Why You Should Always Have Instant Mashed Potatoes In Your Pantry

Instant mashed potatoes are dehydrated potato flakes or granules that, when liquid is added, create light and fluffy mashed tubers. A serving of these potatoes provides a dose of potassium, vitamin C, fiber, vitamin B6, magnesium, calcium, and iron (via Live Strong). While instant spuds can contain high levels of sodium, some potato brands have become aware of consumer concern over sodium content and now make reduced-sodium options. 

The instant variety of mashed potatoes are both inexpensive and convenient, even if they're not quite the same as homemade. Of course, you can roast, mash, fry, bake, and boil potatoes, and rarely will anyone turn them down. Whip up a batch of creamy mashed potatoes, stir in some butter, and you have a bowl full of irresistible, fluffed glory.

You may only consider instant mashed potatoes as a side dish, but they can also be used to make your time in the kitchen easier. Here's how:

Instant tubers are amazingly versatile

Many people consider stocking up on canned goods, but have you considered stockpiling instant mashed potatoes? Packaged mashed potatoes deserve more credit than they receive.

Whether you like the taste of instant tubers or not, they can be used in various ways, creating quite the versatile kitchen staple. As The Takeout points out, instant mashed potatoes are inexpensive and shelf-stable, making them a cheap and long-lasting addition to your cooking arsenal. They can add crispness to vegetables and be incorporated into many recipes. Chef Jacques Pèpin even uses potato flakes to thicken soup instead of flour or cornstarch because it adds richness without requiring a slurry mix (via Mashed).

Taste of Home recommends instant mashed potatoes for dishes such as loaded baked potato soup, shepherd's pie, potato cakes, and swiss potato puffs. They also help create a crunchy coating for chicken, scallops, and other meats. Instant potatoes can be added to your favorite mashed potato roll recipe and in making crescents and focaccia as well.

Next time you visit the supermarket, stock up on instant mashed potatoes; your pantry and pocketbook will thank you.