substitute for butter in mashed potatoes

Mashed potatoes are a beloved comfort food, often made with butter for a rich and creamy texture. However, for those looking to reduce dairy or saturated fat intake, accommodate dietary preferences, or cater to vegan diets, finding suitable butter substitutes is essential. This guide presents six alternatives for butter in mashed potatoes, each offering its own unique flavor and texture while maintaining the comforting essence of this classic dish.

The Role of Butter in Mashed Potatoes:

Butter contributes to the luxuriousness of mashed potatoes by providing:

  • Creaminess: Butter adds a smooth and velvety texture to the mashed potatoes.
  • Richness: The fat content in butter enhances the flavor and mouthfeel of the dish.
  • Moisture: Butter prevents the mashed potatoes from becoming dry, keeping them enjoyable to eat.
  • Flavor: Butter introduces a delightful, savory taste to the potatoes.

Why Replace Butter in Mashed Potatoes:

Opting for butter substitutes in mashed potatoes can offer various advantages:

  • Dietary Restrictions: Individuals with dairy allergies or lactose intolerance can enjoy butter-free mashed potatoes.
  • Vegan or Plant-Based Diets: Butter alternatives align with vegan principles and plant-based eating.
  • Health Considerations: Lowering saturated fat or calorie intake is achievable by choosing certain substitutes.
  • Flavor Experimentation: Substitutes can introduce new and exciting flavors to traditional mashed potatoes.

Six Substitutes for Butter in Mashed Potatoes:

1. Olive Oil:

Olive oil adds a fruity and slightly peppery flavor to mashed potatoes, resulting in a smooth and aromatic dish.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories ~119
Total Fats 13.5g
Saturated Fats 1.9g
Monounsaturated Fats 9.9g
Polyunsaturated Fats 1.4g

How to Use: Replace butter with an equal amount of olive oil.

2. Coconut Milk:

Coconut milk offers a rich and tropical twist to mashed potatoes, enhancing their creaminess.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories ~445
Total Fats 48g
Saturated Fats 43g
Carbohydrates 6g
Proteins 4g

How to Use: Replace butter with an equal amount of coconut milk.

3. Greek Yogurt:

Greek yogurt introduces creaminess and tanginess to mashed potatoes, while boosting their protein content.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories ~59
Total Fats 1g
Proteins 10g
Carbohydrates 4g
Sugars 4g

How to Use: Replace butter with an equal amount of plain Greek yogurt.

4. Nutritional Yeast:

Nutritional yeast adds a cheesy and savory flavor, providing a dairy-free umami kick to mashed potatoes.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories ~60
Total Fats 1g
Proteins 8g
Carbohydrates 5g
Fiber 4g

How to Use: Add 2-3 tablespoons of nutritional yeast for every 1/2 cup of potatoes.

5. Avocado:

Avocado lends a creamy texture and mild flavor to mashed potatoes, along with heart-healthy monounsaturated fats.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories ~234
Total Fats 21g
Saturated Fats 3.1g
Monounsaturated Fats 14.7g
Polyunsaturated Fats 2.7g

How to Use: Replace butter with an equal amount of mashed ripe avocado.

6. Vegetable Broth:

Vegetable broth enhances the flavor of mashed potatoes while maintaining a lighter and more delicate texture.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories ~7
Total Fats 0.1g
Carbohydrates 1.4g
Proteins 0.4g
Sodium 960mg

How to Use: Gradually add vegetable broth until you achieve the desired consistency.

Nutrition Facts Summary Table:

Substitute Calories Total Fats Saturated Fats Source Works Best in
Olive Oil ~119 13.5g 1.9g Plant Oil Classic Mashed Potatoes
Coconut Milk ~445 48g 43g Plant Milk Tropical Mashed Potatoes
Greek Yogurt ~59 1g N/A Dairy Alternatives Protein-Packed Potatoes
Nutritional Yeast ~60 1g N/A Plant-Based Cheesy Mashed Potatoes
Avocado ~234 21g 3.1g Fruits Guacamole-Style Potatoes
Vegetable Broth ~7 0.1g N/A Liquid Base Light and Flavorful Potatoes

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

  1. Will olive oil change the taste of mashed potatoes significantly?
    Olive oil adds a distinct flavor, enhancing the dish’s taste.
  2. Can coconut milk make mashed potatoes too sweet?
    Unsweetened coconut milk is used to avoid overpowering sweetness.
  3. Is Greek yogurt tangy enough to substitute for butter?
    Yes, Greek yogurt’s tanginess can complement the potatoes well.
  4. Does nutritional yeast provide a cheesy flavor?
    Yes, nutritional yeast offers a savory and slightly cheesy taste.
  5. Can I combine multiple substitutes for a unique flavor?
    Experimenting with combinations can lead to interesting results.


Substituting butter in mashed potatoes offers a gateway to culinary creativity and dietary inclusivity. Each alternative brings its own character, allowing you to tailor your mashed potatoes to your taste and dietary needs. Whether you’re exploring dairy-free options, seeking a healthier twist, or embracing new flavors, these substitutes open a world of possibilities without compromising on comfort and enjoyment. So, let’s embark on a mashed potato journey that embraces diversity, flavor, and the joy of exploring alternatives in the kitchen.

Yuki Tanaka

Written by Yuki Tanaka

I'm from Utashinai and I love tasty food and nice words. I also write blogs, take pictures of food, and create recipes. Cooking and baking are my favorite things to do!

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