Loaded mashed potatoes made right in your slow cooker! Creamy, smooth mashed potatoes loaded with cheese, bacon, and green onions. Easy enough for a weeknight side dish at dinner or for a Holiday dinner like Thanksgiving. Free up oven space and use your slow cooker for the mashed potatoes.
LOADED MASHED POTATOES
The Thanksgiving recipes continue with these slow cooker loaded mashed potatoes. I’ve never been a fan of mashed potatoes but when they’re made the right way (aka- cream, cream cheese and butter) and loaded with bacon and cheese, I suddenly become a mashed potato lover.
And, with only a few minutes of prep work these are also so simple to make.
How to make loaded mashed potatoes in the slow cooker
- Peel an entire 5 pound bag of red potatoes. Wash them off and then cut them in half. Place the potato halves, chicken broth, and some salt into the slow cooker. Cover and let cook on high heat for 4-5 hours.
- Add some cream cheese and butter right into the slow cooker. Use a handheld blender and beat the potatoes until they’re smooth and creamy.
- Throw in some shredded cheddar cheese, bacon, and green onions. Stir together to combine.
- Finish it off by adding the remaining cheese, bacon and green onions on top and let it sit there. It will melt slightly and make for a pretty presentation.
My tips for making this recipe
- I think it’s best to peel the potatoes. You can just scrub and clean the potato instead of peeling, but there will be pieces of peel in the mashed potatoes. Leave them unpeeled if that’s your preference.
- I have only ever tried this recipe with red potatoes but I am sure it would be fine to use any other potato you prefer. Red potatoes provide the most flavor and they don’t end up “gluey and pasty” when you blend them up into mashed potatoes.
- These potatoes are perfectly creamy and not super thick. They’re thick enough but not like dry thick, if that makes any sense…. if you like thinner mashed potatoes then use closer to 3 cups of chicken broth. Same idea if you want thicker potatoes then use less than the 2 1/2 cups called for. I have always made this recipe with 2 1/2 cups chicken broth and it’s perfect.
- Please SHRED YOUR OWN CHEESE. Yes, it’s all in caps because it is so important! The pre-shredded cheese has a powder on them to keep it from sticking together in the package, but it also makes the cheese not melt as smoothly and easily because of it. Shred your own cheese!
- I’ve made these potatoes with the package of store-bought bacon bits, made my own bacon and chopped it, and I have used the already cooked bacon (that you cook in the microwave) from Costco. They are all good. For ease, convenience, and taste I prefer the Costco pre-cooked bacon.
- These loaded mashed potatoes can stay in the slow cooker on the warm setting for up to 2 hours.
- If the potatoes end up being too thick for your liking after you have blended them up, simply add some warmed milk into the mixture and blend them again until combined and the consistency you want.
If you are looking for a quick version of mashed potatoes then try this recipe for perfect cream cheese mashed potatoes. Or serve both at the Thanksgiving table because can you really have too many mashed potatoes? I think not 🙂
Slow Cooker Loaded Mashed Potatoes
- 1 bag (5 lbs) red potatoes peeled & halved
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
- 4 tablespoons butter, cubed small
- 4 oz cream cheese, cubed small
- 2 cups (8 oz block) shredded cheddar cheese
- 10-12 slices chopped bacon
- 1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions
Spray the insert of the crock pot with cooking spray. Place the peeled, halved red potatoes into it and sprinkle the salt and pepper over the potatoes.
Pour the chicken broth over the potatoes. Cover with lid and cook on HIGH for 4 hours.
Add the cubed butter and cream cheese into the crock pot (leave the liquid in there, do not drain it) and use a handheld blender to beat it until smooth and creamy.
Add 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese, half the bacon, and half the sliced green onions. Stir it in with a wooden spoon until combined. Sprinkle the remaining cheese, bacon, and green onion on top. Let it sit for a few minutes for the cheese to melt.
Serve right away. Potatoes can stay on the warm setting for up to 2 hours if needed.
IMPORTANT: Do not overmix the potatoes with the hand mixer! If you beat them for too long they release more gluten which leads to pasty/gummy potatoes. Either use a hand potato masher to mash them or use the handheld mixer and just beat together until smooth and creamy.
The chopped bacon and green onion amount is totally up to you. The measurements listed are the ones I use, but you can add more or less depending on preference. Same thing with the green onions.
You can use either the full-salt, regular chicken broth or the reduced-sodium chicken broth.
Use full fat cream cheese! It makes a big difference.
It's important to cube the butter and cream cheese so it will blend in smoothly and easily with the potatoes.
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