Air Fryer Mashed Potato Balls Recipe

If you like fried foods and mashed potatoes, look no further. I’ve got a recipe for you that not only combines the two but is a healthier option by cutting out the oil used to fry and using your air fryer instead! 

This recipe for air fryer mashed potato balls is simple, delicious, and sure to become your new preference over regular old mashed potatoes.

They are crispy on the outside, and smooth, flavorful, and rich on the inside. You can either make this from scratch, or use leftover mashed potatoes from last night’s dinner. 

What You’ll Need 

  • 24 oz Honey Gold potatoes 
  • ¼ cup Heavy cream
  • 1 tbsp Salted butter 
  • ¼ cup + 2 tbsp Sour cream
  • ¼ cup Sharp cheddar cheese
  • ¼ cup Bacon bits 
  • ¼ cup Salt
  • 1 tsp Black pepper
  • 1 tbsp Parsley
  • 1 tsp Garlic powder 
  • 1 cup All Purpose flour
  • ¼ cup Corn starch
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 ½ cups Panko Bread Crumbs 

Ingredient Notes

  • Honey Gold potatoes-

We’re using Honey Gold potatoes for this recipe because it provides a buttery sweet flavor and will make your mashed potatoes velvety and smooth.

  • Heavy cream-

Using heavy cream will give your mashed potatoes a rich, creamy flavor. 

  • Sour Cream-

The sour cream in this recipe will counteract the other rich, heavy ingredients with its acidic and tanginess.

  • Sharp cheddar cheese-

I like to use cheddar cheese in this recipe because it gives a sharpness to the potatoes, and the cheddar pairs well with the potatoes. 

  • All Purpose flour-

Using quality flour in this recipe like the King Arthur brand will improve the results and flavor of your mashed potato balls.

  • Corn starch-

The cornstarch in this recipe will help create a more crispy, crunchy texture for your breading. 

  • Panko Bread Crumbs-

Using panko bread crumbs along with the flour will help form a golden brown crust on the potato balls, and help them cook faster so the potato balls don’t explode. 

How To Make It

Step 1: Boil The Water 

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, being careful not to oversalt the water or your potatoes will be too salty. 

Step 2: Cut Up The Potatoes

While you’re bringing your water to a boil, cut up your potatoes into ½ inch cubes. 

Step 3: Cook The Potatoes

Add potatoes to the pot and boil for 15-20 minutes, or until soft. 

Step 4: Mash The Potatoes 

Once the potatoes are done cooking, put them in the bowl of a stand mixer, and using the paddle attachment mix until potatoes are mashed, adding heavy cream to help the potatoes mix and become creamy.

If you don’t have a stand mixer, you can use a hand mixer, or a fork to mash.

Step 5: Combine Ingredients With Potatoes

Combine butter, sour cream, cheese, bacon bits  and all your seasonings minus the salt (your potatoes should already be salted from the water). Mix well. 

Add more heavy cream if your mixture isn’t creamy enough, but be careful that it doesn’t become too mushy or you’ll have a harder time rolling them into balls and maintaining their shape.

Step 6: Refrigerate Your Potatoes 

Cover the bowl with seran wrap and let sit in the fridge for one hour, this will help you roll them into balls better. 

Step 7: Roll Potatoes Into A Ball

Take the mashed potatoes out of the refrigerator, and using a scoop or spoon, portion out your mashed potatoes and roll them into one inch size balls, placing them on a tray when done. 

Step 8: Refrigerate Potatoes Again

Place the rolled potato balls back in the refrigerator for another hour, this will help them keep their shape when you go to coat them. 

Step 9: Dredge Potato Balls 

Get out three medium size bowls, and in one of them mix your eggs and whisk. In the second bowl, combine your flour, cornstarch, and seasonings, minus the salt. In the third add your breadcrumbs.

 Coat the potato balls first in the egg, then the flour,  and repeat once more, finally coating them in the breadcrumbs to finish. 

Step 10: Cook Potato Balls

Spray the basket in your air fryer with nonstick cooking spray, and place your potato balls in the basket, being careful not to overcrowd the basket. 

Spray potato balls with more cooking spray. Cook at 400℉ for 6 minutes, repeating this step until all the potato balls are cooked. Let it cool for about 10 minutes, plate them up and serve!

Other Alternative Ingredients

How to Make this Gluten-Free

To make this recipe gluten-free simply just use gluten free flour, preferably a 1:1, measure for measure flour. 

How to Make this Vegan

To make this vegan, replace the heavy cream with either the boiling water you used to cook the potatoes, or vegetable broth.

For the butter, you can either omit it completely, or use a vegan butter sold in most stores.

The same applies for the eggs, as you will need this to dredge your potato balls. You can find vegan eggs in most stores.

You can leave out the bacon, as well as the cheese, but if you still want the cheese you can also find a vegan version of this in store. 

Finally, for the sour cream, you can choose to either omit this completely, or once again, find the vegan version of this in store.

I know I’m being repetitive, but the good news is while most of this recipe is not vegan, it’s very simple to make it vegan with all of the options available in stores. 

Using Sweet Potatoes Instead

It’s very easy to substitute this recipe with sweet potatoes, you’ll follow the recipe as usual, the only difference is you’re going to want to peel your potatoes before you boil them, and you’ll need to boil them longer, about 10-15 minutes longer. Make sure they’re soft though before you take them out. 

Can You Make This Ahead Of Time?

Yes! Follow the recipe until you’re going to cook them and instead you can either store them in the fridge for up to a week, or the freezer for up to 6 months. 

To freeze them simply make your recipe up until it’s time to cook them, instead laying them out on a tray and putting the tray in the freezer if you have room, or the fridge, until firm. Then you can store them in a ziploc bag until ready to use. 

To reheat, follow instructions for cooking, cooking 5-10 minutes longer, keeping an eye on them so they don’t explode. 

Dipping Sauce Combinations

Mayo + ketchup + creole seasoning

Mayo + sriracha + black pepper 

Sour cream + hot sauce 

General Tips And Tricks

  • The secret to making your mashed potato balls crispy and delicious is making sure your mashed potatoes are very hydrated and creamy when you’re mixing the ingredients. In addition, dredging the potato balls twice in egg and flour will give them a nice coating that will help it become more crispy. 
  • Be careful not to oversalt your water! This will make the mashed potatoes way too salty.
  • Roll the potato balls a few more times in the palm of your hand when they come out of the refrigerator for the second time, this will help smooth it out so there’s not a lot of texture.
  • Use a spatula to take your potato balls out of the air fryer, otherwise they will fall apart since they are so hot. 

Cooking Times By Air Fryer Model

ModelCooking timeTemperature
Ninja Foodi4 minutes 430 ℉
Philips Airfryer XXL (HD9630)19 minutes 415 ℉
Nuwave Bravo XL Grill4-6 minutes 415 ℉
Power XL 2&3 Qt Vortex9 minutes 440 ℉
Cuisinart4 minutes 440 ℉
Cosori6 minutes 400 ℉
Breville Smart Oven14 minutes 490 ℉
Air Fryer Mashed Potato

Air Fryer Mashed Potato Balls

Yield: 9 servings
Prep Time: 2 hours 35 minutes
Cook Time: 6 minutes
Total Time: 6 minutes

This is the perfect recipe if you’re looking to make a quick and easy snack that’s healthier than traditional fried potato balls which are typically fried in oil, but by using an air fryer you're cutting out the fat and calories.

Ingredients

  • 24 oz Honey Gold potatoes 
  • ¼ cup Heavy cream
  • 1 tbsp Salted butter 
  • ¼ cup + 2 tbsp Sour cream
  • ¼ cup Sharp cheddar cheese
  • ¼ cup Bacon bits 
  • ¼ cup Salt
  • 1 tsp Black pepper
  • 1 tbsp Parsley
  • 1 tsp Garlic powder 
  • 1 cup All Purpose flour
  • ¼ cup Corn starch
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 ½ cups Panko Bread Crumbs 

Instructions

  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Be careful not to oversalt the water or your potatoes will be too salty. 
  2. While your water is coming to a boil, wash and cut your potatoes into ½ inch cubes. Once the water is boiling add your potatoes to the pot and boil for 15-20 minutes or until very soft.
  3. Once potatoes are cooked, in the bowl of a stand mixer or with a fork mash them up, pouring in heavy cream as you go until you have a creamy mixture with no clumps. 
  4. Add your butter, sour cream, cheese, bacon bits, and all your seasonings minus the salt. Mix well.
  5. Cover the bowl and store in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
  6. Take your bowl out of the fridge, and using a spoon or ice cream scoop portion out your potatoes into 1 inch balls, roll into a ball and set on a tray. Repeat until all the balls are rolled. 
  7. Place the tray back in the refrigerator for another hour.
  8. In a medium bowl, combine your eggs and whisk. In another medium bowl combine your flour, corn starch, and seasonings, minus the salt. And in your final medium size bowl add your breadcrumbs. Dredge the potato balls first in the egg, then in the flour, then back into the egg and flour again. Finish with coating it in the breadcrumbs.
  9. Spray the basket of your air fryer with nonstick cooking spray, and place your potato balls into the fryer, making sure not to crowd the basket, and spray again with cooking spray. 
  10. Cook at 400℉ for 6 minutes, repeating until all the potato balls are cooked.
  11. Let cool for 10 minutes, plate your mashed potato balls up and serve!

Notes

Cooking times may vary slightly based on the air fryer brand you use so be sure to check on your potato balls halfway through cooking time and refer to the cooking chart above for varying times and temperatures. 

You can store these in the fridge for up to one week and reheat in the air fryer at half the cooking time, or in the freezer for up to three months, reheating at half the cooking time as well.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 9 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 481Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 60mgSodium: 3406mgCarbohydrates: 95gFiber: 2gSugar: 64gProtein: 9g
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