The Grumpy Garbanzo vegan food for real life

Berbere Mashed Potatoes

Let's make one thing clear here: mashed potatoes are always exciting. Peeled or unpeeled, hand mashed or beaten with an electric mixer...when there are potatoes, salt, and vegan butter involved, it's hard to go wrong. That being said, just as we might enjoy dressing up every now and then for a dinner out, mashed potatoes deserve a little extra pizzazz once in a while. Sour cream, chive, garlic, and cheddar are common accessories in the world of mashed potato fashion. While these are all classic looks that can be adapted to the vegan runway, the potatoes in this meal are going for something a little more spicy: berbere.

Berbere is an Ethiopian spice mix that includes chili peppers, garlic, ginger, basil, and lots of other spices that I'm not sure how to pronounce. While mashed potatoes are definitely not part of traditional Ethiopian cuisine, potatoes aren't an uncommon component of Ethiopian stews. Regardless of whether or not it makes culinary sense, berbere adds a flavorful and exciting kick to vegetable dishes, including mashed potatoes. Add green beans and tofu and you have yourself a properly improper supper. Don't be alarmed if all the veggies you cook end up wearing berbere; all the cool potatoes are doing it.


yellow or red potatoes

green beans

pre—seasoned tofu

vegan butter

olive oil

unsweetened soymilk

salt & pepper



Boil potatoes and mash with soymilk, vegan butter, salt, pepper, and berbere to taste.

Pan fry tofu.

Steam or sauté green beans until slightly softened and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper.


What did I use and why?

I used Wildwood Organic savory baked tofu. This tofu is firm, reminiscent of chicken, and a quick way to add flavorful protein to a meal without the fuss of pressing and marinating tofu yourself.