Welcome, Amici (friends): The Secret of Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
Welcome, amici, to my big, loud, and always hungry Italian family! Today, we’re dishing out a secret so delicious it’s like the culinary equivalent of finding a hidden stash of Nonna’s biscotti—Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes! In true Italian fashion, no dish comes without a story as rich as our tomato sauce.
So, grab a glass of vino, and let’s spill the beans—or in this case, the pumpkin—on how our Smashed Pumpkin Potatoes became the Godfather of all fall feasts!
Table of Contents
Nonna’s Accidental Genius: Seasonal Mashed Potatoes
Picture this: It’s Thanksgiving Day, and I’ve got all my ingredients set out for my famous sweet and white whipped potatoes and my pumpkin puree mousse.
Nonna, bless her heart, decides to lend a hand. She didn’t have her glasses but insisted, so I let her do her thing. In fact, in Italian families, Nonna’s rule is supreme; their help is a gift. Anyway, I turned my back to baste the turkey one last time and check on all the other stuff in the ovens.
Before I could say, “STOP,” the deed was done. You see, instead of grabbing the smashed yams I had set aside, Nonna reached for a mixing cup filled with orange pumpkin puree. (hey, it all looks the same without glasses, right?)
Respect the fact that you NEVER argue with your Nonna; she’s always right, even when she’s wrong. I said nothing, but the look on my face said everything!
So, let’s say we sampled the potatoes and agreed it wasn’t bad but needed a little tweaking. I needed a little wine because there goes our perfect Thanksgiving feast, all because Nonna didn’t have her glasses on.
So, I countered the new-fangled smashed pumpkin potatoes she created by mistake with some spices I had out and a few other basic ingredients, and well, the rest is history—a delicious, mouthwatering history.
We didn’t tell anyone at the table, and I doubled down on the wine to survive the comments that were about to spew.
But low and behold, everyone said, “Wow, Mom, these potatoes are your best yet!” Nonna looked at me with a twinkle in her eye, and the rest is total Vento history!
Now, I’ll be honest; I can’t help but wonder if after all the years of growing up and eating Nonna’s whipped white and sweet potatoes, maybe the secret ingredient she had been holding out on was pumpkin puree and instead, she played me?
Maybe our pumpkin potatoes with candied pecan crumble topping were really what we had eaten our whole lives and never knew it, and the glasses were just an excuse to throw me off?
We’ll never know; it does not matter because we have a fabulous recipe (and story). Everyone especially liked the candied pecans on top (Nonna’s suggestion); they said it “sweetened the pot.” So all’s well that ends, and that’s how we got this recipe.
Unexpected Star of Fall Feasts: Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
You heard it here first, folks. What began as Nonna’s little “oopsie” has become the unexpected star of every fall feast. These Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes are the perfect trifecta of creamy, savory, and just a hint of sweet.
And let’s not forget, while pumpkin lattes are sipping up all the autumn attention, we’re stealing the spotlight with a candied pecan crumble topping. Trust me, this is the stuff that’ll make you say, “Latte, who?”
5 Reasons You’ll Fall in Love with These Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
- Facile da Fare (Easy to Make): Even if you’re not a seasoned chef, these potatoes are a cinch. If you can boil water, you’re halfway there!
- Ingredienti Facilmente Reperibili (Easy-to-Find Ingredients): No need for a scavenger hunt; you’ll find everything at your local grocery store.
- Portatile (Easy to Transport): Got a potluck or family gathering? These potatoes travel well. Just like Nonna, they’re always a hit at parties!
- Versatile: Whether it’s Thanksgiving, a Sunday dinner, or just craving comfort food, these spuds fit the bill.
- Squisito (Delicious): With flavors that meld together like a Pavarotti high note, your taste buds are in for a treat.
Kitchen Essentials For Seasonal Mashed Potatoes
- A large pot for boiling potatoes
- A hand mixer or potato masher
- Measuring cups and spoons
- A mixing bowl
- A baking dish for that candied pecan crumble topping
Ingredients Overview & How to Make Smashed Pumpkin Potatoes
- Potatoes (of course!)
- Pumpkin puree
- Spices like cinnamon and nutmeg
- Butter and cream for that velvety texture
- Candied pecan crumble for the grand finale
Unlike most of our delicious recipes for traditional Italian side dishes, this one is not made of potatoes and garlic; I know what a massive reveal!
How to Make Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes With Candied Pecan Crumble Topping
Are you ready to make pumpkin mashed potatoes? It is so easy!
- Boil those potatoes until they’re tender.
- Beat in the pumpkin puree and spices.
- Add the butter and cream for a creamy finish.
- Top it off with candied pecan crumble.
Just like in traditional Italian recipes, where they leave out a secret ingredient or two, we’re keeping the exact measurements under wraps for now. But don’t worry, grab the recipe card at the end of this post for ingredients directions deets!
What to Pair with Your Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
These potatoes are versatile and pair well with a variety of dishes.
Consider serving them alongside:
- Roast turkey or chicken
- A hearty Italian sausage
- A rich, red Chianti or a crisp Pinot Grigio
- A classic Italian salad for a lighter touch
Uncork and Sip: A Tasting Guide for the Perfect Pair
Look, we get it. Choosing the right wine can be as daunting as deciding who sits next to Uncle Tony at Thanksgiving dinner. But don’t sweat it!
We’ve set up a little tasting guide to help you uncork the perfect wine for these Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes. Even if you don’t make wine, you can choose the right wines based on this little overview.
The Robust Chianti
It’s what we give Nonna:)
- Tasting Notes: Full-bodied with flavors of dark cherry and spice.
- Pairs Well With The savory elements of the mashed potatoes.
- Why It Works: The richness of the Chianti complements the earthy pumpkin and spices.
The Crisp Pinot Grigio
- Tasting Notes: Light and crisp with hints of green apple.
- Pairs Well With The lighter, creamy aspects of the dish.
- Why It Works: The crispness of the Pinot Grigio cuts through the creaminess of the potatoes, offering a refreshing contrast.
So, whether you’re guests are red or white wine kinda of wine drinkers, we’ve got you covered. Uncork a bottle (or two; we won’t judge), and let the tasting begin as we let wine flow more freely than water running over Niagara Falls! Cheers.
Our Tradition Of Vento Vino Sipping
First, we sip all the way from prepping the meal to the meal; now you know why we are so loud when we talk because the more you drink, the less you think, which helps make everything else taste so good! And it’s not the tryptophan in the turkey making everyone sleepy after the meal, lol!
In true Italian fashion, no meal is complete without the perfect wine pairing. And in the Vento household, we take it up a notch with our homemade wines, each bottle proudly sporting the V for Vento.
Whether you’re sipping on our robust Chianti or a crisp Pinot Grigio, these wines perfectly complement our Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes.
Substitutes and Alternatives: Make It Your Own
- No Pumpkin Puree? Use sweet potato puree or butternut squash for a similar fall vibe.
- Dairy-Free? Swap out the butter and cream for coconut milk or a dairy-free alternative.
- More Basic? Add chopped herbs like parsley or Thyme.
- Crunchier topping? Add pepita seeds and a light dusting of cinnamon.
- No Sugar? Don’t candy the pecans or walnuts—just chop and top.
- Nut Allergies? Skip the candied pecan crumble and consider a breadcrumb and herb topping instead.
FAQ’s Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
Can I make these ahead of time?
Absolutely! Just reheat them in the oven or microwave before serving.
Can I freeze Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes?
Yes! However, we suggest you consider freezing without the candied pecan crumble topping for the best texture.
What’s the best type of potato to use?
We recommend Yukon Gold for its creamy texture and buttery flavor.
What can I add to pumpkin to make it taste better?
To make pumpkin taste better, consider adding spices, herbs, sweeteners, citrus, nuts, cheese, cream, garlic, onion, bacon, or a touch of heat.
How do you thicken pumpkin mash?
To thicken pumpkin mash, you can reduce the liquid content by cooking it longer, add more potatoes, or incorporate thickeners like cornstarch, flour, or even a bit of cream cheese for a richer texture.
The Last Bite: Your Turn to Stir the Pot
While we adore our Nonna and her spirited culinary adventures, we’ve kept her well-supplied with glasses—and maybe a glass or two of wine to keep her calm and seated (just kidding, Nonna!). But now, it’s your turn to take the reins in the kitchen.
So, did you make these potatoes?
Did you add your own twist?
We want to hear all about it! Leave us a comment below, share your photos, and let’s keep this Italian food fiesta going. And hey, if you love this recipe as much as we think you will, don’t forget to share it with your friends and family. Because good food, like good gossip, is best when shared!~ Dana XO
Recipe Below For My Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes Recipe
Are you ready to make pumpkin mashed potatoes?
- 4 large Russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- FOR THE CANDIED PECAN CRUMBLE (OPTIONAL)
- 1 cup pecans, chopped
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- A pinch of salt
- Prep the Potatoes: Start by peeling and cubing the Russet potatoes.
- Place them in a large pot of cold water, fully submerging them.
- Boil the Potatoes: Place the pot on the stove over medium-high heat and bring the water to a boil.
- Cook the potatoes until they are fork-tender, about 15-20 minutes.
- Make the Candied Pecan Crumble (OPTIONAL)
- While the potatoes boil, melt 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter in a skillet over medium heat.
- Add the chopped pecans, brown sugar, and a pinch of salt.
- Stir continuously for 5-7 minutes until the sugar has melted and the pecans are well-coated.
- Remove from heat and set aside.
- Once the potatoes are done, drain the water and return them to the pot.
- Mash the potatoes using a potato masher or a hand mixer until smooth.
- Add the pumpkin puree, unsalted butter, heavy cream, sour cream, salt, black pepper, ground nutmeg, and ground cinnamon to the mashed potatoes.
- Mix until all the ingredients are well incorporated, and the potatoes are creamy.
- Give the mashed potatoes a taste test.
- Feel free to add more salt, spices, or cream to suit your preference.
- Transfer the mashed potatoes to a serving bowl and generously sprinkle the Candied Pecan Crumble.
- Let the dish cool for about 10 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.
- Garnish with a sprinkle of fresh herbs like parsley or chives for an extra touch of elegance.
- Your smashed pumpkin potatoes are ready to steal the show on your special occasion! Enjoy
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 497Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 55mgSodium: 343mgCarbohydrates: 46gFiber: 6gSugar: 12gProtein: 7g
DanaVento.Com is not a dietician or nutritionist; any nutritional information shared is simply an estimate. Use a nutritional calculator if you need exact estimates of nutrition, and note that the brands you use in your recipe may differ slightly or significantly from those brands of items you use, creating a variance in nutritional content.