Looking for a dairy-free and vegan alternative for your Thanksgiving table?
Try this creamy vegan herb mashed potatoes recipe!
Mashed potatoes are such a traditional dish for the holiday and now everyone can enjoy them.
To make 8-10 servings, I used a 5lb bag of russet potatoes. I choose russet potatoes because they are more starchy than other types, which creates light and fluffy mashed potatoes.
The science behind potato starch is interesting and a little complicated. The amount of starch released during the prep and cooking process determines the texture and consistency of your mashed potatoes. Because russet potatoes are soft and easy to smash they stay soft and fluffy during the mashing process. If potatoes are overly starchy they will become “gluey” and sticky in texture and consistency.
Potatoes release their starch throughout the prep, cooking, and mashing process. I have a plan to help you keep your potatoes light and fluffy! When you peel your potatoes keep them whole and soak them in cold water. This will keep them from turning brown and will rinse off the starch on the surface. On a busy cooking day like Thanksgiving you can peel and soak your potatoes up to an hour or so ahead of time.
Chopping: To cook your potatoes you will need to chop them into about 1 inch cubes. The goal is to have them all chopped to the same size so that they cook evenly and are done at the same time. The smaller you cut your potatoes the faster they cook, however you do not want to go smaller than 1 inch cubes. This is because when you chop potatoes smaller, you will increase surface area allowing more starch to be released during the boiling process which will create a less-soft and fluffy potato.
Be cautious when chopping since you will notice that starch (the white residue) released onto your knife makes the potatoes stick to it more often. Be super careful when trying to pull the potatoes off. Make sure to keep the blade on the cutting board to prevent cutting yourself. To make it easier you can wipe off your knife when it shows signs of the starch builds up.
Cooking: Boil the potatoes. Add your chopped potatoes into a deep pot of cold water with 2 TBSP of salt. Make sure your potatoes are fully submerged in the water. Bring the water and potatoes up to a boil and cook until your potatoes are soft. You should be able to poke them with a fork and they slide off without effort. Cooking time is approximately 15-25 minutes depending on how big your pot is and your cut size on the potatoes.
Drain:Drain off the water and let the potatoes steam dry while you gather your other ingredients.
Mashing: You will want to do this while the potatoes are still hot. Whatever method you choose to mash your potatoes will determine the texture and consistency of your mashed potatoes.
To keep them the most soft and fluffy use a potato ricer (1). If you don’t have a potato ricer then the second best option is to hand mash.This is the method I use with a traditional hand masher (2). To get them the smoothest and creamiest, less fluff you can use a hand mixer or a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, just make sure to not over beat them.
Dietary Restrictions: Do not confuse starch in potatoes to be gluten. Potatoes are naturally gluten-free. This gluten free, dairy free and vegan recipe is great for for guests with dietary restrictions. Please note this recipe does contain nuts.
ALMOND AND CASHEW MILK
Cashew Milk is a great alternative to whole milk or half and half for these mashed potatoes. It’s 100% dairy-free but still provides the same thick creamy texture that you want with mashed potatoes. Cashew milk gives the most resemblance to a thick whole milk, but if you want to just use almond or oak milk you can do that as well. Just make sure it’s unflavored and unsweetened. I picked an unsweetened Cashew Almond Milk for this recipe.
Thanksgiving dinner is always a time when you want to prep and make ahead as much as possible. You can make these potatoes ahead of time but same day is preferred.
Follow the recipe below, however reserve 1 cup of cashew milk for right before serving the mashed potatoes. Reheat your mashed potatoes over the stove and pour in the reserved 1 cup of cashew milk – this will fluff them back up and give you a creamier texture.
If you keep them warm in the oven like my grandma always did, then just pour the reserved cashew milk into them and stir before serving. If you’re a guest and bringing this dish with you then also bring along the reserved cup of cashew milk. If the potatoes are still warm when you get to your Thanksgiving dinner, then pour in your cashew milk and stir before serving.
You may also need to add another pinch or two of salt at the reheat stage as well. Potatoes love salt and it will give your dish life!
Vegan Creamy Herb Mashed Potatoes
Time: 60 mins
5 lbs Russet Potatoes
2 TBSP Salt
1 TBSP Dry Sage
1 TBSP Dry Thyme
1 TBSP Minced Garlic
2-3 cups Cashew Milk
2 TBSP Olive Oil (plus a drizzle for garnish)
1 tsp Salt
Fresh Herbs – Rosemary, Thyme and Sage for garnish (optional)
1. Peel and chop your potatoes into 1 inch cubes.
2. In a large pot, add in your potatoes, 2 TBSP of salt and cold water so that your potatoes are fully submerged. Bring the pot to a boil. Cook your potatoes about 15-25 minutes until they are soft and tender.. You should be able to poke them with a fork and they slide off without effort.
3. Strain the water off your potatoes and put them back into the hot pot so that they can steam dry while you gather your ingredients.
4. Add in your dry herbs (sage and thyme), minced garlic, and a tsp of salt.
5. Pour in 2 cups of Cashew Milk, 2 TBSP of olive oil and mash your potatoes until they reach your preferred consistency. If needed, continue to add in cashew milk 1/4 cup at a time until the potatoes are desired level of creaminess. Season with more salt to preferred taste.
be careful not to over mash or mix your potatoes to keep them fluffy and soft.
if you are not serving right away then see my notes about the potatoes ahead of time in the reheating section and make sure to reserve 1 cup of cashew milk
6. Once the potatoes are creamy to perfection then add to your serving bowl and garnish with another heavy drizzle of olive oil and fresh herbs.
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