Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Streusel

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Perfect for Thanksgiving, this down-home sweet potato casserole replaces the traditional marshmallow topping with a crunchy pecan streusel.

how to make sweet potato casserole

When it comes to Thanksgiving dinner, I think most of us would say, “Don’t get fancy on me, just make the standards really special.” That’s why this down-home sweet potato casserole is always a big hit. It’s an old southern specialty that graces almost every holiday table.

Instead of the traditional marshmallow topping, I cover the mashed sweet potatoes with a crunchy brown sugar-pecan streusel. It makes the dish! Like most sweet potato sides, this one goes with dinner but you might be inclined to eat it for dessert. It’s “that dish,” the one everyone reaches their fork into long after the meal is done.

What you’ll need to make sweet potato casserole with pecan streusel

how to make sweet potato casserole

I’ve noticed that many grocery stores use the names “sweet potato” and “yam” interchangeably. This can be confusing since yams aren’t sweet potatoes at all, but rather thick white tubers with dark brown skin. Chances are you won’t find real yams at the supermarket, so if you see “yams,” you’re probably looking at sweet potatoes.

How to make sweet potato casserole with pecan streusel

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the sweet potatoes and cook until soft and tender, 20 – 25 minutes. Drain and let cool.

how to make sweet potato casseroleIn the meantime, make the topping: Melt the butter in a medium bowl the microwave. (Alternatively, melt the butter in a small pan or over low heat and transfer to a medium bowl.)

how to make sweet potato casserole

Add the brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon.

how to make sweet potato casserole Mix until well combined. It should look a little clumpy.

how to make sweet potato casserole Add the chopped nuts.

how to make sweet potato casserole

Stir to combine and set aside.

how to make sweet potato casserolePlace the cooked and drained sweet potatoes in a large bowl.

how to make sweet potato casseroleMash with a potato masher or large fork until very smooth.

how to make sweet potato casseroleAdd the melted butter, salt, and brown sugar and nutmeg.

how to make sweet potato casseroleMix well, then add the eggs.

how to make sweet potato casserole Stir to combine. It’s okay if it is not completely smooth.

how to make sweet potato casseroleTransfer the sweet potato mixture to a 2-quart baking dish and spread evenly.

how to make sweet potato casseroleSprinkle the topping evenly over the sweet potato mixture.

how to make sweet potato casserole Bake for about 40 minutes, uncovered, or until the topping is nicely browned. Let cool slightly before serving.

how to make sweet potato casserole

If you’d like to break up the preparation of this dish a bit, feel free to make and refrigerate the streusel a few days ahead. Or, if you really want to get a head start, assemble and refrigerate the whole casserole up to two days ahead of time. Bake right before serving for best results.

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Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Streusel

Perfect for Thanksgiving, this down-home sweet potato casserole replaces the traditional marshmallow topping with a crunchy pecan streusel.

Servings: 6-8
Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 1 Hour
Total Time: 1 Hour 30 Minutes


For the Sweet Potato Mixture

  • 3 pounds sweet potatoes (about 3 large), peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten

For the Topping

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and set an oven rack in the middle position.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil (no need to salt). Add the sweet potatoes and cook until soft and very tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Drain and let cool.
  3. Meanwhile, make the topping: Melt the butter in a medium bowl in the microwave. (Alternatively, melt it in a small pan over low heat and transfer to a medium bowl.) Add the brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon and mix until well combined. It should look a little clumpy. Stir in the chopped nuts and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, mash the cooked and drained sweet potatoes with a potato masher or large fork until very smooth. Add the melted butter, salt, sugar, and nutmeg and mix well. Mix in the eggs. It's okay if there are some lumps. Set aside.
  5. Transfer the sweet potato mixture to a 2-quart baking dish and spread evenly. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the sweet potato mixture and bake, uncovered, for about 40 minutes, or until the topping is nicely browned. Let cool slightly before serving.
  6. Make-Ahead Instructions: You can assemble and refrigerate the casserole up to 2 days ahead of time.
  7. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: You can freeze the unbaked sweet potato portion of the recipe, tightly covered, for up to 3 months. Before baking, defrost in the refrigerator for 24 hours and then proceed with the recipe instructions.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (8 servings)
  • Calories: 489
  • Fat: 22 g
  • Saturated fat: 8 g
  • Carbohydrates: 70 g
  • Sugar: 35 g
  • Fiber: 7 g
  • Protein: 6 g
  • Sodium: 348 mg
  • Cholesterol: 77 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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Reviews & Comments

  • This was fantastic! Used about half the sugar as others suggested. Everyone asked for the recipe. Thanks very much Jenn.

    • — Jan on June 23, 2020
    • Reply
  • This was delicious! Made it for Christmas, everyone loved it! I’ll use this recipe for all the holiday feasts!

    • — Rae on January 28, 2020
    • Reply
  • Can I cook this in an 8×8 2 quart baking dish??

    • — Rae on December 24, 2019
    • Reply
    • Hi Rae, Yes, that’s the right size.

      • — Jenn on December 24, 2019
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn, I’ve made this recipe before and it’s delicious! Like a dessert. For prepping in advance, the recipe says that you can freeze it after baking the sweet potato mixture, but some of the comments seem to imply that you can put the topping on it as well and then freeze it. Which is correct?

    • — Valerie on December 15, 2019
    • Reply
    • Hi Valerie, Glad you like this! I know the freezer-friendly instructions indicate that you should freeze just the sweet potato mixture, but I honestly think you could go either way (with or without the topping before freezing). Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on December 16, 2019
      • Reply
      • Thank you Jenn for responding! So you think I could fully assemble the casserole and freeze it before baking it? Then defrost it and pop it in the oven?

        • — Valerie on December 19, 2019
        • Reply
        • Yes, Valerie, I think that will work. 🙂

          • — Jenn on December 20, 2019
          • Reply
  • Made this the day before our Thanksgiving dinner. Easy to prepare, and oh-so-delicious.
    It was a big hit, and everyone loved it. (Looking forward to leftovers!)

    Thanks Jenn, for another incredible recipe!

    • — Jenny on November 29, 2019
    • Reply
  • Hi-

    Cooking this recipe for Thanksgiving this year! I’ll need to double the amounts- will that change the length of cooking time?


    • — Kara on November 24, 2019
    • Reply
    • It may add a few minutes onto the baking time (and I’d suggest baking them in two separate baking dishes). Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 25, 2019
      • Reply
  • Can you double the ingredients and use a 9 x 13 pan

    • — Noreen on November 17, 2019
    • Reply
    • Yep – hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 18, 2019
      • Reply
  • We love this recipe and I’m taking it to a family Thanksgiving, however this year there will be a little one there who has nut allergies so I need to make it without. Would you suggest I just omit the nuts, or is there something I could replace them with, like oats? (or celery or water chestnuts? I wouldn’t normally consider them for a sweet topping, but I’m just thinking about replacing the crunch of nuts). Thanks!

    • — Kay on November 14, 2019
    • Reply
    • Hi Kay, Glad you like this! You can just omit the nuts here or use oats instead. Hope everyone enjoys!

      • — Jenn on November 14, 2019
      • Reply
  • I grew up with marshmallow sweet potato casserole. I love this and won’t ever use marshmallows again.

    • — Virginia on November 13, 2019
    • Reply
  • Hi. Can I prepare this casserole a day ahead of time, and pop in the oven the day of serving?

    • — Linda on November 11, 2019
    • Reply
    • Yup – hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 11, 2019
      • Reply
      • Just made this for thanksgiving and it was AMAZING. For those trying to time all that needs to be cooked in just one oven…I assembled the night before, baked the next day about 5 hours before dinner was to be served and then reheated at 350 for about 15-20 minutes. I’m very particular about food being fresh from the oven, but Jenn is right with this one, it reheats perfectly! It was the star on the table. I did cut the sugar by about 1/3 and it was still very sweet. Thank you Jenn for your recipes that NEVER fail!

        • — Ellen Mark on December 1, 2019
        • Reply
  • I am making your sweet potato casserole tomorrow. My question is do you actually weigh your potatoes? Or do you just use 3 large? I weighed mine & it’s waaay more than 3. (& the potatoes are not small)

    • — Laura on November 3, 2019
    • Reply
    • Hi Laura, I know that there can be a lot of variation in potato size so I’d stick with the weight for this. Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 4, 2019
      • Reply
  • Have not made this yet, but planning on it. I would like to know if you know how many mashed cups of sweet potatoes would be the equivalent of 3 pounds. Thanks.

    • — Laura on October 22, 2019
    • Reply
    • I don’t Laura — I’m sorry!

      • — Jenn on October 23, 2019
      • Reply
  • Wow delicious! I can see how this could be eaten as a dessert. I made it with almond flour so a gluten-free guest could enjoy it as well (turned out great). Could probably safely cut the quantity of sugar, or just enjoy it in its decadent glory!

    • — Nick on December 28, 2018
    • Reply
    • I have been making this dish for years!! Every year at Thanksgiving I end up doubling or tripling the recipe because it’s the first dish to empty. The only thing I do differently is I bake my sweet potatoes and instead of flour in the streusel I use crushed corn flakes.

      • — Susan on November 13, 2019
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  • My family loved it!

    • — Jonnette on December 26, 2018
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  • What a great side to add to my repertoire for holiday feasts. I followed the recipe as is and it turned out wonderful. The topping mixture is substantial so you could probably spread it over a larger sized pan. I served it with the beef tenderloin; which is also excellent. Serving it with the brisket this weekend!! Jenn, I asked Santa for your cookbook. I’m very hopeful!!

    • — Yvette Lucas on December 21, 2018
    • Reply
  • I am going to bring this to our family Christmas dinner. I have never made it, so I wanted to do a practice this week. Any suggestions of a good main dish to pair it with for a week night dinner?

    • — Heather on December 17, 2018
    • Reply
  • Good Morning Jenn

    One week before Christmas and I am getting my menu and grocery lists prepared. This is going to be a truly Jenn Segal Christmas dinner. I have never made this dish before but know it will be delicious. My question is, if I pre-make my sides Christmas eve – this dish, the make ahead creamy potatoes, the easy sausage stuffing, the roasted brussel sprouts, can they all be reheated at the same temp and for the same length of time while the turkey rests? The make ahead gravy and the cranberry sauce will be in the wings waiting to go! The ginger cookies and pecan squares are done, as is a big container of chili and all in the freezer!! You have no idea how much you have helped me plan my Christmas dinner. Also, thank you for the book plates, such a fun addition to the cookbook:)

    • — Kathy on December 17, 2018
    • Reply
    • Hi Kathy, Yes they can all be reheated together. So glad the recipes came in handy! ☺️

      • — Jenn on December 17, 2018
      • Reply
  • I took a gamble on this at and the last minute decided to stray from our usual Thanksgiving sweet potato recipe which we love… So glad we did as this is amazing! Even my kids – who only tried a taste to be polite 🙂 – actually went back for thirds!

    • — LisaR on November 24, 2018
    • Reply
  • Amazing, I made it today for a work party and everyone loved it. It’s incredibly easy to make and it’s the best sweet potato casserole I’ve ever eaten. This will definitely be added to my favorite recipes.

    • — Jules on November 21, 2018
    • Reply
  • It’s 2 days before Thanksgiving – Option #1 should I bake (with topping) and freeze OR
    Option #2 just freeze mashed sweet potatoes and then assemble on Thanksgiving and cook?
    If option #1, will the top get mushy by freezing?

    • — Shelley on November 20, 2018
    • Reply
    • Hi Shelley, I would assemble the whole thing today and refrigerate, then bake on Thursday (no need to freeze). Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on November 20, 2018
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn,

    Can I go ahead and make the topping now, assemble the whole thing and then freeze it uncooked?

    • — Sarah on November 16, 2018
    • Reply
    • Sure, Sarah. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 16, 2018
      • Reply
  • The picture for this recipe looks different than before. Are the instructions different? In the previous picture, the toppings on top looked smaller to me.

    • — Heather on November 13, 2018
    • Reply
    • Hi Heather, I just re-shot the picture last week as I didn’t love the old pic. I’ve made some minor tweaks to the wording of the recipe, but nothing significant. (Hope that clarifies!)

      • — Jenn on November 13, 2018
      • Reply
      • Ok thanks!

        • — Heather on November 13, 2018
        • Reply
  • This looks great, and I would love to try at Thanksgiving! Do you recommend baking this dish the day before and reheating on Thanksgiving or assembling the day prior and waiting to bake the day of? Overall, trying to figure out whether to bake ahead of time or just assemble ahead of time.

    Thank you very much!

    • — Rachel on November 3, 2018
    • Reply
    • Hi Rachel, You could honestly go either way – this dish reheats well – so whatever is most convenient for you.

      • — Jenn on November 4, 2018
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn, I have made this receipe and I totally love it. I plan to make it again this year for Thanksgiving. Although my guest list have some people who are gluten allergic. I was wondering of I could omit the flour used for the topping. Would it make any difference. Also if I can substitute brown sugar with marshmallows for the topping. Pls advise.

    • Glad you like this Richa! If you want to use the pecan topping, you could use gluten-free flour. If you’d prefer not to do that, you could just do a marshmallow topping – I would just omit the remaining ingredients for the pecan topping as it won’t cook properly with the marshmallows on top. Hope that helps!

  • Hi Jen

    I doubled this recipie but I forgot to double the eggs. The dish is for tomorrow evening so I put it in the fridge uncooked but fully assembled in the hopes you could advise if I should scoop off the topping and add 2 more eggs. I’m not sure if the dish will be ruined without the proper amount of eggs.
    Your cookbook is wonderful!

    Thanks in advance!

    • Hi Nicole, Honestly, I’d leave it alone – it will still be delish!

      • Thank you very much for rescuing me; the dish was fabulous without doubling the eggs! So many of my guests asked for the recipe, a sure sign of something more than “just good”!


  • Is it possible to reheat this dish in a microwave? Or simply oven only?


    • Hi Jessica, If you want to reheat it in the microwave, that would be fine – I’d just suggest popping it in the oven for a few minutes after that to crisp up the topping.

  • Made this for the first time for Thanksgiving. I did a marshmallow topping instead of your topping due to a nut allergy and it was delicious. Your recipe uses a lot less sugar than the recipe I had used for years. I am happily converted!

  • Made the sweet potato pecan crisp for thanksgiving, wow, my family and guests absolutely loved this dish!!!
    Thank you once again for a wonderful dish, your site is now my go to site first for all of recipe searches, cant wait to see your new cookbook!!

  • Made this sweet potato casserole for Thanksgiving and it was a big hit. Everyone loved the flavors. I left out the cinnamon in the topping because we had a guest allergic to cinnamon. It was delicious and will be a new staple to our Thanksgiving meal every year. Thanks for a great recipe Jen!

  • This has become our go-to holiday sweet potato recipe. It is absolutely delicious, plus it can be made ahead of time which is an enormous plus. I initially thought it sounded as if it would be too sweet, but the ratio of topping to sweet potatoes is actually perfect. The topping does of course add some sweetness, but not in an overwhelming or cloying way, and the contrasting texture is really wonderful. I’ve also discovered a quick out-of-the-fridge spoonful at midnight is the most decadent snack!

  • Whenever I make this sweet potato pecan crisp, there’s always 1 person that’s asks me if I ordered this pan of goodness from Ruth Chris Steakhouse. It’s just that good.

    There are two things that I modify with his recipie:
    1. I bake (no boil) my potatos. When you poke holes in the potatoes and bake them, they cook up perfectly without losing any of the nutrients and sweetness in a pot of boiling water. You don’t have to worry about peeling a baked potato either. Just split it open and scoop. Then I always taste my potato’s before adding the sugar. If you’re lucky enough to find Alabama Red Sweets (which are grown in red clay) you can cut back on the amount of sugar you add. This type of potato is naturally super sweet.

    2. Sweeet potatos have strings. Some have more than others, but they all have strings. I personally can’t stand a stringy sweet potato dish or pie. I’ve been reading online about how cooks whip the potatoes in the food processor to deal with strings, but that does not eliminate the strings, that only splits them up and blends them in the potato’s . The only way to eliminate all sweet potato strings is to use a Food Mill. Not a single string will make it past a quick run through an old fashioned food mill. There is no substitute!

    • — GrassRoots Janice
    • Reply
  • We’ve made the ubiquitous Reba McEntire sweet potato casserole for years and loved it. We saw this one, and decided that it was worth a try.

    Well, it’s the same as the Reba–in the same sense that Sizzler is the same as Peter Luger’s, or a Yugo is the same as a Ferrari!

    It’s fresher-tasting, not as sickly sweet, and the topping is crispier. In fact, two days later (we made it the day before Thanksgiving to be sure we would like it), it’s just as fresh and the topping is still crispy. The Reba tended to turn to mush after a day or so.

    If you like the Reba, try this one instead!

    My only variation from Jen’s recipe was to use a ricer instead of mashing by hand. This saved some time (and my hands), and we liked the perfectly smooth texture.

  • Doubled the recipe for Thanksgiving and it was a hit! I added cinnamon to the base and also a spoonful of apple butter for extra depth of flavor, along with marshmallows over the topping (per family tradition). Very yummy and the crumb topping makes the dish.

  • Can I make this recipe the day ahead or does it get mushy?

    • Hi Joni, It’s perfectly fine to make it a day ahead; just reheat it until crisp on top before serving. Enjoy!

  • I have some home-grown Japanese purple sweet potatoes. Can I use those in your recipe? It looks totally delicious, btw!


    • Hi Kirk, I can’t guarantee it will work since purple sweet potatoes are denser and drier than sweet potatoes. Sorry!

  • Jenn, Sorry if you have already answered this question, but could I bake the sweet potatoes instead of boiling them? I make something very similar to this every Thanksgiving & it is always a hit. I can’t wait to try this version! Thanks.

    • Hi Stephanie, I think you could bake them. The baked potatoes may be just a bit drier than if they were cooked on the stove. When you combine all the ingredients for the sweet potato mixture, use your judgment; if they seem a tiny bit dry, just add a splash of milk. Hope you enjoy!

      • Thank you! This was my question this morning. So happy to find the answer already posted.

        • — Linda Jean on November 20, 2018
        • Reply
  • Can you make this ahead of time? Pit in fridge and then add 10 more minutes to the bake time?

    • Sure, Ally – this reheats well.

  • I made this today for our early Thanksgiving tomorrow. What are your suggestions for temperature and time to reheat this dish? I doubled the recipe. Thanks!

    • Hi Jennifer, Place the casserole, covered, in a 350°F oven until warmed through, about 30 minutes. Hope everyone enjoys it!

  • Is it possible to bake the sweet potatoes for this recipe? Love all your recipes!!!

    • Glad you like the recipes, Sherri! I’ve never baked the potatoes for this, but I suspect it should work. I’d love to hear how it turns out!

  • This is listed under the gluten-free section. Just FYI 🙂

    • Thank you, Laura — and sorry about that! It has been corrected.

  • Delicious, classic sweet potato casserole. I usually reduce the sugar, especially if the sweet potatoes are really sweet.

  • I have a recipe that uses canned sweet potatoes, but it can not compare to this recipe. I accidentally cooked it at 400, and the top got too brown, and my husband still went back for seconds. I did cut back on the sugar in the topping to a generous 1/2 cup. That is strictly a matter of taste. I have thrown out all my other similar recipes, and wrote ‘divine’ on this recipe.

  • I love this recipe. It is almost like a dessert and I could eat it instead of pumpkin pie any day! Great hit for Thanksgiving!

  • Hello! How should I adjust the recipe for a 9×13 baking dish? It looks fantastic and I can’t wait to make it! Thank you!

    • Hi Greta, I would multiply the recipe by 1.5. Enjoy!

  • I made this recipe last Thanksgiving and it was absolutely by far the hit of the evening. It kept getting passed around from table to table till the dish was scraped cleaned. This year Thanksgiving is at my sister’s house and I’ve already sent her the recipe to try. I really recommend this for a special meal. It will wow your guests.

  • Does this require the eggs?

    • Hi Diane, I think it’s lighter and fluffier with the eggs but they can be left out if necessary.

  • One of my guests has a nut allergy, can you think of something I can substitute the nuts for..maybe crushed cornflakes cereal? Also I would like to make this a day ahead & reheat. Before putting in the oven to reheat, do you think I could add marshmallows on top & bake for 10 minutes?

    • Hi Michele, you can just omit the nuts. And while I don’t think the marshmallows are necessary for this, you can certainly add them as you suggested. Hope you enjoy!

  • OMG

    This recipe is unbelievable. I made it last Thanksgiving and everytime I pass the sweet potatoes at the market I think about this dish, and salivate. It’s just that good!

  • We do one very similar to this every Thanksgiving but my recipe has a bit of cream sherry!

  • I’m wondering if you have any info on the nutrition facts for this dish? Specifically, do you have any idea how much sugar or carbs per serving is involved? I made a version of this recipe by replacing the sugar in the topping with a cup of sweetened shredded coconut. I like the combination of sweet potato/coconut flavors and I like the added texture the coconut gives to the crisp topping. It still tasted plenty sweet and I think I could get by with using about half the amount of sugar in the potato mix. Curious to know what your thoughts are.

    • Hi Phil, I just added the nutritional information for the recipe. As is, each serving has 70 g carbs and 35 g of sugar. And because the potatoes add a lot of natural sweetness, you could probably get away with reducing the sugar if you’d like. I’d love to know how it turns out if you make it this way!

  • I need to prepare for 20 people, how to I expand the recipe for that large?

    • Bea, you could either double or triple the recipe depending upon everyone’s appetites. The cooking time and temperature will remain the same but you’ll obviously need more than one or a larger baking dish. Hope everyone enjoys!

  • Stumbled upon this recipe for Thanksgiving this year…Awesome, it was the hit at the table.
    Will be repeating this one for Christmas for sure!!
    Only adjustment I made was a little less brown sugar….

  • can this recipe be frozen?

    • Yes Donna, it is fine to freeze this!

  • Can I cook the sweet potatoes and mix with ingredients the night before and bake in the morning?

    • — Bernadette Groner
    • Reply
    • Yep, that’s fine.

  • I know you have said this could be made and reheated the next day but my question is do you cook the crisp, then refrigerate when cool and then warm the next day to serve or you mix it up, put the topping on and refrigerate without cooking and cook it the next day and serve?

    • Hi David, You can make (and bake) the whole thing ahead of time and just reheat it until crisp on top before serving. Enjoy!

  • Hi Jenn! I am excited to try this recipe! Can I make it ahead and reheat it? Or will it be better to make it Thursday and bring it to dinner? Also…how did you get the potatoes so smooth–should I put them in the mixer? Thanks so much! Ellyn

    • Hi Ellyn, It’s perfectly fine to make ahead — it reheats beautifully. And I just mash them up with a fork or potato masher.

  • Hi Jen,

    This recipes looks delicious and I am looking forward to making this for Thanksgiving. If I make just the sweet potato part now and freeze it without the topping, how long should I bake it on Thanksgiving Day when I add the topping? Thanks and Happy Thanksgiving!

    • Hi Cyndi, If you make and freeze the sweet potato portion, I would make sure it is fully defrosted before baking. If it is, you can bake it for the directed amount of time. If not, I would increase the baking time in 20 minute increments until it’s heated through. Happy Thanksgiving!

      • Hi Jen,
        It worked out beautifully for Thanksgiving. Thanks! Hope you had a nice holiday!

  • This recipe is amazing! I followed it to a T and thought it was just the perfect amount of sweet! I wanted to try it out on my biggest, most honest skeptics, my kids, before I made for thanksgiving. All I can say is I turned 2 non-loving sweet potato kids into sweet potato fans! They could not get enough! I will definitely be making for thanksgiving!

  • Best ever! Received 5 stars from Family & Friends this past Thanksgiving. My own twist: I added an additional 1/2 pound of sweet potatoes and substituted pumpkin pie spice to the sweet potato mixture. For the topping, I used half a cup of brown sugar, half a cup of flour, added a dollop of cream and substituted 1/3 cup of walnuts and pumpkin pie spice. Exceptional results with an aromatic flavourful scent. Easy to prepare and made a day in advance to rave reviews.

  • Are you aware that if you allow 8 servings, each one is 445.4 calories with 23.4 g fat, 77.6 g cholesterol, 55.6 g sugar?
    It sounds delicious, but totally unhealthy!

  • This is our favorite sweet potato recipe for the holidays and beyond. I love plain sweet potatoes so found the amount of sugar a bit over the top and use about half of what is called for, have also substituted 4 egg whites for eggs. When I am making for a crowd I make a double bottom with one batch of topping. Half the sugar in the bottom. Someone always asks me for the recipe!

  • Made this for Easter along w/ the Brussels Sprouts/Kale Salad and the Asparagus/Peas dish. This was fantastic and extremely easy. The topping is sooooo good.
    [While I’m being honest, I DID warm up a bowl of this later in the evening and ate it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Just sayin’. :)]

  • Lovely dish! Everyone love the sweet potatoes and wanted the recipe! Thank you so much!

  • Lovely dish! I made it to accompany stuffed turkey breast for Christmas Day dinner and it was a hit. I followed another reader’s advice and halved the topping ingredients and it was plenty, as it’s fairly rich.

    Thanks for another nice recipe!

  • These were quickly gobbled up at our thanksgiving table this year. The sweet potato texture was out of this world! The crispy topping was perfection. I have tried several of your recipes and have never been disappointed!

  • Made these for Thansgiving. They were delicious. Next time, I’m going to cut back on the topping by half. It was a little too much for our taste. The spices & creamy potatoes were perfect though.

  • Made this for Thanksgiving and it was a great hit! I made it vegan by leaving out the eggs and using Earth Balance instead of butter and had people asking for the recipe. This recipe is definitely a keeper.

  • OK this is the third dish I made for Thanksgiving this year from your website. I have made a version of this for years but your is even better! Everyone loved it. Another go to recipe for Thanksgivings to come. Thanks for your great recipes and website. I tell everyone about them.

  • Hi Jenn – Is there anyway to do this recipe with marshmallows instead of or in additional to the pecans? This is the first time I am hosting the holiday and my family loves the sweet potatoes with marshmallows one them. Thanks so much!

    • Hi Karen, Yes, you can do a marshmallow topping over the mashed sweet potatoes. I would just omit the pecan topping; it won’t cook properly if you top it with marshmallows. Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Would I need to double recipe or 1.5x’s recipe to cook it in a 13X9 pan?

    • Hi Debbie, I would double it 🙂

  • This sweet potato recipe calls for two large eggs, but I don’t see them mentioned in the preparation directions.

    • Hi Gloria, They are mentioned where it says “add the remaining sweet potato mixture ingredients.” Hope that helps!

  • Did you use sweet potatoes or Yams?

    • Hi Linda, I use sweet potatoes. For some reason, most grocers use the words “sweet potato” and “yam” interchangeably. This is confusing since yams aren’t sweet potatoes at all, but rather thick white tubers with dark brown skin. Chances are you won’t find real yams at the supermarket, so if you see “yams,” you’re probably looking at sweet potatoes.

      • Are your sweet potatoes the orange ones or white ones (inside)? Our grocer calls the white ones sweet potatoes.

        • Hi Maryanne, They are orange.

  • I’m having a vegan guest for Thanksgiving. I can substitute Earth Balance for the butter, but would it hurt this recipe to leave out the eggs? Or can you recommend a substitute for the eggs?

    • Hi Becky. You can leave out the eggs; just won’t be quite as light and fluffy 🙂

  • Have made this type of dish for years. I use i large can of crushed pineapple with its own juice. Use half in sweet potatoes and half dotted over top instead of so much sugar & butter. I prefer to bake my sweet potatoes after running in microwave for 6+ minutes I then coat with olive oil spray and bake at 375 on foil until the potatoes start to ooze (20 min.). This makes them sweeter; learned this trick from a restaurant that serves sweet potatoes every night. My family is split on pecan topping vs marshmallows so I put half with pecan topping and bake then add the mini marshmallows on the other half and run under broiler so all are happy.

  • Made this for our Thanksgiving feast. I didn’t change a thing. It was wonderful, and now will be my go to recipe for sweet potatoes.

  • This recipe looks wonderful, but I’m wondering if I can make it ahead of time? If so, what stages of the recipe can be done the day before, and what needs to be done right before cooking?


    • Hi Sandy, You can make the whole thing ahead of time and just reheat it until crisp on top before serving. Please come back and let me know how it comes out. Thanks!

  • Yum!!!! Oh my this was good!

  • I’d love to make this for thanksgiving but my daughter is allergic to tree nuts 🙁
    What can you suggest that I substitute for the
    1 cup of pecans? Something other than nuts


    • Hi Lauren, you can just leave them out. Hope you enjoy!

      • will be doing this one for x-mas day.thanksgiving,christmas time i love this so much.got a bag full of sweet taters waitin on me to make this

  • This is the way my mom has always made it, and in my opinion it’s the ONLY way to go….nothing better than the yummy, crisp topping with the smooth, creamy sweet potatoes. Don’t wait till Thanksgiving to make this!

  • I also made this for Thanksgiving and got rave reviews, especially since none of us are fans of marshmallows on our sweet potatoes. This is the perfect combination, smooth, sweet, crunchy sweet potato deliciousness. Can’t wait to have it again.

  • I made this for Thanksgiving last year, and it was a huge hit. I don’t like marshmellows, so it is the perfect sweet potato recipe for me. I got huge raves from everyone at the table… this will be on my menu for years now!

  • This is a wonderful recipe! My entire family loves it!

  • I discovered this recipe a couple of years ago here and LOVE IT! I like to take veggies to family get togethers and this one is always a hit, with people asking for the recipe. I use more sweet potatoes as the topping is pretty sweet and plentiful. Don’t wait for the holidays it is great with roasted chicken or grilled turkey all year long.

    • — Liz McNett Crowl
    • Reply
  • These were the best sweet potatoes I’ve made for Christmas dinner. My future son-in-law said they were the best he ever ate!

  • We made this around the holidays. It’s so fabulous it could almost sit alone in the dessert category, too. The pecans really balance the sweetness well.

  • This will be on our dinner table this Thanksgiving!

  • I was never a sweet potato fan until last year when I was introduced to some “outside the box” recipes. Now I know how good sweet potatoes can be, and this recipe looks great. Will definitely try it this holiday season.

  • Made the sweet potato pecan crisp for Thanksgiving dinner today. It was fantastic, very similar to one I’ve made in the past, but yours was much better. I just halfed the topping recipe. was able to make the sweet potato a day earlier and just added the topping before baking. My guests loved it. Thanks for another great recipe. Have tried several and they are all great. thanks,

  • Jenn,
    I really feel like you should do a cookbook at some point. I have tried so many of your recipes, and they are all amazing!!

    I’m making your sweet potato crisp, roasted carrots with thyme, and roasted brussels sprouts for Thanksgiving.
    For Christmas Eve, I’ll have Hot Buttered Apple Cider ready for my guests to enjoy, and later we’ll enjoy your mac n cheese as a side dish.
    And pretty much everyday I’ve been eating pumpkin muffins (made from your pumpkin bread recipe) for breakfast.

    I think it’s safe to say that I am a major contender for Once Upon a Chef’s biggest fan!

    Best regards,
    Danielle Foster

  • I have been making this dish, mostof my adult life. Not exactly the same but very close. It is just as good cold or even the next day. Wonderful side dish or desert. In my recipe though I also add some FROSTED FLAKES to the topping mixture. Just add it in with the other ingred. it makes for the best topping ever. Try it, you will surely love it.

  • Oh this reminds me of the sweet potato casserole from Ruth’s Chris! My bf loved it so much that iw as going to try and make my own version of it but now I have something to go off of!!! Thank you!!!

  • This sounds just wonderful to me! Those southern recipes are always the best 🙂

  • I agree..you just cant make this with the canned stuff!!!
    Amazing. This is my favorite Thanksgiving side!

  • mmmm! I make a similar one like this- I am not a canned kinda gal, either. Great pics! I put a link to your site on mine- hope ya don’t mind! 🙂

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