Mashed potatoes are great any time of the day, any time of the year. In fact, I don't think I've ever met anyone who doesn't like mashed potatoes.

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Mashed potatoes make everything better until they make them worse. Like the year I made my first Thanksgiving dinner for the entire family. I cooked the potatoes in a crock pot, then tried to smash and mix them, but they were awful. I'm not even sure what I did to make them so bad.

In my defense, I had a lot going on that day. But, to ruin the mashed potatoes, is an unforgivable holiday faux pas that I will never live down.

Since that time, I have been on a quest to find a full-proof way to make amazing and delicious mashed potatoes every time. So, I decided to ask the experienced cooks, amateur chefs, and foodies of the Tristate for their proven secrets to making the very best mashed potatoes.

As usual, those who answered did not disappoint. The secrets they shared are a little unconventional, some are tried and true, and others are just funny.

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How can I make my mashed potatoes better?

The number one website for trending food news and incredible recipes is delish.com. I knew if I looked at them for a secret ingredient to make my mashed potatoes better, they would know the perfect thing.

Mayo can improve your pre-made mashed. Hellmans advises mixing in 1/2 cup of mayo with 1 tablespoon of milk to get your spuds creamy and totally tasty.

Is there a top-secret ingredient for chef-quality mashed potatoes?

If anybody knows how to make delicious mashed potatoes, it's Paula Deen. Does she use a secret ingredient? Yes.

In a large pot, cover the potatoes with cold salted water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until the potatoes are very tender, 20 to 25 minutes; drain well and transfer to a bowl. While the potatoes are still hot, using a potato masher, mash in the buttermilk, butter, salt, black pepper, and nutmeg.

- pauladeen.com

Ok, now that we know the secrets, let's make some mashed potatoes.

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