Mashed potatoes are a way to serve potatoes. Mashed potatoes are made by boiling potatoes, and then mixing them with milk and butter until they are smooth. Vegetable oil, cheese, sour cream, parsley, bacon bits and many other things can be added according to the maker's taste. Dehydrated instant mashed potato mixes are available in many different flavors.
Sometimes gravy is poured on top of mashed potatoes. Mashed potatoes and gravy are usually served with roasts or meat loaf.
Mashed potatoes are part of the traditional American Thanksgiving dinner.