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Potatoes with kale and a knob of butter

Traditional Irish Colcannon

Perfectly creamy buttery mashed potatoes with earthy kale and scallions. This is the perfect side dish for St.Patrick's Day or any day!
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Irish
Diet Vegetarian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 372kcal


  • Potato Masher or Potato Ricer
  • Wooden Spoon


  • 1 Kg (2 lbs) of floury potatoes washed, skin left on
  • 80 g (3 packed cups) of curly kale roughly chopped, woody stems removed
  • 2 medium scallions (spring onions) Topped and tailed, all the white part and most of the green part sliced
  • 70 g (just under a ⅓ of a cup) of salted butter + more for serving
  • 150 ml (½ a cup +1 tbsp) of milk I used full fat milk
  • Sea Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper you can use white pepper if you prefer


  • Place the washed whole potatoes in a large saucepan. Cover the potatoes in cold water. Add a good pinch of sea salt and bring to the boil.
    Reduce the heat to a fast simmer then simmer the potatoes uncovered for 15 minutes.
    Test the potatoes by skewering them with a sharp knife. Once the potatoes are soft but cooked (not soft all the way through) drain away half the water.
    Put the pan back on the heat and cover with a lid. Cook for another 15 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked. Again test them with a knife, the knife should easily go all the way through the potatoes.
    Drain the remaining water, return the pan to the hob. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting. Give the potatoes a gently shake to remove any water.
  • While the potatoes are cooking, cook the kale.
    Heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a large saute pan, add the chopped kale and sliced scallions.
    Cook over low to medium heat until the kale is soft.
    Set aside and keep warm.
  • In a small saucepan melt the butter, transfer to a small bowl.
    In the same pan heat the milk.
  • Peel the potatoes, use a thick tea towel to protect your hand. The peel should come away very easily.
    Return the potatoes to the saucepan. Mash the potatoes with a potato masher or put them through a ricer.
    Pour all the melted butter on first then beat that into the potatoes.
    Add the milk then beat that into the potaoes.
    Add the kale and scallion mixture, fold that into the potatoes.
    Season to taste with salt and black pepper.
  • Serve in a warmed serving dish and top with a good knob of butter.


  • Potatoes - You will need floury potatoes for this recipe, Kerr's pinks or golden wonders are best. In the UK I use Maris Piper or King Edward and in the US russet potatoes will work the best.
  • Butter - salted butter is best for this and if you can, use Irish butter, like Kerrygold.
  • Milk - full-fat is best you will get away with semi-skimmed or 2% in the US.
  • Nutritional Information - is calculated using an online nutrition tool and is approximate. It is based on one serving of four and does not include extra butter for serving.
  • Weights and measurements - For US readers, I use Cuisipro measuring cups and spoons, and a Pyrex measuring jug for liquids. These are the industry standard. Cup/spoon volumes can differ from brand to brand, for accuracy, I recommend weighing all ingredients using a digital scale if possible, for best results.


Calories: 372kcal | Carbohydrates: 54.3g | Protein: 6.7g | Fat: 15.4g | Saturated Fat: 9.6g | Cholesterol: 41mg | Sodium: 823mg | Potassium: 1048mg | Fiber: 5.7g | Sugar: 4.4g | Calcium: 86mg | Iron: 1mg