor?

    • postedNov 15, 2011 10:38 PM

      I don’t think that would work very well.

  6. postedNov 16, 2011 11:49 AM

    If you make them early Thanksgiving morning…Can you put them in the crockpot after mixing everything together instead of putting them in the oven?

    • postedNov 16, 2011 5:36 PM

      That should work just fine.

  7. postedOct 29, 2012 6:17 AM

    I would like to make the potatoes ahead of time and warm them up on Thanksgiving morning to serve at noon. Can you tell me how long I need to warm them in the Crockpot and at what setting (warm, low or high)? Thanks!

    • postedOct 29, 2012 6:26 AM

      I just set them on warm (low) in the morning- keep an eye on them and turn them off at some point if they warm up too much- turn them on again closer to dinner . Stir in milk or cream if they appear to be drying out.

  8. postedNov 12, 2012 8:51 PM

    Thank you so much for this recipe and Crockpot heating idea! Hosting my very first Thanksgiving and am nervous about how it is all going to work. Thanks to you, I have a feeling that I will do great!!!!

  9. postedNov 20, 2012 9:48 AM

    Really? Wow I wish I would’ve thought of this sooner! Hosting my 4th or 5th Thanksgiving dinner and having potatoes in the crock just make since and get them done and out of the way a day or two ahead of time so I can focus on my turkey!! Thanks so much.

    • postedNov 20, 2012 12:10 PM

      You’re welcome!

  10. postedSep 22, 2013 1:09 PM

    “Buttered crock pot” Silly question, but I assume you mean butter the sides of the crock pot as you would a cake/baking pan to keep them from burning/sticking?

    I never thought of putting mashed potatoes in a crock pot like this. The mashed potatoes and the gravy are the last things to be put together on TG day with a traditional dance in the kitchen between my best friend’s husband who whips the potatoes while I make the gravy using the hot potato water instead of broth. Gonna try this with my mashed potato recipe.

    • postedSep 23, 2013 8:10 AM

      Yes! Hope it works well for you!

  11. postedNov 17, 2013 4:41 PM
    Robin Fowler

    How would the frozen “steamable” potatoes do in this recipe? I’m guessing ok, but haven’t used them before. Thank you!

    • postedNov 17, 2013 9:43 PM

      I’ve not used them either, so I’m not sure.

  12. postedNov 17, 2013 6:00 PM

    i have thanksgiving every year but this year im having surgery the day before and this idea is great but i think i will buy the plastic liners for the crock pot plus i think it will keep it from drying out

    • postedNov 17, 2013 9:42 PM

      good idea!

  13. postedNov 27, 2013 8:26 AM

    I’m excited to try this recipe, and am so happy to have found one that allows me more time right before we sit down to eat! I’m making them one day early, and am planning on warming them in the crockpot. Do I forego the baking then? Or do I still bake them today, and warm them in the crockpot tomorrow?

    • postedNov 27, 2013 8:25 PM

      I think warming in the crockpot later is just fine. Add more milk, as needed, if they begin to dry out.

  14. postedDec 28, 2017 5:06 AM

    I like smashed not whipped potatoes- any chance it might work for a chunkier less buttered potato?

    • postedDec 29, 2017 6:37 AM

      You can certainly try!

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