SIMPLE Mashed Potatoes with Caramelized Onions

Jump to RecipeLeave a Comment

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

Italian Mashed Potatoes with only ONE ingredient!

What is the ONE ingredient in these delicious, creamy (without cream), luscious mashed potatoes? …


It all starts with the potatoes themselves. In order to achieve the creamy smooth texture you MUST use the YUKON GOLD variety. This is the closest variety to the Italian yellow potato variety that I find in Sardegna, Italy. The flesh is yellow to gold, firm, naturally flavorful, and moist- perfect for making them into yummy mashers. Since the potatoes are naturally moist and delicious to the taste after boiling them in salted water I simply beat them with a hand mixer and about 1/2 Cup of the reserved potato water and THAT IS IT!! What you get is an unbelievably flavorful, simple, and tasty MASHED POTATOES dish.

A Healthy Potato!

VITAMIN C One medium Yukon gold potato meets one half of your daily vitamin C needs, and contains nearly twice the amount of vitamin C as a regular baking potato. Vitamin C is used for synthesis of collagen, which helps your body heal wounds.

LOWER BLOOD PRESSURE The Yukon gold potato is a good source of potassium, which may help lower your blood pressure, by decreasing the effects of sodium.

IRON The Yukon gold potato meets 6 percent of your daily value for iron. Although not significantly high in iron, the vitamin C in the potato helps improve its absorption, and may help you meet your iron needs.

Do I need to say more? Make and EAT these potatoes!

Want to save this recipe?
Just enter your email and get it sent to your inbox! Plus you’ll get new recipes from us every week!
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Personal Story… The Potato Debacle

My husband is from Idaho Falls, Idaho. I KNOW!! Potato country! He grew up with very traditional mashed potatoes made with Idaho Russets (duh! they buy them by the case there), heavy cream, and butter. I do have a place in my heart for these as well, BUT they are a totally different side dish than this Italian version. The flesh of Idaho Russets is white, dry, and mealy, and it is suitable for baking, mashing, and french fries. The problem when you make mashed potatoes with them is you need to add a lot liquid (cream, chicken stock, etc.) and fat (butter) to achieve the creamy mash we all crave. So, in MY OPINION, russets win the race for french fries by a mile!

When it comes to SIMPLE AND SMOOTH MASHED potatoes- the ITALIAN version wins the race! Don’t worry, my husband and I are fine :). We may get in a passionate discussion over potatoes, but that is the life of living with an Italian woman in the kitchen. He’s used to it! P.S he says, THESE POTATOES DELICIOUS AND TASTE NATURALLY BUTTERY.

Caramelized Onions

For this recipe I used red onions to give a sweeter taste and add some color. You can certainly use yellow or sweet onions (I would not recommend a white onion as they are sometimes overpowering and bitter). My advice for making delicious, sweet, and perfectly caramelized onions is :

DO NOT BE AFRAID TO KEEP COOKING!!! Half way through cooking them you may think, AHH! They are getting too dark? Are they burning? What is happening? I still need to cook them? They look done! …NO!! By slowly cooking them in olive oil until they are richly browned, you will pull flavor out of the simplest ingredients.

Stay patient and you will achieve the perfect restaurant style onions. These onions are great for serving over burgers or sandwiches as well!

Works as a MEAL or a SIDE DISH

I find that the richness of the onions and the hearty mashed potatoes make this a great stand alone meal on a busy weeknight. It is also a great side dish for a more formal dinner. Either way- MAKE THESE FAST!! YOU WILL LOVE THEM.


Mashed potatoes and caramelized onions

Recipes to go with this:

Perfect Roast Chicken with Citrus, Fennel, and Vegetables

Braised Chicken with Plums

Tuscan Style Osso Buco

Seared Scallops in Lemon Butter

Made with Amore,

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Mashed potatoes and caramelized onions

SIMPLE Mashed potatoes (dairy free) and Caramelized Onions

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

No reviews

I find that the richness of the onions and the hearty mashed potatoes make this a great stand alone meal on a busy weeknight. It is also a great side dish for a more formal dinner. Either way- MAKE THESE FAST!! YOU WILL LOVE THEM. 

  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x


Units Scale
  • 1 lb Yukon Gold potatoes, cut in quarters
  • 4 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 red onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 Tbs dry Rosemary
  • 1/2 Tbs dry Thyme
  • salt to taste


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (about 6 Cups water and 3 Tbs Kosher Salt). Add the potatoes once the water boils. Boil about 10-12 minutes until fork tender. Reserve 1 cup of potato water. Drain potatoes and place in a large mixing boil. Add 1/2 Cup of the potato water, With a hand mixer start mixing the potatoes until creamy and smooth (I like to leave a little chunky). Add more potato water and salt if needed to achieve desired consistency. When done, Cover and set aside.
  2. Heat a large skillet to medium heat. Add olive oil. Add onions, garlic and herbs. Stir and cook for about 20-25 minutes. First the onions will cook and turn soft. Keep cooking until the are dark brown and all the natural sugars come out and create flavorful taste. Because most of the natural onion water has cooked off at this point, there might be some spots where the pot could start to burn. If this happens, stir in a splash of water. The liquid will dissolve the cooked-on bits, which the onions will re-absorb. Salt to taste. Do not add salt until the end of cooking.
  3. Serve the potatoes HOT and add the herby onions over the mashed potatoes!


Onions are great over burgers and sandwiches as well!

  • Author: Elena
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 30 min
  • Category: Savory
  • Method: Italian
  • Cuisine: Italian

You May Also Like

About Elena

My dream is to share delicious wholesome recipes that you will share around the table with all your loved ones. The memories surrounded by food are the heart and soul of CucinaByElena.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star