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Healthy Restaurant-style Smashed Potatoes

February 22, 2014

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Who doesn’t love potatoes? And if there’s ever a time when you deserve to indulge in some spud-eating, it’s in the midst of winter, especially a winter as harsh as this one! It’s bitter cold outside, so it makes sense to crave a warm, filling dish. Not to mention that it’s almost Saint Patrick’s Day, so it’s only fitting to give a nod to the Irish with a big bowl of warm smashed potatoes!

The problem with potatoes is that they are relatively low in nutrients and often prepared using unhealthy, rich ingredients, which makes for an overindulgent dish. Delicious, yes, but probably not the healthiest meal choice. Luckily, smashed potatoes are easy to lighten up by adding a variety of hearty root vegetables and cutting back on the added dairy. I found this classic, restaurant-style recipe for smashed potatoes from celebrity chef Ree Drummond, and made a few adjustments to turn it into a healthy version that’s worthy of a real St. Patrick’s Day feast! 

Lightened Up Smashed Potatoes

(Adapted from Ree Drummond)


  • 2 large red potatoes, chopped into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 turnips, chopped into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 parsnips, chopped into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 4 tbsp. (½ stick) organic, unsalted butter (or Earth Balance!), softened
  • ½ cup organic pepper jack cheese
  • ¾ cup Greek yogurt
  • 3 slices organic bacon, cooked and crumbled (optional)
  • 2 whole scallions, finely sliced
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. chili powder
  • ½ tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • ¾ cup finely chopped and toasted walnuts


1. Pre-heat the oven to 400°F. Toss all of the chopped vegetables with the olive oil and arrange on a baking sheet. Bake for 25 minutes or until easily pierced with a fork.

2. Add vegetables to a large bowl and smash all of the vegetables with a fork.

3. Set aside 1 tbsp. of the chopped scallions, then immediately add the butter, cheese, Greek yogurt, bacon (if you’re using it), the rest of the scallions, and the spices to the potatoes. Stir with a spatula to combine.

4. Before serving, sprinkle the toasted walnuts and the reserved scallions on top. 

Vegan Variation: Make this dish vegan by omitting the Greek yogurt and bacon, replacing the butter with Earth Balance, and using Daiya cheese instead of the pepper jack. For a creamier texture, stir in ½ cup of almond milk!