The Herbs You Should Be Adding To Mashed Potatoes

Anyone who makes mashed potatoes tends to get in the habit of making them the same way every time with butter, milk and salt. Maybe for a special occasion you add a little sour cream. But there is a whole world of deliciousness waiting for you to explore. Next time you make mashed potatoes, consider a simple flavor addition — fresh herbs.

While some chefs recommend incorporating fresh herbs after the potatoes have been mashed and the hot milk added, others have a slightly different approach. Some recipes advise cooks to take a few sprigs of fresh herbs and add them to the milk as it is warmed (via Real Simple). Milk that has been warmed in a small saucepan should be used to make mashed potatoes in order to keep the potatoes hot, versus using straight-from-the-fridge cold milk. Not only that, but apparently the potatoes will also mash easier with the warm milk.

What herbs to use

Herbs that are frequently grown in a backyard garden are great additions to your potatoes. Herbed mashed potatoes pair well with parsley, dill and basil (via Martha Stewart). Rosemary, thyme or sage can also be incorporated into your recipe to add a little extra flavor. For bigger flavor, try adding a single bay leaf to the milk as it warms, but remember to remove it before mashing the potatoes. Another addition that can add flavor, but should be removed before mashing, is a teaspoon of peppercorns. Think even further outside the traditional mashed potatoes recipe and consider including a strip of lemon zest or a little nutmeg.

Another delicious option involves stirring in some parley with your mashed potatoes. Instead of fresh, try using dried parsley, which can add a subtle taste to the potatoes and will go well with all of the food you have on your dinner plate. With home gardens beginning to grow and farmers markets sprouting up around the country with fresh produce, now is the best time to start experimenting with some fresh herbs in your mashed potatoes.