How Many Carbs are Packed in 1 Cup of Mashed Potatoes?

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a bowl of mashed potatoes

Are you a fan of mashed potatoes? This is easily one of the most popular uses of the root vegetable along with baked, fried, and boiled. There’s even an old-school dance known as the Mashed Potato. This is popular comfort food with a smooth texture and buttery flavor. Besides being tasty it also includes the potato, which is often referred to as one of the superfoods.

However, if you’re carb-counting you’ll want to know information like: how many carbs in 1 cup of mashed potatoes. While the white potato is super-healthy it’s also high-carb. In fact, it’s not allowed on diets like Keto and Atkins along with other root crops including sweet potatoes, yams, and turnips.

What’s the big deal? If you’re doing carb cycling and have high-carb days then the potato is an outstanding choice to give you energy for a high-intensity workout. On the other hand, if you’re going low-carb then you’ll have to watch your carbohydrate intake.

Fun Fact: A large potato has 64g of carbs. That’s 14g more than you’re allowed for one day on the Keto diet! This is a key issue because you’ll want to stay under 50g for the standard Keto and Atkins diet.

What Exactly Are Mashed Potatoes?

This is a basic food that includes ingredients like potatoes, butter, milk/cream, and salt/pepper. There are other versions but these are the main ingredients. As is often the case the rule “keep it simple” is an effective way to get the best results.

There are some variations you can use but it’s important to go with the basics in order to get the best results. If you want the most nutrients it’s important to keep the potato as close to its original state as possible. That’s why homemade is always better versus the store-bought mixes. This is a fairly easy recipe to make anyway and the main work involves cutting and blending the potatoes. Other than that, it’s super-easy.

One of the possible issues is whether cream/butter is healthy. You can use half and half in place of heavy cream if you want to reduce the fat content. In addition, you’re also adding two dairy products, which might seem to be an issue.

Here’s the thing. Butter and milk/cream are high-fat but they’re healthy fat. This makes them Keto-friendly food since they’re also low-carb foods. In fact, this requires you to make fat at least 70% of your total calories. We’re also talking about healthy fat and not the kind in deep-fried Twinkies or microwave popcorn.

Another factor is whether you go with full-fat milk, heavy cream, and grass-fed butter. These are the best options in terms of overall quality and nutrients. They’re a much better choice versus basic butter and especially margarine. Consider that trans-fat was invented for tub margarine.

If you’re a mashed potato newbie then master the basics before you try out variants. This will provide the best results. When you get the basics down you can experiment with different potatoes and ingredients. This will make you a mashed potato aficionado.

How Many Carbs in 1 Cup of Mashed Potatoes?

CALORIES

There’s 210 in one cup of the mashed potatoes. This is about 10% allowed on a 2,000-calorie diet. It’s not sky-high and it’s also a side-dish. This is your starchy veggie for your meals so the calories aren’t too high. for example, for dinner, you should also include a protein non-starchy veggie and salad to make it complete.

CARBS

You get 33g of carbs in a cup of mashed potatoes. This is quite high and over 65% of the total calories allowed on Keto and Atkins (50g). This definitely isn’t a Keto-friendly food. There isn’t much in the milk and butter but the carbs will mostly be from the potato itself. This makes the food a good option for high-carb days for carb cycling. In the case of a low-carb diet—not so much.

FATS

The nearly 7.5g of total fats make this food Keto-friendly. That’s because of the total fat and healthy fats you’re getting. There’s a small amount of saturated fat mostly from the butter/cream. However, it’s mostly healthier unsaturated fat, which is a plus. Even if you aren’t on a low-carb diet it’s important to get a good amount of healthy fats during the day.

PROTEIN

There’s a moderate amount of protein from mashed potatoes at about 3.8g. The best plant-based sources include quinoa and soybeans. These are “complete proteins” since you get all 9 essential amino acids (9 EAAs). However, you get a decent amount of protein from mashed potatoes.

VITAMINS/MINERALS

You get a decent amount of various ones including these daily values:

  • Vitamin C: 25%
  • Potassium: 16%
  • Vitamin A: 7%
  • Iron: 3%

It’s well-known that potatoes are a good source of potassium. However, it might be surprising you also get one-quarter of your daily Vitamin C from smashed potatoes. There’s also some Vitamin A and Iron to get your daily totals.

Top Mashed Potato Variants

Waffles

This is an interesting combo that you might not expect. It combines the heartiness of wheat and creaminess of mashed potatoes. If you want to make it even better you could go with fried chicken & waffles. This would make it more like a dinner than breakfast food. Try to see if your household can guess the secret ingredient in the waffles.  

Applesauce

This might sound weird at first but it provides an interesting combo of potatoes and apples. You can also add some nutmeg to take it to the next level.

Mediterranean

This variety includes olive oil and herbs like parsley and basil. This is a great option even if you’re not on the Mediterranean Diet.

Fried Potato Balls

It’s not for those who say they’re not mashed potatoes in this form. However, if you want to think outside the box then this is a great option. You get the crispy goodness of fried food plus the creamy texture of mashed potatoes. This food provides the best of both worlds.

Cream Cheese

This ingredient is one that’s often referred to as “heavy.” It’s actually sky-high in healthy fats. If you want to make your mashed potatoes more Keto-friendly then this is the perfect ingredient. That’s because cream cheese is low-carb and high-fat. The main issue is the potato is still high-carb. However, sometimes it’s OK to party with potatoes!

Roasted Garlic

This is one of the all-time healthiest herbs in the world. When you roast the garlic, it helps to tone down the flavor while keeping the nutrients. Once you try this variety, you’ll ditch instant mashed potatoes unless you’re in the middle of the zombie apocalypse. Garlic is also a low-carbohydrate herb so it’s a good option after learning how many carbs in 1 cup of mashed potatoes.

carbs and other information about mashed potatoes

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