Spicy Smashed Potato Salad

Smashed potato salad made with creamy mashed potatoes and smashed, along with a few savory, sweet and spicy ingredients. | mjskitchen.com


Whenever Bobby and I drive through Texas, our route usually takes us through Post, Texas, a one – stoplight town, about an hour south of Lubbock.  If we arrive around breakfast or lunch we usually eat at George’s Family Restaurant, a little cafe’ with good food, service, and prices.  The last time we stopped it was for a late lunch.  We each ordered barbecue which came with a side of potato salad, a creamy potato salad made with a combination of mashed and chunky potatoes, a minimal amount of mayonnaise and other ingredients, and lots and lots of flavor.  We both loved it so much, I just had to give it a go.  This Spicy Smashed Potato Salad isn’t exactly like George’s, but it sure is GOOOOOOOOD, and it’s got a bit of a kick to it, something not included in the original.

This smashed potato salad is not chunky like most potato salads including my own mixed potato salad.  It’s creamy and slightly chunky from a blend of both mashed and smashed potatoes.  Other ingredients include minced onion and celery, pickles and pickle juice, and a simple seasoning of salt and pepper and red chile flakes (for a little heat if you so desire).  As most potato salads are served cold, Bobby and I both prefer this salad served warm or at room temperature, making it a great potato salad for barbecues, potlucks, and picnics.


Smashed potato salad made with creamy mashed potatoes and smashed, along with a few savory, sweet and spicy ingredients. #potato #salad #redchile @mjskitchen


Smashed Potato Salad Recipe

Recipe Author:  MJ of MJ’s Kitchen

Serves 6
Prep and Cook Time:  30 minutes


Enough water to boil potatoes + 1 tsp. salt
~2 pounds potatoes (Russet, Red, or Yellow)*
½ cup milk
2 tsp. Dijon or stone ground mustard
2-3 Tbsp. mayonnaise*
½ cup minced onion
½ cup minced celery
2 Tbsp. sweet or dill pickle relish*
1 tsp. black or white pepper
3 Tbsp. juice from the dill pickle jar
1 tsp. red chile flakes (for spicy version)*


  1. To a large pot, add enough water to cook the potatoes. Add 1 tsp. salt and bring to a boil.
  2. Peel the potatoes. Cut into 2 – 3 large chunks. Add to the water once it comes to a boil. Boil for 15 – 20 minutes, until potatoes are cooked through. Drain.
  3. Transfer about half of the potatoes to a large bowl. Add the milk, mustard and 2 Tbsp. mayonnaise. Mash with a potato masher.
  4. Add the remaining potatoes and remaining ingredients. Smash about 3 – 4 strokes to break up large chunks of potatoes.
  5. Use a rubber spatula or spoon, fold the ingredients together to mix all ingredients and to coat the larger pieces of potatoes with the mashed potatoes. If too dry, add more mayonnaise and/or pickle juice.
  6. Taste. Add salt if needed.

*See Kitchen Notes for more information.



Smashed potato salad made with creamy mashed potatoes and smashed, along with a few savory, sweet and spicy ingredients. | mjskitchen.com


Kitchen Notes

Potatoes – I’ve use Russets, red and yellow.  They all work, but the yellow potatoes break up easily making great mashed potatoes, but not chunky ones.  A good combination is to use the yellow potatoes for the mashed, and red or Russets for the chunky potatoes.  I would not recommend all yellow potatoes because you’ll end up with just mashed potatoes once you’re done.

Mayonnaise – The mashed potatoes provide a lot of the creamy coating, but a little mayonnaise is still needed IMO.  So start with 2 Tbsp. and add more if too dry.

Sweet/dill pickle relish – If you don’t like sweet pickle relish, then substitute with dill pickle relish or minced dill pickles.  I personally like the combination of the sweet and sour you get by using both sweet relish and dill juice.  The dill juice adds a tartness and bite.

Red chile flakes – I know, how dare I make chile flakes optional!? However, to make a kid friendly potato salad you’ll probably need to omit them.  It’s still delicious but just doesn’t have the spicy kick. I personally like the spiciness of the chile flakes, but Bobby prefers it without.  Either way, it’s a great salad and perfect for long holiday weekends and summer barbecues.

Hope you enjoy this Smashed Potato Salad!  If you do, then you might also enjoy these other potato dishes.

Not My Mama’s Potato Salad

Mashed Potatoes with Garlic and Herbs

Roasted Fingerling Potatoes

Mashed Sweet Potatoes



51 Responses to “Spicy Smashed Potato Salad”

  1. Shanna November 11, 2016 at 5:08 pm #

    I use green chilies or pickled jalapenos in the place of the relish or pickles. Love it.

    • mj November 15, 2016 at 6:16 pm #

      Me Too! Thanks for dropping by!

  2. Anna @ shenANNAgans May 9, 2016 at 9:09 pm #

    How super amazing are potatoes? I seriously love them, if I can work them into my food, I will. So you can imagine my excitement to find this delicious recipe. Smashed potato works with pretty much everything. Thanks for feeding my addiction, cant wait to try. 🙂

    • mj May 11, 2016 at 10:22 am #

      Thanks Anna! I know what you mean about potato addition! 🙂 I probably shouldn’t eat as many as I do, but they are hard to turn down.

  3. Vicki Bensinger May 9, 2016 at 6:59 pm #

    I love potato salad but rarely ever order it and never make it anymore. Your version sounds just like the ones I like best and you’re right it’s perfect for a barbecue. I’ll be sure to save this and try it for our next one. It will be a nice treat.

    • mj May 11, 2016 at 10:20 am #

      Thanks Vicki! It’s not a dish I make often, but with grilled or smoked meats, it’s a natural side dish.

  4. Evelyne CulturEatz May 9, 2016 at 2:25 pm #

    that truly looks like a smashing 😉 potato salad MJ! I love them with texture so this looks wonderful, even if you went still a bit creamier then the restaurant. Pickle relish is a must!

    • mj May 11, 2016 at 10:20 am #

      Ha Ha! It is creamier without all of the massive amounts of mayo. And yes, the pickle relish is a must! 🙂

  5. Anne@ASaladForAllSeasons May 8, 2016 at 9:20 pm #

    What a GREAT potato salad! I LOVE the idea of adding smashed potatoes, too. And I especially love that it contains pickles and pickle juice! (I think most everything should contain pickles….except maybe chocolate mousse!). Looking forward to trying this salad! : )

    • mj May 9, 2016 at 9:17 am #

      Thanks so much Anne! I’m with you – you gotta have the pickles, but no – I do think I would leave them out of chocolate mousse. 🙂

  6. Sissi May 8, 2016 at 10:29 am #

    I am really crazy for potato salads in general and have already seen/made different kinds from different countries, but yours doesn’t resemble anything I know! It looks and sounds fantastic and reminds me of… Japanese potato salad!!! Japanese potato salad (in case you haven’t had it) is also smashed; something between rough purée and regular salad. It’s just irresistible… so I make it very rarely, but when I do, it’s treated like a very very special treat. I am amazed by the way you use the juice from the pickles (just like you do with olive brine!). I must try it one day really! (Especially since I have a jar of tiny gherkins open in the fridge practically non-stop).

    • mj May 9, 2016 at 9:14 am #

      I did not know that about Japanese potato salad. Need to look that up. You know how we are, Sissi – waste not, want not. So pickle juice, olive brine never goes to waste in our houses. 🙂 Thanks for you kind comments as always.

  7. Keith @ How's it Lookin? May 8, 2016 at 8:50 am #

    Looks so good. Can’t go wrong with a potato salad, thanks for sharing

    • mj May 9, 2016 at 9:12 am #

      Thanks Keith!

  8. Kelly @ Inspired Edibles May 6, 2016 at 9:45 pm #

    A kick to it? So unusual for MJ’s Kitchen 😉 I have to say I have never been a fan of potato salad gooped in mayo – not because I have an issue with mayo (a quality mayo is olive oil + egg – great stuff) it’s just not my thing. I appreciate how you’ve revamped this one — dill pickle reslish? yes! Such a great idea.

    • mj May 7, 2016 at 11:40 am #

      Ha Ha!!!! I too am a big fan of pickle relish and it can be sweet or dill. The sweet relish is one of my food vices. I know it’s not that good for me, but everything in moderation right? 🙂 That’s interesting that you like mayo with a quality olive oil. I’ve made it about 3 or 4 times using different quality olive oils because so many recipes use it, but Bobby and I just do not like it. We both prefer canola or avocado oil. Of course I add a little pickled chile pepper vinegar for the acid. 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend Kelly!

  9. Abbe@This is How I Cook May 6, 2016 at 11:29 am #

    I love potatoes and potato salad every which way! And I love that new photo of you! And now I am getting hits from Reddit that I think are from you! Never have tried that before. Looks like fun and thanks! If you ever head N on 25 please find me in Denver!

    • mj May 7, 2016 at 11:34 am #

      Thanks so much Abbe! I will definitely look you up next time we head N on 25!!! I’m sending you an email about Reddit.

  10. Debra Eliotseats May 6, 2016 at 9:50 am #

    We had a discussion early on in our relationship as to whether or not mashed potato salad was palatable. Long story, but I grew up with a grandmother that used leftover mashed potatoes to make salad. The Hubs did not…… I love the red pepper in this, M.J.

    • mj May 7, 2016 at 11:32 am #

      You know, that sounds right about your grandmother using the leftover mashed potatoes. Post is an old town and I’d bet that cafe had been around a long time and was using someone’s grandmother’s recipes. It certainly shows in their biscuits! They are huge!

  11. Roz | La Bella Vita Cucina May 6, 2016 at 6:31 am #

    I love the spicy kick that you added to your potato salad! It really adds an extra surprising kick!

    • mj May 7, 2016 at 11:31 am #

      Thanks Roz! It does provide a little kick. 🙂

  12. Viviane Bauquet Farre - Food and Style May 6, 2016 at 3:10 am #

    MJ this looks delicious! Potato salads can be hit or miss, if not given the right touch, but this looks and sounds excellent. The texture, the kick of spiciness… Mmm!

    • mj May 7, 2016 at 11:30 am #

      Thanks Viviane! Yes, sometimes I find potato salads dry and flavorless. This one is not. 🙂

  13. Bam's Kitchen May 6, 2016 at 12:36 am #

    What an amazing side dish and of course i love the little kick from the chilis… Of course. Lots of BBQ ing on the horizon and I am sure this side dish is going to be loved by our family. Wishing you a super weekend!

    • mj May 7, 2016 at 11:30 am #

      Thanks Bobbi! Hope you and your family are having a wonderful weekend as well!

  14. Tamara May 5, 2016 at 9:14 am #

    This looks fabulous MJ! It would be perfect with Texas BBQ 🙂 We bought a kamado grill when we moved to McAllen, and we really need to get it going before it’s so hot and humid that we’re reluctant to go outside! I think this is a perfect side dish… I love the combination of smashed and mashed!

    • mj May 5, 2016 at 9:50 am #

      My BIL bought a Kamodo grill a while back and loves it! Well, I have the perfect recipe coming up for you in a couple of weeks. 🙂 And these potatoes go great with it! Thanks and have a happy Cinco de Mayo!

  15. Ramona W May 5, 2016 at 5:11 am #

    You know I’m all for a some extra spice in my potato salad! I could just hang out with that bowl and a fork and not want to be disturbed. 🙂

    • mj May 5, 2016 at 9:48 am #

      Thanks Ramona! Happy Cinco de Mayo!

  16. SeattleDee May 4, 2016 at 11:18 pm #

    Red chile flakes in smashed potato salad? Yes, please, and perhaps a handful of diced poblano peppers as well. Pass me a bowlful.

    • mj May 5, 2016 at 9:48 am #

      Diced poblano or any type of roasted green chile sounds great! Thanks Darlin!

  17. Deb|EastofEdenCooking May 4, 2016 at 12:49 pm #

    Oh goodness! It’s almost lunch time here and I am craving a huge scoop of the Smashed Potato Salad! A scrumptious summer recipe MJ.

    • mj May 5, 2016 at 9:47 am #

      Thanks Deb! I did have a bowl of this for lunch just yesterday. 🙂

  18. Adina May 4, 2016 at 11:02 am #

    I love potato salad and this version sounds really good. I think my kids would be all over it as well.

    • mj May 5, 2016 at 9:46 am #

      Thanks Adina! My little 2 year niece liked with her smoked pork ribs. 🙂

  19. Judy Purcell May 4, 2016 at 6:38 am #

    It’s a kin to lumpy mashed potatoes, which I prefer, but with a lot more flavor. With summer coming and backyard barbecues about to blossom, the timing is perfect for this recipe. And I think the chile flakes would be a must!

    • mj May 5, 2016 at 9:46 am #

      Actually, that’s probably why Bobby and I love these potatoes – we’re like our mashed potatoes lumpy. 🙂 Great dish for backyard barbecues! Thanks Judy!

  20. Angie@Angie's Recipes May 4, 2016 at 3:52 am #

    It does look very comforting and delicious, MJ. Beautiful photos as well!

    • mj May 5, 2016 at 9:45 am #

      Thanks so much Angie!

  21. Katerina May 4, 2016 at 3:27 am #

    I am a huge fan of mashed potatoes! My father makes jokes on me saying that I eat hospital food haha! This mash is so goood I could devour the whole pot. Pinned!

    • mj May 5, 2016 at 9:45 am #

      Interesting that your dad considers mashed potatoes hospital food. 🙂 I’m with you – give me a bowl of potatoes any day! Thanks Katerina!

  22. GiGi Eats May 3, 2016 at 6:45 pm #

    I LOVEEE SMASHING tubers! 😉

    • mj May 3, 2016 at 7:34 pm #

      So does Bobby! He has dibs on all of the smashing. 🙂 Thanks!

  23. John/Kitchen Riffs May 3, 2016 at 6:25 pm #

    What a terrific potato salad! And just in time for cookout/picnic season! I’ve had something similar to this, but have never made one myself. Thanks for figuring out a great looking recipe so I won’t have to bother! And yes, red chile flakes please.

    • mj May 3, 2016 at 7:33 pm #

      Thanks bunches John! Yep, I served it to the extended family a couple of weeks ago along with some smoked ribs. It was a great complement. Hope you enjoy!

  24. Crista Vesel May 3, 2016 at 5:30 pm #

    This looks great and refreshing for the summer. I bet that it will also be great with Hatch green chile!

    • mj May 3, 2016 at 7:32 pm #

      Thanks so much Crista! I’ll be trying the chile with it in the fall with some fresh chile. YAY!!

  25. Mary May 3, 2016 at 3:21 pm #

    Something I would’ve to see on all recipes, not just yours, is the nutritional values. Only because I count points with Weight Watchers and would still like to indulge in New Mexico cooking. Just a thought.

    • mj May 3, 2016 at 7:31 pm #

      Thanks so much for the suggestion Mary! Adding nutritional values is something I have been considering. Once things calm down for me in July, I’ll see what I can do. Thanks for your comments!

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