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Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes

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Instant Pot mashed potatoes will change your life! I promise, you’ll never go back. If you don’t use your Instant Pot for ANYTHING ELSE, use it to make perfect mashed potatoes.

bowl of mashed potatoes with salt, spoons, and kale in the background

My Christmas Mashed Potato Disaster

Almost every Christmas, I make my favorite Pork Tenderloin dinner with mashed potatoes, creamy mushroom gravy, and homemade 5 minutes Instant Pot cranberry sauce.

Well, these were pre-Instant Pot days, and I found a technique on Pinterest to make the mashed potatoes in the Crockpot.

Oh, great! I thought. One less thing to worry about! After 6 HOURS they hadn’t cooked all the way! I’m talking really hard in the middle and the outsides were starting to get that burned smell.

My guests were coming and I panicked! I ended up having to microwave the uncooked parts and it was just a huge mess. I never have to worry about that using the Instant Pot! Use my technique for the perfect dish.

Instant Pot mashed potatoes pin

Why make Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes?

Traditionally, most people wash/peel/dice/cover/boil/simmer/drain, then mash their potatoes. This can result in a lot of waste and a watery/soggy result. It also requires boiling and draining a heavy pot of water, which isn’t possible for some people.

Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes with butter and green onions

Best Potatoes for Mashed Potatoes

You can technically use any type of potato, but here are my favorites (in order) for smooth, creamy mashed potatoes. The best potatoes for mashed potatoes have a high starch content.

  • Russet Potatoes (white, smooth, and neutral)
  • Red Potatoes (a little bit of a more robust flavor)
  • Yukon Gold Potatoes (yellow or gold in color, very dense)

How many potatoes per person for mashed potatoes?

I typically plan 1.5 medium potatoes per person when making mashed potatoes. If you have large, 1 pound russets, you can use 1 potato per 2 or 2.5 people.

Don’t forget that adding butter and milk will also add a lot of bulk and if you’re serving other side dishes, most people will take a little less of each dish.

However, almost every person will always take mashed potatoes where they won’t necessarily take sweet potato casserole or bacon green beans.

How to make Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes

There are several ways you can use the Instant Pot to make your potatoes:

  • Whole potatoes, skin on
  • Whole potatoes that are cooked with the skin on, then peeled after pressure cooking (hot but creates zero waste)
  • Whole potatoes, skinless
  • Quartered, diced, or sliced potatoes (skin on or off)

Pressure cooking the potatoes whole with the skin on makes it so the only thing that slides right off is the skin. I will warn you that it’s hot work, so get a partner and use a couple towels to hold the potatoes. I actually never peel them and mash them skin-on, unless I have guests coming.

If I have guests coming, I will peel the potatoes first, then cut them into smaller pieces so they cook quickly.

Pressure cooking mashed potatoes

The difference in your potatoes will be the amount of time you need to cook them, depending on the size. Whole potatoes typically take 10-20 minutes, up to 25 minutes, and diced potatoes take as little as 5 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of water or broth with the potatoes, then pressure cook.

I can get away with a quick release, but if you aren’t quite ready to mash your Instant Pot potatoes, feel free to let them naturally release the pressure for as long as you need.

a green colander full of peeled potatoes

Tip! Skin on Potatoes- Drain The Water

If you leave the skin on your potatoes, be sure to drain the water used to cook the potatoes out of your Instant Pot and rinse the pot if you’re going to mash in the the Instant Pot liner. The potatoes give off extra dirt and cloudy junk in the water during cooking.

You don’t want that in your perfect Instant Pot mashed potatoes!

This is much easier and safer to do if you put your potatoes into a steamer basket! That way, you can easily lift the basket and potatoes out of the water.

(Use code IPCOOKING10 for 10% off your steamer basket!)

Mash the potatoes in the Instant Pot

potatoes with butter, seasoned salt, and cream cheese

Then, just pour in the ingredients you use to make your potatoes, yup, right in the Instant Pot! If you feel like you might have too much water in your pot, you can drain it first.

I typically use butter, half and half or cream, milk, and sometimes sour cream/cream cheese. Does anyone ACTUALLY use a recipe for just normal mashed potatoes?

Lastly, use an actual masher, and go easy. If you don’t have one, you can use a hand mixer. Just be sure to not over-mix!  Overworking the potatoes really ticks off the starches, and you’ll get a gluey, gummy glop instead of a fluffy, creamy, smooth bite.

Salt Mashed Potatoes

Typically, I don’t overly salt my potatoes because they are usually served with salty gravy. I like to let my guests choose how salty they want their potatoes. Sometimes I will add my favorite seasoned salt, which you can get for 15% off using the code IPCOOKING.

potato masher mashing potatoes

How to make Skin On Red Mashed Potatoes

Wash and scrub your potatoes, then place them in a steamer basket or on a trivet. Place the potatoes into the Instant Pot with 1 cup of water. Cook on manual high pressure for 15 minutes, then do a quick pressure release.

Remove the basket and rinse the Instant Pot liner to remove dirt. Pour the potatoes back into the pot and mash or whip with milk/cream and butter.

Colcannon Potatoes

A BLUE DISH with colcannon potatoes, kale, and potatoes

For a fun twist on traditional mashed potatoes, try these colcannon potatoes in your Instant Pot! They are creamy mashed potatoes, with swirls of sautéed kale and onion. SO good!

If you like this recipe, you’ll love my super simple Chicken Drumstick recipe! Dinner will be on the table in less than 30 minutes!

What to Serve with Mashed Potatoes

About Lisa

Lisa childs holding an instant pot lid with a mickey instant pot

Lisa Childs is the food blogger behind Tried, Tested, and True. Join the hundreds of thousands of people each month that learn from Lisa-

Subscribe to her website, follow her on Instagram at @tried_tested_true, follow her on Pinterest, and find her on Youtube at Tried Tested and True. She is passionate about giving home cooks confidence using their Instant Pots. Make sure to sign up for our email newsletter to hear from personally from her weekly! Learn more about Lisa.

DON’T FORGET TO PIN INSTANT POT MASHED POTATOES

Instant Pot mashed potatoes pin
Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes with butter and green onions

Perfect Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes (technique)

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

This recipe for Perfect Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes is a technique. I use 1.5 potatoes per person I am feeding. Please use your favorite "recipe" by adding your desired milk/butter/other ingredients. I give some general measurements in the notes.

Ingredients

  • Potatoes, Russet/Red/Yukon Gold Potatoes
  • 1/2-1 cup water or broth

Your desired ingredients to make your favorite mashed potatoes

  • Butter
  • Milk, Cream, or Half and Half
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Sour Cream

Instructions


Cooked Whole, Skin on, then Mashed Potatoes

  1. Rinse/wash potatoes.
  2. Place the trivet into the Instant Pot. Pour 1 cup of water into the pot and add potatoes on top of the trivet. Alternatively, stack potatoes into a steamer basket for easier handling.
  3. Lock the lid, set the knob to SEALING, then cook on manual high pressure for 15 minutes. (Add additional time for larger potatoes. The potatoes I used were small russets and reds, about the size of my palm. If you're using large 1lb+ Russet potatoes, I'd recommend cooking about 25-30 minutes.)
  4. Perform a quick release (QR). I always QR unless I'm busy with other things and then I'll let it naturally release the pressure (the Instant Pot will display an "L" with the number of minutes it has been releasing the pressure until I can get to it.
  5. Open the lid and check the potatoes with a knife. If there is any resistance, the potatoes are not cooked all the way. Replace the lid and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  6. Drain the water from the potatoes and remove trivet from the Instant Pot (the water will be dirty from all the junk that was on the skin.) If you used a basket, remove the basket and rinse the liner.
  7. Place the potatoes back into the Instant Pot liner and add butter, milk/cream, and mash to your desired consistency. The potatoes may be kept on "keep warm" in the Instant Pot until ready to serve.

Potatoes Cooked Whole with Skin on and Peeled after Pressure Cooking

  1. Follow the above recipe through step 6.
  2. Carefully remove potatoes with a dish towel & peel just the skin using a paring knife. Place peeled potatoes in a separate bowl.
  3. Set the Instant Pot to Saute and add butter/milk to warm.
  4. Add potatoes and mash with a potato masher until fluffy. Do no over mash. (In a pinch you can use your hand mixer. It makes is super fast and easy! Just be sure not to over do it!)

Peeled Whole Potatoes, then Mashed

    1. Rinse/wash potatoes and peel.
    2. Pour 1/2 cup of water or broth into the pot and add potatoes.
    3. Lock the lid, set the knob to SEALING, then cook on manual high pressure for 15 minutes. (Add additional time for larger potatoes. The potatoes I used were small russets and reds, about the size of my palm. If you're using large 1lb+ Russet potatoes, I'd recommend cooking about 25-30 minutes.)
    4. Perform a quick release (QR). I always QR unless I'm busy with other things and then I'll let it naturally release the pressure (the Instant Pot will display an "L" with the number of minutes it has been releasing the pressure until I can get to it.
    5. Open the lid and check the potatoes with a knife. If there is any resistance, the potatoes are not cooked all the way. Replace the lid and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
    6. Add butter, milk/cream, and mash to your desired consistency. The potatoes may be kept on "keep warm" in the Instant Pot until ready to serve.


Peeled and Cut Potatoes (Fastest Way)

  1. Rinse/wash potatoes and peel. Cut into 1 inch cubes. If you cut into halves or quarters, add 2-4 minutes to the cook time.
  2. Pour 1/2 cup of water or broth into the pot and add potatoes.
  3. Lock the lid, set the knob to SEALING, then cook on manual high pressure for 7 minutes. (Add additional time for larger potatoes.
  4. Perform a quick release (QR). I always QR unless I'm busy with other things and then I'll let it naturally release the pressure (the Instant Pot will display an "L" with the number of minutes it has been releasing the pressure until I can get to it.
  5. Open the lid and check the potatoes with a knife. If there is any resistance, the potatoes are not cooked all the way. Replace the lid and cook for an additional 2 minutes.
  6. If you have less than 2 pounds of potatoes, drain the water out of the Instant Pot. Add butter, milk/cream, and mash to your desired consistency. The potatoes may be kept on "keep warm" in the Instant Pot until ready to serve.

    Notes

    • For about 3 pounds of potatoes, I use 1 stick of butter and about 1 cup of milk or half and half. Everyone likes their potatoes to be a different consistency, so add more liquid for a smoother mash, and less for a chunkier one.
    • I prefer not to add too much salt to my potatoes before serving if I'm serving with gravy. Salt to your desired preference.
    • Do not over-mash your potatoes! They will become gluey and tough.
    • You may use a hand masher, a hand mixer, a ricer, fork, or even the bottom of a glass to mash potatoes.

    Nutrition Information:
    Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1 grams
    Amount Per Serving: Unsaturated Fat: 0g

    Did you make this recipe?

    Tag me @tried_tested_true on Instagram!

    Barbara

    Saturday 26th of September 2020

    Thank you SOOOOO much for adding the time adjustment for russet potatoes! I had about 4 large and did 30mins in my IP - I know from looks you and I have different models and it worked great! Only thing to mention is that QR, it took awhile for the pin to drop. It was the first time that happened to me so I thought i did something wrong. ;) Thanka for the great recipe Lisa!

    Lauren

    Sunday 19th of April 2020

    I use a ricer to “mash” the potatoes. You halve the potatoes if needed so they’ll fit. You need a deep pot so I use the Instant Pot liner. This is necessary so they don’t squirt all over your kitchen. Use a silicone spatula or whatever to remove the skins as they tend to stick to the “plunger” piece and/or the bottom of the ricer and block it up. I have an ancient workhorse ricer but recently got this because it has 3 disks. Top Rated Bellemain Stainless Steel Potato Ricer with 3 Interchangeable Fineness Discs-Full 2-Year Warranty https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07YCS31SQ/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_UZsNEbZF0WEY4

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