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Can Cats Eat Mashed Potatoes? Nutritional Facts & FAQ

Can Cats Eat mashed-potato
Last Updated on November 16, 2023 by Ashley Bates

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Anyone who has owned a cat knows what it’s like to have a curious nose lingering near their dinner plate. After all, how dare you try to eat something without offering them a bite! Most of the time, after inspection, your cat will simply walk away. However, some cats really like peculiar foods that you wouldn’t expect.

So, if your cat is interested in mashed potatoes, you might wonder if cats can eat them. The answer is—most of the time—mashed potatoes are perfectly safe. But like many other cooked food items, it depends a lot on how they’re prepared. Let’s look at how you can ensure mashed potatoes are safe for your cat.


Cats Can Potentially Eat Mashed Potatoes

Unseasoned boiled mashed potatoes are safe for your cat to eat once in a blue moon. They shouldn’t be an everyday snack, but they are OK in moderation.

Just remember, the starch in potatoes is pretty hard for your kitty to digest, even when it’s cooked. Since they might have trouble, small licks here and there are all right—but avoid large quantities.

bowl of mashed potato
Image Credit: Pixabay

Seasonings to Avoid in Mashed Potatoes

You might enjoy potatoes slathered in butter, garlic, salt, and other seasonings. You can whip up mashed potatoes in virtually any way that you want. While that is fantastic for humans, the same sentiment does not extend to cats. There are several spices and seasonings that are toxic and harmful to felines.

If you plan on sharing with your cat, try to avoid:
  • Garlic, chives, leeks, and onions—All members of the Allium family are toxic to dogs and cats. While fresh onions are dangerous,  powdered varieties are more concentrated and potent.
  • Salt—You might be tempted to add salt to a heaping pile of mashed potatoes, but it is highly toxic to cats in large quantities.
  • Marijuana—If you are a licensed marijuana user, you might use the food-grade version when you’re cooking. While it might be perfectly acceptable for you, marijuana is toxic to cats.
  • Oregano—While oregano may seem like a harmless herb used in everyday cooking, it is not something your cat should ever ingest.

What Types of Potatoes Are Dangerous for Cats?

Don’t get too comfortable with the idea that white potatoes are entirely safe for your cat. That isn’t always the case. Potatoes, in some forms, are highly toxic or unhealthy for your felines.

  • Uncooked Potatoes—Before potatoes are cooked, your cat cannot digest them. When you prepare a potato dish, the starch granules break up into digestible bits.
  • Green Potatoes—Green potatoes contain a chemical called solanine. This component is highly toxic, but it is unlikely that a cat would choose to eat raw potatoes.

While they aren’t toxic, avoid oily, processed snacks like potato chips or potato sticks.

Can Cats Eat Mashed Sweet Potatoes?

Sweet potato is often seen as a safe alternative to white potatoes. However, sweet potatoes are not easy for your cat to digest either. You should look for other treats if you plan on feeding your cat a snack.

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Cats and Mashed Potatoes: Final Thoughts

Now, you know that mashed potatoes are absolutely fine as long as they don’t have any toxic ingredients. Be mindful of how much your cat eats at a time. Even if you don’t have harmful components in the mashed potatoes, it might cause an upset stomach if they gorge themselves.

Otherwise, it’s okay to let your kitty lick your leftover dinner plate. If you want to season them to perfection, perhaps set aside a small serving of plain mashed potatoes for your kitty.

Related Read:

Featured Image: Inga Nielsen, Shutterstock

About the Author

Ashley Bates
Ashley Bates
Ashley Bates is a freelance dog writer and pet enthusiast who is currently studying the art of animal therapy. A mother to four human children— and 23 furry and feathery kids, too – Ashley volunteers at local shelters, advocates for animal well-being, and rescues every creature she finds. Her mission is to create awareness, education, and entertainment about pets to prevent homelessness. Her specialties are cats and dogs.

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