KFC Mashed Potatoes (Copycat)

5 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes

KFC Mashed Potatoes copycat recipe is just as creamy and buttery as the original, made with real potatoes and served with copycat gravy!

KFC Mashed Potatoes are one of the ultimate comfort foods – creamy, buttery, fluffy potatoey goodness. To be able to whip them up at home whenever the craving hits, and control the quality of ingredients? Even better! One of the best things about Copycat Recipes is that you can indulge in fast food favorites like KFC Original Recipe Chicken from the comfort of your home without breaking the bank!

Sabrina’s Copycat KFC Mashed Potatoes Recipe

The Colonel has long cornered the market on the best fast casual KFC potatoes, touting them as the most popular side dish to their famous deep-fried chicken. He’s also kept those top-secret recipes close to the chest. We’ve put ourselves through rounds and rounds of taste testing to get this copycat version right. We may not be ordering any more fried chicken buckets for a while, but it was worth it to crack the code to this famous side dish.

Our copycat KFC Mashed Potato recipe is the real deal and these creamy mashed potatoes have all the iconic taste and consistency along with the spot-on copy of their rich gravy. The key to this recipe is to use instant mashed potato flakes. Instant mashed potatoes may not seem like they will come out as fluffy and flavorful – but they absolutely do, especially if you use milk and butter when reconstituting them.

Much like their Original Fried Chicken recipe, they use MSG in their mashed potatoes. With this copycat recipe, we left that out but it still tastes like the fast food favorite.


  • 2 ½ cups Idaho Potato Flakes: These flakes serve as the base for the mashed potatoes. They provide a smooth texture and absorb the butter and milk beautifully.
  • ½ cup Margarine: Margarine adds richness and creaminess to our mashed potatoes.
  • 2 tablespoons Unsalted Butter: Butter adds creamy goodness to the mashed potatoes.
  • 2 ½ cups Hot Water: Hot water hydrates the potato flakes, helping them achieve the desired consistency. 
  • ¾ cup Milk: Milk contributes to the creamy texture of the mashed potatoes, while also adding a hint of sweetness. 
  • 1 teaspoon Salt: Kosher salt enhances the flavor of the mashed potatoes.
  • 3 tablespoons Unsalted Butter (for gravy): Butter adds richness to the gravy.
  • 1 small Onion: Onion adds savory depth and complexity to the gravy.
  • 5 tablespoons Flour: Flour serves as a thickening agent for the gravy, helping it achieve the desired consistency.
  • 2 ½ cups Water: Cold water forms the base of the gravy.
  • 2 teaspoons Beef Bouillon: Beef bouillon infuses the gravy with savory and beefy flavor.
  • 2 teaspoons Chicken Bouillon: Chicken bouillon adds additional savory flavor to the gravy.
  • Course Ground Black Pepper: Black pepper adds a subtle warmth and spiciness to the gravy. Adjust the amount to taste, and freshly ground pepper is preferred for optimal flavor.

Kitchen Tools & Equipment

  • Potato Masher: This essential tool is used to mash the boiled potatoes into a creamy consistency. Ensure the potatoes are cooked until tender before mashing for smooth results. If you don’t have a potato masher, a potato ricer, the back of a fork or even a hand mixer can be used as alternatives.
  • Skillet: A skillet is required for preparing the gravy. Opt for a non-stick skillet to prevent the flour from sticking and burning. Stir constantly while making the gravy to avoid lumps and ensure a smooth texture.
  • Whisk: A whisk is indispensable for creating a smooth and lump-free gravy. Use it to incorporate the flour into the butter evenly and to whisk the liquid ingredients until well combined.
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons: Accurate measurements are crucial for achieving the desired consistency and flavor in both the mashed potatoes and gravy. Use dry measuring cups for the potato flakes and flour, and liquid measuring cups for the water and milk.
  • Saucepan: A medium saucepan is essential for heating the water and melting the butter and margarine for the mashed potatoes. Choose a medium-sized saucepan with a heavy bottom to ensure even heating and prevent scorching. Stir the ingredients frequently while heating to prevent sticking.

How to Make KFC Mashed Potatoes

Time needed: 55 minutes.

  1. Make the Gravy

    In a skillet, melt butter and sauté finely chopped onion until translucent. Add flour to form a thick paste, cooking until golden brown. Whisk in water, beef bouillon, and chicken bouillon until smooth. Season with black pepper and bring to a boil. Cook until thickened to gravy consistency, stirring frequently. scooping gravy

  2. Prepare Mashed Potatoes

    Heat water in a saucepan and add butter and margarine until melted. Season with salt and cook briefly. Add the potato flakes and mix until you achieve a mashed potato consistency. Then, stir the milk into the hot potatoes until well combined.adding potato flakes to melted margarine

  3. Serve

    Once both the mashed potatoes and gravy are ready, serve them together with fresh parsley as a garnish along with one of our Mac & Cheese bowls. whisking the pot to make creamy potatoes

Can This Be Made Ahead of Time?

Yes, both the mashed potatoes and gravy can be made ahead of time and reheated when ready to serve. Store them separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days.

Nutritional Facts

Nutrition Facts
KFC Mashed Potatoes (Copycat)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 420 Calories from Fat 270
% Daily Value*
Fat 30g46%
Saturated Fat 11g69%
Trans Fat 0.5g
Polyunsaturated Fat 5g
Monounsaturated Fat 12g
Cholesterol 33mg11%
Sodium 670mg29%
Potassium 428mg12%
Carbohydrates 33g11%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 1243IU25%
Vitamin C 25mg30%
Calcium 75mg8%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

How to Store Mashed Potatoes


Serve your mashed potatoes and gravy immediately. Please don’t leave them out for more than 2 hours. You can keep your mashed potatoes for up to 4 days in the fridge.

Reheating Tips

For reheating, use a microwave-safe dish to warm the mashed potatoes in short intervals, stirring occasionally until heated through. For the gravy, gently warm it in a saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly. Avoid overheating to maintain the desired consistency.


It’s not recommended to freeze these mashed potatoes. They will not thaw well and the consistency will be off.

Serving Ideas

  • KFC Famous Bowls: Make potato bowls and top the mashed potatoes with popcorn chicken and corn, smother in the signature gravy, and garnish with a three-cheese blend to recreate a fan-favorite Famous Bowl.
  • Bucket Meal: Save money by creating your own Family Bucket at home with our Copycat Fried Chicken Recipe, KFC Coleslaw, and some homemade Buttermilk Biscuits, along with your potatoes.
  • Gravy: Give your brown gravy a richer flavor by adding an extra scoop of beef or chicken bouillon. If you want an old-school KFC taste, add chicken drippings.

Ideas for Leftovers

Mashed potatoes aren’t usually that great reheated the next day. Use your leftover potatoes in the following dish ideas. Have a great idea to share? Leave a comment for the world to see!

  • Potato Latkes: Leftover KFC Mashed Potatoes would be perfect for latkes, or potato pancakes. Freeze a batch for use during the holidays when you are running short on time.
  • Shepherd’s Pie: Top a Beef Stew, thicken the liquid to make more like a gravy, with your leftover potatoes for an easy and hearty Shepherd’s Pie.
  • Potato Bread: Add a cup of mashed potatoes to a White Bread recipe to give your loaf a delicious, melt-in-your-mouth texture and flavor.

Frequent Questions

Can I use fresh potatoes instead of potato flakes?

While you technically can substitute fresh mashed potatoes for instant potatoes and still get the creamy texture, the flavor probably won’t be exact. If you’re okay with that, ensure they are cooked until tender and adjust the liquid ingredients accordingly for the desired consistency. In this case, we recommend following the recipe for our Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes

What if my gravy is too thick or too thin?

If your gravy is too thick, simply add a little more water or broth until you reach the desired consistency. If it’s too thin, let it simmer for a few more minutes to reduce and thicken.

Recipe Card

KFC Mashed Potatoes (Copycat)

KFC Mashed Potatoes copycat recipe is just as creamy and buttery as the original, made with real potatoes and served with copycat gravy!
Yield 5 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


Mashed Potato Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups Idaho potato flakes
  • 1/2 cup margarine
  • 2 tablespoons  unsalted butter
  • 2 1/2 cups hot water
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon  kosher salt

Gravy Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter , divided
  • 1 small onion , finely chopped
  • 5 tablespoons flour
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons beef bouillon
  • 2 teaspoons chicken bouillon
  • course ground black pepper , to taste


Gravy Instructions

  • Melt ½ of the butter in a skillet over medium heat.
  • Add onion; cook and stir until translucent, about 5 minutes.
  • Heat remaining butter in skillet over medium heat; whisk in flour to form a thick paste.
  • Continue cooking, whisking constantly, until flour has turned golden brown and begins to smell toasted, about 20 minutes.
  • Whisk water, beef bouillon, and chicken bouillon into skillet until no lumps remain.
  • Add pepper and bring mixture to a boil.
  • Cook and stir until thickened to gravy consistency, 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Keep warm until ready to serve.

Mashed Potato Instructions

  • Heat water add butter and margarine till melted.
  • Season with salt and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Pour in potato flakes and mix until mashed potato consistency.
  • Stir in milk until combined.
  • Serve with gravy.


  • Click on the yield amount to slide and change the number of servings and the recipe will automatically update!
  • Click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.
  • To convert measurements to grams, click on the Metric option next to Ingredients in the recipe card.


Calories: 420kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 33mg | Sodium: 670mg | Potassium: 428mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1243IU | Vitamin C: 25mg | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 1mg

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Variations on KFC Mashed Potatoes

  • Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Add a tablespoon of minced garlic cloves to the mashed potatoes for a flavorful twist. Simply sauté the garlic in butter before adding it to the mashed potatoes for an extra layer of flavor.
  • Cheesy Mashed Potatoes: Stir in shredded cheddar cheese or your favorite cheese blend into the mashed potatoes for a creamy variation.
  • Herb-Infused Gravy: Enhance the flavor of the gravy by adding 3 teaspoons fresh or 1 teaspoon dried herbs such as thyme, rosemary, or sage. Simply add the herbs to the skillet along with the onion and sauté them together for a fragrant and aromatic gravy.

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About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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