Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

There's a lot you can do to make these healthier without sacrificing taste.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes
 Cal Crary / Getty Images

Mashed potatoes are naturally calorie dense, particularly in carbohydrates. “I have substituted potatoes for cauliflower, which is delicious. Over the course of the day you will eat enough starch, and switching to cauliflower really cuts down on carbs and calories,” nutrtion expert Leah Kaufman suggests. She also recommends substituting whole milk for skim to reduce total fat. “This will not only cut down on all the fat, but specifically saturated fat,” she says. Butter is another tasty killer in this recipe because of its high saturated fat content.

“You can also substitute the butter for trans fat-free margarine to decrease (saturated) fat,” she says. For creamy mashed potato fans who want to enjoy the texture without the added fat of regular cheeses, Kaufman recommends trying Laughing Cow Cheese.

Our advice

Healthy: Replace whole milk with skim (cuts 30 calories) and exclude the cheese (cuts 27 calories).

Healthier: Replace whole with skim, exclude butter (cuts 27 calories) and cheese (cuts 26 calories).

Healthiest: Replace potatoes with cauliflower (cuts 160 calories), replace whole milk with skim, exclude butter and cut the cheese.

Nutrition (per serving)

253 calories; 11g fat; 3.5g saturated fat; 34.2g carbohydrates; 5.7g protein

Prep time

15 min.

Cook time

60 min.

  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 7 baking potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400°.

Slice about 1/4" from the head of garlic, and drizzle olive oil over the exposed cloves. Wrap garlic in aluminum foil, and roast for 40-50 minutes—until soft. Remove from oven, and cool until you can handle it.

Meanwhile, set a vegetable steamer into a pot or saucepan with a lid. Add an inch of water to the pot, and fill the steamer basket with the cauliflower florets. Cover the pot, and bring the water to a boil. Cook cauliflower until very tender (so that when you pierce it with a knife it goes in and comes out easily without catching), about 10 minutes.

Transfer cauliflower to a food processor. Squeeze the individual cloves of roasted garlic into the cauliflower. Add the thyme, and secure the lid on the food processor. Pulse the cauliflower mixture until there are no lumps and it's smooth like mashed potatoes. This may take a few minutes.

Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve.