mashed potatoes

The Homemade Trials: Mashed Potatoes

I compare instant potatoes to made-from-scratch concerning cost, time, nutrition, and taste. Who wins?!


The Homemade Trials: Mashed Potatoes

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It seemed like people really enjoyed the last Homemade Trials I did comparing boxed mac-n-cheese to a made from scratch version. I was pretty shocked at how close some of the categories ended up, especially cost and nutrition. So, I’m definitely going to make this a monthly series here. Based on the comments in the last post, a lot of you wanted to see a breakdown of Mashed Potatoes, so here ya go!

If you didn’t check out the last homemade trials, these are the criteria that I use to compare the homemade version with the store-bought version.

The Criteria. I picked four main criteria on which to evaluate my pre-packaged item versus the homemade version:

Time: How long does it take to prepare? Do I save any time by buying it pre-packaged?
Cost: When you break down ingredients, is it actually cheaper per serving?
Nutrition: How do the two versions shape up from a nutritional standpoint?
Taste: The only subjective criteria, but at least for me it has to be one because this is food after all people.

The Instant Stuff. There were about 10 different brands of instant mashed potatoes to choose from, but they all looked basically identical to me. I went with the most basic flavor.

If you’ve never made instant potatoes before, you basically just add boiling water to the flakes and BAM. Potatoes. Sort of.

Powdered Potatoes. Yum.

To compete with the instant version, I made a really simple homemade mashed potato recipe using real russet potatoes plus some butter, milk, and garlic. Again, I tried to keep it as simple as possible just to hopefully make it a fair competition!

2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 Tablespoons butter
2/3 Cup milk
1 1/2 Teaspoon Kosher salt

Let’s get into the trials!


I started a stopwatch right as I started each version. This might be a shock to you but instant potatoes DESTROYED real potatoes in the time department.

The time it took me to boil a few cups of water, stir it into some flakes, and fluff them up was about 8 minutes.

Meanwhile, peeling and chopping potatoes (I did this while I was waiting for water to boil), letting them cook, mashing them, and mixing in all the other stuff took a whopping 35 minutes.

Potatoes take some time to cook. There’s no shortcut really here so I have to give the time category to the instant variety.


Cost is a pretty easy thing to calculate in this case as long as you remember your receipt! The key here to figure out servings based on weight. I just weighed my instant and homemade potatoes when they were done, then looked up how many servings were in the instant mix (4) and figured out how many grams were in a serving of mashed potatoes.

Here’s my breakdown!

So, I guess instant is still cheaper, but the one note on this is that I used pretty expensive ingredients. I used organic potatoes, milk, and butter.

I experimented a bit and found that if you could find potatoes for about .50 cents/pound, then you could keep the organic butter and milk and about match the instant costs. That’s not too bad if you ask me.

So I’ll give Cost to the instant variety, but with an asterisk that it’s doable to beat the cost per serving if you were to shop around a bit.


I had absolutely no idea how this one would shape up. Let’s take a look!

WELL. Crap. That didn’t work out as well as I hoped. It turns out that instant potatoes are basically air. They have very little real food in them as far as I can tell. As you can see, the instant variety has way less calories, fat, carbs, etc per serving.

I guess I have a few comments on this. For starters, most of my fat comes from butter and I guess you could cut that down if you wanted. I used 4 Tablespoons for my 6 servings and you could probably cut that down to two. It still wouldn’t get us close to the fat in the instant stuff, but it’d be closer.

Second, and more amazing to me, the instant potatoes, somehow, have less carbs than just a potato per serving. How this is possible is beyond me, but they’ve literally just removed carbs from the potatoes. That’s pretty impossible in a homemade version obviously.

The good news is that my version actually has less sodium along with more fiber and more protein. Plus, I don’t actually think that 226 calories for a nice serving of real mashed potatoes is all that bad.

If you’re curious what’s going on in the instant variety, here’s a shot of the ingredient list. I guess all of these things add up to basically nothing.


I’m honestly torn on how to call this one. Part of me wants to call it a TIE because the homemade version has some good stuff in it and none of the preservatives, but it does have WAY more fat and calories.

I’m going to call it a TIE but I’d love to hear what you all think on this one.


This one is easy. Buttery, creamy, garlicky mashed potatoes or wet cardboard?

Actually, I should give the instant version a bit more credit. They weren’t horrible. They actually tasted exactly like any and every buffet line mashed potato that I’ve ever had. The same smell and consistency.

The key thing about the instant variety is that you have to eat them as soon as possible. If they cool down or sit for too long, they congeal into this strange mass of gunk that could be used to caulk your tub.

So, I can say, without doubt, that taste goes to the homemade variety!



If you just look at the results (TIME=Instant, COST=Instant*, NUTRITION=Tie (debatable), TASTE=Homemade), then I guess I have to give it to instant.

Of course, the problem is that if you could judge taste on a scale, the instant would have been about a 3 for me while the homemade was like an 8 or 9. So, the question is, are you willing to give a few minutes, a few cents, and a few calories for real food that tastes better?

It’s honestly a hard question. I thought this was going to be a shoe-in for the homemade variety, but when you break it down, it’s just not that clear-cut.

So, what do you think? INSTANT or HOMEMADE?

Also, feel free to comment with ideas for future Homemade Trials!

If you want the recipe that I used for my homemade version, click the PRINT THE RECIPE link.

49 Responses to “The Homemade Trials: Mashed Potatoes” Leave a comment

  1. Homemade wins for me. Fresh and flavorful is what I like. And with homemade I can control how much sodium is added, I like that most, I think. Way to go on these posts. I take for granted that one aspect of homemade vs. instant is better, but it's really awesome to see the breakdown. Thanks for taking the time to do these posts!

    As for the lower carbs in the instant (and anyone can correct me if I'm wrong), it may have something to do with the way the potatoes are processed to remove the moisture to make the potatoes into flakes. My Dad loves potatoes but he's on a special renal/diabetic diet and so his potassium intake has to be limited. My Mom has to peel, chop and soak potatoes (drain, soak again, repeat) to leach out much of the potassium. As a result, I would assume that if starch = carbs then maybe some of the starch is removed with all this soaking too. Maybe it's much the same with the processing of potatoes for making the flakes. Maybe if there were a comparison of the potassium content of intant verses homemade? But I'm not a scientist, it's all just major guessing over here.

  2. I would still give nutrition to the homemade version. The only thing that makes me pause is the amount of saturated fat, but you can easily fit that amount of fat/calories into a healthy diet. I don't think you can really call the ingredients used in the boxed version nutritious. Sure, there's less fat but that's because… they don't use real food? I would think the version using real potatoes would have more health benefits.

  3. Hey Nick – Here we go -straight up:

    Your calories in the homemade version come mostly from the potatoes and the milk you use. If you cut out your fat, the best you could save is anywhere from 0 to 70 calories, so there is not much there to trim. (Remember a gram of fat=9 calories.)

    THe calories in the box are mostly from processed oils and transfats. (Any time you see "Hydrogenated" that means trans fats.)
    The ingredients in the instant are also dubious. Take the first 12 ingredients:
    Potatoes – okay, they are dried
    Powdered Cellulose – to give it body.
    Maltodexterin – a form of hidden sugar, made from corn byproducts. The reason they need sugar is to make up for the lack of fat. Fat = flavor
    Salt – of course there should be salt, but this much?
    Butter – for flavoring… but it's probably rancid by now
    Sugar – why the hell is there MORE sugar in here?
    Non-Fat milk – Why non-fat? So here we have MORE sugar. A little known fact is that the less fat a milk has, the MORE sugar it has.
    Modified Wheat Starch – Why is there wheat starch in mashed potatoes?
    Buttermilk – finally! Real flavor. I don't mind that its in a powdered form… unless you actually LIKED drinking powdered milk as a kid….
    Mono and Diglycerides – Oh! More fat – but as SOYBEAN. These act as emulsifiers, and are also known as trans fats.
    Partially Hydrogenated Soy Bean Oil – more SOYBEANS! And more transfats.
    Natural Flavor – What the hell does this ever mean anyway?

    I could go on Nick, and my wife hates my "preaching," but I think it is important to look deeper when it comes to nutrition…

    The whole milk and butter you add to the potatoes gives an abundance of vitamins in addition to the "calories." You get Vitamins A. D, and E. Better yet, the fatty acids are short chained.. which your body loves, despite the "heart wrecking" claims the margarine (read SOYBEAN) industry claims.

    The calories in the boxed version come from the fillers and stabilizers. The question to ask yourself is "what do I want to spend my calorie limit per day on? Fillers, or REAL food?"

    I have a way that would DESTROY the powdered version. I always have mashed potatoes at the ready (because I use them to thicken soups as well…) What I do is make a base on Sunday… then I dip into them. How do I heat them up?
    A little butter, a splash of cream, and 3 minutes in the micro, and BAM! Instant potatoes. By the time you are measuring out your mix, boiling your water, I am already finished my potatoes, and looking whistfully at your plate. LOL

    Take care man!
    My recent post So What’s The “Plan”

      1. Except that most of his post was completely usesless. Let’s go point by point.
        “Potatoes – okay, they are dried”

        “Powdered Cellulose – to give it body.”

        “Maltodexterin [sic] – a form of hidden sugar, made from corn byproducts. The reason they need sugar is to make up for the lack of fat. Fat = flavor”
        Wrong – Actually, maltodextrin is flavorless! It’s used also to give body and to reduce the dryness of the food, which is kind of important. It’s also not “hidden” because it’s included in the Nutrition Facts as a carbohydrate. Unless you really need someone to tell you LOOK AT THIS IT’S A SUGAR on everything.

        “Salt – of course there should be salt, but this much?”
        It’s not really that much more. I mean, if someone sprinkled the homemade with table salt it would probably tie with it.

        “Butter – for flavoring… but it’s probably rancid by now”
        Dehydrated butter cannot “go rancid”.

        “Sugar – why the hell is there MORE sugar in here?”
        Because, like I said, maltodextrin doesn’t have any flavor. Sugar does. Why is this a big deal? The final result — what matters — contains a total of 1g of sugar.

        “Non-Fat milk – Why non-fat? So here we have MORE sugar. A little known fact is that the less fat a milk has, the MORE sugar it has.”

        Non-Fat powdered milk adds body without adding fat. Jason continues to gripe about sugar. Again, the final result – what the nutrition facts state as a result of totalling all the ingredients – is that this food has 1g of sugar per serving. It doesn’t matter if it comes from one sugar-containing ingredient or twelve of them. This “little known fact” is also completely incorrect, as anyone can tell by simply comparing nutrition labels at the store.

        “Modified Wheat Starch – Why is there wheat starch in mashed potatoes?”
        I don’t know about this one, probably for body. Hmm.

        “Buttermilk – finally! Real flavor. I don’t mind that its in a powdered form… unless you actually LIKED drinking powdered milk as a kid….”
        I’m surprised Jason doesn’t complain that the buttermilk is “rancid” and “contains even more sugar”.

        “Mono and Diglycerides – Oh! More fat – but as SOYBEAN. These act as emulsifiers, and are also known as trans fats.”
        Monoglycerides and diglycerides are not necessarily trans fats. In this case, they probably are. But they are not “also known as trans fats” by any means. You fail food chem.

        “Partially Hydrogenated Soy Bean Oil – more SOYBEANS! And more transfats.”
        Correct, actually. But Jason seems oddly fixated on the soybean part.

        “Natural Flavor – What the hell does this ever mean anyway?”
        It means “derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof”. Flavor chemists (yes that is a real job) spend a lot of time making these so that food producers can say “no artificial flavors”. We should appreciate it!

        “Better yet, the fatty acids are short chained.. which your body loves, despite the “heart wrecking” claims the margarine (read SOYBEAN) industry claims. ”
        Why do you hate soybeans, Jason? At any rate, short chained fatty acids are actually worse for you. They are the fat equivalent of simple sugars. White bread. Long chain fatty acids have been shown for decades to be key in making you feel full through the release of the hormone CCK.

        “The calories in the boxed version come from the fillers and stabilizers.”
        No, they come from potatoes. Jason spent all this time telling us how these extra ingredients are secretly hidden sugars and fats when by the time all is said and done, the Nutrition Facts show that the cumulative effect is a total of 1g of fat and 1g of sugar per serving. The whole thing is carbs. Starch. POTATOES. You, Nick, are actually sort of correct when you say that all those ingredients add up to nothing. In terms of calories, at least, you’re right.

        “I have a way that would DESTROY the powdered version…”
        …by doing 90% of the work ahead of time. In what world does this make sense?

        This post is TWO YEARS OLD but my Thanksgiving-related Googling brought me here and it was just so wrong I had to type this. My apologies.

      2. Hey Ruben, thanks for swinging by and adding to the conversation! I always appreciate thorough comments even if they are on two year old posts. :)

        I definitely learned something from reading through your comment so
        thanks for taking the time.


    1. Jason, I love this!! I do the same thing with labels! If it's supposed to be one thing (ex potatoes. or orange juice. or whatever) why are there 92 ingredients?? I hate eating things that aren't really food but are just chemical simulations of food. I give the win to the Homemade Mashers everyday of the week :)

  4. most definitely homemade for me – nothing better than creamy mashed potatoes,sooo worth the wait!!! I really don't like the smell of the instant and don't even mention the consistency!!!

  5. Just a couple of thoughts, Nick. First of all, I LOVEm potatoes, both instant mashed, boxed, dehydrated hash browns, shredded real, homemade potato chips, home fries, real mashed…any way you want to make them. Anytime I make instant mashed, however, I still add skim milk, condensed non fat milk, or non-fat buttermilk, garlic powder, and either "Promise" or "Smart Balance" margarine (I have heart problems). (Continued)

    1. I prefer the taste of homemade…BUT…if I'm pressed for time, I'll go with instasnt. Sometimes, I prefer them to be a little lumpy, in which case, the REAL ones taske precidence! Also, the instant ones will hold up ok if you add a little lump of butter when serving, but if you are serving gravy, the homemade version holds up MUCH better. Another thing to consider in "COST" is the extra "gas" or electricity it costs to boil the homemade potatoes. With instant, you merely bring the water to a boil and "dump" and remove from the heat. With the real stuff, you have to continue to boil, therefore wasting more energy. As far as how often I have each, I think it's probably split 50/50 for both types.

      1. I do prefer, however, either white, "yukon gold" and even sometimes red potatoes to the russets. The "reds" are good if you like to leave the peel on for a rustic "smashed" potato. Just my two cents. An interesting study you did, and I'm sure we all appreciate the time and effort you put in to this to educate us a bit! Thank you! Larry

    2. Larry,

      Have you seen this article?

      Especially if you have heart problems, you should to stay totally away from the fake foods you mentioned above. (Skim milk, margarine, etc.) Healthy fats like butter and cream are protective in our bodies and I use plenty of them both in our homemade mashed potatoes, they're so good, I could never go back to the powdered potatoes that I used to think tasted fine. All those fake ingredients scare me!

      My recent post Monday Morning Mix-Up 2-7-11

      1. I do too. I make my instant the exact same way I make from scratch. Milk, butter and a little cream. Beat with beater. But the instant I use has only dehydrated potatoes and salt in the ingredients none of that other stuff.

  6. I think you were more than generous giving a TIE to the nutrition part. The number of ingredients in the instant potatoes tell me that you aren't actually eating potatoes at all but something made to somewhat look/taste like them. Even with potatoes (with an asterisk) as the first ingredient there are too many other additives for me. And way too many of those ingredients add bad fats and sugar. Give me carbs in the form of fiber anyday!

    And I've had instant mashed potatoes…bleeeckk. I'll put in 35 minutes for some great tasting mashed potatoes — and that way I can have leftovers for my lunch at work the next day too!! win-win :-)

    1. Grandma used to make potato pancakes with the leftover real potatoes the next morning. Just add an egg and some flour until the batter is the consistency of pancake batter and cook them like pancakes. They were delicious, and made great use of leftovers.

  7. Coming from an Idaho boy, there is no contest. Even if the instant "mashed potatoes" were free and packed with nutrition, I would not eat them. They don't smell like potatoes, they are unnaturally smooth (no lumps), and you just add water. Nothing good can come of that. "No self-respecting southerner eats instant grits!" And no self-respecting Idahoan eats instant potatoes. Come on people, mashed potatoes are at the top of the list for easy to make.

  8. FYI. "Powdered cellulose" is sawdust. While the first commenter said they put it in there to "add body", it was my understanding that its purpose was to prevent clumping. They also put this in convenience cheeses (grated cheese and those handy packages of shredded cheese) to keep them from clumping in the bag. What bothers me is, by weight, sawdust is the second ingredient. And seriously? Do mashed potatoes need added sugar?

  9. Great discussion going on here, loved this post! Who knew…! I'd still go with the Homestyle Mashed Potatoes coz' like everyone above mentioned, the real mash has much more nutrition and fibre as compared to the Instant ones. And also, it's not only about the calories but also about the overall nutritional content. I'd go with Homemade for sure!
    My recent post Nicks Italian Pasta and Bean Soup

  10. funny — just thinking about this series made me buy flour and cream rather than frozen biscuits the other day — thanks!

  11. I agree with Jason above on all the additives – can't be good for us. And on the time factor – while they are cooking you can be doing something else so the cooking time should not count – only the prep and whipping time should.

  12. Home-made wins every time in our house. In fact, I don't think I have actually made instant mashed potatoes before. I find mashing the little beauties very therapeutic after a stressful day.

    I have been known to add all sorts of ingredients to my mashed potatoes, cooked diced ham, green onions, chilli, chives and even diced mushrooms once.

    I start to get nervous when I see ingredients such as margarine added into products like instant potatoes. Let alone the additives these companies add to their products And powdered milk? Yuck! Who thought of that one!?

  13. Thanks for your honesty in the post, Nick. I am glad you really are approaching this with an open mind. Clearly, most readers of a food blog will prefer the homemade version. Instant potatoes are a shortcut I occasionally take and, I think, one the better boxed substitutes available.

  14. I am for homemade mash – all the way! Although I did discover the wonders of instant mash when bush walking for a few days/nights over Christmas and a warm bowl of Deb (the instant brand in NZ) is pretty good after a long hard day of walking in the rain!

    I do wonder though, what if you had added the yummy stuff to the instant potatoes? Would it then have been a bowl of buttery, creamy, garlicky instant mash? Or would it still have tasted like poorly disguised cardboard?

    I would love to see a Mi Gorang comparison :) Because the Indomie brand of Mi Gorang 3 minute noodle is pretty yummy!

    Thanks for another great blog, Nick!

  15. (Splitting into 2 comments)

    Let me first say that I really enjoy the site and your postings Nick. However, I’m quite disappointed with this post. Here's my problem: you start off with a set of criteria (cost, nutrition, etc) and then look at the homemade and instant versions. But when the data doesn't support the conclusions you so obviously want to see, you adjust the criteria, make exceptions and explanations, and give the award to the homemade version. When the data doesn't match what you want, you can't just say "I really want it to be the other way." That's not the way science works.

    It seems that this post was supposed to show everyone how terrible processed food is, and how homemade mashed potatoes are superior in every way. Since you do write a food blog (which, again, I think is excellent) I understand that this fits your agenda of encouraging people to cook more, a goal which I think is laudable. But you can’t assume that you could find a cheaper way to make the homemade version and you can’t change your criteria on nutrition. The sad truth in science is that you’re stuck with the data you’ve got.

    1. Thanks for the comment Drew and for reading obv.

      I don't really think I adjusted my criteria. I mean, after all, I said in the verdict that Instant won if you go by the criteria. And I gave all the data as scientifically as I could given that I'm not a scientist ;)

      I don't really think the goal of this post is to necessarily show people that processed food is inferior in every way, but instead I think it's to show people that there are certain, verifiable trade-offs made. So, for example, you're trading calories for preservatives. Or a few minutes for a better tasting product. It's not to say though that homemade always works for everyone no matter what.

      At the end of the day though, taste trumps for me personally (food blogger!) so that's my winner no matter what. There's a few comments that echo that instant can work in some cases which I get and is supported by the data.

      That said, I do think you're right that mashed potatoes were a bit of a simplistic example. I think there are some other more interesting foods that will work really well with this series which I'm working on.

    2. I don't understand Drew's post. You "gave it" to instant. Even though you explain your personal preference/surprise/disappointment and maintain that homemade is a superior tactile, human experience, there is nothing wrong with this analysis. And I AM a scientist. Clearly, I missed something here.
      My recent post Anyone Else Ever Do This

  16. (Continued)

    To be fair, most of the people commenting here are only too eager to go along with this. I especially liked Jason's post: "Butter – for flavoring… but it's probably rancid by now.” Really? Is there any evidence to support this? But again, most everybody extols the virtues of homemade with nary a nod to the data which shows that instant won big in several categories.

    I think you do yourself a disservice when you set up a straw man, and are unable to convincingly knock him down. And there are so many other, more interesting things to do with this type of experiment. You could look at multiple brands of instant, multiple pricing levels (I’m no connoisseur but there has to be the dirt-cheap kind and the more expensive kind at least), and other factors. You could round up some kids and do some taste testing there (or get really ambitious and do multiple cohorts based on age, gender, income level, etc). Of course, this is not all practical. But there are so many interesting things to do with this idea other than using it to beat up on those corporate straw men.

    1. In response to the point about whether butter is rancid, an in the interest of science, I propose an experiment; leave butter at room temperature for a few months, (covered of course) and see if it will not go rancid. Sure, the processed version is good at room temp for a year, or it needs to be refrigerated. Now, how long has that butter been on the shelf? How ok wa it when it was used? How long has it sat in storage for? How long on the grocery store shelf?

      Potato starch is nothing new, we sometimes use it fr thickening items like sauces for gluten intolerant people. Mashed potatoes though?

      Now, I may not be all scietific an all, but I do know what tastes good, an I believe that something that us actually natural might be better for you. 1000's years prove that to me, I don't need science for that.

    2. Using multiple brands is a good idea. For instant potatoes they were all really similar actually but I can see how that could be a big difference in other foods.

  17. I love this new series of posts! Very informative. I'd be interested to see how homemade soup stacks up against canned, as I practically live off both.

  18. I'd like to see this done with Bob Evans' prepared mashed potatoes (available in the refrigerated section) instead of instant. I buy these all the time and add whichever spices or other fixins I feel like that night. I once (ashamedly) did this for a potluck and everyone RAVED about them.

  19. I hope I can write this without being preachy. Forgive me if somebody else has already chimed in — but it seems we enter into these evaluations with some assumptions, and I don't necessarily agree with them. The first is the "nutrition." We assume that more fat is BAD, and more calories are BAD. I really don't agree that fat is bad. I've been using whole milk, only butter, coconut oil, etc. for 18 months for my family, and we haven't gained an ounce, and are not less healthy. So, I don't know that you can say the instant potatoes are better nutritionally in that they have less fat. Calories are also a good thing. I really think this trend of trying to eat no calories, and reduce fat to 1 or 2 grams a day, is a thing of the past. It's not healthy.

    And "time"? Who says that spending the least amount of time in the kitchen is the desired end? It's not for me. The assumption here is that everybody in America is in a time crunch. Well, shame on them, but that doesn't mean that I want to make all my meals in 20 minutes. Simplify your life. Cut out some of the other junk. And enjoy your cooking. Simmering, stirring, sniffing and salivating — that's time well spent. Perhaps your "time" component should be tweaked to "quality time."

    Rant, over and out.

  20. Hi Nick! I love mashed pototoes! I've been considering going half-and-half with cauliflower though to make them a little healthier. I haven't tried it yet because I'm not sure how much cauliflower I can hide in their before my family will notice the difference. What would you suggest as a way to still get the full flavor with maybe a little more nutrition?

  21. I'm honestly not sure how you could even compare the two. I don't ever consider even buying instant mashed potatoes! However, I really like the frozen potatoes that are already chopped up. You just put them in the microwave for 10 minutes then add whatever you want to them and mash them up. For me I usually add skim milk, margarine and kosher salt to minimize the calories but maximize the flavor and texture. It's quicker then peeling and boiling potatoes but you are still using the real thing.
    My recent post Did I Sign Up For This

  22. Thinking about nutrition is obviously much more than "fat" and "calorie" amount.
    I am an ex-vegan who now eats everything. BUT like another commentator said, all those fake ingredients are scary. I am in southern europe so we have fewer packed items, but in any case if I do decide to buy something packed/ready made or packaged I look at the ingredients… You know this happens a lot with "organic" foods and vegetarian things. They are still full of chemicals. Try your local organic foodstore for mashed potatoes and look at the ingredients. The potato is supposedly organic (although the term is very loosely used) and then they add all this random chemicals. oh god.

  23. i like this man. this is the 1st comment i have ever made on a website other than facebook!
    anyway i have a ridiculously high metabolism and im trying to gain some weight. one way to do this is to eat lots of carbs and proteins and do heavy weight training. with me? so coz i love mash so much i was thinking i could try and eat loads of it with meat everyday (obv with sum veg too) but then im quite lazy and i wouldnt wana spend half my week in the kitchen when i should be doing somin more constructive. so wouldnt it be great if i could eats looooooads og instant mash and still get a large amount of carbs? but if its mostly air like you said well that will probably just make me shit my pants. any ideas?

    1. Yo man, you could make like 5 pounds of mash at time and just freeze it. Mashed potatoes freeze great. Just portion out however much a portion you want and stick it in individual bags.

      That’s what I would do. The instant stuff is pretty horrible and not really all that filling in my opinion.

  24. All instant potatoes I make add the butter and milk. I came up with 43 cents per serving for the purchased potatoes. So it close to the same price with your organic. I would compare to just plain instant potatoes. I just made some dried sliced potatoes this year and will try them.

  25. What you’re using it for is a factor too. If it’s mash for a side to a complete dinner, go for homemade. I always use instant for salmon balls and tuna patties, processed with left over veggies that I fry up in the air fryer. Instant allows you to play with consistency. Add more to soak up moisture, or even use a blend between fresh and instant. I use instant as a substitute for flour and breadcrumbs where possible.

  26. I came upon this page looking for a nutrient comparison between instant and fresh mashed but this experiment doesn’t succeed in that because “flavored” potato flakes were used. The carbs didn’t “disappear”, there are just less potatoes and more additives per serving in the instant brand you used.

    I keep a mostly clean diet and I usually bake whole potatoes or make a hash, but regularly make instant mashed, always with Idaho potato flakes (no additives) and whole fresh ingredients (I use butter and homemade yogurt). Homemade mashed are for holidays only, too time consuming!

    I just wanted to make a point about the “disappearing” carbs, though :) have a great day!

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