Sweet Potato Casserole

Without question, this is the best sweet potato casserole recipe I've tried! Smooth and creamy sweet potatoes are topped with a savory pecan crumble.

Sweet potato casserole

This sweet potato casserole recipe is one of my favorite Thanksgiving side dishes. I haven’t always been such a sweet potato casserole fan. When I was growing up, my family had sweet potato casserole with marshmallows every year, and I never loved it. For me, sweet potatoes plus sweet marshmallows is just too much sweet.

But this sweet potato casserole recipe won me over. I swap out the mini marshmallows for a pecan crumble topping. It’s savory and crunchy—the perfect complement to the creamy sweet potatoes underneath.

Make this recipe for a holiday meal, and I promise it will be a hit. It’s healthy and flavorful, and—best of all—you can make it ahead. You and your guests will love it!

Healthy sweet potato casserole recipe ingredients

Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe Ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need to make this sweet potato casserole recipe:

For the sweet potatoes

  • Sweet potatoes, of course! You’ll need 5 large for a 9×13-inch baking dish.
  • Butter or olive oil – For richness.
  • Milk – It helps the sweet potatoes blend into a smooth and creamy puree. Use any kind you like!
  • Ground ginger – For warm depth of flavor.

For the crumble topping

Some sweet potato casserole recipes feature a brown sugar streusel topping like you’d find on an apple crumble. This isn’t one of them. Instead, I make a savory topping with these ingredients:

  • Pecans and walnuts – I pulse some into the crumble and leave a few whole for garnish.
  • Old fashioned oats – For hearty texture.
  • Fresh rosemary, sage, and dried thyme – For savory autumn flavor.
  • Garlic – Along with the herbs, garlic gives this sweet potato casserole its delicious savory taste.
  • Pure maple syrup – It adds a touch of sweetness to the nutty topping.
  • Butter or olive oil – To help the topping crisp up in the oven.

And of course, you’ll need sea salt and fresh black pepper to make all the flavors pop!

Find the complete recipe with measurements below.

Pecans, walnuts, oats, and herbs in a food processor

How to Make Sweet Potato Casserole

This easy sweet potato casserole recipe has 4 basic steps:

1. First, roast the sweet potatoes. Prepare them according to this baked sweet potato recipe.

Bake the potatoes until you can easily pierce them with a fork. You want them to be super tender so that the sweet potato mixture gets totally smooth!

Pecan topping in a food processor

2. While the sweet potatoes are baking, make the pecan topping. Pulse the nuts, oats, herbs, garlic, maple syrup, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a food processor until just combined. The mixture should clump a bit, but it should still have lots of texture.

Sweet potatoes in a food processor

3. Then, blend up the filling. Instead of using a potato masher to mash the sweet potatoes, I use a food processor to get them super smooth.

Peel the cooked sweet potatoes, and place the soft orange flesh in a food processor.

Sweet potato casserole filling in a food processor

Add the milk, ginger, salt, and pepper and pulse until well combined.

Sweet potatoes in a baking dish

4. Layer and bake! Spread the creamy sweet potatoes in a large baking dish.

Hand sprinkling pecan topping over sweet potatoes

Add the topping…

Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe

…and a few whole pecans and sage leaves for garnish.

Bake at 425°F until the topping is nicely browned and crisp, and enjoy!

Easy Sweet potato casserole recipe

Make-Ahead and Storage Instructions

Wondering if you can make this recipe ahead? The answer is yes!

  • Up to two days in advance, bake the sweet potatoes and blend up the filling. Store it, covered, in the casserole dish or an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  • Make the pecan topping, and store it in a separate container in the fridge.

When you’re ready to serve, assemble the casserole and bake!

Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

To reheat, warm them in the microwave or bake in a 325°F oven until heated through.

Can you freeze sweet potato casserole?

Yes, you can also freeze sweet potato casserole. 

If you’re freezing it before a holiday meal, I recommend ONLY preparing the sweet potato filling.

  • Spread it in the baking dish and let it cool to room temperature.
  • Cover tightly with aluminum foil, and freeze for up to 3 months.
  • Let thaw overnight in the fridge before adding the topping and baking according to the recipe.

If you freeze the fully assembled casserole, the topping will lose its crisp texture. This may not bother you in the case of leftovers, but for a Christmas, Easter, or Thanksgiving dinner, I recommend adding the topping once the casserole thaws for the best crunch.

Sweet potato casserole with pecans

More Favorite Sweet Potato Recipes

If you love this sweet potato casserole, try one of these delicious sweet potato recipes next:

Looking for more holiday side dishes? Check out my best Thanksgiving side dishes or Easter side dishes!

Get This Recipe In Your Inbox
Share your email, and we'll send it straight to your inbox. Plus, enjoy daily doses of recipe inspiration as a bonus!

Sweet Potato Casserole

rate this recipe:
4.85 from 59 votes
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Serves 6 to 8
You'll love this healthy sweet potato casserole recipe! Find make-ahead instructions in the blog post above.

Ingredients

  • 5 large sweet potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil or melted butter, plus more for drizzling
  • cups milk, plus more if necessary
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¾ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup fresh sage leaves, for garnish

Crumble Topping

  • cup whole rolled oats
  • ½ cup pecans, plus more for garnish
  • ½ cup walnuts, plus more for garnish
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil or melted butter
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • ½ teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
  • teaspoons sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with foil and brush an 9x13-inch baking dish with olive oil.
  • Use a fork to poke a few holes into the sweet potatoes. Place on the baking sheet and roast until very tender, about 60 minutes.
  • Make the crumble topping: In a food processor, place the oats, pecans, walnuts, garlic, maple syrup, olive oil, thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper and pulse until just combined. Remove and set aside.
  • Scoop the cooked sweet potato flesh out of the skins and place in a food processor. Add the olive oil, milk, ginger, salt, and pepper and process to combine. Spread the mixture into the baking dish.
  • Sprinkle with the crumble topping, additional nuts, and sage leaves. Drizzle with olive oil and bake for 20 minutes, or until the topping is browned and crisp.

This post is in partnership with ALDI.

128 comments

4.85 from 59 votes (32 ratings without comment)

Leave a comment:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate this recipe (after making it)




  1. Erica
    11.16.2022

    Question? Could this be made the day before and then reheated the day of Thanksgiving? What changes would I need to make? Thank you so much in advance!

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.18.2022

      You can totally prep this recipe ahead of time! Make the filling and spread it in a baking dish, cover, and refrigerate. Then make the crumble topping and store it in a separate container in the fridge. When you’re ready to serve, sprinkle on the crumble topping and bake according to the recipe. We recommend keeping the crumble and filling separate when you make this recipe ahead so that the crumble doesn’t lose its crisp texture. Hope this helps!

  2. Diane Ozolins
    11.13.2022

    I LOVE the sweet and savory mix of this dish. Thank you for another delicious recipe. I really enjoy this cooking club a ton as it gives me good reason and inspiration to try new things 🙂

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.18.2022

      Hi Diane, I’m so glad you love the recipe (and the club)!

  3. Brenda Leis
    11.12.2022

    5 stars
    I enjoyed the ginger in this and it was a delicious dish. One suggestion that I would like to make is that for fruits and vegetables, since they are in a variety of sizes in nature, it would be helpful to be given a weight measure in grams instead of just a description of small, medium or large.

    Great choice for the cooking club..

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.18.2022

      Hi Brenda, Thanks for your feedback! So glad you enjoyed the casserole.

  4. Shira
    11.12.2022

    5 stars
    Love this casserole! Sweet potato casseroles don’t have to be too sweet and I loved how this was savory and so perfect for Thanksgiving.

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.18.2022

      Hi Shira, I’m so glad you loved it!

  5. Annika Carnes
    11.12.2022

    5 stars
    I was a little hesitant making this sweet potato casserole since I was convinced that I just don’t care for them. I gave it a shot though and am so glad I did. It was absolutely delicious and I can’t wait to eat the leftovers. It was very easy to make and came out perfect. I will definitely make this again. Such a perfect fall dish!

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.17.2022

      Hi Annika, I’m so glad you loved it!

  6. Samantha
    11.10.2022

    I have some questions about the directions. In the ingredient portion for the crumble topping it lists 1/4 black pepper but it is not mentioned again in the directions. I left it out of my crumble topping but just wanted to touch base and make sure I did it correctly.

    Also, the sage is just a garnish correct? It is listed with the sweet potato part in the ingredients section so I just wanted to clarify.
    I left it out of my sweet potatoes and planning to put it on top as a garnish only.

    Looking forward to baking the dish. It looks delicious!

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.11.2022

      Hi Samantha, Thanks for noting that about the pepper! That’s our mistake–it should be in the crumble, but I think yours will turn out just fine without it. The sage is just for garnish. I’ve updated that for clarity as well. I hope you enjoy the casserole!

      • Samantha Barnett
        11.11.2022

        5 stars
        Hi Phoebe,

        Thank you for your quick reply. I wanted to give you an update. It came out great even without the black pepper in the crumble topping but I made a note to add it for next time. Planning to make this dish again for Thanksgiving. This was my test-run for Thanksgiving and I also made it for the contest entry! An added plus is that not only is it delicious but the aroma of the sage on top made my home smell so good when it was baking! P.S. I love the serving fork in the first picture on the page. Any idea where it is from?

        • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
          11.18.2022

          Hi Samantha, So glad it came out well! The serving spatula is vintage from Etsy. Have a great Thanksgiving!

  7. Amanda
    11.09.2022

    5 stars
    This was very good, savory and delicious!

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.11.2022

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  8. Jane
    11.07.2022

    Would a nut free version for allergies be workable? Would you recommend regular milk, half and half, or cream? And then just omitting the nuts in the crumble? Thanks.

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.11.2022

      Hi Jane, Yes I think this would be totally doable! I would use regular milk instead of the almond milk. If seeds are ok for you, I would replace the 1 cup nuts in the crumble with 2/3 cup pepitas. Hope this helps!

  9. Lisa M.
    11.07.2022

    I have to admit, I was skeptical. I have been experimenting with more plant-based recipes, and I had my suspicions about this one. But, wow, it was packed with flavor. Each ingredient came through; it was delicious. I served it at a dinner party; my guests loved it and wanted the recipe. This will become a go-to recipe to share with friends and family. I will be making it again. Excellent!

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.11.2022

      Hi Lisa, I’m so glad you all loved the recipe!

  10. Jean
    11.06.2022

    Can’t have oil. Any subs or just leave it out?

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.11.2022

      Hi Jean, if you can have melted butter, it would be a great sub. If not, I’d skip the oil in the sweet potato mixture. You might need to add a little water to the crumble mixture to help it clump together without the oil.

  11. Susan Collison
    11.05.2022

    Are you using the whole sage leaves as a fresh garnish, or baking the casserole with them already on top? I don’t see any mention of garnishing after baking.

    Thank you,
    ~Sue

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      11.11.2022

      Hi Sue, we bake the casserole with the sage leaves on top.

      • Susan Collison
        11.11.2022

        5 stars
        Thank you for your reply. I made the sweet potato casserole for dinner tonight because I couldn’t wait until Thanksgiving! lol! The savory flavor was a nice change from the “too sweet” traditional marshmallow variations. I should tell you, my husband is really loving this friendly competition! He reaps the rewards happily! =)

        By the way, my sage (I used 1/2 t. dried in the half recipe) went into the sweet potato mix…tasted great!

        • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
          11.17.2022

          Hi Susan, I’m so glad you and your husband enjoyed it!

  12. Jenna
    11.01.2022

    5 stars
    Lighter casserole that’s a nice balance between sweet and savory. I really enjoyed the ginger in it.

    • Phoebe Moore
      11.04.2022

      I’m so glad you love the recipe!

  13. Brenda
    02.27.2022

    4 stars
    I made this for a dinner party last night and it was very good. The only changes I’d suggest include: a large stand mixer with a metal beater (since I don’t have a food processor), a little less salt in the crumble (I put in 1 tsp instead of 1 1/2, and it was still a bit salty for me), and a bit more herbs and ginger in the purée, as it was a bit bland without the additions. But overall? A lovely alternative to the typical and overly sweet casseroles I usually see. It went well with a Honey Baked Ham. Well done! .

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      02.28.2022

      Hi Brenda, I’m so glad you enjoyed it.

  14. Lauren
    11.28.2021

    5 stars
    Made for my first Thanksgiving and this got rave reviews. I think my sweet potatoes were a touch small, so I should have gone lighter on the ginger. I also made it the night previous and followed the separate container advice. Pulling it together day of was seamless. Everyone loved it. Different than the typical sweet potato casserole.

  15. Steve Warner
    11.25.2021

    3 stars
    This dish got mixed reactions at Thanksgiving dinner. Some seemed to really like it while others just left it on their plates. I personally was not crazy about the texture, but I thought the flavor was okay.

  16. Michelle
    11.25.2021

    It would’ve been nice to specify the type of sweet potato because it is yams that you are using not sweet potatoes.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      11.25.2021

      Yams or sweet potatoes will both work in the recipe.

  17. Yum
    11.24.2021

    5 stars
    About how many pounds of sweet potato is in this? Not sure how to convert 5 large sweet potatoes to the small ones that I have!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      11.24.2021

      Hi, I’m sorry, I didn’t weigh the potatoes, but it doesn’t have to be exact – if your potatoes are very small, you can use one extra and that should be fine.

  18. SAS
    11.24.2021

    Hi –
    Love your recipes!
    Have you made this the day before needed?
    Thanks!
    SAS

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      11.24.2021

      Hi, yes, you can make it the day before and bake it before you’re ready to eat.

  19. regina
    11.21.2021

    Can anything be substituted for the oats ? For carb free folks ?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      11.21.2021

      Hi Regina, you can add extra walnuts and pecans in place of the oats (but note that there are carbs in the sweet potatoes).

  20. Andrea
    11.20.2021

    Hi! Your recipes are fantastic. For this one, could one use unsweetened coconut milk?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      11.21.2021

      I’m glad you’ve been enjoying them! Yes, you could use coconut milk.

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.