Whether they are buttery, savory, or sweet, mashed potatoes are a dinner table staple, especially when it comes to fall feasts like Thanksgiving. So, with the holidays approaching, we asked celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson for fresh new takes on the traditional side dish. While most recipes call for butter or cream, Chef Samuelsson has teamed up with Spectrum Culinary oils to launch the Spectrum® Evolve Beyond Olive program and show us how oil can get the job done just as well—if not better (for your health, at least). Just make sure you pick one that will complement the flavor profile you’re working with, and when it comes to the mashing, the top chef has one steadfast rule: “Whatever you do, don’t puree your potatoes in a blender, either rice them or mash them with a fork.” Below, find four of his favorite mashups.
Coconut oil mashed sweet potato
Chef Samuelsson suggests rubbing your yams with olive oil and baking them until soft. Then, after separating the flesh from the skin, add some coconut oil instead of the usual butter or cream. This will enhance the sweetish flavor and deliver similar tasting results, he says, but eliminates the need for dairy. Definitely try this at home. I did and it was delicious. For extra flavor profiles, add some pan-fried sage leaves (I used fresh-from-my-freezer) or a sprig of rosemary. This adds an unexpected earthy punch that is sure to impress.
Photo: C/O Spectrum
Savory + sweet spuds mashed
“Mixing them up, using both sweet potatoes and regular potatoes is a really delicious treat,” says Chef Samuelsson. Pro tip: Boil your potatoes and roast your yams, then smash ‘em up all together in one big, happy bowl. He says it gives a “light deliciousness” to the dish.
Mashed with apple and carrot
If you want to venture way outside the lines, which we highly recommend, Chef Samuelsson suggests adding apples and carrots to your medley. “Peeling and boiling apples and carrots, then mashing them into the mashed potatoes [will] lighten up the dish,” he says. The carrots will give it some extra color too; tri-color carrots can give you purple and orange hues. Not sure how to get the dish off the ground? Follow his tips in this Buttermilk Mashed Potato recipe, and sub out the buttermilk for coconut oil or olive oil.
Photo: C/O Spectrum
Roasted garlic mashed
Start with a whole garlic bulb, rub it with olive oil, pack it in aluminum foil with some rosemary or sage, and then roast it in the oven at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. “What will happen is that the garlic will go from spicy to nutty and sweet,” explains Samuelsson. “You take that out and then you mash it, grab all that liquid, and you already have all of the flavor you’re going to need for your mashed potato.” Yes please!
Photo: Matt Dutile
Marcus Samuelsson is an award-winning chef and author. He owns nine restaurants and has served as a judge on Top Chef, Iron Chef, and Chopped.