Traditional Sweet Potato Casserole

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Traditional Sweet Potato Casserole

82 Reviews
Traditional Sweet Potato Casserole
16 servings
November 2007

Top this lightened version of the classic sweet potato casserole with both marshmallows and toasted pecans. (For more classic dishes, visit our sweet potato recipes collection.)


  • 2 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans, divided
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 cups miniature marshmallows

Nutritional Information

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 375°.

Step 2

Place the sweet potatoes in a Dutch oven, and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes or until very tender. Drain; cool slightly.

Step 3

Place potatoes in a large bowl. Add sugar and next 3 ingredients (through vanilla). Mash sweet potato mixture with a potato masher. Fold in 1/4 cup pecans. Scrape potato mixture into an even layer in an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup pecans; top with marshmallows. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until golden.

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Ratings & Reviews

4.6 / 5

Avatar for Cheryl

"Excellent recipe for Thanksgiving!"


Great recipe! Since I am trying to reduce the sugar in our diet, I doubled the vanilla and reduced the brown sugar to 1/2 cup. It was amazing and everyone loved it!!!!

Avatar for rebelfan

"rebelfan's Review"


This has been my go to recipe for Thanksgiving and Christmas sweet potatoes! It is easy and such a better choice than traditional recipes. I agree with another review that I have trouble determining how many sweet potatoes to use.

Avatar for Roslynym

"Roslynym's Review"


Made this every holiday since finding it and keep getting requests for it. Making it tomorrow for Easter.

Avatar for emestevez

"emestevez's Review"


I'm typically not a sweet potato casserole fan, but this was amazing! Made this for Thanksgiving and all of our guests loved it. Personally, I really liked the texture the pecans added against the creamy sweet potatoes. I use vanilla bean paste in place of extract and that definitely added a rich flavor. Can't wait to make this again for a side dish on a chilly winter night.

Avatar for spunkygran

"spunkygran's Review"


I made this exactly as written for Thanksgiving and everyone in my family loved it. There wasn't any left at the end of the meal! I wasn't sure about it since it didn't have any of the traditional spices, but nobody even commented about that. Next time, I may try adding a few spices. But this is an easy and very tasty recipe and will be added to my recipe repertoire.

Avatar for ericka5441

"ericka5441's Review"


I really liked this recipe. I adjusted the amount of butter used I used a tad bit more than the recipe called for and I used walnuts instead of pecans and nixed the marshmallows. Additionally I used white sugar and brown sugar. I mixed dark brown and light brown sugar. It sounds like a lot of sugar but I used 8 very large sweet potatoes. I also recommend using a pinch of salt.

Avatar for ariemay

"ariemay's Review"


Excellent go-to for a lightened traditional family favorite. My friend (that we share Thanksgiving with) eats leftovers for breakfast.

Avatar for OmaSue

"OmaSue's Review"


This was my first "from scratch" sweet potato casserole. Usually I open a can, heat it and eat it lol. But this was fantastic! A dinner guest told me she NEVER has liked sweet potatoes but for some reason decided to try it. Needless to say, she loved it. This will be one more added family favorite for any future feasts!

Avatar for ArtistKate

"ArtistKate's Review"


Marshmallows are made from animal product…. so if you add them to your dish… it is NO longer vegetarian.

Avatar for Braninsb

"Braninsb's Review"


I made this last Thanksgiving. Reviewing it now because i'm cleaning up my file. I remember this being relatively easy except for trying to figure out how many potatoes to use. Our celebration was small. I think it came out super sweet which is fine for me. Maybe cut down on the sugar next time. I'm tempted to make it with Splenda. That would allow me to probably justify eating too much. I will make it again.

Avatar for dwngonz

"dwngonz's Review"


I made this for Thanksgiving, and it was by far the best sweet potatoe recipe I have ever tried. I omitted the nuts because I didn't think my kids would like them, but it was still great. I think I will use a little less sugar next time. The flavor was light, sweet and delicious.

Avatar for pandorable

"pandorable's Review"


This is amazing. It's wonderfully sweet and the marshmallow crust is divine. I will be making this again and again!

Avatar for CandaceCH

"CandaceCH's Review"


Prepared this exactly to recipe. This is so delicious, it's the only dish I had thirds of– and I adore my grandma's stuffing! It tastes like maple syrup heaven with marshmallow clouds of happiness.

Avatar for DarcyCP

"DarcyCP's Review"


Usually I hate it when someone rates a recipe, then reinvents it by adding a bunch of additional ingredients, proclaims it "delicious", even though is scarcely resembles the original recipe. I did take the advice of some previous raters and tweaked this a little to my own liking….here goes: toast the pecans, cut the salt in half, add some orange zest, and don't put the marshmallows on until the last couple of minutes – then just broil briefly until browned. My family did love this (maybe because it was made from scratch for a change:) We will definitely make this again.

Avatar for balper

"balper's Review"


This is almost the same dish as my grandmothers. The only thing I do differently is add orange or pineapple juice whatever I have on hand. The juice gives it a great fruity flavor & makes the dish a little creamier. Just thought you might like to try a little addition. My family would be so upset it I didn't make this. Even the little kids love it.

Avatar for cudasco

"cudasco's Review"


Everyone loved it at the Thanksgiving table. Changes: I roasted the yams instead of boiling them, and cut the brown sugar down to 1/2 cup.

Avatar for nkyhky

"nkyhky's Review"


The best sweet potatoes ever!!! Not super sweet, but just enough. I made two batches- one with pecans and one without due to some allergies in the family. Everybody raved about this dish and there were hardly any leftovers. It was also easy enough to make anytime, which is why I made it again about 2 weeks after Thanksgiving on a work night- I was craving it!

Avatar for yamsaredelish

"yamsaredelish's Review"


DELICIOUS. I couldn't stop eating it! I would recommend putting in a little less sugar if you don't like a sweetness overload. Otherwise, it's perfect. I could eat this every day.

Avatar for steponme

"steponme's Review"


Last night was the 2nd time I made this; simply delicious! I cut down the butter and sugar a little and it's still delicious.

Avatar for aplem81

"aplem81's Review"


I made this recipe for Thanksgiving this year and the whole family loved it, even my mom who doesn't normally like sweet potatoes.I followed the recipe for the most part, but I made half of it without pecans and half with. This was to accommodate my 2 yr old son. I also made it up earlier in the day, stuck it in the fridge and just pulled it out and mixed in the pecans right before baking. I will definitely keep this recipe in my arsenal for Thanksgivings to come!

Avatar for JessicaJJM

"JessicaJJM's Review"


This sweet potato receipe is good! I made this for Thanksgiving and everyone raved about it. It will turn those nver cared for these year after year into fans.

Avatar for JessicaStacey

"JessicaStacey's Review"


This was absolutely delicious! I made the sweet potato puree the night before and refrigerated it overnight in the casserole dish, then added the pecans and marshmallow topping the next morning and finished the casserole in the oven. Everyone loved it, and no one guessed that it was a "lighter" version of an old favorite. My potatoes weren't very sweet (I guess I picked bad ones), but if they'd been sweeter I'd use less sugar – I'd start with half and add sugar to taste. The marshmallows add a lot of sweetness, so I used a bit less than the recipe called for. But overall a great, easy, quick recipe that everyone loved.

Avatar for creamcheese

"creamcheese's Review"


I added two extra potatoes and roasted instead of boiling them. Served this at Thanksgiving and everyone said it was the best dish there! YUMMY!!

Avatar for HoneyMa

"HoneyMa's Review"


This is an awesome recipe, and it is going to be added to my Holiday menu from now on! I did make a couple of changes…I added about a handful more pecans to the mixture because my famiy loves pecans, and a whole teaspoon of vanilla. I also sprinkled a layer of brown sugar on the top of the casserole before adding the pecans and then the marshmellows on top. Everyone loved it! Also I made it the night before, put it in the oven for about 15 minutes to knock off the chill, added the marshmellows and baked. You will not regret making this recipe instead of candied yams, I promise.

Avatar for Puyiii

"Puyiii's Review"


This was delicious and easy to do. Love marshmallows with sweet potatoes!!! Don't just leave this for Thanksgiving and Christmas…it's great all year long!

Avatar for tmitch5889

"tmitch5889's Review"


SO DELICIOUS! eating it right now, had an early thanksgiving w/ friends and they all loved it! so easy to make – and did everything the same, but more pecans, less marshmellows! will definitely be making it for the family!

Avatar for chriskitten8

"chriskitten8's Review"


I hosted Thanksgiving last year and this recipe was to die for. I could eat the entire pan myself, it's like dessert, only healthier. It's sweet and creamy and I'm looking forward to making it again this year.

Avatar for fishies3

"fishies3's Review"


This was really good. Recipe calls for too much sugar though- I used half a cup and it was plenty sweet. Also, didn't put the marshmallows on top- only the nuts, and it was great.

Avatar for Katieusc

"Katieusc's Review"


I love sweet potato casserole but my family's recipe calls for an ungodly amount of butter and sugar. When I found this and the great reviews I gave it a try and now I need to look no futher. Even my husband, who claims to hate sweet potatoes, ate this and asked when I would make it again. I baked the potatoes whole and scooped out the insides rather than peeling, cutting and boiling them. I initially cut the sugar and butter in half per other reviewers but ended up adding it back in. Not sure if my potatoes were on the less sweet side originally or what? Anyway, I was hesitant about mixing in the pecans but did it anyway and it was a good touch. The marshmallows and pecans on top made a delicious crunchy texture that you would bit into every so often. YUM!

Avatar for irishmaiden222

"irishmaiden222's Review"


I always wanted to make a sweet potato casserole for Thanksgiving, but the Triple Corn Spoon Bread from this site is the one requested year after year. I got to host this year so I was able to make both. This was a HUGE hit. I even used the lighter colored sweet potatoes and it was still delicious. I did make a note to my copy of the recipe to reduce the brown sugar just a bit for next year.

Avatar for jen101604

"jen101604's Review"


Can't say enough about this one. Left the pecans out of the main dish so the kids could easily separate what they didn't want. Delish!

Avatar for purplezebra1

"purplezebra1's Review"


I thought this was good, but the rest of the family felt it was too sweet. It tastes a lot like candied yams you make during the holidays, except, as my husband put it, candied yams are primarily only sweet on the outside. Mashing the sweet potatoes makes this sweet throughout.

Avatar for jenfur13

"jenfur13's Review"


FANTASTIC!! I used yams, about 4 lbs instead of 2.5, and kept all the other ingredients the same. I cubed them small enough before boiling that I just mixed in the sugar and other ingredients and got a nice lumpy texture (I like having chunks of potato in my casserole). Everyone raved, and no one would have guessed it was a light version – just as comforting as the original.

Avatar for pdgesualdo

"pdgesualdo's Review"


I baked the sweet potatoes instead of boiling them, but otherwise kept the recipe just the same. I topped the casserole in rows so that those who preferred the pecans got the pecans..same with the marshmellows. this one is a keeper!!

Avatar for Rebecca1001

"Rebecca1001's Review"


Yes, this is a keeper! I made a few slight changes to this recipe. First I roasted my yams instead of boiling, roasting added so much deep flavor to the yams. Then I cut the amount of brown sugar in 1/2. I felt that the sweetness of the yams was enough, and they didn't need more. This dish turned out to be an excellent sided dish that everyone loved.

Avatar for SWinkinAZ

"SWinkinAZ's Review"


I used yams instead of sweet potatoes. I made it the night before but didn't add the pecans or marshmallows until I was ready to take the dish to my grandmother's house, where we were having our Thanksgiving meal. Once we got to her house, I baked it according to the directions in the recipe. It was very popular and I thought it was delicious. I would definitely make this again and I wouldn't change a thing.

Avatar for SueBrown

"SueBrown's Review"


This is the best sweet potato casserole I've ever had. We had it as part of our Thanksgiving dinner. Everyone loved it. The kids especially liked the marshmallow topping. We mixed it up the day before and stored it in the refrigerator. We took it out of the refrigerator about two hours before putting pouring it into a baking dish, adding the remaining pecans and topping with marshmallows. I was afraid the texture was too thick and it would be dry, but it was perfect. No one would ever guess that it is a "light" recipe.

Avatar for tonythegreek

"tonythegreek's Review"


It is such a hit on our early Thanksgiving dinner this weekend. Four of us devoured this casserole after a full dinner. Even my older son who never liked sweet potato ate about 3 servings. Nothing left in the bowl. They specially loved the topping. Will definitely make it again with more nuts.

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