Every thanksgiving dinner is incomplete without a buttery and fluffy bowl of mashed potatoes. Mashed potatoes are the comfort food everyone loves to enjoy on holidays and weekends. It’s a side dish that everyone can make, but not everyone can make it perfect. And I know there’s nothing disappointed and worse than a gummy mess of mashed potatoes.
Mashed potatoes can be prepared with few simple ingredients but it’s the details that can make or break this comfort food. So, should you ever ask yourself, why are my mashed potatoes gummy? If yes, this little guide can help you know your mistakes that ultimately lead to the gluey mass of potatoes. Let’s move on.
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Why Are My Mashed Potatoes Gummy?
Potatoes can easily turn into gummy mass if you overwork or overmix them. Potato is full of starch, and it releases more starch on mixing and mashing. So, if you mash them vigorously for a long time, they’ll definitely end up gummy and gluey.
Besides this, a number of other mistakes that people make while preparing mashed potatoes. For instance, using the wrong type of potato, uneven cooking, using blender or electrical tools to mash potatoes are some common blunders.
Let’s discuss them in detail and avoid these mistakes to get a more palatable, fluffier, and delightful meal.
You’re Using High-Moisture, Less Starchy Potatoes
Starting with the right kind of potato is the key to getting fluffy mashed potatoes. Although one can prepare the dish by using a variety of potatoes, but if you are ended with a gummy mass, check what type of potato you are using.
Mostly, people use high moisture and less starchy potatoes such as white or red bliss potatoes for mashing. However, such kind of potatoes needs extreme mashing and mixing and thus make them gluey.
How to avoid: The best way to avoid this mistake is to use less moisture and high starchy potato types. For instance, Russets and Yukon Gold potatoes give the dish a more creamy and fluffy texture, and their less moisture keeps the dish dry and light rather than gummy.
You’re Cutting Small Pieces Of Potatoes
After choosing the right potatoes, it’s time to prepare them correctly and efficiently. However, many people cut the potatoes into small pieces for quick boiling. This way, every small piece absorbs much water and loses its texture when it comes to mixing.
How to avoid: Potatoes need to be cut into small uniform chunks of 1 to 2 inches. This way, every piece will get an equal amount of heat and water and retain its smooth, fluffy texture while mashing.
You’re Adding Potatoes To Warm Water
Another common mistake that leads to gummy mashed potatoes is using warm water for boiling potatoes. Although it’s a time-saver trick to add potatoes into already boiled water, it’s the reason you will end up with a gluey mess of potatoes.
When you add potatoes into boiling water, their outer skin gets cooked first with an undercooked interior. And thus, you might get unwanted lumpy mashed potatoes.
How to avoid: Instead of boiling water, add your potatoes to cold water and turn on the stove to medium heat. Allow them to simmer and cook evenly and thoroughly to get your dream recipe.
You’re Adding Cold Ingredients
Dairy products such as butter and cream are essential to get creamy and fluffy mashed potatoes. But sometimes, we add cold cream and butter straight from the refrigerator into the dish resulting the gluey and sticky mashed potatoes.
Cold ingredients lower down the temperature of the dish and do not mix well. If you are also doing this mistake, stop it.
How to avoid: Bring the temperature of ingredients to normal temperature and then use them in your favorite recipe. Don’t overmix them with potatoes, as this overwork will release more starch leading to gummy mashed potatoes.
You’re Overworking The Potatoes
Potatoes are higher in starch content and release it while mixing, mashing, and blending. The more you blend them, the more starch will release, making the dish sticky, gummy, gluey, and unappetizing.
Mashed potato is a dish that demands perfect mashing and mixing to get creamy and fluffy potatoes.
How to avoid: Mash your potatoes gently and avoid too much mincing as it will release more starch and make the dish ingredients sticky and gluey. So, limit the overworking and avoid gummy mouthfeel.
You’re Using Electrical Tools
Mostly, people mash their potatoes with the help of a potato mixer, blender, and food processor. No doubt it’s a time and effort-saving trick but ruins the whole texture of potatoes. Such electrical tools mash and mix potatoes vigorously, and the result will be definitely gummy mashed potatoes.
How to avoid: Try to use a fork or ricer to mash potatoes as they don’t rupture the starchy potato cells and prevent your dream food from becoming gluey and totally wasted.
How To Fix Gummy Mashed Potatoes
Unfortunately, there’s no ideal method to fix sticky and gluey potatoes as we can’t reverse the release of starch molecules. But there are a couple of options that you can try to make something better from a gluey potato mess.
First, you can prepare extra mashed potatoes and mix this batch with previously prepared sticky potatoes. It can reduce the gummy sensation to a great extent, and you will be able to enjoy it as a side dish.
Secondly, you can prepare potato soup by using gluey potatoes. Add them to the blender with buttermilk or cream. Sprinkle seasonings and spices to your taste and blend the mixture. Serve it with cooked vegetables, and it tastes too delicious.
In addition, you can also prepare unpredicted potato casserole by baking. Just spread the mixture of potatoes in a baking tray, add toppings, either vegetables, spices, or cheese. After that, bake it and enjoy.
Some Tips To Avoid Gummy Mashed Potatoes
Here are some tips to avoid sticky and unappetizing mashed potatoes that you can follow to get your desired dream recipe as you expected.
- Avoid uneven cooking and boiling of potatoes. Put the potato pieces in cold water and allow them to simmer at medium flame. Make sure to cover the pan so that steam can do things right.
- Add some salt to the boiling water while cooking potatoes, as this salty pinch will boost the flavor of bland gummy potatoes.
- Bring all the adding ingredients to room temperature and then mix them with potatoes. It will help to retain the texture of the splendid recipe.
- Don’t use electrical tools to mash potatoes as they will rupture the swollen starch cells and make the dish extra sticky. Always mash them by hand or fork.
There are several factors responsible for your unwanted gluey mess of potatoes. Probably you are making a mistake in choosing the right kind of potato, don’t prepare them correctly, mash them too much using electrical tools, and mix cold dairy ingredients into a freshly prepared batch.
All these mistakes will ultimately make the mashed potatoes extra gluey, gummy, and sticky. So, make sure to avoid these mistakes and keep an eye on each step of prepping ingredients to get palatable and appetizing meal.