You probably already know that sweet potato casserole is a delectable dish usually served at Thanksgiving and Christmas.
And it’s no surprise why it’s such a hit at every party. A dish made of sweet and tender sweet potatoes and topped with crunchy pecans, brown sugar, nutmeg, and cinnamon?
What could go wrong? It’s sweet, savory, nutritious, and affordable! It’s the perfect side dish to go with your scrumptious turkey dinner.
How to Make Sweet Potato Casserole
Sweet Potato Casserole is healthy, delicious, and best of all, easy to make. Here’s how:
- You’ll need baked sweet potatoes for this recipe because baking will keep more flavor than boiling. Just pop three medium-sized sweet potatoes in the oven for one hour. No need to peel them beforehand, because the skin will peel off more easily once they’re baked.
- Next, combine baked and peeled sweet potatoes with:
- ¼ cup of white sugar
- 4 tablespoons butter
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup of evaporated milk
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon of ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon of ground nutmeg
- Mix ingredients until smooth and pour into a baking dish.
- Combine 1 cup of brown sugar and 2/3 cup of all-purpose flour in a bowl. Add 6 tablespoons of softened butter and mix until you get a coarse mixture. Add 1 cup of chopped pecans. This mixture serves as your topping.
- Sprinkle the topping generously over the sweet potato mixture.
- Pop it in the oven at 325 degrees F for 30 minutes, or until the topping turns slightly brown.
Tips & Tricks
- If you want some texture in your potatoes, use a potato masher or a fork to mash them.
- Bring out the flavor of the pecans by toasting them for a few minutes in the oven.
- While sweet potatoes are the star of this recipe, you can also use yams as an alternative.
- You can use canned sweet potatoes or yams for this recipe as well. To give them a mushier consistency, boil them in the syrup for a few minutes, then drain.
- Instead of baking, you can roast the sweet potatoes to bring out their natural sugars.
- Top the casserole with toasted coconut flairs for a tropical flair!
- If you want a crumble topping, use cold instead of softened butter.
- Want a marshmallow instead of a streusel topping? Simple! Just top it with a layer of mini-mallows and bake in the oven for 25 minutes.
- Can’t choose between mallows and streusel? Why not top them both ways? Top half of the casserole with streusel and bake for 15 minutes. Take the casserole out of the oven and top the other half with mallows. Bake for another 25 minutes.
- Pumpkin pie spice also adds a wonderful flavor to the casserole.
Things To Avoid
While sweet potato casserole is easy to make, it’s also possible to mess it up. Avoid any mishaps by following these guidelines:
- Don’t over-mash the sweet potatoes. You won’t want your casserole to be way too mushy because it won’t hold together well. Avoid using the food processor when mashing the sweet potatoes.
- Don’t use too much sugar. Since sweet potatoes are naturally sweet, you won’t need much sugar to sweeten the dish further.
- Add a crunchy element. It’s what elevates the casserole into a fabulous Thanksgiving side dish. If you do not have toasted pecans, almonds and pumpkin seeds are great substitutes!
- Allow it to set before serving. Apart from the sweet potato mixture, the topping also needs a few minutes to dry out to have that wonderful crunch. A good 10-20 minutes should do the trick. Don’t worry, the casserole will still be warm enough by then.
Can You Make Sweet Potato Casserole Ahead of Time?
Hosting a Thanksgiving party can be tiresome and time-consuming, so you’ll need all the help you can get.
Preparing side dishes ahead of time cuts down so much preparation time on the day of your party.
And that’s precisely why I love making sweet potato casserole so much.
You can prepare it as early as two days in advance and cross it out of your to-do list early on.
You can either bake the casserole ahead of time or prepare the mixtures (sweet potato and topping), refrigerate, and bake when ready. Here are a few things you need to remember:
- If you refrigerate before baking, do not combine the sweet potato and topping mixtures yet. Place them in separate bowls and cover them in plastic wrap.
- Take the sweet potato mixture out of the fridge 30 minutes before baking. You can also heat it for 15 minutes in the oven first because cold sweet potatoes take longer to bake. As for the topping, let it warm to room temperature before adding to the sweet potato mixture and baking.
- If you bake the casserole ahead of time, let it set to room temperature and cover with plastic wrap before you refrigerate. When you’re ready to serve it, take it out of the fridge, cover with foil, and warm it in the oven.
How To Store Sweet Potato Casserole
Sweet potato casserole should store nicely in the fridge. Place it in an air-tight container or resealable plastic bag and it will last for 3 to 5 days.
If you want it to survive longer, squeeze some lemon juice on top of the sweet potatoes to delay discoloring.
Can You Freeze Sweet Potato Casserole?
Absolutely! If you store it in an air-tight container, your sweet potato casserole can last for up to a year in the freezer.
You can also freeze individual servings in freezer-safe containers so they’re easier to take out and reheat.
Another option is to freeze the sweet potato mixture before you bake it.
Cover it with two layers of aluminum foil, freeze, and it will last for up to 3 months.
When you’re ready to serve, thaw it in the fridge overnight. Let it set to room temperature for 30 minutes before you top and bake it.
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