Crispy, Leftover Mashed Potato Pancakes

 Leftover mashed potatoes?  LUCKY YOU!  You can make these crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside potato pancakes from mashed potatoes tonight. No flour needed. Just an egg, green onions, seasoning and a fork.

Skip right to the potato pancakes from mashed potatoes recipe.

My favourite potato dishes in order of preference (as of my mood at this exact moment): potato chips, french fries, potato pancakes, gnocchi. TWO of the things on my list are made with leftover mashed potatoes.

I have an easy gnocchi recipe that uses leftover mashed potatoes and then there’s my potato pancakes. The love of my life.

I usually get a craving for them just by looking at the jars of homemade chili sauce in my kitchen cupboard.  Get my chili sauce recipe here if you’re wanting to make some of the good homemade stuff.

I have the same reaction when I spot horseradish in my fridge only that ends with me making an entire roast beef dinner.  I think we all know what I end up making when I spot the bottle of ketchup. Yes french fries. In fact, I believe I make some pretty perfect french fries. It’s all in the double fry.

I’m highly suggestible when it comes to food condiments.

So you want some potato pancakes? ‘Cause you can have some!  All you have to do is remember to make extra mashed potatoes the next time you have them.   Thennnnn the next night you can have potato pancakes out of the leftovers.  It’s simple math really.

Obviously these don’t have to be made with leftover mashed potatoes, you can cook mashed potatoes specifically for making them. You just need to make sure you have time to cool the cooked potatoes in the fridge before making the mixture. Using cold mashed potatoes help stop the pancakes from falling apart.

I normally just eyeball everything but for those of you who like a recipe I’ve included one.

potato Pancake Recipe

  1. Slice a couple of green onions.
  2. Mix the green onions in with 2 cups of mashed potatoes and one egg.

* If you’re making these from just cooked, hot mashed potatoes, you need to temper the egg with some hot potatoes before adding it to them.  But I would recommend cooling the potatoes in the fridge after mashing them and before adding the onions and egg.

  1. Season the mixture with salt and pepper.  
  1. Grab a ball of the potatoes.  About “this” much.  Maybe 1/4 cup or so and form the mixture into patties.
  1. Fry in olive oil and/or butter in a non stick pan over medium/low heat until golden brown. Keep an eye on them to make sure your heat isn’t set too high which will burn them.
  1. Serve with chili sauce or sour cream.

Can you see that?? I’m sure you can see that. Crispy on the outside, fluffy and hot on the inside. And just so you know, there’s really no such thing as too much chili sauce with potato pancakes. I’ve been known to go through an entire jar in one sitting. 

Not fond of chili sauce?  I don’t actually understand that but like I mentioned before sour cream is another respectable condiment choice for potato pancakes OR the classic dollop of applesauce. 

Mashed Potato Pancakes

This is a recipe for mashed potato pancakes.  
4.43 from 26 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4 pancakes
Calories: 191kcal
Author: Karen


  • 2 cups Potatoes mashed
  • 2 Green Onions sliced thin
  • 1 Egg
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter


  • Preheat oven to 210 f.
  • Slice your green onions.
  • Add green onions and egg to mashed potatoes and mix together.
  • Season with salt and pepper
  • Form mixture into hamburger shaped patties.
  • Heat oil and butter in non stick pan over medium low heat.
  • Fry patties allowing the underside to brown until crisp before flipping them over to fry the other side.  Add more oil or butter if needed once you flip them.
  • Keep finished potato pancakes on a plate in the preheated oven to keep hot.
  • Serve potato pancakes with sour cream or chili sauce.


Serving: 1pancake | Calories: 191kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 56mg | Sodium: 77mg | Potassium: 465mg | Fiber: 2g | Vitamin A: 295IU | Vitamin C: 13.1mg | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 3.7mg

How to keep potato pancakes from falling apart

  1. Egg is what will bind everything together so there’s no need to add flour.
  2. If your pancakes aren’t sticking together while you form them, you can add a bit more egg, or put the potato mixture into the refrigerator to firm up again.
  3. If your pancakes are feeling too wet and won’t form into a patty you can add a bit of flour to act as a binder.
  4. Putting your mashed potato pancakes into the fridge before frying will firm them up and help them hold together while you cook them.

I know I’ve mentioned this before but these really do pair well with the fall spices of homemade chili sauce. It’s addicting. As an added bonus, while you’re simmering this chili sauce your whole house will smell delicious.  Less of a bonus is when you start licking your own furniture because of it.

If I’ve convinced you about the  merits of homemade chili sauce you can read my whole recipe and canning instructions for it in this post.

O.K., you have mashed potato pancakes now what are you going to serve them with?  If you’re having them for breakfast then you can have them in place of hash browns but for dinner this is how I like to serve them.

What are you gonna serve with them?

I’m not sure why you don’t want to just eat an entire plate of potato pancakes, but O.K.

My go-to is grilled sausage with some type of greens like swiss chard or green beans with butter.

Meat mains

  • sausage
  • pork chops
  • goulash
  • roast chicken
  • brisket
  • smoked salmon

Vegetarian mains

  • chana masala
  • ratatouille
  • tempeh breakfast sausages
  • cheesy black bean bake
Can I make potato pancakes out of baked potatoes?

Yes yes yes! Baked potatoes make great mashed potatoes, which in turn make really good potato pancakes.

How do I make them cheesy?

Add 1 cup of grated cheddar or mozzarella cheese per 2 cups of mashed potatoes for really cheesy potato pancakes. Just add the cheese to the mixture after you’ve incorporated the eggs.

Can you freeze mashed potato pancakes?

You bet you can. They’ll freeze best if you cook them first then let them cool. After that you can place them on a parchment lined plate and stick them in the freezer to freeze quickly. Once frozen, separate each pancake with a small piece of parchment or waxed paper and put them in an airtight container or bag.

Do these have gluten?

As long as you don’t add flour to the mixture, your potato pancakes will be gluten-free.

Now that I’ve polished off every one of the potato pancakes seen in this photo I can plan for tonight’s dinner.  What am I having?  Here’s a hint.  I got the craving while looking at the bottle of squeeze mustard in my fridge.

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Crispy, Leftover Mashed Potato Pancakes


  1. Kay says:

    I’ve been eating potato pancakes for 50 years and can make a meal out of them. They’re so good that I don’t need sauces or sides. Delicious!

  2. Andrew Karr says:

    I just saw a piece on CBS Sunday Morning (which BTW is my church going experience) about musical copyright infringement so I think I will sue you over this idea.
    On second thought, even if I get 10% of the revenue from this post, I wouldn’t be able to pay my legal team.
    I Love You! (and potatoes).

  3. Mary W says:

    Always have eaten potato pancakes like yours with applesauce BUT, since you started the craving in me, I’ll add a layer of sour cream. My stomach is rumbling so loud. I’ve never ever ever thought to use instant potato flakes but my date has expired on the pandemic box so lunch may or may not be good. Hey, how can it be wrong – it’s potato.

  4. Randy P says:

    This one looks to be a winner. I usually just make Polish potato dumplings using left-over mashed spuds. The basic 1 cup mashed, 1 cup flour and 1 egg. Form per your good gnochi technique, boil for 6 minutes in salted water, then saute in butter and bread crumbs. And my pancakes start with grated raw potato and onion. But I WILL give your selection a fair try.

    It’s almost amazing how many great dishes can be made from the lowly potato. Some of them there other veggies are just not pulling their weight says I. lol

  5. marie keller says:

    I add leftover corn when I have it. Gives some extra flavor and uses up another leftover.

  6. Carole says:

    Hmmm…. sounds delish. Do you think you could deep fry these, dropped from a one-ounce disher? (I am thinking of the french Pommes Dauphine, but they have gluten ….) I am imagining they would be they would ultra-crispy outside and creamy inside, and they could be more of a finger food? Maybe with some crazy dipping sauces. I am going to try it!

  7. Lori says:

    This post makes me sad, in a good way. I remember loving mashed potato cakes when I was a kid. I lost my mother last year, so I can’t ask her how she made them. But I seem to remember flour or cracker crumbs. And she probably fried them in bacon grease. And we always ate them with apple sauce. I’m going to have to make some of these. Thank you.

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