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potato cakes with pistachio pesto

crispy parmesan and panko crusted mashed potato cakes served with a homemade pistachio pesto
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Additional Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Sides
Servings: 20
Author: the communal feast


  • 2 large russet potatoes peeled
  • 1 large sweet potato peeled
  • 4 medium carrots peeled
  • 1/4 cup cooking cream
  • 1 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1 TBS cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup green onions finely chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • Pistachio pesto
  • 1/2 cup arugula loosely packed
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup pistachios de-shelled
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 lemon juiced
  • 1/2 cup olive oil


  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the potatoes and boil for 10 minutes or until tender. Add the carrots to the pot and boil an additional 5 minutes. Vegetables should be tender enough that they can be pierced with a fork.
  • While the potatoes cook, combine all of the ingredients for the pesto in a food processor. Slowly add the olive oil. Blend until well combined. Add more olive oil for a thinner pesto. Set aside until ready to serve.
  • Rinse potatoes and carrots under cold water and cube small enough to add to a blender. In a blender combine potatoes, carrots and cream. Mix until just started to resemble mash potatoes. Do this step in batches if needed.
  • In a large bowl, combine mixture with green onions, 1/2 cup parmesan, flour and cornstarch. Fold together until fully incorporated. Season with salt and pepper. Use a cookie scoop to form balls and place on baking tray. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • In a non stick pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add just enough to the pan to cover the bottom for a shallow fry. While the oil warms, combine the remaining parmesan with bread crumbs in a shallow bowl. Use your hands to flatten the balls into small patties. Coat both sides with the parmesan/panko mixture. Cook until golden about 4 minutes per side. The edges should begin to change colours and crisp once you see this they are ready to be flipped. Remove from heat and set on paper towel lined plate. Repeat until all the patties are cooked.
  • Serve warmed topped with pistachio pesto.


*you can substitute 2 cups leftover mashed potatoes instead of the 3 potatoes. Skip to step #3. No need to refrigerate at this point as the potatoes will have already been chilled and are easier to handle at this point.
*Can be made a day ahead, coating with breadcrumbs/parmesan just before cooking. Store them on a tray covered with plastic wrap in the fridge.