Healthy Mashed Potatoes

5 from 531 votes

These Healthy Mashed Potatoes are light in calories since they're made with low-fat sour cream, but loaded with flavor - must-have Thanksgiving side dish!

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These Healthy Mashed Potatoes are full in flavor but low in calories. Made with low-fat sour cream they are a must have healthy potato side dish! They are perfect if you are on a low calorie and low fat diet.

Final plate of healthy mashed potatoes served with fresh chives and a dab of butter
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If you’re looking for a fuss-free healthy version of mashed potatoes, I think you’ll be very pleased with my recipe. These lighter mashed potatoes are made with naturally buttery yukon potatoes. I boil the potatoes with whole garlic cloves, and then mash them with sour cream, vegetable broth and a tad of butter. They come out so creamy, fluffy and utterly delicious! This classic side dish gets a mini makeover for the major Thanksgiving dinner!

Are mashed potatoes healthy?

So wait, we’re making healthy mashed potatoes. But you might be asking, are mashed potatoes even healthy? Potatoes don’t really show up on many diet meal plans. And I think that’s mostly because of how potatoes are prepared. Potatoes are actually good for you. They are low in fat, high in potassium and only have 150 calories per potato/serving. These are not empty calories either. There’s actual great vitamins and nutrients in those calories. So, nutrition and calorie-wise, potatoes are great to add to your diet.

Now if you’re doing a low carb diet, potatoes may not be the best option since a single potato has 36 grams of carbs and only 4 grams of fiber. This is why most people avoid them when they are on strict diets. The main reason potatoes can become unhealthy though is the way they’re prepared – especially when we’re talking mashed potatoes. It’s easy for the calories and fat to add up with all the butter, milk and cream generally in mashed potatoes. So don’t skip the spud, just make a few substitutes for healthy mashed potatoes.


How to make healthy mashed potatoes

I use Yukon Gold potatoes because they have a rich yellow color and buttery texture that makes them the perfect choice for healthy mashed potatoes (that uses less butter than traditional recipes).

I like starting with the potatoes cut into 2 inch chunks. This way when I boil the potatoes they cook more evenly and quickly, as compared to boiling them whole. I also throw in the garlic cloves with the potatoes in the pot. It helps to infuse that garlic taste into the mashed potatoes.

2 pounds of potatoes cut into 2 inch chunks

Once the potatoes are fork tender, I drain them and the garlic together and throw them in a mixer bowl when they’re still hot. You can mash them using a masher or fork. I like using my electric mixer because it’s hands-free and fast. Plus all that whipping makes the mashed potatoes extra fluffy.

Healthy mashed potatoes getting whipped in an electric mixer

After a couple minutes in the mixer, the mashed potatoes are ready to be served. You can leave them there for a shorter time if you like the mashed potatoes to be more chunky, or leave it in there longer and add more broth or more butter or more sour cream for an extra velvety rich result.

The end result is healthy mashed potatoes that are much lighter than traditional mashed potatoes, but taste just as good! Potatoes are truly the big hero side dish on Thanksgiving, but it doesn’t mean it has to be big on calories! I love the creamy, buttery texture and garlicky flavor of these mashed potatoes that just melts in your mouth. It pair so well with turkey, but also with chicken or steak recipes!

close up shot of healthy mashed potatoes with a large spoon in the potatoes for serving

Watch this video to learn how to make healthy mashed potatoes.

Tips for making the recipe

I’ve made some healthy swaps to make the classic mashed potatoes lighter in calories and fat. But I’ve got more tips for you to make more healthy swaps if you’d like so you can customize it to your diets and taste buds.

  1. Boil cauliflower with the potatoes and blend along with the potatoes. You’ll hardly notice the difference when blended together and you’ll consume less carbs that way.
  2. Use greek yogurt instead of low-fat sour cream. Both give a creamy, tangy taste to mashed potatoes. But sour cream is higher in fat and calories while Greek yogurt is higher in protein and has fewer calories
  3. Substitute the butter for olive oil. They both have the same fat content, but butter is a source of saturated fat, while olive oil is a source of monounsaturated fat (the good kinda fat)

Frequently asked questions

What is the best potato for mashing?

Starchier potatoes are the best for mashing, I used yukon gold, but russets would also work. Avoid waxy potatoes, like red or white, they require more mashing which can lead to a pasty texture.

How many calories are in mashed potatoes?

Mashed potatoes made with cream and milk, can have anything from 250 calories a serving and upwards. These creamy potatoes are around 180 calories per serving, so are a much lighter option.

What can I use to mash potatoes without a masher?

I use my stand mixer to mash my potatoes, it’s so easy and results in perfectly fluffy potatoes. A fork will do the job too, it’s just a little more work!

Try these other potato side dishes:

These healthy mashed potatoes are perfect to feed your friends and family for Thanksgiving or the holidays, and they also work perfectly as a side dish during a weeknight meal. And if you have some leftover over, be sure to use them to make Vegetarian Shepards Pie!

If you’ve tried this healthy-ish feelgood Healthy Mashed Potatoes recipe or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!

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Healthy Mashed Potatoes

These Healthy Mashed Potatoes are light in calories since they’re made with low-fat sour cream, but loaded with flavor – must-have Thanksgiving side dish!
5 from 531 votes
Servings 5
Course Side Dish
Calories 184
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 19 minutes
Total Time 29 minutes
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  • 2 pounds yukon gold potatoes peeled & cut into 2″ chunks
  • 4 garlic cloves peeled and halved
  • 1/2 cup low-fat sour cream
  • 1/2 cup low sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • Salt and pepper
  • Fresh herbs like thyme, chives or parsley for serving


  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Place the diced potatoes and garlic inside the pot. Cook covered until the potatoes are tender, about 16-20 minutes.
  • Drain and the return the potatoes and garlic to the pan. Add the sour cream, vegetable broth and butter. Using a fork, masher or electric beaters, mash the potatoes until smooth or until your desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve warm and top with fresh herbs, if desired.


Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last about 3-4 days in the fridge.
Make Ahead Tips: You can chop the potatoes up to 3 days in advance and store them in the fridge in an airtight container with water. When it’s time to cook the mashed potatoes, drain the potatoes and cook as usual.
Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. However you can leave out the butter if you’d like or substitute low fat milk for the sour cream.


Calories: 184kcal, Carbohydrates: 25g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 20mg, Sodium: 81mg, Potassium: 828mg, Fiber: 4g, Vitamin A: 215IU, Vitamin C: 21.6mg, Calcium: 91mg, Iron: 6mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American
Course: Side Dish
5 from 531 votes (514 ratings without comment)

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  1. Sara says:

    This recipe is amazing. How can mashed potatoes with only a couple tablespoons of butter and 1/2 cup sour cream or milk, taste sooo close to full fat mashed potatoes! My husband is a southerner, and his mom makes THE BEST classic mashed potatoes, but he said these were really good. He is picky about his southern staples, haha, so that’s huge. This is a great recipe for a regular weekly need for mashed potatoes, to lighten calories, especially fat and cholesterol. Super easy, too. Thank you for sharing with us!

    1. Yumna says:

      Love this, thanks for sharing!!

  2. Marie says:

    These came out SO good. No one could tell any sort of substitution was made! Can’t believe these only have 2 Tbsp of butter. If they come out bland for you, check the quality of your veggie stock. I’ve found this recipe really hinges on the depth of the veggie stock. Also, left my skins on out of laziness and turned out great.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Great tips, Marie! Thank you for sharing.

  3. Deb says:

    This recipe sounds good! I don’t usually buy low fat foods when they are a substitute for foods naturally higher in fat. A lot of times the fat is lowered, and stuff is added to maintain flavor/ texture that aren’t good. I have never read the label on low fat sour cream, but since there is such a relatively small amount, divided by about 5 servings, I would make these with the real deal!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Hi Deb, you can for sure use full-fat if that’s what you prefer. Looking forward to seeing what you think after you make them!

      1. Elmira says:

        I use full fat yogurt instead of low fat sour cream. Comes out great every time.

        1. Yumna says:

          Thanks for letting me know!

  4. Heidi Hall says:

    These came out slimmy for me… not sure why

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Oh no! Is it possible that they got overmixed? Sometimes they will get gummy/slimy if they get overworked.

  5. Vicki says:

    Your nutrition information doesn’t give serving size

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      When the recipe is set to 5 servings, it should make roughly 5 cups total, so it should be 1 cup per serving.

  6. Rob K says:

    I’m always grateful to find recipes that are healthy, delicious, and easy to prepare. These potatoes checked both boxes. I made a couple tweaks by substituting Greek yogurt for sour cream and chicken broth for vegetable broth.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      That is perfect! I am glad it worked that way – sounds delicious!

  7. Lisa says:

    Any way to make these non-dairy?

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      I have yet to try that, but you can try using vegan substitutes!

  8. denise says:

    thank you so much for this recipe. Cannot wait to try it….looks so yummy

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      You’re so welcome! Hope you enjoy!!

  9. Abby says:

    How much does this yield? I need 6 cups of mashed potatoes for another recipe and I’m not sure how many I would get with this recipe.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      When the recipe is set to 5 servings, it should make roughly 5 cups total, so it should be 1 cup per serving.

  10. Martha says:

    I really enjoyed this low calorie mashed potatoes, creamy and fulfilling.
    Really good for me, who is on calorie deficit but always wanted to eat delicious food

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you so much! I’m glad you enjoyed!

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