Parmesan Smashed Potatoes

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These parmesan smashed potatoes make a rustic and comforting side dish.

Spoon in a dish of parmesan smashed potatoes.

These parmesan smashed potatoes are like a rustic version of mashed potatoes. To make them, simply boil a few pounds of baby red potatoes, smash them with a dinner fork, and mix them with butter, Parmesan cheese, and seasonings. So easy…and everyone loves them! Truthfully, I don’t make this dish as often as I’d like because it renders both my husband and me totally helpless in the self-control department. If you’re watching your carbs, these smashed potatoes are a little dangerous to have around.

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Parmesan Smashed Potatoes

These parmesan smashed potatoes make a rustic and comforting side dish.

Servings: 4-6


  • 2 pounds baby red potatoes, sliced in half (they should all be about the same size so they cook evenly)
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons
  • ½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon fresh chives, finely chopped (optional)


  1. Bring large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook potatoes until fork-tender, about 15 minutes.
  2. Use a slotted spoon or hand-held strainer to transfer cooked potatoes to a shallow bowl or serving dish. Reserve hot cooking water. Top potatoes with butter, Parmigiano Reggiano, salt and pepper. Use a fork to smash the potatoes, adding cooking liquid as necessary to make potatoes as creamy as you like (I usually add about a ½ cup total). Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Sprinkle fresh chives over top and serve.

Nutrition Information

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  • Per serving (6 servings)
  • Calories: 246
  • Fat: 14 g
  • Saturated fat: 9 g
  • Carbohydrates: 24 g
  • Sugar: 2 g
  • Fiber: 3 g
  • Protein: 6 g
  • Sodium: 407 mg
  • Cholesterol: 37 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

Gluten-Free Adaptable Note

To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods; if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.

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  • Hi. I’ve made this before as written with the chives, but don’t have any on hand. Would fresh sage chopped finely or dry thyme work in your opinion?

    • — Shannon C on April 12, 2024
    • Reply
    • I’d go with the sage. Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on April 12, 2024
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn,

    Love your recipes. I have a large group of 20 for Christmas dinner and hoping for some make ahead options. Would this work as a make-ahead? I’ve made your make ahead mashed many times so looking to change it up.

    • — Steph on December 20, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Steph, so glad you like the recipes! Yes, I think you can get away with making these ahead. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on December 21, 2023
      • Reply
  • At first I was hesitant to try this recipe because we are not huge red potato fans. Well, apparently we now are! They were creamy and delicious and have become our go-to “mashed” potato recipe. Like others, I added a splash of cream for richness but it is equally delicious without.

    • — Gail on September 23, 2023
    • Reply
  • Delicious! It’s a keeper! Yum!
    Very easy to put together.
    Everyone enjoyed them.
    Thank you for another winning recipe.

    • — Chris on August 23, 2023
    • Reply
  • Oh! These are amazing!

    • — Elaine on June 6, 2023
    • Reply
  • Hi Jenn–Wondering: Can I make these the night before and then reheat them, covered in a 350 degree oven for 20-30 minutes or so before serving? I know you said they could be reheated on the stove top with some milk or potato water added, but I’m a little worried they might be too broken up/watered down this way–want them more chunky. Thanks for your thoughts, as always!

    • — Diane on February 28, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Diane, I haven’t tried reheating them this way, but I think it should work. Please LMK how they turn out!

      • — Jenn on March 1, 2023
      • Reply
      • Great! Will do, Jenn! Excited to have this info and try these. Thanks so much!

        • — Diane on March 1, 2023
        • Reply
  • Jenn, would this recipe work with peeled red potatoes? Some in the household do not like potato peels. Thanks so much for all your delicious recipes!

    • — Rebecca on January 6, 2023
    • Reply
    • Sure!

      • — Jenn on January 6, 2023
      • Reply
  • Jenn – we really enjoyed these potatoes. How do you keep them warm until ready to eat them? Thanks.

    • — Kathy on December 26, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Kathy, glad you liked them! I’d just cover them with foil or saran. Another alternative is to put them in your oven on the warm setting (covered).

      • — Jenn on December 26, 2022
      • Reply
  • Jenn, what I have on hand are russet potatoes. Would russets be a good substitute for the reds in this recipe?

    • — Chrissy on December 11, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Chrissy, I think you could but you may have to adjust the cooking time to make sure the potatoes are tender. Please let me know how they turn out!

      • — Jenn on December 13, 2022
      • Reply
      • Jenn, I made the Parmesan Smashed Potatoes using russet potatoes and your great tip to adjust the cooking time, and PERFECT! The dish turned out absolutely delicious, and my husband was asking if I would make them at Christmas, and every week! I can’t wait to make them using your recommended small red potatoes, when I can find some again. Thank you, Jenn for your timely help and for sharing another of your wonderful recipes with us all! And, mostly, thank you for giving novice cooks like me the courage to learn to cook without fear, and instead with joy and an expectation of great results. You are the best chef and teacher any cook could hope for!

        • — Chrissy Baker on December 19, 2022
        • Reply
        • 💓

          • — Jenn on December 20, 2022
          • Reply
        • Hear hear!! So agree!

          • — Joy on February 11, 2023
          • Reply
  • Just finished dinner with your Chicken Marsala and these yummy potatoes. Everyone loved both dishes. Incredible flavor on both. Thank you!

    • — Pam on September 26, 2022
    • Reply
  • I didn’t think anything could compare to your Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes, but sure enough….another winner. There are only a few ingredients and so easy to put together, that I made them twice in five days. This is now my ‘Go To’ Potato recipe…..Thanks, Jenn….Another Hit!

    • — Liz on August 14, 2022
    • Reply
  • These are delicious and easy to prepare.

  • I happen to have small gold potatoes, are they a good substitute or are red necessary for the right texture?

    • Hi Jan, small gold potatoes should work here. Enjoy!

  • I will be making these potatoes and will be re-warming them on the stovetop as you suggest. Can I keep some of the cooking water and add it (if needed) rather than milk?

    • Sure, Linda, that should be fine. Enjoy!

  • I absolutely LOVE your recipes! Just a small query….how much salt should I cook the potatoes (tatties) in?

    • So glad you like the recipes! I’d add about 2 teaspoons of water to the pot. Hope you enjoy them. 🙂

      • I think you meant of salt, Jenn!! 😊

        • — Joy on February 11, 2023
        • Reply
        • lol yes! thank you 🙂

          • — Jenn on February 13, 2023
          • Reply
  • Delicious! Served with chicken piccata and thyme roasted carrots

  • Hi Jenn!
    Love your recipes! I was wondering if this could be made a day ahead and warmed up?
    Thank you!

    • — Rebecca Peerless
    • Reply
    • So glad you like the recipes! Sure – I would reheat them on the stovetop so you can add more liquid (cream or milk would be best) if necessary to thin them out.

      • Thank you so much for your quick response!

        • — Rebecca Peerless
        • Reply
  • Delicious! Made as suggested and served with Chicken Marsala and Green Beans. Will definitely make them again!

  • Wanted something easy but delicious for Thanksgiving potato-wise. This was so simple and SOOOOO delicious! I will never whip potatoes again, the chunks were so satisfying and the texture of the red potatoes are second to none! I loved the saltiness and added flavor of the parmesan as well! Brilliant!

    Thanks again for a great recipe Jenn!

  • Ok so I made these a month ago and LOVED them. Couldn’t believe how creamy they were without milk. Then I made them yesterday for Thanksgiving and accidentally tossed all the cooking water so I had to use milk instead. Definitely better the first time using the cooking water. Hopefully won’t make that mistake again. With that said- mashed potatoes with lots of butter and Parmesan are delish!

  • This was so delicious! My new Marsala recipe, yum.

  • I need to make a freezer meal to keep for emergencies. I am planning to make your turkey spinach meatballs which indicate they pair well with these potatoes. Can this recipe be frozen, and then how to reheat alone or in combination with the meatballs? Thanks, we love your cookbooks and all the recipes here.
    I’ve made this recipe for my own use and know how good and easy it is.

    • Hi Kathy, I don’t recommend freezing these – I’m sorry! If you’re looking for a freezer-friendly option that would pair nicely with the meatballs, this focaccia would work. Hope that helps!

  • I had two large, red potatoes left from a friend’s summer garden and tried this recipe for today’s Sunday dinner. It came together quickly, using ingredients I had on hand!
    Served it with BBQ country ribs……yum! Would give it more stars if I could!

  • I made 3lbs of potatoes tonight (I adjusted ingredients accordingly) and based on other reviews, added heavy cream and roasted garlic. I had the perfect amount of potatoes for 8 people and everyone loved them! Thank you!

  • I loved these potatoes but to say my husband loved them is an understatement! I made half the recipe since it’s just the two of us and he packed the leftover potatoes into a Tupperware container and ate all of that before it made it into the fridge. Will definitely make again!

  • I made these potatoes 2 weekends in a row for family. So easy and delicious and lots of compliments. These are now my go to potatoes

    • — Stacey Goldfarb
    • Reply
  • I was skeptical about not adding any cream or milk but…as usual with your recipes, they were wonderful! Thank you once again.

  • This was excellent – a new family favorite to go along with the meatloaf. I actually prefer it to mashed potatoes- and easier!
    Thanks again for another wonderful recipe!

  • Delicious and oh so easy
    Thank you

  • I have made these potatoes many times and they are a hit every time. They are super easy and super flavorful.

  • This is my go-to mashed potato recipe, and is so much more interesting than regular boring, white, creamy mashed potatoes. I made this for Thanksgiving last fall for the first time with a few small tweaks, and received multiple requests for the recipe (thanks again, Jenn!). I’ve made this again and again since then, and always make these changes, based on personal preference: one whole head of roasted garlic (I know it sounds crazy, but it has a very mellow flavor when roasted), 1/2 cup of heavy cream, and 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh rosemary (instead of chives). For the roasted garlic, I take a whole head of garlic, cut off the top 1/4 of the bulb to expose the tops of the individual cloves, then drizzle with olive oil to make sure it gets down into the head of garlic, wrap in foil, and cook on a sheet pan in the oven on 400 for 45 minutes, or until the heads of garlic are soft and jammy. I then take the whole head of garlic and squeeze the whole cloves right into the mashed potatoes after they’ve cooked and had the cream/butter added, then mix in with a dinner fork to preserve the “smashed” texture. The final touch is a bit of fresh rosemary, which gives this an even heartier flavor. I should mention that the recipe is perfectly amazing as-is, but these small tweaks take it over the top for me and make it Thanksgiving or Christmas-dinner worthy. Thanks for the great recipe, Jenn, and for always making me appear to be a much better cook than I actually am! 🙂

  • These are my go-to for potatoes. So yummy and easy.

  • These were great! After using freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano in this recipe I’ll never be satisfied using the grated parmesan in the green can!

  • Do you peel the potatoes?

    • No, no need to peel them. Enjoy!

  • I’m always looking for red potato recipes as we had a good crop in our garden this year. This is a keeper recipe! I’m happy to know about using hot potato water, and you also answered a question I have had in one of the comment responses, “how much salt is in salted butter”? I’m a better cook from reading your blog and first cookbook! Much appreciated!

  • Made this recipe tonight with the Italian Meatloaf. Very, very good. I heavily salted the water in which I boiled the potatoes, and didn’t add salt when I smashed them and it was fine. I didn’t have any chives on hand, and will make sure that I do next time I make these potatoes. Another fine recipe from Chef Jenn!

  • Made this recipe tonight. A subtle difference to ‘normal’ mash. I served it with steamed broccoli and the Marsala Chicken recipe. Divine!

  • Easy to make and super delicious!

  • So delicious! Have made this multiple times paired with different chicken recipes. It is very easy to follow and fast! Would highly recommend

  • Hello! I loved these potatoes and have never used the cooking water idea before. Very nice! I did cut down a little on the butter and added a good splash of 2% milk to balance that out. I also added 1/4 tsp of onion powder and 1/4 tsp of garlic powder. Loved these and will make again. Super easy!

  • I love these potatoes and make them often. Do you think they would also work well in a Shepards Pie?

    • Hi Laura, Glad you like these! I’m not sure they would be appropriate for shepherd’s pie though — I think they may be a bit too thick/heavy. Sorry!

  • HI Jenn– I made a boo boo and bought pecorino romano. Will that work here instead of parmesan? Thanks! Eve

    • That’s fine, Eve – should be delish!

      • I found some parmesan and made it with that. DELICIOUS!! Everyone was raving. Thank you Jenn.

  • These were wonderful. Used regular red potatoes. Otherwise, prepared as written. I could have eaten these without the main dish or veggies.

  • These were yummy and easy! At first, I wasn’t sure about just using the cooking liquid for creaminess (I’m used to putting milk in potatoes). However, I loved this technique, texture, and that it has less fat this way. Using the cooking liquid still resulted in very flavorful potatoes!

    • — Christina Midvale
    • Reply
  • My husband likes cheese, but not cheese that has an odor. Will this Parmigiano-Reggiano have an odor when making it? or if I reheat the potatoes will it have an odor?

    Thank you, love your recipes.

    • Hi Mary, I don’t think the cheese in these creates a strong odor. Hope you enjoy if you make them!

  • Fabulous! I cut back just a bit on the butter and salt (for health reasons) and they were still loaded with flavor. Yes, they could be dangerous. This recipe is a keeper for sure. Jenn, you’ve done it again!

    • — Vicki Frederick
    • Reply
  • This is a great recipe – so yummy!! I’ll be making it again for special occasions!!

  • So yummy and so easy! My new go-to mashed potato recipe!

  • Delicious & simple to make!!! Made this tonight in a pinch. We were meant to make another recipe with our potatoes & were short on time so we searched & found this recipe. They were a hit. Our kids ate them all up too – which in our household equals a good recipe!!! All I had was a pre-shredded bag of parmesan & we made that work. Also all we had was Regular red potatoes instead of babys & we just cut them small & made it work. I added a bit more salt for our taste. We will make again absolutely!!!!

  • These are the easiest, most amazing potatoes I’ve ever made! My sister had thirds, she loved them so much! I drained the potatoes and forgot to reserve some of the water, so I used half and half to make them creamy. I also used more cheese than listed in the recipe. This will be a regular side dish for us. Thanks for another fabulous recipe!

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