What was that? You say you aren’t getting enough desserts these days?  Well, then let’s make some brownies.

Oh yeah, and since this is Mid-Century Menu, the first ingredient is instant mashed potatoes. Because this is how we cook around here.


These are Potato Brownies!

Potato Brownies
Serves: 2 dozen
  • ⅔ cup instant mashed potato flakes
  • ⅔ cup hot water
  • ⅓ cup shortening
  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅓ cup flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ baking powder
  • ½ cup chopped nuts
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 8x8 pan.
  2. Measure potato flakes into mixing bowl. Blend in hot water; set aside.
  3. Melt shortening and chocolate over low heat, stirring constantly. Add chocolate mixture, sugar and eggs to potatoes in bowl.
  4. Stir together remaining ingredients; blend into chocolate mixture. Pour into prepared pan. Bake 25 to 30 minutes. Cool; if desired frost.



This lovely is from 42 Hot Potato Ideas, which was published by Betty Crocker in 1967.

Do you see that? Up in the corner? “From soups to desserts.” I love how these product pamphlets overreach their limits in recipes.


But it isn’t too much of a reach in this case. I know that mashed potatoes are actually a pretty common ingredient in vintage recipes, especially in bread. Doughnuts and rolls made with mashed potatoes are fantastic. But the reason that this recipe caught my eye wasn’t just because of the addition of mashed potatoes, it was the amount of potatoes.


When you look at the recipe, its pretty much just sugar and mashed potatoes with a little chocolate thrown in. I wanted to see if they had gone too far. I can imagine that they wanted to see how much potato they could cram into one recipe and still get it to work.


They actually worked! They totally looked like brownies. I was shocked. I honestly thought they would look pretty much like batter when they came out of the oven.



“What do you think? Are they brownies?”

“Yeaaaaahhh. Sort of. They are pretty good.”

The Verdict: Sort Of Brownies

From The Tasting Notes –

These were really interesting. The taste was great, a good chocolate flavor and not overly sweet. I accidentally used salted nuts in the batter, and it actually ended up being really good with the extra salt. The texture was where things skewed a bit. Since they were made mostly of potatoes they tasted mostly like…potatoes. While they were warm, they very much had the mouth feel of mashed potatoes. It wasn’t 100% potatoes, but you could tell what you were chewing. When they cooled the texture changed to somewhere between cheesecake and fudge. Not bad at all, but just not a normal brownie texture. But they were moist and still had a good chocolate flavor. So overall I would say these are a yes, especially if you need a chocolate fix and you have little to no flour in your house. And the texture of potatoes doesn’t freak you out.