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Southern Sweet Potato Casserole (+Video)

This Easy Sweet Potato Casserole has a creamy filling made with canned sweet potatoes and is topped with a brown sugar streusel topping.

AN EASY RECIPE FOR SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE

Sweet potato casserole is a must-have, must-make side dish for me at the holidays. I’ve mentioned this before but I would be totally happy with a bunch of side dishes for holiday meals. It just isn’t Thanksgiving for me without sweet potato casserole!

Easy Sweet Potato Casserole on a plate

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

Can I freeze sweet potato casserole?

I do a ton of cooking on Thanksgiving and over the years, I have learned ways to make my recipes not only easier to whip up but still have that same great taste I love. I use canned sweet potatoes or yams and I make this whole thing the night before, pop it into the refrigerator and it’s ready to bake the next day. If you want to prep this a few days or more in advance, you can freeze it (just make sure you wrap it really well.) Put into the refrigerator overnight to thaw and proceed with the cooking instructions below. Or cook from frozen but add on additional cooking time.

Which topping is better? Marshmallow or pecan?

The pecan praline topping on this is my favorite but I will never turn down a good ole marshmallow topping either. Instead of the pecan praline topping, you can leave it off and top with mini marshmallows towards the end of cooking. If you put them on too early, they will burn. Or. you could do a half and half. Just don’t add the marshmallow topping until the end of cooking. Also, if you don’t like pecans in the topping, you can just leave them out.

Can I use fresh sweet potatoes?

Of course! You’ll need about 3 small sweet potatoes. They need to be cooked soft enough to be mashed. Boiling is probably the simplest way to make them. Just peel and dice the sweet potatoes into large cubes and boil until tender then continue with the recipe as written.

How do you thicken up sweet potato casserole?

This answer is two-fold. Most people don’t allow their casseroles to set up after baking. The casserole needs at least 15-20 minutes to cool before serving. The casserole sets up as it cools. However, if you prefer a really thick sweet potato casserole, you can add about 2-3 tablespoons of flour to your sweet potato batter and this will help the mixture to thicken. This is an especially good idea if using fresh sweet potatoes.
If your sweet potato casserole turned out “watery”, its usually because you forgot to add eggs; you didn’t let your casserole have enough time to set up after baking or you used fresh sweet potatoes and didn’t boil them long enough before mashing. Sweet potatoes retain a lot of moisture so boiling them well beforehand will help release a lot of that excess moisture before adding them to your casserole mixture.

Who invented sweet potato casserole?

This one is for all you food fact nerds like me. Sweet potato casserole was actually invented by a marshmallow corporation in 1917. So the original recipe was intended to be made with marshmallows. They were trying to market the sweet pillowy treat with a recipe. This is a marketing technique we see regularly these days. However, southerners eventually morphed the original dish and added the sweet pecan brown sugar topping.

How do I store leftovers?

Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Or you can freeze leftovers. Cover and wrap well to protect from freezer burn. Casserole will freeze for up to 6 months.

Easy Sweet Potato Casserole recipe from The Country Cook

INGREDIENTS NEEDED: (FULL RECIPE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE POST)

  • canned sweet potatoes
  • salted butter
  • milk
  • sugar
  • vanilla extract
  • eggs
  • brown sugar
  • all-purpose flour
  • chopped pecans
canned sweet potatoes, milk, sugar, vanilla extract, eggs, salt, brown sugar, flour, chopped pecans

HOW TO MAKE SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE:

Preheat oven to 350f degrees. In a large bowl, mash the sweet potatoes and stir in melted butter, milk, sugar, vanilla extract and beaten eggs. Stir until combined well.

melted butter, milk, sugar, vanilla extract and beaten eggs stirred together in a bowl

Pour sweet potato mixture into a 2-quart (8-inch square) baking dish.

sweet potato casserole mixture poured in an 8x8-inch baking dish

In a bowl, combine the melted butter, brown sugar, flour and chopped pecans. Use a fork or your fingers until mixture becomes small crumbles.

sweet potato casserole crumble topping mixture in a bowl

Sprinkle crumbles over sweet potato mixture.

sweet potato casserole, pre-baking

Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes until topping is golden brown. Let casserole cool for about 15-20 minutes before serving. This is important as the casserole will set-up as it cools.

Sweet Potato Casserole, cooling

Makes 8 servings. 

Best Sweet Potato Casserole recipe, large spoonful

MORE SIDE DISH RECIPE IDEAS:

Originally published: November 2016
Updated and republished September 2019

Sweet Potato Casserole

Southern Sweet Potato Casserole (+Video)

This Easy Sweet Potato Casserole has a creamy filling made with canned sweet potatoes and is topped with a brown sugar streusel topping.
4.99 from 150 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 10

Ingredients

For the casserole:

  • 1 (29 oz) can sweet potatoes, drained
  • ½ cup salted butter, melted
  • cup milk
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, beaten

For the topping:

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350F degrees. In a large bowl, mash the sweet potatoes and stir in melted butter, milk, sugar, vanilla extract and beaten eggs. Stir until combined well.
  • Pour sweet potato mixture into a 2-quart (8-inch square) baking dish.
  • In a bowl, combine the melted butter, brown sugar, flour and chopped pecans. Use a fork or your fingers until mixture becomes small crumbles.
  • Sprinkle crumbles over sweet potato mixture.
  • Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes until topping is golden brown. Let casserole cool for at least 15-20 minutes before serving. This is important as the casserole will set-up as it cools.

Video

Notes

  • Three small fresh sweet potatoes (peeled, diced and boiled) can be used instead of the canned sweet potatoes.
  • A marshmallow topping can be used instead of the pecan topping. Put the marshmallows on around the last 10 minutes of cooking. 
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American

Nutrition

Calories: 371kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 24g | Sodium: 152mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 30g

Nutritional Disclaimer

“The Country Cook” is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

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183 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Delicious! I was baking for someone with wheat and nut allergy, so I used cassava flour in the topping and replaced the pecans with 1/3 cup old fashioned oats. It was the best sweet potato casserole I’ve ever had.