Chunky Mashed Potatoes

Serves 5 to 8
These are the mashed potatoes we grew up on, a true testament to my partially WASP upbringing. My mom always put cottage cheese—not milk or sour cream or anything else—in our mashers. We also liked them chunky, not smooth. Until I was an adult, I thought it was the normal way to eat mashed potatoes, and only altered my habits when my husband began substituting ricotta cheese for cottage cheese. Give it a try before you snarl; it’s a good heap of protein on top of the deliciousness


  • 5 4- to 5-inch russet or Idaho potatoes, washed well but not peeled
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) small-curd cottage cheese or ricotta cheese
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 45 minutes. Insert a knife into the center of the potatoes to ensure accurate soft tenderness; the potatoes should be soft but not falling apart. Drain. When cool enough to handle, hold each potato in a clean kitchen towel and peel off the skin. Cut into chunks. (If in a hurry, peel the potatoes first and cut into small chunks for boiling.)
  2. Add the butter and milk to the same pot and place over the lowest heat to melt the butter and warm the milk. Return the potatoes to the pot and mash until almost smooth. Add the cottage cheese and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Stir briskly before serving.
cook's note
Getting Protein into Kids: A dollop of high-protein low-fat cottage cheese or ricotta is a smart way to get protein into kids. With a gentle, friendly fl avor, the half cup used to top a large baked potato contains a whopping 16 grams of protein, which makes it a wise alternative to meat and beans.
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