Kirbie's Cravings

Mashed Potato Tots

Homemade mashed potato tots are a great use for leftover mashed potatoes and a tasty variation on traditional tater tots. Instead of shredded potatoes, these crispy bites are filled with creamy mashed potatoes.
photo of a bowl of Mashed Potato Tots

We always have leftover mashed potatoes after Thanksgiving so I like to come up with new ways to use them up. This year, I plan on making a lot of mashed potato tots.

The tater tots I grew up eating are made with shredded potatoes. I’ve made homemade tater tots with shredded potatoes like my Sweet Potato Tots, but the ones I’m sharing today are made with mashed potatoes. When you bite through the crispy coating, you are treated to a creamy filling of mashed potatoes and cheese.
close-up photo of Mashed Potato Tots
What’s especially great is that you can make a few batches of these and freeze them. Then you can cook the frozen ones whenever you’re in the mood for some mashed potato tots.
overhead photo of Mashed Potato Tots

More Recipes to Try

Mashed Potato Tots

Servings: 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
A homemade version of tater tots, using leftover mashed potatoes instead of shredded potatoes.


  • 1 1/2 cup cold leftover mashed potatoes
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • canola oil for frying
  • 1 tsp finely chopped parsley
  • grated parmesan cheese for topping


  •  In a large bowl, add potatoes, egg, cheese, and flour. Mix until smooth and evenly combined.
  • Using a 1/2 tbsp measuring spoon, scoop out 1/2 tbsp of mashed potato mixture and gently shape into a cylinder. The mashed potato mixture will be quite soft and sticky. Roll and cover outside of cylinder with panko bread crumbs. Once covered in crumbs, it should be easier to shape. Re-shape gently to resemble a cylinder shape. Set aside and repeat with remaining potato mixture.
  • In a skillet add about 1/2 inch of oil. Bring to medium heat. When oil is hot, add a few tots to the hot oil. Fry tots on both sides until tots are golden brown. Repeat with remaining tots.
  • Garnish tots with parsley and grated cheese. Serve with your choice of dipping sauce.

The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.

Did you make this recipe?I'd love to see it! Mention @KirbieCravings and tag #kirbiecravings!
Mashed Potato Tots

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12 comments on “Mashed Potato Tots”

  1. Can these be baked instead of frying? If so, how long? Sounds yummy!

  2. Can you freeze these, if so, before or after frying?

  3. So how do you thaw them out and also how do you heat them up after freezing

    • You shouldn’t have to thaw them first – we recommend warming them in the oven to heat them up. Or, if you have an air fryer, you could warm them up that way, too.

  4. Would this work with whipped potatoes ?

    • It’s more about the consistency of the cold mashed potatoes. As long as you can shape the leftover whipped potatoes it should work fine, so they should be stiff and thickened. If your whipped potatoes are very soft and creamy (can’t hold a shape) it will be difficult to shape the tots.

  5. Happy Thanksgiving leftovers week! Was wondering, can I cook these in an air fryer? Thanks!

  6. At what point would you freeze them to have later?