Yes, you can make vegan mashed potatoes in the crockpot or slow cooker! My version of vegan mashed potatoes is made with red potatoes, garlic, and chives, vegan cream cheese, and plant-based milk. You’ll cool all the ingredients together on high in the crockpot for 3 1/2- 4 hours, or until the red potatoes are fork tender before mashing. A great dairy-free side dish!
Nothing says the comfort of home like a creamy flavorful vegan slow cooker red mashed potatoes dish. These dairy-free mashed potatoes are so easy to make too. You don’t have to peel the potatoes. You don’t whip them “light”, but smash them, leaving nice chunks of creamy potato that mix perfectly with cream cheese, garlic, and chives.
Cooking plant-based slow cooker recipes makes prepping for a holiday meal less of a chore. This vegan slow cooker creamed corn casserole and easy slow cooker carrots recipes are both quick and easy to throw together and cook up easily with the help of your slow cooker.
Cooking in the slow cooker infuses the flavors over a period of time for the most flavorful dishes! Soy curls with BBQ Teriyaki sauce and stuffed Crock Pot baked apples are two great examples of slow-cooked infused flavors.
You’ll love these vegan mashed potatoes not only for how easy they are to cook and their great flavor but because they will free up space on your stovetop so that you can be cooking other holiday favorite dishes. You can’t serve dairy-free mashed potatoes go without vegan turkey gravy! And what’s a holiday meal without cranberry sauce? And you will need your stovetop for both of those special vegan holiday side dishes!
Ingredients Needed to make this slow cooker mashed potato dish:
- small red potatoes -Buy a bag of small red potatoes – not baby red potatoes. You will have too much skin to mash in if you use baby potatoes.
- minced garlic– You can use freshly minced garlic, or you can buy minced garlic in a jar.
- olive oil – I prefer robust flavored olive oil.
- vegan cream cheese – (I use Kite Hill vegan cream cheese)
- unsweetened plant milk – Make sure to use unsweetened plant milk. Some plant milks like almond milk have a naturally sweet flavor. DO NOT use these types of naturally sweetened milk or you will have sweet mashed potatoes. I used unsweetened oat milk.
- chopped chives
- You’ll also need a slow cooker or Crock-Pot. My 3 1/2 quart is the perfect size for three pounds of potatoes.
Why we use red potatoes:
Red potatoes are a little less starchy and waxier which means they aren’t going to whip up as light and fluffy. That makes them perfect for this recipe as it’s more of a sturdy “smashed” potato dish!
The red skins are also thin and quite edible and look festive along with the green chives making this a perfect holiday dish.
Different types of red potatoes:
Did you know there are many varieties of red potatoes? Some are whiter inside, while others are a creamy yellow. I’ve used both and really can’t tell a difference in taste or texture so use what you can find in your local produce department. Read more about the different types of red potatoes here.
Can I use baby red potatoes in this dish?
No, it’s best to not use baby potatoes. Baby-size is smaller and so has a greater skin-to-potato-flesh ratio. We don’t peel these potatoes for this recipe but cook and mash them with the red skin intact. While some skin is desirable, too much would be too chewy. Just use regular red small potatoes.
How to make garlic cream cheese mashed red potatoes in the slow cooker:
The first step is to wash and inspect the red potatoes. You will be using three pounds which is the perfect size for this 3 1/2 quart slow cooker!
If you have a larger slow cooker, then you may increase the amount of potatoes as well as the other ingredients accordingly.
Inspect the red potatoes while washing:
I love red potatoes, but they sometimes come with weird pieces. Cut all of the blighted or dark pieces out before cooking. There is nothing less appetizing than getting a crunchy brown piece of unknown origin in your beautiful mashed potato dish. (Yep sadly I know…)
Cut the potatoes to equal size:
This is actually pretty important so that the potatoes cook at an even rate. If you have some smaller potatoes, you can leave those whole. The idea is that the potatoes should be fairly uniform in size.
Cooking the potatoes in the slow cooker:
Make sure to spritz your pan with cooking spray. Then add the potatoes. Next, pour the olive oil and water over the top. Finally, sprinkle in the salt and chopped garlic.
Make sure the lid fits tightly and turn the slow cooker on high for 3-4 hours. I don’t know how your slow cooker cooks so you may need to adjust the time. My potatoes are fork-tender in 3 hours. Every time!
After the red potatoes have cooked:
Your potatoes should be “fork-tender” which means that you can easily stick a fork in without any resistance. If the potatoes have cooked too long then they will be falling apart – but as long as you check the potatoes at exactly three hours, you shouldn’t have a problem.
Mashing the cooked potatoes:
You can mash the potatoes right in the Crock-Pot liner! Use a potato masher or a hand mixer. I use a mixer, but honestly end up mashing with the beaters more than I do mixing. It’s all good – you just need to get those potatoes nice and smashed!
As mentioned above, these are not the light and fluffy type of mashed potatoes, but a heavier, hearty, “smashed” potato dish. It is desirable to have some big chunks of potato in the finished dish.
Adding the cream cheese, milk, and chives.
This is a vegan food blog, so of course, I am using vegan-friendly ingredients. If you are not vegan, use what you normally would.
After the potatoes have been smashed, stir in the cream cheese and half of the chopped chives. If you are using vegan cream cheese, it will already be soft enough to just stir in.
Next stir in the milk, a little bit at a time. Be aware that you might not use the entire one-half cup, depending on the natural moisture of the potatoes you use.
I use oat milk because it does not have a distinctive flavor. Almond milk – even the unsweetened variety – will be too sweet for this dish and affect the flavor. Soy milk would work, as would unsweetened cashew milk.
Sprinkle the remaining chives on top and salt and pepper to taste.
Health it up!
You could make this recipe without oil, just add more water to the slow cooker before cooking. It will affect the texture though and your potatoes won’t be as creamy. But if you eat oil-free then you already know this. I don’t think homemade cream cheese made with tofu would taste as well in this recipe. You need to use cream cheese that will melt.
I like a dollop of vegan buttery spread on top!
My favorite seasoning to sprinkle on top is Penzey’s Fox Point. If you haven’t tried it, you really should. I posted my (affiliate) Amazon link. Or you can find it on the Penzey’s website.
These potatoes are plenty moist and creamy, but there is nothing wrong with a little gravy on top! AMIRIGHT?
Try my Homemade Vegan Thanksgiving Turkey Gravy for a special treat!
Will these vegan slow cooker potatoes keep in the fridge?
The cooked potatoes certainly will! In fact, I use them for meal prep and they will keep for at least five days. Before reheating the potatoes in the microwave, you will want to “recharge” them with a little plant milk or even veggie broth.
Can you keep mashed potatoes warm in a crock pot?
If you prepare your vegan slow cooker mashed potatoes ahead of time you can keep them warm in the crockpot for a few hours if you have a “keep warm” or “buffet” setting. Be aware though that there is a greater chance of the cooked mashed potatoes drying out so you may need to refresh them with a little plant milk.
Also, check for scorching. I’ve had slow cookers that tend to burn on the bottom when left on for too long – even in a keep-warm mode. If they do scorch, do not scrape the burned part into the potatoes when you scoop them out to serve. Carefully avoid that part.
And now for the recipe:
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Easy Vegan Crockpot Mashed Potatoes with Garlic
- slow cooker
- 3 lbs red potatoes small
- 4 cloves garlic chopped
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup water
- 4 ounces vegan cream cheese
- 1/2 cup plant milk unsweetened – see notes
- 2 teaspoons chives finely chopped
- Prepare the slow cooker by spritzing with cooking spray I use coconut oil spray.
- Wash and examine the red potatoes. Cut off any blighted or strange parts. Cut larger potatoes in half if necessary so that the potatoes are close to the same size.
- Chop the garlic and mince the chives.
- All the prepared potatoes, chopped garlic, olive oil, salt, and water to the prepared slow cooker.
- Put the cover on the slow cooker and cook on high for 3 ½- 4 hours. Check at 3 ½ hours to see if the potatoes are cooked through and fork-tender.
- When the potatoes are cooked through, mash or beat the potatoes with a hand mixer right in the cooking pot. They will be a little lumpy which is desirable.
- Add the cream cheese and fold in. Then add in the plant milk a little at a time until you have the desired consistency.
- Stir in half of the chives leaving the other half to sprinkle on top.
- I used a three-pound bag of small potatoes and cut the larger ones in half so that the potatoes were evenly sized. Don’t use baby red potatoes. These will yield too much skin.
- I used Kite-Hill Cream Cheese. Homemade vegan cream cheese made with tofu will not work well in this recipe.
- Use an unsweetened plant milk and one that is not naturally sweet. Almond milk, even unsweetened sill has a sweet flavor. I used oat milk. Soy, pea protein, or cashew might work as well.
- I used a 3 1/2 quart slow cooker which is the perfect size for this recipe. If you use a larger slow cooker then you could perhaps increase the amount of ingredients.