I have some issues with holding mashed potatoes before serving them. Of course, it's not practical to make them from start to finish everytime someone orders them. I am trying to figure out how I will do this in a restaurant setting. I estimate that the potatoes will need to be good for at least 4 to 12 hours after making them.

I have tried keeping them in a slow-cooker at the lowest setting, but found that this setting causes bits of it to burn, and also makes them more over-cooked and gummy after 2-4 hours.

I have thought of putting individual servings in small containers in the fridge immediately after they are made and microwaving them just before serving. Will this cause the starches in the potato to change significantly and affect the flavor in any way?

  • When cooking at home I put them into the stove in a bowl - naturally this does not apply to a restaurant setting, so I'm making this a comment rather.
    – dot_Sp0T
    Commented Oct 24, 2017 at 9:42
  • Do you have an immersion cirulator? There is no better way to hold/re-heat mashed potatoes.
    – moscafj
    Commented Oct 24, 2017 at 12:07
  • 1
    You are thinking of opening a commercial restaurant? You put them in a low end slow-cooker that does not even have a warm setting. A commercial kitchen should have a commercial slow cooker with multiple temperature settings and steam warmers.
    – paparazzo
    Commented Oct 24, 2017 at 12:30
  • @moscafj How would one do this in an immersion circulator?
    – user60513
    Commented Oct 30, 2017 at 16:12
  • @user60513 cooked mashed potatoes, cream (if using) and all, can be sealed in a bag and held in water bath at 66C for a day with no loss of quality...maybe even longer. Google "Serious Eats Ultra Fluffy Mashed Potatoes". You can also cook, chill, bag, and reheat using sous vide. That particular article has other suggestions that might help you.
    – moscafj
    Commented Oct 30, 2017 at 16:48

2 Answers 2


I would suggest getting them to the riced/passed stage and then refrigerating in a tightly sealed container. When an order comes in, scoop out a portion, and bring it up to temperature with the use of hot milk (which could be microwaved) and a few minutes of on the stove. That way it's still reasonably fresh tasting.

  • I would do this by my version uses vegan margarine, and needs very little liquid.
    – user60513
    Commented Oct 24, 2017 at 13:47
  • The principle remains the same, just heat it on a medium stove, stirring frequently, then keep warm until service. Commented Oct 26, 2017 at 6:52

Have you tried leaving the skins on, boiling then leaving them in a slow simmer to retain heat but not burn. You would cut your overall cook time without unnecessary drying or burning since they remain in water (or after boiling leave them in a steamer which would be better to keep from losing to much starch stiffness). Add a little instant patotoe mix to the mashed potatoes to give it "stiffness" if it boils to long and becomes to runny.

  • Would this mean the potatoes have to be peeled and mashed every time there is an order for it?
    – user60513
    Commented Oct 25, 2017 at 11:38

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.