Ask Dr. Potato
Q: What is the difference between mashed potatoes and twice-baked potatoes? Are they identical?
A: The big difference is that mashed potatoes are boiled, and the twice baked are baked. I know it sounds obvious but the way the potatoes are cooked does change the flavor and consistency. Twice baked potatoes are baked; the insides of the potato are scooped out and mixed with seasonings, heavy cream and cheese, mixed thoroughly, returned to the potato skins then rebaked.
Mashed potatoes are simply boiled potato cubes chunks (usually peeled but skin-on is an option) that are mixed with added ingredients like cream, garlic, butter and herbs. The two preparation methods are close, but again – not quite.