Potato Fritters with Red Pepper Relish Give Spuds a Whole New Look

In my house, we are obsessed with potatoes. Like, legitimately obsessed with anything potato that we can get our hands on.

Fried potato fritters on a serving dish with a small glass bowl of red pepper and onion relish, and two lime wedges.

From fries to mash, wedges to hash browns, we go through a substantial quantity of spuds every single week. How can one resist, when potatoes pair so well with practically everything?

Due to this intense daily interest, I find myself looking for new and unique ways to satisfy our longing for this starchy root vegetable.

Top-down shot of golden brown potato fritters on a white rectangular serving plate with a small glass dish of red pepper relish with a spoon and scattered lime wedges on a white cloth.

These potato fritters are just the recipe to shake up your normal side dish routine, while helping you savor the flavor in new ways.

Making potato fritters may seem like a fussier recipe than you might usually like to make. But don’t worry – the technique is not too complicated.

Keep in mind that you need to make the relish with enough time to let it cool before serving, and the mashed potato patty mixture will also need some time to chill before you fry up your fritters. These steps can actually be done ahead of time if you like, and the effort is well worth it.

Three mashed potato fritters topped with red pepper and onion relish on a white plate with a fork, with more on a serving platter in the background.

Potato fritters, also known as croquettes, are filled with seasonings, fresh herbs, and in this case, a good helping of onion and sharp cheddar cheese. All of these elements come together in a patty to enhance the flavor of the spud, and homemade red pepper relish is the perfect accompaniment.

They are soft and creamy on the inside, golden brown and crispy on the outside. Each bite is peppered with cheese, onion, and cilantro, giving your taste buds a burst of excitement with every mouthful.

When you pair all of this with the red pepper relish, a whole new burst of flavors comes into the mix. The relish is cool, tangy, and slightly sweet from the balsamic vinegar and agave combination. The relish would also pair perfectly with other fried delights, like our fried zucchini or sweet corn fritters.

Three potato fritters, fried until golden brown and topped with red pepper and onion relish, on a plate in the foreground with more on a serving platter in the background.

I highly recommend that you take the time to finely dice the peppers and onion for this relish, for the best texture. If you’re in a hurry, a few pulses in the food processor should do the job, but I think a more uniform veggie mixture makes a nicer presentation.

Part of the magic of these fritters is that they are fantastic for using up leftover mashed potatoes. If you have a good helping of at least 3 cups left over from a previous evening’s dinner, this is a fantastic way to use them up and repurpose them, rather than simply reheating and serving.

In fact, these make a delicious addition to a post-Thanksgiving brunch!

Three potato fritters on a white plate, topped with red pepper relish, with a fork, with a bite missing from the one in the foreground to show the inside, with more on a serving platter in the background.

If you don’t have leftover mashed potatoes, you can easily peel, dice, cook, and mash the potatoes ahead of time. Store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days prior to making and cooking the patties.

This is a great idea when you are prepping for a large cocktail party or dinner. Just make sure you leave enough time for the patties to firm up in the refrigerator or freezer before you fry them. It’s the best way to ensure that the fritters keep their shape throughout the frying process (but we do have an easy baked version of potato fritters, if you don’t want to fry!).

Plus, these fritters look so pretty when you’re done and they’ve been topped with the colorful relish! The smooth and crispy texture, and the rich and tangy flavor combination will win over whoever you choose to serve it to.

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Three potato fritters topped with red bell pepper relish on a white plate with a fork, with more in the background on a serving platter.

Mashed Potato Fritters with Red Pepper Relish

  • Author: Shanna Mallon
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 15-20 fritters 1x


A new take on potatoes, our mashed potato fritters with red pepper relish are an appetizer that gives your favorite spuds a whole new look.



For the Fritters:

For the Relish:

  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 medium red bell peppers, finely diced
  • 1/4 medium red onion, finely diced
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 4 tsp agave syrup


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add potatoes and boil until tender, approximately 10-15 minutes. Drain the potatoes and place in a large bowl. Mash, leaving them a bit chunky in texture. If you are working with leftover mashed potatoes, skip this step.
  2. Add egg yolks, cilantro, onion, cheese, salt, and pepper. Stir well to combine.
  3. Shape the mixture into small patties. Arrange on a plate and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or freeze for at least 10-15 minutes to chill before cooking.
  4. While the patties chill, make the relish. In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the bell peppers and onion. Stir in salt and pepper.
  5. Cook the vegetables until they begin to soften, approximately 3-4 minutes. Stir in balsamic vinegar and agave. Cook until the liquid evaporates, approximately 8-10 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and let cool completely.
  7. When ready to cook, place breadcrumbs in a shallow dish, and coat each patty on all sides.
  8. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the patties in batches, approximately 4 to 5 at a time, until browned on both sides, approximately 2-3 minutes per side. Remove to a paper towel lined plate to drain.
  9. Serve with pepper relish.
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hours
  • Category: Fritters
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Appetizers

Keywords: potato, mashed potato, red pepper, relish

Cooking By the Numbers…

Step 1 – Prepare Fritter Ingredients

Peel and dice the potatoes, and place in a bowl of cool water as you continue to prep, to keep them from browning. If you are using mashed potatoes that you’ve already made, bring them to room temperature before starting the recipe.

Peeled and chopped potatoes on a red cutting board with a knife.

Chop the cilantro, dice the onion, and grate the cheddar cheese (if not already grated). Set aside.

Measure out the remaining ingredients as listed.

Step 2 – Prepare Relish Ingredients

Finely dice the red bell pepper and red onion.

A chef's knife with diced red onion and bell pepper, on a beige countertop with small square glass dishes of balsamic vinegar and salt.

Measure the remaining ingredients and set them aside until you are ready to make the relish.

Step 3 – Cook Potatoes

In a large pot of boiling water, cook the diced potatoes until they are tender, approximately 10-15 minutes. Drain the potatoes well in a colander.

A yellow plastic colander filled with chopped cooked potato.

If you are working with leftover mashed potatoes, skip this step.

Step 4 – Prep Fritters

Add the drained potatoes to a large bowl and mash, leaving them a bit chunky.

Two egg yolks, shredded cheddar, chopped onions, and minced cilantro in a stainless steel mixing bowl.

Add egg yolks, cilantro, onion, cheese, salt, and pepper. Stir well to combine.

A mashed potato mixture with cheese and herbs in a stainless steel mixing bowl.

Shape the mixture into patties, working with approximately 3-4 tablespoons at a time.

Mashed potato patties with onions, herbs, and cheese, on a black plate.

Place on a plate and set it in the refrigerator or freezer to chill through before cooking.

Step 5 – Make Relish

Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the bell pepper and onion.

Chopped red onion and red bell pepper in the bottom of a saucepan.

Stir in salt and pepper, cooking the vegetables until softened, approximately 3-4 minutes.

Stir in the balsamic vinegar and agave syrup. Cook until the liquid is mostly evaporated, approximately 8-10 minutes.

Red bell pepper and onion relish in a saucepan.

Remove from heat and cool completely. The relish can be placed in the refrigerator to chill when it is no longer steaming. It can also be made ahead of time, up to a few days in advance.

Step 6 – Cook Fritters

Heat the oil for the fritters in a large skillet over medium-high heat. While the oil is heating, coat the potato fritters in breadcrumbs.

I like to place the crumbs in a shallow bowl and coat a few at a time on all sides, then set them aside on a baking sheet topped with a piece of parchment or a Silpat pan liner.

When the oil is hot, cook the patties in batches until browned on both sides. This should take approximately 2-3 minutes per side. Be careful when you flip them – if they are sticking to the pan, they aren’t quite ready to flip yet. Add more oil to the pan between batches if you need to. Remove to a paper towel lined plate to drain.

Serve warm with red pepper relish.

Fried Doesn’t Always Have to Mean Fries

As much as we all love the deep-fried goodness of French fries, sometimes you might yearn for the crispy exterior and soft interior of a different preparation.

That is where these heavenly mashed potato fritters come in.

Golden brown mashed potato fritters stacked on a white rectangular serving platter with lime wedges and a small glass dish of red pepper relish.

The exterior is golden and crispy, but in a lighter way than what you get with fries. The fried element in these fritters is light and simple, so it doesn’t outshine the creamy center, peppered with chunks of onion and bites of cheese.

This is what makes the red pepper relish really shine when you pile it on top of the fritters.

Three potato fritters topped with red bell pepper relish on a white plate with a fork, with more in the background on a serving platter.

The sweetness and tartness come through pleasantly in each forkful. Don’t be surprised if you find that it’s difficult to stop eating them.

Have you ever made potato fritters or croquettes before? When do you like to serve them? Tell us in the comments below. And when you give this recipe, be sure to leave a five-star rating if you loved it!

And for more potato-licious recipes check out some of these tasty recipes:

Don’t forget to Pin It!

A collage of photos showing different views of potato fritter recipe with red pepper relish.

Photos by Meghan Yager, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on July 28, 2009. Last updated: May 3, 2021 at 18:08 pm.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

About Meghan Yager

Meghan Yager is a food addict turned food and travel writer with a love for creating uncomplicated, gourmet recipes and devouring anything the world serves up. As the author of the food and travel blog Cake 'n Knife, Meghan focuses on unique foodie experiences from around the world to right at home in your own kitchen.

21 thoughts on “Potato Fritters with Red Pepper Relish Give Spuds a Whole New Look”

  1. oh, shanna. your photos look lovely! i know what you mean about slumps, though. i can’t seem to shake mine. fun, fresh veggies definitely help, though.

  2. The potato fritters look dee-licious! I could dive into that photo right now.

    I know just what you mean about submitting photos. Now when I submit I just shrug my shoulders and ask myself, “Wonder what the rejection reason will be THIS time?” Objectivity does not seem to be part and parcel of the process. C’est la vie.

    Keep up the good work with your blog and photos and have fun using all that summer bounty!

  3. I have never submitted to Tastespotting before, but now I’m intrigued and want to try (although if you’ve gotten rejected, then I surely will!)

    What a treat to have so many fresh veggies. That’s why summer is such a fun time to cook.

  4. I really hope we work together soon so you can give me more information on this CSA business. That is like my dream come true!

  5. Hooray for your first CSA box! I’m honored to have inspired your membership. Looks like it’s working out for you!

  6. I’m getting so many greens with our csa too! I love the idea of eggs and chard and I’ll definitely have to try that.

  7. I think your photos our fabulous My mouth is already watering. Thanks so much for your encouraging words on my blog. Here’s to change!!!!

  8. Rachel: I never thought I’d feel that way, but veggies ARE fun!

    Jacqui: You are kind, friend. I’ve been trying to push away this slump by ignoring it, which hasn’t worked, so now I’m trying the opposite: calling it out and admitting it. Well, that, and eating. A lot. The CSA package was just in time.

    Justopia: Thank you! I hope I didn’t sound like I was downing TS or FG. They’re both awesome sites, full of gorgeous photos, the kind that inspire me towards better work. But sometimes I just feel, I don’t know, behind on all of it, like I’ll never do what I need to do to make them like my photos! It’s not them; it’s me. I know.

    PCC: You should! And don’t be intimidated: they are awesome sites, and, really, the rejections help me improve, even though I don’t love them at the time.

    Alicia: Why aren’t we farmers? No, seriously. I’ve been wondering about this all summer.

    Jess: Hooray, indeed! And thank you again, my dear, for the inspiration!

    Kickpleat: When I was flipping through Food Network yesterday on my MONDAY OFF WORK !!!, I caught a chili with Swiss chard that was very inspiring. If my next shipment has more, I might look that up, too!

    RedMenace: You’re very sweet. I was so excited to find your site, which is lovely! And the post about change resonated so well and so easily. So, really, thank you!

  9. First let me say that I am a wee bit jealous of your good luck with the CSA. Those around us are on waitlists. That’s a great thing…just not for me! (And I already love spinach in my scrambled eggs, so I’ll have to try the Swiss Chard, just to give my life a little variety. And vegetables.)

    Second let me say that I am stopping by to let you know about a site that I’ve launched that will help you take the sting out of rejection from TS and FG. It’s called TasteStopping and I created it specifically for rejected food photos. If you swing by and take a look around you’ll see that you and your photos will be in very good company! Everyone feels that blow when a photo doesn’t make the cut, but at least this way, you’d have a guaranteed second home for it. I hope you will visit and consider submitting. 🙂


  10. I think your pictures are GREAT! I’m in a life-long photo slump 🙁

    I am really looking forward to being back in the states at some point in the next year or two so I can join a CSA…I’m totally missing out right now!

  11. Those fritters are a great idea. Regarding the soup, I find that some freshly ground nutmet helps white creamy soups along. You can also add some white pepper, which has a nice amount of heat, works great for white food.

  12. i have been ambivalent about joining a csa. i think it’s because there are so many in baltimore too choose from (seriously, too many choices is not a good thing) and while i know in the long run it’s cheaper, the up front thing is so expensive and running the risk of receiving some veggies that i don’t like… well. it’s making a normally decisive person very indecisive which makes me decisively annoyed. i realize you’ve only just received your first shipment but have you felt the inclination to hit the grocery store for any extras of anything since?

    like you, i’ve been in a photography slump. i need to pay attention to composition and food plating/bowling.

  13. you sure created some yummy tasting treats from your CSA goodies! I totally know what you mean about going through a photo slump… sometime I can go through weeks where I just can’t take one single shot i like! but then you get your mojo back and things brighten up! these photos you posted today are lovely! so fresh and green and summery!

  14. Tastestopping/Casey: Thanks for the info about your site, and best wishes with the wait list! I guess that means next year, you’ll be first in line? Here’s hoping!

    Cate: You’re sweet, and I’m glad to know I’m not alone! BTW I clicked over on your about page – what an exciting life you’re leading!

    Kelly: You’ve been so inspiring with your “market week” series – love all the ways you’ve found to use fresh produce!

    Angela: I can always count on you for good advice. Thank you!

    JessieV: Exactly!

    Lan: See, the way I look at the upfront thing is this: now it’s like I’m getting free boxes of food every two weeks! (I realize this is illogical, but that does not lessen the joy.) And, truthfully, aside from a run to Sam’s on Monday for a huge load of baking supplies (I have a party coming up, after all!), I’ve been trying to avoid the grocery store for as long as possible, so I’m just going with what I have and have received. So I guess the CSA’s other benefit is that it eliminates some decision-making from my life, as I don’t have to pick what I want; it does for me.

    Montague/Amy: You are too nice for words. When I look at your site’s insanely beautiful photos (every! one!), I am always in awe and unable to say much except WOW. Thanks for the encouragement!

  15. how exciting! I LOVE our CSA. Every week is new and exciting – and even a challenge in eating it all. You had some great ideas – thanks for sharing! I’m excited to browse through your other posts!

    Thank you for your kind comments on my blog… It is so encouraging to hear those compliments – keeps me going! 🙂

  16. YUM!
    So glad you’ve discovered the joy of having a CSA! We subscribed for a number of years and loved it. This year we couldn’t afford the initial investment — but we make regular trips to see our farmer at the market each week. So, I feel like we’re still supporting their efforts — AND getting uber fresh produce at the same time.

  17. Amanda Mae – That is so encouraging to hear! I hope the excitement keeps coming for me, too. And I love your photography so much.

    Lo – Sorry to hear you’re sitting out this year, but farmers’ markets are just as important and a way to support local agriculture, and I totally understand the cutting back. Yay, fresh produce!

  18. Rachel, I just checked out the site today and have already become a subscriber. I need LOTS of ideas for my fresh produce, so thanks again for pointing me in the right direction. My current dilemma/wonderful thing? 14 EARS OF CORN that I bought at a farm stand for $4 yesterday because I couldn’t say no. Currently have chowder cooking and a big bowl of boiled corn mixed with butter and thyme, and I’m looking for MORE.

    It was wonderful meeting you and your family. Thank you again for coming. So much!


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