A beloved Irish breakfast food making
use of leftover mashed potatoes



My love for potatoes is back in my “5 People, 5 Countries, 5 Breakfasts” series with this simple yet excellent Irish dish. Boxty is yet another delicious spin on potato pancakes, but its combined use of both raw and cooked potatoes really sets it apart in terms of texture. Whether you’re eating a homemade batch on the couch or ordering out at a favorite brunch spot, boxty’s comforting, buttery taste never fails to gift you with a sense of pleasure and solace. 

Janette from Ardnacrusha, County Clare in Southern Ireland was kind enough to share this boxty recipe with us. She now resides in Abbeyleix in County Laois, but no matter what part of Ireland she’s in, boxty always reminds her of her mom, who would often make this dish to satisfy her non-adventurous daughter’s palate. Janette emphasizes the importance of butter, and I must second this; use a rich butter, and do not use it sparingly! 

Boxty is very filling yet economical. About two centuries ago, many Irish families were very large with many mouths to feed and not much income. Boxty was the perfect way to feed an entire family without doling out too much money. More recently, this yummy dish is traditionally eaten more so around Halloween time (or Samhain, as it’s known in Ireland), because autumn is the time of year when the main crop of potatoes was historically ready to harvest. 

 Since their introduction to Ireland, potatoes have always been a staple item for Irish cuisine. Boxty is a prime example of the usefulness of potatoes, and its heavenly taste and texture prove the worth of potato-based dishes. Just be sure to make sure the batter spreads easily when making this food and add a little more buttermilk if needed; you’ll thank me later. 

This Irish version of potato pancakes is familiar yet elevated. Its pleasant chewiness and buttery flavor are excellent, and they are also easy to make. If you’re looking to try different foods but don’t want to stray too far outside your comfort zone, boxty is exactly what you’ve been looking for. 

Watch the Video


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup mashed potatoes
  • 1 ½ cups grated, raw potato
  • 1 cup buttermilk (more if needed)
  • butter for the griddle


  • In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt; set aside. 
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the mashed potatoes with the grated raw potato, then add the flour and mix well.
  • Slowly add the buttermilk and stir gently (do not over mix). The mixture should be like a very firm, thick batter; almost like a dough, so add more buttermilk if needed.
  • Heat a griddle or nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat, and add a pat of butter, just before scooping out some of the boxty batter onto the pan. 
  • Flatten and shape into a nice, round pancake shape and fry until golden brown on the bottom. 
  • Turn and continue to cook until golden brown on top too, turning the heat down if they are browning too quickly (remember there are raw potatoes which need to cook). 
  • Continue to add a little butter and fry the boxty until all the batter is finished. Serve hot!
Course: Breakfast
Region: Europe
Diet: Vegetarian
Keyword: Kid Friendly


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