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Loaded Mashed Potato Waffles

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This 15-minute meal is a delicious way to use up leftover mashed potatoes. Kid pleasing, quick, and hearty–you can eat these loaded mashed potato waffles for breakfast, lunch, or dinner!I’m constantly on the look out for delicious new recipes…EASY ones that I can manage to make between feeding the baby and folding the laundry. I get tired of the same meals all the time, but I don’t have a lot of extra time or energy with three little boys running around for Julia Child-style cooking.

A few weeks ago, however, I discovered a new gem of a recipe, and I’m super excited to share it with you all today. We’re talking mashed potatoes meet waffles. Are you sensing how epic this is?

It’s the perfect trifecta of family-friendly food:

  1. It takes less than 15 minutes to cook from start to finish (unless you have small helpers slowing you down…then it’s more like 20-25).
  2. It’s a great way to use up leftovers in a way that doesn’t taste like leftovers.
  3. My kids ate it happily…as in…NO complaints at all.

Can I just tell you how happy it makes me to sit down and enjoy a meal with my family without anyone complaining? No whining about the “green stuff” in the soup (parsley, people…you’d think I was trying to poison the child) or moaning that the chicken is too spicy (since when is teriyaki sauce considered spicy?).

Nope, with this meal there was just contented eating and a few glorious comments of, “Mom, this is really good!” Little Man (5) even requested it again for breakfast on Saturday morning.

Hallelujah! It may be a small battle to win, but it gives me hope that I might just win the war, too….someday.

Alright, back to the mashed potato waffles themselves. I originally found the recipe when I was searching for ways to use leftover mashed potatoes. Mashed potato waffles sounded like a fabulous idea (thanks to Joy the Baker), so I simplified her method and tweaked the ingredients a bit to fit our family’s tastes.

Instead of just a potato waffle, I mixed in some leftover diced ham and shredded cheese to make these more like a loaded baked potato. The result was delicious! Crispy exterior with a soft inside. Just the right amount of flavor from the onion, cheese, and ham. Seriously, next time, I need to double the batch. They’re always GONE in minutes.We had them for an easy weeknight dinner the first time, but their encore performance was breakfast a couple of weeks later. With a combination like this, you can get away with eating mashed potato waffles any time of day!

Oh, and if you don’t have leftover mashed potatoes on hand, NO worries! Instant potatoes are totally acceptable here. I almost never use fakey flakey potatoes (I actually only keep them on hand for making my FAVORITE potato rolls), but I wanted to try them in these waffles just as an experiment because I don’t always have the real deal sitting in my fridge. I am happily surprised to report that instant potatoes work great in this dish!

So, are you ready to cook?

Loaded Mashed Potato Waffles

Notes:  I’ve successfully made this recipe with both leftover mashed potatoes as well as instant potatoes. Use whichever you have on hand.

Also, a note about adding ham. I love to use leftover ham from Christmas or Easter in these (I always buy a HUGE one and keep the leftovers diced up in my freezer for amazingly simple breakfasts like this one and this one.) If you don’t have that on hand, you could easily dice up some deli ham, or use bacon instead. So many options!

Ingredients:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups mashed potatoes (*see note)
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 cup diced ham (or bacon)
  • 2/3 cup grated cheddar cheese

Directions:

  1. Preheat waffle iron. Grease if needed.
  2. Stir milk into melted butter, to cool it down. Add eggs, and beat thoroughly.
  3. Add mashed potatoes and stir gently to combine.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pepper, and onion powder. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, and stir gently with a rubber scraper until just combined.
  5. Fold in ham and cheese.
  6. Scoop approximately 1/4 cup of batter into each section of a waffle iron (mine can do 4 at a time). Cook waffles until golden brown (cooking time will depend on your iron…mine takes about 3 minutes). Remove to a wire rack and keep warm in oven or microwave.
  7. Serve immediately! These really taste best fresh out of the iron. If they cool down too much, you can always pop them in a toaster oven or on the top rack of your oven for a few minutes to heat them back up. If you want to get really fancy, you can even melt some additional cheese on top in the oven. Mmm. I’m all for more cheese.

Enjoy!

Source: Adapted from Joy the Baker. I simplified the process, switched up ingredients, etc.

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