Don’t let those mashed potatoes go to waste. Okay, I agree. They are so good heated up with some homemade gravy showered on top. But …you have to try this. Take those leftover mashed spuds, add a few key ingredients and fry them up in a pan. You won’t be sorry. It’s like biting into the best tater-tot ever.
Most Eastern Europeans can relate to potato pancakes, known as placki ziemniaczane in Polish, as a typical meal served on Fridays when Catholics were required to abstain from eating meat. Typically, they are made from grated fresh potatoes …the most common being the Jewish latkes, which are infused with onion and served with sour cream and applesauce. My husband is 100% Polish and he has vivid memories of his mom using leftover mashed potatoes to make their potato cakes. My mom made them with mashed potatoes, too. Her ancestors were from Austria and Hungary, but she made her potato cakes the same way my Polish mother-in-law made them.
The moral of the story is …make extra mashed potatoes next time. You’ll be so glad you did. For this post, I used gluten-free flour and bread crumbs so that my granddaughter could indulge. Feel free to use regular versions of each if you are not concerned with gluten.
These can be made as large or small as you prefer. I used my ice cream scoop to collect enough for each one to be just about the size of a golf ball. Then, when flattened out, they measure about 3-inches in diameter.
Try these with a dollop of sour cream. Add some chopped chives or scallions. The kids love to dip them in ketchup. Or make the best version possible by topping them with sour cream, shredded cheddar and crumbled bacon. Yum.
gluten-free mashed potato pancakes
The best way to use up those leftover mashed potatoes. Easy and delicious.
- 3 cups mashed potatoes, chilled
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded Gouda cheese
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1/4 cup finely chopped scallions, green parts
- 1/2 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour or regular flour (may need more or less depending on moisture content of mashed potatoes)
- 1 cup gluten-free breadcrumbs or regular breadcrumbs
- coconut oil, for pan frying (or any neutral oil)
- coarse kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper (for finish)
In a large mixing bowl, add the mashed potatoes, cheese, egg & chopped scallions. Using a potato masher, combine ingredients until well mixed. Gradually add the flour and continue mixing until the mixture can hold a pancake shape. If the potatoes are still too loose to hold a patty shape, add extra flour a tablespoon at a time.
Using an ice cream scooper, take the equivalent of about 2 tablespoonsful of potato mixture between your palms and form into a ball. Flatten each ball into a round patty measuring about 3" in diameter.
Place breadcrumbs in a shallow dish. Dredge both sides of each patty in the breadcrumbs and set aside on a tray.
Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat with enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Once the oil is hot, add several patties in a single layer (without crowding) and sauté 3-4 minutes per side or until golden brown. Repeat with the remaining patties, adding more oil as needed.
Transfer the patties to a tray lined with paper towels. Sprinkle with salt & pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
Don't have leftover mashed potatoes?
Peel and cut about 2 pounds of russet or Yukon gold potatoes into 1-inch cubes. Place them in a large pot and cover with water. Add 1 tablespoon of salt. Cook until easily pierced with a fork. Drain well and mash in 4 tablespoons of butter. Let the mashed potatoes cool to room temperature before proceeding.