Olive Oil Smashed Potatoes
Yield: about 6 servings
Universally adored for their rich, creamy, buttery, fluffy texture, this recipe delivers in an unexpected way!


  • 2 pounds yellow fleshed potatoes, like Yukon gold, peeled if desired and cut into 1-inch chunks*
  • 8-10 garlic cloves, peeled but left whole
  •  Kosher salt and fresh black pepper
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Optional: 1 (6-inch) sprig fresh rosemary


  1. Bring 8 cups of water, the potatoes, garlic, 2 teaspoons salt, and optional rosemary sprig to a boil in a large saucepan. Cook at a brisk simmer (but not a full rolling boiling) until the potatoes are very tender, about 15 minutes from the time a simmer is reached.
  2. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid, and then drain the potatoes and garlic. Discard the stem from the rosemary, if using. Mash the potatoes and garlic, and then beat in the olive oil (I use my hand masher to sort of whisk and stir) and then thin to desired consistency with the reserved cooking liquid. Check for seasoning – I add a few hearty grinds of the pepper mill and find between ¼ and ½ teaspoon of salt to be plenty, depending on how much cooking liquid I’ve used. Serve immediately.


*For added ease and a rustic smashed potato, I don’t peel the potatoes, although you may if preferred. Also, Yukon gold potatoes provide good flavor and a creamy heft. If you prize light, fluffy mashed potatoes, use up to 50% russets. While peeling is optional with the thinner-skinned Yukon golds, I recommend peeling thicker-skinned russet potatoes.

A few more things…
While measuring the water in which the potatoes cook may seem unnecessary, it ensures properly salted water that flavors the potatoes while cooking and in a later step. That way the end result is neither too salty nor bland.
Traditionalists may add a pat of butter to the top, and a sprinkle of Parmesan offers a nice extra. That said, we typically enjoy them just as they are.

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