5 Crazy-Good Ways to Do Up Mashed Potatoes — Sensational Sides

Though this creamy, dreamy side could never, ever get old, there's something to be said for dressing up your family's tried-and-true recipe every once in a while.

Baked Mashed Potatoes with Parmesan Cheese and Bread Crumbs

Photo by: Tara Donne ©Tara Donne

Tara Donne, Tara Donne

Chances are you've ladled out your fair share of mashed potatoes over the years. Though this creamy, dreamy side could never, ever get old, there's something to be said for dressing up your family's tried-and-true recipe every once in a while. This week, in celebration of our first installment of Sensational Sides, we're digging into mashed potato recipes that come to the table with a few extra-special touches.

Bake them

When you sink a spoon into Giada De Laurentiis'  Baked Mashed Potatoes with Parmesan Cheese and Bread Crumbs (pictured above), you're met with a crunchy, buttery topping that contrasts just right with the creamy, rich mashed potato center. Browned on top and served in a casserole dish, this cheesy take on mashed potatoes gives a special edge to a weeknight staple.

Ree Drummond's Cajun Mashed Potatoes for Ree's Birthday Dinner, as seen on Food Network's The Pioneer Woman

Photo by: Alice Gao ©Alice Gao Photography

Alice Gao, Alice Gao Photography

Add a kick

Though a lot of mashed potato recipes take nothing more than butter, cream, salt and pepper, Ree Drummond's Cajun Mashed Potatoes toss in a little spice to keep things interesting. Mix up homemade Cajun seasoning, complete with garlic powder, paprika, black pepper, kosher salt and cayenne pepper, before blending it with velvety cream cheese-infused mashed potatoes. Ree always adds cream cheese to mashed potatoes as her go-to secret weapon, so the added spice is met with a little added creaminess too.

Sour Cream Mashed Potatoes; Ina Garten

Photo by: Tara Donne

Tara Donne

Make 'em tangy

Even when you add just half a cup of sour cream to mashed potatoes, you get a luxuriously creamy texture with a background tang that'll have your family going back for seconds. Ina Garten's Sour Cream Mashed Potatoes are so good, you'll be making them on repeat for dinners to come.

TrishaYearwood_ArtSmithsMashedCauliflower_H

TrishaYearwood_ArtSmithsMashedCauliflower_H

Chef Name: Trisha Yearwood Full Recipe Name: Art Smith's Garlic Mashed Cauliflower Talent Recipe: Trisha Yearwood's Art Smiths Garlic Mashed Cauliflower as seen on Trisha's Southern Kitchen FNK Recipe: Project: Foodnetwork.com, Back to School/Sandwich Central/Dinner and a Movie/Sides Show Name: Trisha's Southern Kitchen Food Network / Cooking Channel: Food Network

Photo by: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Renee Comet, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Pass on the potatoes

Art Smith's Garlic Mashed Cauliflower from Trisha Yearwood may sound like just another low-carb alternative, but this side is so good that carb cutters and carb lovers alike will be digging in with abandon. When you blend up a cooked head of cauliflower in a food processor with a little Greek yogurt, chicken stock, Parmesan and seasoning, you get a luxuriously creamy mashed side that looks the potato part and tastes just as creamy, comforting and decadent.

Keep 'em loaded

Potato skins may be a staple of your game-day viewing parties, but those aren't the only times you can relish this bacon-laced goodness. After folding in all the ingredients you love about potato skins (aka fresh chives, crispy turkey bacon and extra-sharp cheddar), serve Rachael Ray's  Mashed Potato Skins for Food Network Magazine at the dinner table.

Get more mashed recipes from friends:
Weelicious:  Mashed Potato Cakes

Elephants and the Coconut Trees:  Spicy Roasted Eggplant Mash

Napa Farmhouse 1885:  Roasted Carrot, Onion & Garlic Mash

The Mom 100:  Perfect Mashed Potatoes
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