Cheesy Monterey Mashed Potatoes

Everyone has a favorite way to eat potatoes, and I believe that mashed potatoes are the winner. However, mashed potatoes can be a bit of a let down for people that don’t like gravy considering that is the typical topper for the dish. Cole is one of those people that strongly dislikes gravy, and he usually opts to sprinkle cheese on top of mashed potatoes instead. Since I’ve been trying to be more aware of the food that is already opened in my fridge, I developed this recipe on a whim. I was craving mashed potatoes, and I knew Cole would like them better with cheese mixed directly into them. The block of cheese we currently had open in the fridge was Monterey Jack, and I didn’t foresee using it for any other purposes, so I figured, why not? I started throwing ingredients together, and the end result was the very BEST mashed potatoes I have ever made. As soon as I finished eating, I KNEW that this was a recipe I needed to share. 

Ingredients

2 ½ lbs Potatoes

1 tbsp Minced Garlic

12 cups Water

1 tbsp Better Than Bouillon – Roasted Chicken

¾ cup Whole Milk

3 tbsp Butter

1 ¼ cup Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese

Directions

1. Weight the potatoes to make sure that the weight is close to 2 1/2 pounds.

2. Peel the potatoes and cut them into ¼ inch coins, then cut each coin into quarters.

3. Pour the water, bouillon, and minced garlic into a large kettle and turn on high until it reaches a rapid boil.

Kitchen Tip: Better Than Bouillon is an ingredient that I always keep in my house. I keep three different flavors on hand at all times: Chicken, Beef, and Turkey. This ingredient allows me to quickly mix up each type of broth very quickly when I need it, or in the case of this recipe, to add a little extra flavor to an ingredient being boiled in water.

4. Dump the chopped potatoes into the boiling water, and boil for 15 minutes or until they are “fork-tender” (can be broken apart with a fork)

5. While the potatoes are boiling, put the milk and butter into a microwave safe dish and heat them until the butter is melted. 

6.Shred up the Monterey jack cheese while waiting for the potatoes to be boiled.

7. Strain the potatoes and pour both the potatoes and the milk mixture back into the original kettle. 

Kitchen Tip: You may want to pour the milk mixture into the potatoes a little bit at a time while mashing. This recipe is my preferred level of creaminess, but everyone has different preferences for how creamy or chunky they prefer their potatoes to be. Using all of the milk mixture would result in mashed potatoes that are pretty much “chunk-free.”

8. Once the potatoes are mashed to the desired creaminess, add in all of the cheese and stir until it is melted in. 

Overall this is an extremely easy side dish to make! It serves 4-5 people, and is a great way to put a slight spin on regular mashed potatoes by adding in a couple of additional flavors to the mix! While I will always love mashed potatoes and gravy, this recipe allows me to have mashed potatoes more frequently when I don’t have time or the right meat to create a gravy to go along with the potatoes. I highly recommend this dish to any potato lovers that dislike gravy, or anyone that simply loves extra creamy and cheesy mashed potatoes! 

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