Mashed potatoes are a delight, both to cook and to eat. The soft and creamy texture positively contrasts meaty products, such as steak and turkey. It can even stand on its own, adding a bit of butter or even some bacon bits to make it an excellent meal.
Because of its versatility and simplicity, it is something that most cooks learn early on before they go on to more complicated dishes. Every household has a way of doing their own mashed potatoes, and every home claims it to be the best!
It is also straightforward to cook and learn, which is why it’s great to know the basics of making mashed potatoes and building upon that knowledge to create tastier meals. It’s also a great way to impress your guests as you garnish and make fancy this dish.
The fact that a simple bag of potatoes can turn into something so tasty and luxurious if done correctly is magical to me, which is why I have been falling in love over and over again with the act of cooking and finding new recipes to try.
You might find, though, that because of the excitement of creating beautiful batches of mashed potatoes, you tend to overcompensate for how much you need. This leaves you with a full stomach and a bowl full of leftovers.
Of course, you have to make sure you freeze it carefully and safely, something we’ll be talking about later. Leave it in the freezer but don’t forget about it, as you have to reheat this in one month to be consumed eventually!
Reheating Mashed Potatoes
Reheating mashed potatoes isn’t as hard as reheating meats such as steak. It’s quite simple! There aren’t many steps to think about, so long as you generally don’t let it heat for too long, and you keep an eye on your potatoes!
Using the oven to reheat your mashed potatoes might seem like an over-the-top way to do so, especially if you have your microwave just right on top of it. However, you’ll find that using an oven will reheat your mashed potatoes better by retaining their silky texture and preventing the loss of moisture.
After thawing your mashed potatoes in the refrigerator overnight, you might want to spread them evenly on a baking dish and place it in the oven. This even layer of potatoes makes it so that they heat up faster and evenly, unlike what happens in a microwave where some parts remain cold, and some are scorching hot!
The oven is already great for retaining moisture even as you heat the potatoes. However, to aid in that moisture, adding more dairy and fat can help keep your potatoes creamy. Adding butter can already go a long way.
Before putting your baking dish into a 350°F (175°C) oven, cover it with aluminum foil to help retain the moisture and so that the outside edges do not crisp up more than you want them to. With this low temperature, the mashed potatoes will be introduced to the heat slowly and retain their original texture. Good as new (almost)!
2. Slow Cooker
This is another fancy way to reheat your potatoes and is also a great way to keep the moisture. Because of the slow introduction of heat (hence, “slow cooker”), the potatoes don’t dry out as much as they would in the microwave.
Because this is a slow process of reheating your mashed potatoes, you might want to block out a portion of your day dedicated to this. Every 20 minutes or so, you’re going to have to stir your mashed potatoes to keep them silky and creamy.
Adding butter or cream definitely won’t hurt; they’ll blend nicely into the potatoes as you slowly heat them and create a beautiful potful. Keep the temperature low, and you’ll find success in reheating your mashed potatoes.
This process will probably take around an hour to keep your potatoes’ quality, but you can go higher in temperature if you lack time. Just make sure to stir when they seem too stiff to you.
3. Ziploc Bag
You might be lacking all the materials you typically need to reheat mashed potatoes. You might even be too scared to place it back on the stovetop; you’ve experienced how terrible the result of reheated mashed potatoes are if they’re done there.
It can also be that you’ve stored and frozen your mashed potatoes in a Ziploc bag and are too tired to deal with cleaning all the pans and the baking dishes that you need. Great news for someone like you: there is a way to reheat those with very minimal effort — both in cooking and in the cleanup.
Get your pot of water simmering on low heat as you ready your mashed potatoes. Although there isn’t much to do with your Ziploc bag, just make sure you have sealed your bag correctly to prevent water from getting in. Yes, you’ve guessed it: we’re going to place the Ziploc bag into hot water.
Surprisingly, this is a great way to reheat your mashed potatoes because of the sealed bag. This keeps the moisture in and slowly introduces heat without drying them out. Make sure the water isn’t too hot, though, as you still have plastic to deal with.
Although this would probably be the last thing you would go for when you want quality reheated mashed potatoes, the microwave isn’t such a bad way to reheat them, especially if you do it right and take your time.
The best way to reheat mashed potatoes in the microwave is to do it in intervals. However, before you do so, you have to take into consideration the power of your microwave. Is it at a high voltage? Or does it heat food slowly in general?
If you have a medium to high-powered microwave, you might want to heat your mashed potatoes in intervals of 1 minute to 1 minute and 30 seconds. Take them out and stir them. This is to make sure your potatoes are evenly heated.
Put them back in again and do this until you feel that the potatoes are all adequately heated. Don’t be afraid to add butter or cream to keep the mashed potatoes silky despite using a microwave. Increase the time of your intervals if your microwave is of a lower voltage.
Although cooks definitely go against this method as this usually creates a gluey mess, you can still use your stovetop if you’ve run out of options. Make sure you heat them slowly, though, and on as low heat as you can.
Apply the same tricks as the other methods: add dairy and butter to increase your potatoes’ moisture. As you heat the potatoes, some of the water is bound to evaporate out, especially if you’re using the stovetop method.
You must also learn to stir a lot! Stirring will help keep the texture silky and creamy instead of toasting your potatoes’ sides and creating an uneven texture. Although that seems like a good thing, trust me; you want it to be creamier than crunchier for mashed potatoes.
To have more control over your stovetop’s heat, you can regularly take your pot or pan off the heat and stir your potatoes on the counter. This relieves the potatoes of the intense heat.
If you’re adding cream to a pan, don’t use it too much too quickly; try coating the pan first and incorporating that into your mashed potatoes before adding as needed. It’s much easier to add more than to take it back.
Although reheating mashed potatoes seem simple enough, there are many things to consider, especially if you want to retain the quality and texture of when you first cooked your mashed potatoes. Some of the general tips are adding moisture through dairy and fat to keep your potatoes tastier and silkier.
You can also keep stirring to prevent them from drying out. If you’re reheating frozen potatoes, make sure that the temperature reaches 165°F (75°C) according to the US Department of Agriculture If you have to freeze your potatoes, place them on a baking sheet in individual scoops if you want individual servings.
If you’re serving them by batch, it’s best to use a Ziploc bag. Just make sure to get all the air out before putting it in the freezer.
Making mashed potatoes with a saucepan is such a quick and easy process , maybe even more comfortable than reheating it. Even though leftovers are a tricky thing to store and reheat, they make a great next-day lunch or dinner and retains their flavor pretty well. Have fun with your mash!