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Make Ahead Creamy Italian Mashed Potatoes

Serves 8     adjust servings

 Make ahead side dishes are perfect for holiday meals! These Creamy Italian Mashed Potatoes are packed with flavor and so easy to throw together. After whipping the potatoes, you put them in a casserole dish and bake til crispy. It's so good!

Ingredients

  • 5 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, smashed and minced
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter
  • 2 (.7 ounce) packets dry Italian dressing mix
  • 1 teaspoon Better Than Bouillon Chicken Base
  • 1 tablespoon dry Italian dressing mix, for topping
  • 1-3 teaspoons Italian seasoning, for topping

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil over high heat while you peel and chop the potatoes. Chop them into 1 or 2 inch chunks.
  2. Chop the onion and the garlic.
  3. Add the potatoes, onion, and garlic to the water, even if it's not boiling yet. Leave the heat on high until the water starts boiling, then reduce to a medium simmer.
  4. Boil for about 15-20 minutes until the potatoes are very tender.
  5. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  6. Drain well.
  7. Add the cream cheese, butter, 2 packets of Italian dressing mix, and Chicken Base.
  8. Use a hand mixer to beat the potatoes. This should only take about 2 minutes.
  9. Taste the potatoes and see if you want to add any salt and pepper.
  10. Pour the potatoes into a 3 quart casserole dish. (Any size will do. 9x13 works great, and then you get lots of crispy topping.)
  11. Use your spoon to create wave and divets on the surface of the potatoes.
  12. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon additional dry Italian dressing mix. If you don't have another packet, or think it's annoying to have an open package in your cupboard, then skip it and just sprinkle on some Italian seasoning. I did both!
  13. Bake at 400 degrees F for about 20-30 minutes, until the top has developed a layer that is as crispy as you like it. 
  14. Serve immediately.

Make ahead:

  1. Follow instructions through step 12 (put the potatoes in the casserole dish and top with seasoning). Cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. When you are ready to bake, remove the cover and bake at 400 for 30-45 minutes, until hot and the top has become crispy. 

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