Home » Side Dishes » Sour cream mashed potatoes

Sour cream mashed potatoes

Sour cream mashed potatoes have a depth and richness you can’t get with a plain version. Not to mention they turn out at just the right thickness. Eat them out of the pot with a spoon. I won’t judge. 

Jump to Recipe
a bowl of sour cream mashed potatoes on a table

What kind of potatoes work best?

Use a russet or another high-starch potato. The starchiness allows the potatoes to come to a light and fluffy texture during the mashing process. Yukon gold potatoes will yield a denser mash. 

Steer clear of waxy potatoes such as fingerlings. Their low starch content and inferior ability to break down and absorb added dairy will end you with an undesirable texture.   

Don’t forget the salt!

Adding salt to the cooking water will impart flavor to the potatoes. I suggest using sea salt. It is less processed than table salt, lends a better flavor, and contains some beneficial minerals.

The smaller the flakes, the less salt you will need to impart flavor. Celtic sea salt is my favorite followed by pink Himalayan salt.

How to make sure the potatoes cook evenly.

When boiling the potatoes, cut them into even-sized chunks. The smaller you cut the potatoes, the faster they will cook. Keep that in mind if you are pressed for time. Place the cut potatoes in a large pot with cold water and bring it to a boil. This helps ensure that the potatoes cook all the way through at the same rate. 

Why use sour cream in mashed potatoes?

Sour cream adds a glorious creaminess and depth of flavor to mashed potatoes. Look for high-quality, cultured sour cream. If you cannot tolerate dairy, feel free to use your favorite dairy-free substitute.  

a bowl of sour cream mashed potatoes with a spoon in the bowl

Can creamy mashed potatoes be made in a slow cooker?

I don’t suggest attempting to cook your potatoes in the slow cooker.

You are more than welcome to keep the finished product warm in the slow cooker though. You may need to add a little milk before serving if they thicken too much.

My potatoes are watery and thin. What happened?

No one wants watery sour cream mashed potatoes.

This usually occurs because you did not drain the potatoes thoroughly enough before mashing. You may have also added too much cream or milk before mixing.

When in doubt, add a few tablespoons less than you think you need. If the mixture still seems dry, add a tablespoon or two at a time until they are the proper texture. You can always add it but you can’t take it out after the fact.

Tips for mashing potatoes. 

Here are some useful tricks that will help you achieve the best mashed potatoes possible.  

  • Keep the potatoes warm. After draining, return the potatoes to the pot and place the pot back on the warm burner to mash. The burner should be off, but it should still be omitting some heat, which will help make the mashing easier.
  • Don’t over-mash. We are going for a smooth consistency. Once you get there, stop. Over-mashing will lead to a gummy texture. 
  • Timing. If you are adding sour cream, butter, and cream, do this before mashing. It will give them a chance to incorporate into every bit of potato. 
a cutting board with cubed potatoes waiting to be boiled.
a pot of boiled potatoes with butter and sour cream on top

Can I use a stand mixer to mash the potatoes?

Yes, but careful. Over-mixing sour cream mashed potatoes can end you with a gluey mess.

If you use a stand mixer, use a low speed and check the consistency of the potatoes frequently. 

What can I do with leftover mashed potatoes?

You can use leftover creamy mashed potatoes in so many ways. So make a big batch and try one (or all) of these ideas. 

  • Crispy potato cakes. Golden brown and crispy with a tender center? Yum! My crispy Mashed Potato Cakes are so delicious and they only take 20 minutes to make!
  • Twice-baked potato filling. Just add some cheese, stuff in potato skins, bake, and top with bacon and chives. Delish! 
  • On top of shepherd’s pie. Spread these perfect mashed potatoes on top of your favorite shepherd’s pie filling, bake, and call it a day. 

What can be added to sour cream mashed potatoes to take them over the top?

There is nothing like some tasty toppings to finish off mashed potatoes. Here are some of my favorites. 

  • Herbs. I am partial to garlic, chives, basil, rosemary, thyme, and/or parsley
  • Bacon or ham. Dice some bacon or ham, crisp it up in a pan, and toss it on top for added flavor and protein.   
  • Cheese. I like to get a little adventurous. Try adding blue cheese or goat cheese and see what your guests say. 
  • Shallots or green onions. Finely chop a shallot or a couple of green onions and scatter on top for a little extra bite. 
a bowl of mashed potatoes with chives and butter on top

How to freeze leftover mashed potatoes 

You can freeze these. Allow the potatoes to cool completely before sealing in an airtight container and storing in the freezer.

It is best not to freeze sour cream mashed potatoes for more than 1 month. The liquid in the potatoes lends itself to freezer burn. 

How to reheat sour cream mashed potatoes

To reheat this delicious dish on the stove, heat them over low heat, stirring occasionally until heated through.

If using the oven, place the creamy mashed potatoes in a casserole dish and cover with aluminum foil. Bake at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes or until warm. In either case, add milk and stir as needed to reach the desired level of creaminess. 

If reheating from frozen, pop the desired portion in the slow cooker for 2 hours on the lowest setting, stirring intermittently.

Alternatively, reheat in a heavy-bottomed pot on the stove covered over low heat, stirring occasionally. 

a bowl of sour cream mashed potatoes with a spoon in the bowl

Sour Cream Mashed Potatoes

Bring rich, full flavor to your mashed potatoes or use this recipe as a basic for a dozen other dishes. It’s a great starting point!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 6 people
Author Rachel Ballard


  • 2 pounds white russet potatoes about 6-8 medium potatoes
  • Water to cover
  • 3/4 cup sour cream cultured is best
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt plus 1/2 tablespoon divided


  • Wash, peel and slice potatoes thinly–about 1/4 inch thick.
  • Cover with water and bring to a boil.
  • Once boiling, add 1/2 tablespoon salt and stir well.
  • Cook until the potatoes are tender when poked with a fork–about 15-20 minutes.
  • Drain and return to the pot.
  • Add butter, sour cream and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
  • Mix well until smooth and creamy. Taste for salt–if you’d like more, go ahead and add the remaining 1/2 teaspoon. I do!


Calories: 239kcal
Tried this recipe?Tag us on Instagram @feastandfarm and hashtag it #feastandfarm
Course easy, Side Dish
Cuisine American

Similar Posts


  1. 5 stars
    Made this for my children & self, we all LOVED IT. They where light, smooth and tasted great, didn’t need gravy at all. I think gravy would have took away the taste from the mashed potatoes itself. My eldest son said I should make them for the family thanksgiving dinner. 🤔 They went great with our baked chicken thighs, the perfect match

  2. To this day I tend to say “It’s not like my Mom’s” cause to me, my Mother was a great cook!!
    Mother would have been 89 years old today had she not died this past February. 🙁 I miss her so much!! 🙁

    These potatoes sound simply delicious!! Pinned it!! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

About the Author

Rachel Ballard, RN, BSN brings more than 20 years of professional nursing expertise to Feast and Farm. With a love for nutrient dense foods that support wellness, she works to distill complex health information and current trends into recipes that fuel the best version of yourself. Read more about Rachel here.