These traditional Irish potato cakes are so easy to make and are a great way of using up leftover mashed potato this St Patricks Day. Plus they are dry fried in the frying pan, or on a griddle, making them healthier and more authentic than some fried potato cakes!!! Serve them for dinner with corned beef or for breakfast with smoked salmon. Or make small ones and serve as an appetizer with your St Pattys day feast.
What is more they freeze wonderfully and can be re-heated quickly, making them such a great easy prepare ahead side dish!
Do you always make too much mashed potato?
I know I do. And that is where this Irish potato cake recipe is great! It can be made with fresh potatoes or with leftover mashed potato.
Ideally you want to use mash that has had no butter or cream added to it.
That's right just plain mashed potato.
No butter, no milk, no cream....just potatoes cooked and then mashed.
The recipe calls for 2 cups of mashed potatoes, which is yielded from about 1 pound (500g) of raw potatoes.
For the perfect St Patrick's day, cook up a big batch of mashed potatoes, use some to make these Irish potato cakes for breakfast and then save the rest to serve with a Beef and Guinness Stew for dinner!
What to serve with Potato Cakes?
The beauty of these Irish potato cakes is they are so versatile, you can serve them for dinner, lunch, breakfast or even as an appetizer!
What to Serve Potato Cakes with for Breakfast:
- Butter and jam
- Buttery scrambled egg
- Crispy bacon and a fried egg
- Crispy bacon and a drizzle of maple syrup
- Smashed avocado and a poached egg
- Replace the english muffin with a potato cake in this salmon and avocado recipe.
What to Serve Potato Cakes with for Brunch/Lunch
- Smoked salmon and a dollop of sour cream
- Smashed avocado, fresh tomato and mozzarella
- Piled high with garlic mushrooms
- Slices of pear, crumbled goats cheese and a drizzle of honey
- Roast beets and a dollop of sour cream/horseradish sauce
- Baked beans and grated cheese
- Dipped into this lentil soup or this spiced coconut and potato soup
What to Serve Potato Cakes with for Dinner
- Beef and Guinness Stew
- Corned beef and cabbage soup
- Dipped into a tomato stew
- Steak, garlic mushrooms and roasted tomatoes
- Chicken, kale and bean stew
- Beef pot roast or brisket.
- Use instead of corn bread and serve with a chili
What to Serve Potato Cakes with for an Appetizer
Use a cookie cutter to cut small disks out of your dough and serve as an appetizer or party snack:
- Sour cream and apple sauce
- Sliced rare beef and horseradish/dill pickle
- Marinara dipping sauce
- Cream cheese and topped with a roast bell pepper slice
- Tzatziki and a small slice of lamb
- Shrimp and old bay cocktail sauce
How to make Potato cakes with leftover mashed potato
These potato cakes use just 4 ingredients! And one of those is salt! Plus the whole thing takes well under 30 minutes! (So many exclamation marks there but I think this recipe warrants them!)
With very little work you can have one of the most delicious side dishes that the whole family will demolish.
The leftover mashed potato, flour, salt and baking powder are mixed together to form a rough dough. This is easy to do, there is no need for a food mixer, you can do it in a couple of minute just using your hands.
Once you have a rough dough all that is left is to divide the dough into two equal(ish) balls, placed on a well floured surface and flatten them out to form a disk.
The disk is cut into quarters ready to be cooked in a large skillet.
Potato Cake Recipe Tips
Start with cold mashed potato
Mashed potato solidifies as it cools, so if you try and use warm mashed potato you'll find the mixture is quite wet and hard to handle.
Use mashed potato that doesn't have lots of cream or butter in it
The recipe works best with mashed potato that is just potato. If you do have a very soft mashed potato you will need to add extra flour to the dough. This will still work but your potato cakes will take longer to cook through.
If you don't have leftover mashed potato don't worry
You can easily make some mash specifically for these potato cakes. The recipe calls for 2 cups of mashed potatoes, which is yielded from about 1 pound (500g) of raw potatoes. Just be sure to let the potato cool before you use it.
When you cook the potato cakes don't add oil
Traditional Irish Potato cakes aren't golden brown. They are a much darker almost dirty brown. This is because they don't have any fat in them.
These potato cakes freeze really well
After cooking, allow them to cool and then wrap individually, to make it easy to defrost and to prevent them from sticking together.
To reheat, allow them to defrost for 10-15 minutes and then reheat in the toaster.
Why not pin this recipe for 4 ingredient easy Irish potato cakes. Pin it here.
Irish Potato Cakes
- 2 cups mashed potato - See note 1
- 1 ½ cups AP flour - plus extra for dusting
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, they should come together to form a soft dough. (see note 2 if your dough is too wet)
- Shape the dough into two roughly equal sized balls. Sprinkle your work surface generously with flour and use your hands (or a floured rolling pin) to flatten out a disk about 1cm thick.
- Cut the disk into 4 quarters.
- Use the excess flour from the board to give each potato cake a covering of flour, set to one side and repeat with the second ball of dough.
- Place a large frying pan or griddle pan over a medium heat. (don't add any oil)
- Dry fry the potato cakes for 4 minutes on one side until they are coloured (see note 3 )
- Carefully flip the potato cakes and cook for a further 4 minutes until heated through and dark brown in places.
- 2 cups of mashed potato works out at about 1 pound (500g) of raw potatoes boiled and mashed. If you are making mash specifically for this recipe don't add any butter or cream to your mash.
- Ideally you want to use mashed potatoes that haven't had butter and/or cream added to them. If you are using very wet/buttery mashed potatoes then you may need add extra flour to form a manageable dough.
- Because there is no oil in the frying pan, the potato cakes don't get a golden color to them, instead they get a darker dirtier look. This is exactly what you are looking for and is completely traditional and authentic.
To Freeze:After cooking allow the potato cakes to cool fully and then freeze each cake individually wrapped in glad wrap. Once frozen, allow to defrost for 10 minutes and then heat them in the toaster.
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