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Potato Cakes Recipe with Leftover Mashed Potatoes

Potato Cakes recipe is the perfect use for leftover mashed potatoes. Baked Mashed Potato Cakes have a buttery crispy crust with a creamy center. The flavor options are endless.

Top down photo of a gray plate holding baked potato cakes garnished with sliced green onions.

Mashed Potato Cakes are an easy way to repurpose mashed potatoes.

This Potato cakes recipe uses simple ingredients and the flavor combinations are endless. We’re sharing our favorites and hope you’ll share yours too.

Making Potato Cakes from mashed potatoes has been a staple in our family for as long as I can remember and we never get tired of them. My spin on my mothers is that I BAKE mine versus frying.

When we cook, we’re already planning on repurposing our leftovers before the food even hits the table.

Some dishes are just better the second time around, and some ingredients can be remade into a whole new recipe like this one.

A sliced Potato Cake garnished with sliced green onions on a white.

What are the best potatoes to use?

We use Russet potatoes for most of the recipes calling for mashed potatoes. We like the texture and their ability to hold up in soups and casseroles without getting mushy or disintegrating altogether. You can use any potato that you routinely use and like for your recipes.

Do you have to use leftover mashed potatoes? Of course not! You can certainly cook your potatoes and mash them up or run them through a potato ricer.

Leftover baked potatoes also work well.

Ingredients

The ingredients used to make potato cakes including mashed potatoes, egg, garlic powder and sliced green onions.

When we make our mashed potatoes, we use butter, milk or cream, salt, and pepper. So the recipe doesn’t need a lot of additional ingredients to come together.

  • Mashed Potatoes – You can also use sweet potatoes!
  • Cream – I used heavy whipping cream because it adds a delicious richness.
    • Substitutions for cream include milk, yogurt (plain any variety), or sour cream (light or original).
  • Green Onions – This is optional but we love the addition of this mild onion in this recipe.
  • Garlic Powder – We don’t use fresh garlic because it would dominate this recipe.
  • Salt and Pepper

Flavor Variations

  • Make it loaded by adding grated cheddar cheese and bacon! Top it with a dollop of sour cream.
  • Black pepper and parmesan is an amazing combination.
  • Diced ham and cheese make them a delicious option at breakfast.
  • Chopped pepperoni and mozzarella make a pizza-inspired potato cake. Serve them with a side of marinara.

You can also add pre-cooked veggies. We recommend that they be finely chopped. Broccoli, mushrooms, and peppers would be delicious.

Want more delicious recipes? Follow Hostess At Heart on Pinterest!

Potato cake sitting on a gray plate topped with sliced green onions over a gray stripped napkin.

How to make Potato Cakes

  1. Season room temperature mashed potatoes with garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  2. Whip the egg and stir it into the mashed potatoes.
  3. Drizzle in the cream until the potatoes have a creamy texture but are still firm enough to hold their shape.
  4. Shape into a 3-inch pattie with a 1/2-inch thickness.
  5. Bake.
Raw potato patties on a baking sheet.

Note: We bake our potato cakes but they can also be fried. Heat a neutral cooking oil into a large skillet. When hot, add the potato cakes and cook 3 to 4 minutes on each side.

Tips for making the perfect Leftover Potato Cakes recipe

  • Use room temperature ingredients. It makes blending the ingredients together easier.
  • Beat the egg before adding it to the mashed potatoes. Again, it makes blending easier.
  • Season the potatoes. Even though you seasoned the mashed potatoes when you made them, these cakes need seasoning so they don’t taste bland.
  • Keep the shape and thickness similar so they cook at the same rate.
Top down close up potato cake garnished with sliced green onions sitting on a white plate.

These Leftover Mashed Potato Cakes are simple to make, use simple ingredients, and you don’t need any fancy ingredients. I used a baking sheet and two hands. Couldn’t be easier right?

If you fry them I would definitely use a cast-iron skillet. They get good and hot which is what you want. If you add them to the skillet before it’s hot, the potato cakes will just soak up your oil. Not what you want.

How to Reheat and Store Mashed Potato Cakes

Can you make Potato Cakes ahead of time?

Yes. Keep the unbaked potato cakes for up to 2 days in the fridge. Remember, however, if you made these potato cakes with leftover potatoes you should bake and use them within 5 days of when you cooked the potatoes.

How long will Baked Potato Cakes last in the refrigerator?

Baked Potato Cakes will last in the refrigerator for 2 days. They can become soggy so I recommend just covering them lightly with waxed paper or foil. I would store them unbaked and then bake them so they’re crispy when served or follow the reheating instructions below.

Can Old-Fashioned potato cakes be frozen?

Yes, these old-fashioned potato cakes can be frozen. Place the potato cakes baked or unbaked on a baking sheet and place them in the freezer. Once frozen, place them in an airtight container for up to 2 months.

How to Reheat Potato Cakes From Mashed Potatoes

Baking is the best way to reheat potato cakes from mashed potatoes. Microwaving can result in soggy potato cakes. Please the potato cakes on a baking sheet that’s been sprayed lightly with non-stick baking spray. Put them in a 375°F oven for 10 to 20 minutes until heated through.

Thawed or frozen leftover mashed potato cakes can be reheated until golden brown and heated through.

What goes with Mashed Potato Cakes?

Anything that you would serve potatoes with you can serve with potato cakes.

We like to think that Mashed Potato Cakes can be served casually making them perfect with the following dishes.

Here are a few of our favorite Recipes for Leftover Mashed Potatoes!

Pin this Recipe!

Two photo collage for Pinterest. Top photo is a potato cake that's been cut open showing the soft center. The bottom photo is potato cakes sitting on a gray plate garnished with sliced green onions.

If you enjoyed this recipe, here are a few more you may like.

Top down photo of a gray plate holding baked potato cakes garnished with sliced green onions.

Potato Cakes Recipe

Author: Julie Menghini
Potato Cakes recipe is the perfect use for leftover mashed potatoes. Mashed Potato Cakes have a buttery crispy crust with a creamy center and the flavor options are endless!
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword: Leftovers, Mashed Potatoes, Potato Cakes, Potato Patties
Servings: 8

Ingredients
 
 

  • 4 cups mashed potatoes
  • ½ cup heavy cream – can substitute with half and half, milk, yogurt or sour cream
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onions
  • salt and pepper

Optional garnishes – cheese, crispy bacon, or sour cream.

    Instructions
     

    • Preheat the oven to 375F°
    • Combine all of the ingredients together and shape into patties approximately 3 inches round and 1/2 inches thick.
    • Place the patties on a greased baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, turning the pan halfway through.

    Notes

    Tips:
    • Use room temperature ingredients. It makes blending the ingredients together easier.
    • Beat the egg before adding it to the mashed potatoes. Again, it makes blending easier.
    • Season the potatoes. Even though you seasoned the mashed potatoes when you made them, these cakes need seasoning so they don’t taste bland.
    • Keep the shape and thickness similar so they cook at the same rate.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 334kcalCarbohydrates: 50gProtein: 7gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 82mgSodium: 91mgPotassium: 714mgFiber: 4gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 559IUVitamin C: 50mgCalcium: 46mgIron: 1mg

    Nutritional Disclaimer

    This recipe was calculated using the exact brands and measurements I used to make this recipe. If you are following a strict diet please note changing anything will cause the nutritional info to change. My calculations are intended as a guide only.

    Tried this recipe?Let me know how it was!

    Some of our favorite recipes using leftovers!

    Recipe Rating




    Louisa

    Monday 27th of June 2022

    June 27, 2022: Julie, I just found this recipe. I like that these are baked and not fried. It is a healthier option. Can these be frozen? It would save time when serving for a holiday dinner. If they can be frozen, is it better to freeze unbaked or baked? If you'll be eating them in a few days, can you keep in fridge unbaked? If using yogurt for a cream substitute, can you use low or nonfat plain Greek yogurt or should it be non Greek? Thanks. Louisa

    Julie Menghini

    Wednesday 29th of June 2022

    Hi Louisa! Thank you for stopping by. You can definitely substitute yogurt for cream and any variety will work. My mother even made these with just milk. They freeze beautifully. I would form them and put them on a baking sheet before baking. Once frozen just slip them into an airtight container. I'd bake the day you want them. You can even bake them frozen but personally, I'd let them thaw at room temperature uncovered so they don't get mushy. You can freeze baked patties but I would still crisp them up in the oven before serving until they're warm, 10 to 15 minutes Thank you for your question. I definitely need to add this information to my post.

    Kat

    Thursday 31st of March 2022

    What kind of cream do you use, I'm a novice at cooking so I need things spelled out T.T Is it heavy whipping cream? Half and half?

    Julie Menghini

    Sunday 3rd of April 2022

    I love your comment! Thank you! I used Heavy whipping cream in this recipe but you can substitute with half and half as well. I'm heading over to update the recipe with this information. Thank you for posting your question. I'm sure other readers will thank you too.

    Shelby

    Wednesday 24th of November 2021

    I was VERY impressed by these! Normally, like most commenters, I make potato pancakes in the pan, but these might actually be better?? To be honest, I really do not miss the grease.

    Julie Menghini

    Thursday 25th of November 2021

    Thank you so much, Shelby! They just soak up the grease when fried and these still have a crispy exterior with a soft center when baked.

    blank

    Sunday 16th of May 2021

    it didn't cook either method, and all I got was gross creamy unhealthy potatoes

    Linda Lum

    Monday 10th of January 2022

    @blank,Perhaps the mashed potatoes you started out with were too creamy. I think this recipe works best with potatoes that are simply cooked and mashed, not filled with butter and milk or cream.

    Julie Menghini

    Monday 17th of May 2021

    Not sure why, we haven't ever had any issues making these. Did you handle them too much?

    Kathleen

    Sunday 11th of October 2020

    These are perfect! We loved their golden crispy exterior and soft and savory insides!

    Julie Menghini

    Monday 12th of October 2020

    Thank you, Kathleen!