A seriously easy Crock Pot mashed potato recipe, these loaded mashed potatoes are trashed up (in the best possible way) with butter, sour cream, scallions, cheddar cheese, and - of course - bacon for the meat-eaters.
3poundsred potatoesscrubbed clean and cut into 2-inch pieces
4tablespoonsbuttercut into squares + more for serving if desired
1teaspoonsalt + additional salt if desired
1/3cupwater or vegetable broth
1/2cuphalf-and-half plus more if needed
1cup+ 1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheesedivided
1bunch scallionschopped & divided
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
For the optional bacon topping:
2-4slicesbacon or turkey baconcooked, drained, and crumbled
Add potatoes to a 3-quart or larger slow cooker. Dot with the butter and sprinkle on the salt. Pour water or vegetable broth over the top. Cook on high for 4-5 hours or low 7-8 hours, or until potatoes are fork-tender. Turn off the slow cooker, remove the lid, and let cool for a few minutes.
Add 1/2 cup half-and-half and sour cream. Mash and stir with a potato masher until well-combined. Add more half-and-half for a thinner consistency, if desired. Stir in 1 cup cheddar cheese and most of the scallions, reserving some of the green slices for garnish. Taste and add additional salt and some pepper if desired.
Transfer to a medium-size casserole dish or serving bowl, piling the potatoes lightly. Add additional butter, if desired, and top with the remaining cheddar cheese and the remaining scallions. Pass with the bacon in a separate bowl so diners can top with bacon if desired (or leave it off if they prefer).