These Dairy Free Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes are a healthy vegan mashed potato recipe packed with flavor. They are a great plant-based holiday side dish or cozy everyday dinner side. Instead of butter, milk, and cream, they use a creamy roasted garlic sauce made with silken tofu that adds extra protein without a ton of fat! These dairy-free mashed potatoes are easy to make, gluten free, cholesterol free, and include an oil-free option.
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Anyone who knows me knows I love, love, LOVE mashed potatoes. I mean, who doesn’t? They’re warm and filling, creamy and comforting, simple to make and simple to pair…but sometimes, you just want more than the standard. Sometimes, you want to switch things up a bit. Sometimes, you want a creamy roasted garlic sauce mixed in…and a lot of it, baby!
I’ve had this recipe on my mind and made it for T and myself for quite some time now – I mean, come on. Potatoes? Roasted garlic? Come to mama. – but it was a few of our favorite and totally awesome Periscope viewers from back in the day who inspired me to develop those visions of garlic smashed taters dancing in my head and turn them into a delicious reality.
Dreamy, creamy red-skinned potatoes filled with the flavor of roasted garlic, fresh thyme and the slightest zing from a bit of lemon. (That’s right…lemon.)
Friends, we are so glad to share this recipe with all of you!
Why We Love Dairy Free Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes
- They’re warm and comforting and filled with the delightfully powerful flavor of roasted garlic.
- Instead of butter (or vegan butter for that matter), we’re using a creamy silken tofu sauce that’s blended with super flavorful ingredients. It adds texture and flavor throughout the dish without a ton of effort.
- They remind me of those steakhouse-style garlic potatoes – perfect for the holidays or as a side for dinners year-round!
- Thanks to the aforementioned silken tofu, they pack a protein punch!
How to Make Mashed Potatoes Vegan (and healthy!)
If you’re new to vegan cooking, you may be wondering: Do mashed potatoes contain dairy?
Traditionally, mashed potatoes almost always contain some kind of dairy: milk, butter, sour cream, or a combination of any / all of these. Luckily, it’s easy enough to find vegan butter and plant-based milk alternatives these days and veganize whatever recipe you’re used to making with ease. In fact, we have a vegan mashed potato recipe just like that here!
However, for these vegan red potato mashed potatoes, we wanted to provide a bit of a healthier option. That’s where we came up for the idea for the creamy garlic silken tofu sauce to use in place of butter for these mashed potatoes!
But wait…can you make mashed potatoes without milk and butter? Like, really? Yes, really.
While these mashed potatoes are definitely a different style than our classic vegan mashed potatoes, you’ll be shocked how delicious they are and what an impressive creamy texture they have! I see these as a different type of mashed potato, like a “steakhouse-style” mashed potato. You know, the kind with the ribbons of red skin and small soft lumps throughout, the garlic herb flavor that filled every bite. That’s the style we’re going for here.
Vegan Garlic Mashed Potatoes Ingredients
Obviously, first and foremost, you’ll need POTATOES! We use red-skin potatoes for these healthy vegan mashed potatoes.
And to make the creamy tofu garlic sauce, you’ll need:
- Fresh garlic cloves (You can roast them or not, your call!)
- Silken tofu
- Olive oil (see notes for oil-free)
- Nutritional yeast
- Lemon juice
- Fresh thyme
- Sea salt
- Onion powder
Substitution Options for Healthy Vegan Mashed Potatoes
If you need a substitution for these non dairy garlic mashed potatoes, here are our best tips:
For the red potatoes:
It will work with other potatoes, but since these will be mashed potatoes with skin I love to use red because I love the way it looks.
For the garlic:
We chose to roast the garlic for this recipe, and blending it with the sauce gives it a sense of subtlety throughout the dish. You can also maybe try roasted/sauteed minced garlic unblended with the sauce for a larger, more immediate pop of flavor. This option may require a touch more oil as minced garlic will require more surface space. Alternatively, you can leave the garlic unroasted if you REALLY want a sharper garlic flavor. You may want to reduce the amount of garlic cloves you use if you don’t want the flavor to be too intense though.
For the silken tofu:
It’s important that you use SILKEN tofu in this recipe. Soft youfu will work too, but I wouldn’t use anything firmer than that. This type of tofu has a different texture than the firner tofu you might be used to. When blended, it will become the creamy base for our sauce. Alternatively, you could try making the creamy sauce with soaked cashews, but you would have to add some water to achieve the same texture. I would omit the olive oil if you’re going this route, as the cashews would provide plenty of fat.
Can you make these oil-free?
Sure! I like to add a little olive oil for a bit of fat in our sauce, but you can totally omit that if you want these to be oil-free. You’ll also want to omit the oil we suggest drizzling on the garlic cloves before roasting.
For the nutritional yeast:
This is a staple ingredient in vegan kitchens and adds a bit of nutty, cheesy flavor to our creamy sauce. Please note this is not the same as the yeast you make bread, and they are not interchangeable. It is also not the same thing as “brewer’s yeast.” If you don’t have nutritional yeast, you could skip it and maybe throw in 1 Tbsp ground mustard powder for flavor.
For the thyme:
Use any fresh or freeze-dried herbs you want here! Rosemary would be a great choice also but would bring a more intense flavor.
For the lemon juice:
This just adds a little zingy flavor to our sauce. Feel free to skip it or maybe sub some miso paste for a little fermented cheesy flavor.
How to Make Healthy Vegan Mashed Potatoes
If you’re still wondering “But HOW do you make mashed potatoes from scratch without milk?”, settle in!
Step 1: Boil the potatoes.
First, add the potatoes to a large pot and cover them with water. Bring to a boil on the stove. Continue to cook the potatoes, uncovered, for approximately 20-30 minutes, until they are fork-tender (and then some). I like to overcook the red potatoes a bit, so I stick closer to 30 minutes.
Step 2: Roast the garlic.
Now, roast your garlic. Preheat the oven to 400F and add your peeled garlic cloves to a small baking dish. Drizzle them with a little olive oil and a pinch of salt. Then, roast them at 400F for about 10-12 minutes until slightly browned and fragrant. (Yep, that’s how easy it is to roast garlic!)
Step 3: Make the creamy garlic sauce.
Next, add the roasted garlic to a small blender or food processor along with the rest of the sauce ingredients. Blend on high until smooth and creamy. We like to use our immersion blender here to make things easy!
Step 4: Bring it all together.
Finally, pour the cream sauce over the strained potatoes and use a potato-masher to mash and stir the potatoes until the sauce and potatoes are combined and they reach a nice, creamy consistency. Alternatively, and for an even creamier texture, you can use your immersion blender here as well. I usually use mine at least partially, so I can have a mix of super creamy texture and a few lumps of potato goodness. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed before serving. I usually add a pinch more salt.
How to Serve Dairy Free Mashed Potatoes
Here are some of our favorite ways to serve (and reasons to make) these dairy free roasted garlic mashed potatoes:
Mashed Potato Bowls: These potatoes layered in a bowl with soy curls (rehydrated with our homemade vegan bouillon powder!), peas + corn, and drenched in gravy. You can also use store-bought vegan chicken nuggets (We love the vegan nuggets from MorningStar) or make the chicken parm tofu bites from our vegan chicken parm pizza recipe. Add vegan shredded cheese if you want too. We dig the shredded cheese from Violife!
Holiday Dinner Side: Serve drenched in vegan gravy with all the fixins. These mashed potatoes do great with holidays, and people really seem to dig them. This recipe makes a smaller serving than you may need for the holidays, but it is easily doubled.
Healthy Meal Prep: Make these mashed potatoes up to 5 days ahead of time to have an easy, healthy, and comforting side prepped and ready to go for the week!
How to Store Dairy Free Mashed Potatoes
How to Store Dairy Free Mashed Potatoes in the Fridge:
Store these vegan mashed potatoes in the fridge for up to 5 days in an air-tight container.
How to Freeze Leftover Mashed Potatoes:
Did you know you can FREEZE mashed potatoes?! It turns out you totally can! Pack the mashed potatoes into an airtight freezer container or plastic freezer bag. Honestly, the bag works so much better because it freezes them in a thinner layer that makes defrosting a breeze.
If you’re planning on freezing leftovers, the sooner they go in the freezer the better. If the mashed potatoes aren’t already cool, you can store it in the refrigerator for a few hours before moving it to the freezer. Stored like this, the mashed potatoes will be good for at least a month. To defrost, transfer the mashed potatoes to the fridge. Let it defrost completely before reheating and use within 3 days of removing it from the freezer.
How to Reheat Leftover Mashed Potatoes:
Microwave: You can reheat leftover mashed potatoes covered in the microwave. Microwave for 30-45 seconds and stop to stir. Repeat this until it reaches your desired temp. If the texture doesn’t come back to life, just whip in some plain unsweetened non-dairy milk and a fork.
Stove: You can also reheat mashed potatoes on the stovetop in a large saute pan or wide-bottomed pot. Use a medium setting and stir often. Add a touch of warm liquid (water/broth/non-dairy milk) if needed, but wait until the potatoes have warmed through at least a bit before adding too much.
More Healthy Potato Sides:
- Vegan Au Gratin Potatoes
- Vegan Broccoli Ranch Twice Baked Potatoes
- Simple Egg-Free Potato Pancakes
- Easy Roasted Potatoes
So, go make these taters for your holiday or non-holiday gatherings, and let’s show our non-vegan families and friends just how deliciously spectacular vegan food is!
And when you do, make sure you let us know how it goes by rating the recipe and leaving a comment below. We also love seeing you tag us in your recipes on Instagram. If you’re not already hanging out with us over there, we’re @theplantpowercouple with the “the”.
Enjoy these, friends. And if you happen to be reading this around the holidays, happy holidays; if it’s just another Tuesday, happy Tuesday. And while we’re at it, happy birthday. 🙂 Enjoy!
Yield: 6 servings
These Dairy Free Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes are a healthy vegan mashed potato recipe packed with flavor. They are a great plant-based holiday side dish or cozy everyday dinner side. Instead of butter, they use a creamy roasted garlic sauce made with silken tofu that adds extra protein without a ton of fat! These dairy-free mashed potatoes are easy to make, gluten free, cholesterol free, and include an oil-free option.
20 minPrep Time:
30 minCook Time:
50 minTotal Time:
- 2 pounds red potatoes, washed + diced
- 8-10 large cloves garlic
- Olive oil (for drizzling, optional)
- Sea salt
- Roasted garlic
- 8 oz. silken tofu (That's 1/2 a 16-oz block.)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil (skip it for oil-free)
- 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp fresh thyme
- 2 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp onion powder
- BOIL THE POTATOES: Add the potatoes to a large pot and cover them with water. Bring to a boil on the stove. Continue to cook the potatoes, uncovered, for 20-30 minutes, until they are a little softer than fork-tender. When done, remove from heat, strain the water, and add the potatoes back to the pot.
- ROAST THE GARLIC: Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 400F and add the garlic cloves to a small baking dish. Drizzle or spray them lightly with oil and sprinkle on a pinch of salt. Roast the garlic at 400F for 10-12 minutes until fragrant and lightly browned.
- MAKE THE SAUCE: Add the roasted garlic to a blender or food processor along with the remainder of the sauce ingredients. You can also use an immersion blender. Blend on high until smooth and creamy.
- BRING IT ALL TOGETHER: Finally, pour the cream sauce over the strained potatoes and use a potato-masher and large wooden spoon to mash and stir the potatoes until they reach a nice, creamy consistency and the sauce is fully combined. Alternatively, and for a creamier texture, you can do this with an immersion blender. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed; I usually add another pinch of salt.
- SERVE/STORE: Serve these mashed potatoes drenched in vegan gravy and store leftovers in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or the freezer for up to a month. Enjoy!