Mashed Potato Pancakes – A Couple Cooks


These mashed potato pancakes are absolutely delicious as a savory side or breakfast! Here’s how to make potato pancakes from mashed potatoes.

Mashed Potato Pancakes

Got leftover mashed potatoes? Here’s a genius way to give them a new life: try mashed potato pancakes! You will fall head over heels for these tender, savory pancakes that taste like fluffy hashbrowns. Add a little eggs and cheese and fry them up: they work either savory served with sour cream and chives or sweet with maple syrup. The tender texture is out of this world good! They’re extremely easy to whip up, the perfect idea for leftover mashed potatoes from Thanksgiving or any meal.

Got lots of leftover mashed potatoes? Try Potato Waffles.

Ways to make mashed potato pancakes

How to make potato pancakes from mashed potatoes? There are two basic methods, both of which add eggs, flour and often cheese. This recipe uses the easier of the two methods, and makes deliciously moist, tender pancakes that are bursting with savory flavor.

  • One method makes a dough that is thick and dense and pats it into small disc shapes that are then pan-fried. However, this type of mashed potato pancake can be a little fussy. They’re hard to flip and need quite a bit of oil to fry them on all sides.
  • This recipe for leftover mashed potato pancakes uses an easier method that’s more like a pancake batter. The batter is thick but liquid enough to pour onto the griddle, so it fries up just like traditional pancakes. It’s so simple and there’s no need to form pancakes or deep fry: pour them right onto the skillet!
Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe

Ingredients for leftover mashed potato pancakes

To make mashed potato pancakes you’ve got to start with leftover mashed potatoes. The leftover part isn’t just cute: refrigerating the mashed potatoes helps dry them out, making a perfect texture for frying into flapjacks. But this method will work with any type of mashed potatoes you’ve got: even if they’re just a few hours old! We recommend using our best mashed potatoes recipe for best results. Here’s what you’ll need for this recipe:

  • Refrigerator ingredients: Leftover mashed potatoes, eggs
  • Pantry ingredients: Olive oil, baking powder, salt, all-purpose flour
  • Dairy: Shredded cheddar cheese, milk of choice
Mashed Potato Pancakes

Tips for the process

These leftover mashed potato pancakes are simple to whip up: you’ll make a simple batter and fry it up just like sweet breakfast pancakes. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Use a large griddle: a non-stick surface is helpful. Some griddles have uneven heating, so use a quality griddle or skillet. A non-stick surface is a plus, though you’ll still want to cook the pancakes in butter to get them golden brown.
  • Experiment to find the right heat level. Medium low heat is ideal, but it’s different on every stovetop. It should take a few minutes to get the pan up to heat. If the heat is too low, the pancakes won’t puff as much when cooking.
  • Don’t worry if the first pancake isn’t perfect! Use it as a test for honing in your pancake skills and adjust the heat accordingly.
  • The batter sometimes becomes very thick while waiting for the second batch. If so, add a teaspoon or two of buttermilk until the batter is pourable. 

Ways to serve leftover mashed potatoes

Leftover mashed potato pancakes work savory or sweet, making them extremely versatile. They work as a sweet or savory breakfast, a side dish, or as an appetizer. Here are a few ways we like to serve them:

  • Topped with sour cream and chives as a savory breakfast or appetizer
  • As a side dish for salmon, chicken or vegetarian main dishes
  • Appetizer, made into smaller pancakes (similar to fritters)
  • Topped with maple syrup, fresh fruit and butter as a sweet breakfast
Mashed Potato Pancakes

Dietary notes

As written, this mashed potato pancakes recipe is vegetarian.

For dairy-free, omit the cheese and add another pinch of salt. Use oat milk, and serve with cashew cream.

For gluten-free, you can use gluten-free 1-for-1 flour. Almond flour is another option, but the pancakes would be more fragile and you might want to make them smaller to be easier to flip.

More mashed potato recipes

This mashed potato pancakes recipe is great for using up leftovers, whether it’s with classic mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, or other types. Here are a few of our top mashed potato recipes:

This mashed potato pancake recipe is…

Vegetarian. For dairy-free or gluten-free, see the Dietary Notes section above.


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These mashed potato pancakes are absolutely delicious as a savory side or breakfast! Here’s how to make potato pancakes from mashed potatoes.

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt*
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups cold leftover mashed potatoes
  • 3 tablespoons milk of choice
  • Butter or more oil, for cooking
  • For serving: sour cream and chopped chives or maple syrup (or toppings of choice).

  1. Whisk the eggs, then add the olive oil, baking powder, salt and whisk. Add the flour and whisk gain. Change to using a spatula and stir in the shredded cheese, leftover mashed potatoes and milk to make a thick but pourable batter. 
  2. Lightly butter a skillet or griddle and wipe off extra grease with a paper towel. Heat the skillet to medium low heat. Pour the batter into small circles (¼ cup for medium-sized pancakes, or smaller for small pancakes). Cook the pancakes until the bottoms are golden, about 1 to 2 minutes. Then flip them and cook until cooked through and no longer gooey at the edges, adjusting the heat as necessary so they don’t brown too fast.
  3. Place the cooked pancakes under an inverted bowl to keep them warm. Repeat with the remaining batter, adjusting the heat as necessary to maintain an even temperature (if the batter becomes too thick, you can add a teaspoon or two of milk until it becomes pourable). Serve immediately with sour cream and chopped chives (for savory), with maple syrup (for sweet), or with the toppings of your choice.


*If your mashed potatoes are not seasoned with salt, use ¼ teaspoon kosher salt.

  • Category: Breakfast or Side
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Keywords: Mashed potato pancakes, potato pancakes, leftover mashed potato pancakes, potato pancakes from mashed potatoes, potato pancakes with mashed potatoes


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