Creme Fraiche Mashed Potatoes with Gruyere

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mashed potatoes in a white oval baking dish

Creme Fraîche Mashed Potatoes with Gruyere is the updated classic side that your holiday feast needs. Ultra creamy mashed potatoes, the tangy zip of creme fraîche, and a golden brown cheesy top make this holiday recipe unforgettable. 

If you’re in pursuit of the perfect mashed potatoes, this recipe for Creme Fraîche Mashed Potatoes with Gruyere cheese is here for it. The Gruyere cheese in this recipe doesn’t just melt over these lusciously smooth mashed potatoes, it forms a savory-crisp crust. Pair that with the tangy zip of creme fraîche, and this is one gluten-free side dish that the whole table will be reaching for. 

Mashed potatoes will never be the same.

SHOULD YOU USE A POTATO RICER? 

One of the secrets to smooth, fluffy mashed potatoes is a potato ricer. This handy kitchen tool creates just the right potato consistency (AKA super creamy mashed potatoes), by breaking apart chunky potato lumps when it pushes the cooked potatoes through a grate. This process softens the potatoes, but doesn’t release the starch. Keeping the potato’s starch intact is what allows the potato to absorb all of that delicious butter, milk, and creme fraîche.

potatoes in a ricer over a clear bowl

DO I NEED TO PEEL THE POTATOES?

If you use a potato ricer, you can opt to leave the peels on. The grate in the potato ricer does an excellent job of catching the potato skins. (Pull the peels out of the ricer to clear the grate as you work.) 

MASHED POTATO PRO TIP

Heat your liquid (milk, cream, stock) before adding to the mashed potatoes. If the liquid is warm, it will more easily blend into the potatoes. 

Where to find Creme Fraîche

Many grocery stores carry creme fraîche near other dairy products. Sometimes it is located near other creamy dairy products like sour cream, but occasionally it is separated out near the fancier cheeses. I often buy my creme fraîche at Trader Joe’s. 

This easy to follow guide from Serious Eats on how to make creme fraiche has everything you need to know, but be sure to plan ahead if using this method. 

WHAT TO DO WITH LEFTOVER CREME FRAICHE

Creme fraîche is one of those ingredients that we use for one special recipe or dish, and then sometimes forget we have it in the fridge. Get the most out of your leftover creme fraîche by turning an average weeknight dinner recipe into an amazing weeknight dinner recipe with my Creamy Dijon Chicken, or Creamy Shells with Peas and Bacon.

INGREDIENTS

  • Creme FraîcheThis rich, decadent dairy product is essentially cultured cow’s cream. It works well in both savory and sweet recipes. Creme fraîche’s thick, creamy texture adds a tanginess to the mashed potatoes, and offers a beautiful contrast to the salty Gruyere cheese.
  • Potatoes This recipe works best with Russet potatoes. They have a high starch content and make light fluffy mashed potatoes that blend well with liquids after refrigeration. You can also use Yukon Gold potatoes in this recipe, but may not need as much milk / half and half to get a smooth, creamy result. If using Yukon gold potatoes, start with half the amount of half and half and add more as needed. 
  • Gruyere Cheese – This salty Alpine cheese is slightly nutty and has a unique savory flavor. Recipes that call for melting cheese, like fondue or French Onion soup, often use Gruyere cheese. When it’s melted over mashed potatoes, it gets crisp and golden and has a rich savory flavor.
  • Milk or Low-Sodium Vegetable or Chicken Stock – The liquid you use with your potatoes is completely a matter of preference. Using whole milk, half-and-half, or heavy cream will result in a richer mashed potato dish. Using chicken or vegetable stock adds a bit more savoriness to the potatoes.

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5 from 9 votes

Creme Fraîche Mashed Potatoes with Gruyere

Give your classic mashed potatoes an upgrade with creamy, tangy creme fraîche and a golden crust of Gruyere cheese on top. The dish should be made in a casserole dish so that the top can be broiled right before serving, making an elegant but still traditional mash.
Prep: 40 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Servings: 12

Equipment

  • Stockpot
  • Colander
  • Potato Masher or Potato Ricer
  • 3 Quart Casserole Dish

Ingredients 

For the potatoes:

  • 4 pounds Russet Potatoes (see note)
  • 2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups Creme Fraîche (1 1/2 cups = 16 oz)
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups Milk or Low-Sodium Vegetable or Chicken Stock, warmed
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt, more to taste

For topping:

  • 1/2 cup finely grated Gruyere Cheese (sub extra-sharp white cheddar)

Instructions 

  • Fill a large pot about 3/4 full with water. Stir in about 1 Tbsp of salt (not on ingredients list). Peel the potatoes and slice into even pieces. Add to pot of water.
  • Cover and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove cover and reduce heat to a low simmer. Simmer until potatoes are easily pierced with a fork, 15 to 25 minutes (depending on size of potatoes).
  • Drain potatoes. Cover the colander with a dish towel or lid. Let the potatoes sit in the colander, covered, for 10 minutes (the potatoes will lightly steam; this will draw out the moisture and prevent watery mashed potatoes).
  • Mash potatoes with a masher or by running them through a ricer. (I prefer the ricer for the most light and fluffy potatoes.)
  • Add melted butter and creme fraîche to potatoes and mash everything together.
  • Heat milk or stock in the microwave or on the stovetop just until warm to the touch. Add to mashed potatoes as needed (start on the low end of the range and add more as needed), until very smooth and creamy. Taste and season with more salt, as needed.
  • Turn on the oven’s broiler.
  • Spray a broiler-safe 3-quart casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray. Spread potatoes evenly into the dish.
  • Sprinkle grated cheese over the potatoes.
  • Broil potatoes until topping is light golden brown, 3 to 6 minutes.
  • Serve immediately.

Notes

Potatoes - This recipe works best with Russet potatoes. They have a high starch content and make light fluffy mashed potatoes that blend well with liquids after refrigeration. You can also use Yukon Gold potatoes in this recipe, but may not need as much milk / half and half to get a smooth, creamy result. If using Yukon gold potatoes, start with half the amount of half and half and add more as needed. 
Kosher Salt - I use Morton’s Kosher Salt to test recipes. If using table salt, reduce by about half. If using Diamond Kosher Salt, increase by about 25%. Everyone has their own preferences when it comes to salt, so be sure to taste and adjust as you go.

Nutrition

Calories: 213kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 29mg | Sodium: 171mg | Potassium: 682mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 265IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 87mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef
Cost: $8.00
Calories: 213
Keyword: gluten free, Holiday recipe, mashed potatoes
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About Jess Smith

Jess is the recipe creator and photographer at InquiringChef.com. She spent nearly a decade as the Chief Recipe Developer for the award-winning meal planning app Cook Smarts. Her colorful, healthyish recipes have been featured in popular online publications including Parade, Hallmark, and HuffPost.

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