Leftover Mashed Potato Pancakes

updated Aug 3, 2022
Leftover Mashed Potato Pancakes

A simple recipe for pan-fried potato pancakes using leftover mashed potatoes.


Prep20 minutes

Cook12 minutes

Jump to Recipe
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: Brett Regot/Kitchn

While there are many Thanksgiving leftovers that are arguably better the second day (looking at you, stuffing), mashed potatoes aren’t one of them (unless you plan on drowning them in gravy). They are, however, one of the very best leftovers to reinvent into something new. Forming leftover mashed potatoes into patties and pan-frying them is easily the most delicious thing you can do with leftovers. Here’s how to make them.

Crispy Pancakes Are the Best Thing to Happen to Leftover Mashed Potatoes

If you’re swimming in leftover mashed potatoes after all your guests have come and gone, look no further than these potato pancakes. Add an egg, cheese, and a bit of chopped fresh chives, and you’ve quickly made a mixture that can be formed into patties. You may also want to consider this 5-ingredient mashed potato cakes recipe. There’s no need to even add salt and pepper to the mix if your original mashed potatoes were well-seasoned.

Dredge the patties in flour before slipping them into a hot, oil-coated skillet and the results will be crisp, golden-brown pancakes with warm and fluffy insides. Serve them for lunch with a dollop of sour cream and a simple green salad on the side or make them a midday snack. You could even slide a fried egg on top and call it brunch. It’s hard to go wrong here.

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: Brett Regot/Kitchn

Leftover Mashed Potato Pancakes

A simple recipe for pan-fried potato pancakes using leftover mashed potatoes.

Prep time 20 minutes

Cook time 12 minutes

Serves 4

Nutritional Info


  • 1 ounce

    Parmesan cheese, grated (about 1/2 cup)

  • 2 tablespoons

    chopped fresh chives

  • 1

    large egg

  • 2 cups

    cold mashed potatoes

  • 1/2 cup

    all-purpose flour, divided

  • 2 tablespoons

    olive oil, divided

  • Sour cream, for serving (optional)


  1. Grate 1 ounce Parmesan cheese (about 1/2 cup) and place in a large bowl. Chop until you have 2 tablespoons fresh chives and add to the bowl. Add 1 large egg and lightly beat with a fork or wooden spoon to combine. Add 2 cups cold mashed potatoes and 1/4 cup of the all-purpose flour, and stir to combine. Refrigerate the mixture for 10 minutes.

  2. Place the remaining 1/4 cup flour in a shallow dish. Divide the potato mixture into 8 (1/4-cup) portions. Working with one at a time, shape each portion into a patty about 3-inches in diameter, then dredge the patty in the flour on both sides, shaking off excess. Place on a baking sheet or large plate.

  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a 10- or 12-inch cast iron or nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Tilt the pan so that the oil coats the bottom. Using a wide, flat spatula, gently transfer 4 of the patties into the pan and cook, flipping once, until golden-brown and crisp, about 3 minutes per side. Repeat with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil and 4 patties. Serve warm with sour cream, if desired.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.