If you can make mashed potatoes, then you can make Duchess Potatoes! They are a simple way to make your dinner more elegant, and everyone will love them.
I just adore how Duchess Potatoes look on a serving platter or dinner plate! They’re beautiful and they’re a fun way to jazz up regular mashed potatoes, particularly for a holiday or dinner party.
I served them with Herb Roasted Prime Rib for a holiday dinner, and they were the most talked-about side dish by far. The concept is simple: make mashed potatoes, pipe them into rounds, and bake. That’s it!
Origin of duchess potatoes
The origin of Duchess Potatoes is French, and they recipes for them are found in many French cookbooks.
But the story of how they came to be is relatively unknown. They are thought to have been made for a British duchess who visited France, when they earned the name duchess potatoes.
The recipe starts with a fairly traditional recipe for mashed potatoes, including:
- Yukon Gold potatoes—these make for extra creamy mashed potatoes!
- A splash of heavy cream
- Egg yolks and nutmeg are per French tradition
- Salt seasons the potatoes to perfection
How to make duchess potatoes
Start by placing peeled and sliced potatoes into a large saucepan, then cover with water. Bring the water to a boil, then let the potatoes cook for 15–20 minutes, or until tender.
Drain the potatoes, and place them in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the butter and beat on low until creamy (take care not to over mix them, which can make the potatoes gummy).
Add the egg yolks, whipping cream, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Mix until just combined. Let sit for 30 minutes to cool.
Then, prepare a piping bag fitted with a star tip, and pipe the potatoes into 2–3 inch circles on a greased sheet pan.
You have several options for piping the potatoes. A regular gallon-sized zip-top bag works great for the piping bag if you don’t have an official decorator’s piping bag. I do suggest getting a star tip (this is a great set) to create the beautiful swirls on the top of the Duchess Potatoes.
Plus, the more surface area of the potato, the more chances there are for it to brown lightly in the oven! Crispy potatoes = delicious potatoes.
If you opt to skip a star tip, you can cut a ½ inch hole in a gallon-sized zip-top bag and use that to pipe the potatoes onto the sheet pan. The end result won’t be quite as elegant, but it will still taste delicious. You could also pour the potatoes in a 13×9 inch baking dish and use a spatula to create swirls on top, creating one gigantic Duchess Potato.
To ensure the tops of the potatoes get brown in the oven, we need two things. The first is a relatively hot oven set to 400°F. The second is an egg wash. The combination will ensure you get crispy tips on the top of those potatoes!
Bake the duchess potatoes for 20–25 minutes, or until golden brown on top.
Serving the potatoes
I served these Duchess Potatoes as part of a Christmas dinner with my friend Kelley of Haviland Events.
The placemats were provided by the enormously talented Liz of EJD Design. She custom drew them to fit the plates and cups, and has created them for weddings, too.
I served the Duchess Potatoes with the following dishes for Christmas dinner:
Have you tried this recipe? Please leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating and/or comment below!
- 2½ lbs Yukon Gold potatoes
- 2 tablespoons melted butter
- 3 egg yolks
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
- Peel the potatoes and cut into 1 inch cubes. Place in a saucepan and add water to cover the potatoes. Place on the stovetop over high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Let cook for 15–20 minutes, or until the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork.
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Drain the potatoes and place them in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the butter. Mix on low until potatoes are mashed and creamy (be careful not to overmix or they will get glue-like).
- Add the egg yolks, cream, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Mix until just combined. Let sit for 30 minutes to cool.
- Prepare a large sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
- Once the potatoes are cool, place them in a piping bag fitted with a star tip. Pipe the potatoes into 3 inch circles, swirling the piping bag to create a mound of potatoes.
- Brush the tops of the potatoes with the egg wash. Bake for 20–25 minutes, or until golden brown on top. Serve immediately.