Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

These roasted garlic mashed potatoes are like mashed potatoes that have gone to finishing school with sour cream, Parmesan, and sweet caramelized onions suffused with red wine. Quite possibly the best mashed potatoes in the world. Plus they’re freezer-friendly and reheat beautifully.

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

These roasted garlic mashed potatoes with caramelized onions take comfort food to places you’d never imagined. The recipe makes a startlingly large batch but the combination of creamy mashed potatoes, slow roasted garlic, and sweet onions will make you glad you made so much. The best part? The leftovers freeze and reheat beautifully, which means you’re one step closer to dinner on some future weeknight when things are chaotic as heck. Originally published October 23, 2016.Angie Zoobkoff

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

  • Quick Glance
  • 45 M
  • 1 H
  • Serves 12 to 14
5/5 - 1 reviews
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  • 1 whole garlic bulb
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 5 1/2 to 6 pounds russet potatoes (about 8 potatoes)
  • 2 medium yellow onions, thinly sliced (12 oz)
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon red wine (optional)
  • 1/2 cup salted butter (4 oz)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese (50 grams)
  • 1 cup milk (preferably whole or 2% milk)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper


  • 1. Preheat the oven to 425°F (218°C).
  • 2. Peel the outermost layer of papery skin from the garlic bulb and slice off the top. Brush the exposed part with one teaspoon olive oil. Wrap the whole bulb in aluminum foil and bake until tender, 30 to 35 minutes.
  • 3. Meanwhile, peel and quarter the potatoes. Place them in a large pot of cold water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, or until soft.
  • 4. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-low heat. (If you can avoid using a nonstick pan here, please do. They actually don’t work well at all for caramelizing onions, but if that’s all you have, then just plan on taking a little longer to caramelize the onions.) Add the onions and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the brown sugar and red wine and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are golden brown, at least 10 minutes more. Remove from the heat and let cool. Once cool, transfer to a cutting board and roughly chop.
  • 5. When the potatoes are done cooking, drain them and then place them in a large bowl. Into the same bowl squeeze the roasted garlic from its papery husk and add the chopped onions, butter, sour cream, cheese, milk, salt, and pepper. Beat until mashed and well combined. Serve immediately or freezer for later. To freeze the roasted garlic mashed potatoes: Let cool. We like to do 2- to 3-cup portions in quart-size bags, then a couple of small disposable loaf pans able to hold 4 cups of mashed potatoes. For that method, we wrap the containers tightly with plastic wrap, then foil and label the top. To reheat the roasted garlic mashed potatoes: Thaw in the refrigerator overnight, then place in a slow cooker on low to reheat. Once warm, turn the slow cooker to warm until ready to serve. Thawed mashed potatoes may also be warmed in a large pot over low heat, stirring every few minutes.

Recipe Testers Reviews

I loved how all the separate ingredients, and there are quite a few ingredients for a bowl of mashed potatoes, added up to delicious mashed potatoes that I found myself eating off the spoon and, if I am going to be honest, eating from my finger as I waited for the other dishes to get done. (Hey, wasn’t it Julia Child who said that you’re always alone in the kitchen? Or something close to that.) I cut all the ingredients in half, because a whole recipe was just going to be too much for 2 people. Even with half a recipe, we had the mashed potatoes 2 nights in a row with cider-brined pork chops and 2 nights with chicken piccata. I’m in favor of it all. I cooked my onions in a cast iron skillet. I liked the technique of adding the brown sugar and red wine—Syrah in my case—for how nicely the onions caramelized. I did let the onions cook for a few minutes to cook off the raw taste of the wine.

This roasted garlic mashed potatoes recipe makes a large amount (at least 12 servings) but with the option to freeze them for up to 6 months, there's definitely a time-saving benefit to making this amount all at once. The garlic will take 40 to 45 minutes to become tender and develop a sweet, nutty flavor. The potatoes will take at least 20 minutes to be completely cooked. Rather than quartering the potatoes, I suggest cutting them into 1- or 2-inch pieces to reduce cooking time. The amount of dairy used is less than what is used in most mashed potatoes recipes, but you will get great flavor from the onions and the garlic and with some effort to mash the cooked potatoes, the dish will turn out fairly smooth and creamy. I did not use a slow cooker to reheat the defrosted potatoes, but warming them in a pot over low heat works very well. For the red wine, I used a Cotes du Rhone Rose.

Delicious. The varietal of wine I used was Merlot. The garlic was tender at 30 minutes and the potatoes were soft at 20 minutes. I got 14 servings out of the recipe. Delicious.


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  1. We made this last night as part of our New Year’s Eve celebration, and it was great. The roasted garlic gave the potatoes a little kick, and the cheese and sour cream gave it richness. I can’t say I tasted the wine or the sugar, but I think they added to the overall incredible-ness of the dish.

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