This Brown Butter Rosemary Mashed Potatoes recipe is a beautiful way to elevate your classic mashed potatoes. The browned butter pairs well with the subtle rosemary for a delicious side to any meal! 

If you love rosemary, then you’ll enjoy my other rosemary dishes such as my rosemary dinner rolls and my rosemary roasted cashews!

A black bowl filled with Rosemary Brown Butter Mashed Potatoes topped with a sprig of fresh rosemary.

Why This Recipe Works

  • Flavorful. When I made these brown butter mashed potatoes with rosemary, my husband took a bite and said they taste like Christmas. That’s high praise! He’s right, though — they have a ton of flavor! Brown butter has a rich, caramel- or toffee-like flavor. Add that with the rosemary, and these mashed potatoes really will knock the socks off your family and friends! 
  • Creamy texture. Using Yukon gold potatoes and incorporating half and half ensures a luxuriously creamy consistency that’s unbeatable.
  • No need for gravy! The nice thing about this mashed potatoes recipe is that it’s a delicious side dish that doesn’t need gravy! I mean, you can definitely load up on gravy, for sure. But, it’s completely delicious on its own! So if you don’t like packaged gravy or you don’t want the hassle of making gravy from your meat drippings, this rosemary brown butter mashed potatoes recipe is your ticket. 
  • Elevated dish. This rosemary mashed potatoes recipe uses simple ingredients and is the perfect side dish for your holiday meals or everyday meals. This is a favorite dish for our Thanksgiving table. 

Ingredient Notes

Rosemary Brown Butter Mashed Potatoes ingredients on a light gray background: Yukon gold potatoes, half and half, rosemary, butter, salt and pepper.
  • Yukon Gold Potatoes: Wash, peel, then chop the potatoes into equally sized pieces. Yukon gold potatoes will provide the creamiest mashed potatoes. 
  • Butter: For an in-depth look at how to brown butter, along with tips and FAQS, check out my How to Brown Butter post! 
  • Half and Half: Using half and half will add a creamy texture without being too thick. 
  • Rosemary: If you don’t have fresh rosemary, you can use dried rosemary. You’ll love the hints of rosemary in every bite! 

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Cook the potatoes. Fill a large pot with cold water. Place potatoes in the water. Bring to a boil and cook until fork tender. Drain potatoes of all water. 
  2. Brown the butter. To a small saucepan or skillet, add 16 tablespoons of butter and heat over medium low heat. Once melted, add 1 tsp rosemary and cook until browned. Golden colored specks will form on the bottom of the pan. Reduce to low and stir frequently. Once the specks turn amber colored, the butter is browned.
  3. Add the half and half. Add 1 1/4 cups half and half to the browned butter and stir until warmed. Remove from heat. 
  4. Add butter mixture to potatoes. Pour some of the browned butter mixture into the pot of potatoes and begin mashing the potatoes using a potato masher. Continue adding the butter mixture and mashing the potatoes until fully mashed. Season the rosemary mashed potatoes with salt and pepper. 
Browned butter in a small grey skillet.

Recipe Tips

Rather than use a potato masher, you can use a potato ricer. Either works great! I prefer using a potato masher instead of an electric mixer because i think some texture is better than completely smooth. 

Because of the brown butter, these mashed potatoes won’t be perfectly white. That’s normal! 

Adding the rosemary to the butter as it cooks helps infuse the butter with the rosemary, which provides an even distribution of that beautiful, subtle rosemary flavor! 

Cut the potatoes in equal sizes to ensure even cooking. 

Keep a close eye when browning the butter, maintaining a low heat to avoid burning and ensuring those flavorful browned bits without going too far.

Adding the half and half to the browned butter will help warm up the cream so there isn’t a temperature shock that might alter the texture of the mashed potatoes.

If you don’t have half and half, whole milk or 2% milk works fine. You can also do part cream, part milk to create half and half at home. 🙂

Add the browned butter mixture gradually while mashing the potatoes to control the consistency and ensure an even distribution of flavors.

For an in-depth look at how to brown butter, along with tips and FAQS, check out my How to Brown Butter post! 

Make Ahead, Storing, and Freezing

Make Ahead: You can prepare the mashed potatoes a day in advance. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Reheat gently on the stove or in the microwave, adding a splash of cream if needed to regain creaminess.

Storing: Leftover brown butter mashed potatoes can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days in an airtight container.

Freezing: While mashed potatoes can be frozen, dairy-based ones like these may experience texture changes. If freezing, store in a freezer-safe container for up to 1-2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat gently.

Recipe FAQs

Why cook potatoes in cold water?

While I’m sure there’s a very scientific answer to this question, the simple explanation is that it helps the potatoes cook more evenly! There’s nothing worse than having chunks in your mashed potatoes from sections that didn’t get cooked as much. Putting the potatoes in cold water first helps prevent this 🙂 You can read more about it from the Kitchn.

How do you brown butter? 

To make browned butter, melt the butter in a small saucepan or skillet on medium low heat. Cook the butter until you see some golden-colored specks at the bottom of the pan, reduce the heat to low and stir frequently to ensure the butter doesn’t burn. The butter will smell nutty and turn an amber color. Amber/brown-colored specks will appear at the bottom of the pan. That’s how you make browned butter! It tastes delicious in so many things, including my famous brown butter chocolate chip cookies

Can you mash potatoes with a hand mixer?

Certainly! You can use a potato masher, hand mixer, or potato ricer. Whatever you have or prefer.

Can I use a different type of potato? 

While Yukon golds provide a creamy texture, you can use Russet potatoes for a fluffier mash.

Can I use dried rosemary instead of fresh? 

Yes, but adjust the quantity as dried herbs are more potent. Start with 1/3 teaspoon of dried rosemary.

Can I use whole milk instead of half and half? 

Yes, but it might result in a slightly less creamy texture.

How can I prevent lumps in the mashed potatoes? 

Ensure the potatoes are cooked through and use a potato masher or ricer for smoother consistency. Gradually incorporating the butter mixture also helps avoid lumps.

A spoon nestled in a black bowl that's filled with creamy Rosemary Brown Butter Mashed Potatoes.

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Rosemary Brown Butter Mashed Potatoes in a black bowl on a light gray background.
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5 from 1 vote

Brown Butter Rosemary Mashed Potatoes

Lets elevate the flavor of classic mashed potatoes by using browned butter and adding rosemary!
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 12 servings


  • 4 lbs Yukon gold potatoes - peeled and chopped
  • 16 tablespoons butter - salted or unsalted is fine
  • 1 1/4 cups half and half
  • 3 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary - chopped


  • In a large pot full of cold water, add the potatoes. Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are fork tender. Drain the water from the potatoes. 
  • While the potatoes are cooking brown the butter. In a small saucepan or skillet, set over medium low heat melt the butter. Once melted stir in the rosemary. Cook the butter until browned. Once you see some golden colored specks at the bottom of the pan reduce heat to low and stir frequently to ensure the butter doesn’t burn. The butter will smell nutty and turn amber colored. Amber brown colored specks will appear at the bottom of the pan. 
  • Stir in the half and half and heat until warmed. Remove from heat. 
  • Pour some of the butter/milk mixture into the pot of potatoes. Using a potato masher, begin mashing the potatoes. Continue adding the milk/butter mixture and mashing the potatoes until the potatoes are fully mashed and smooth and the brown butter mixture has been fully incorporated into the potatoes. 
  • Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with additional chopped rosemary if you’d like. 
  • Serve warm.
  • If you like this recipe, I would love for you to leave a rating and review on Thank you!


Calories: 283kcal (14%)Carbohydrates: 28g (9%)Protein: 4g (8%)Fat: 18g (28%)Saturated Fat: 11g (55%)Cholesterol: 49mg (16%)Sodium: 734mg (31%)Potassium: 674mg (19%)Fiber: 3g (12%)Sugar: 1g (1%)Vitamin A: 556IU (11%)Vitamin C: 30mg (36%)Calcium: 49mg (5%)Iron: 1mg (6%)
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
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