Mashed Sweet Potatoes can be lackluster but can also be mind-bogglingly good. My sweet potato mash uses two ingredients you know and love and one (not-so) unique cooking method for the best whipped mashed potatoes around!
I’m so tired of ho-hum mashed potatoes and while sweet potatoes definitely add something to the mix, they can still be a little boring.
You always know what to expect. Everyone does them with brown sugar, marshmallows, and butter. And don’t get me wrong, that is delicious and wonderful, but I am flipping the script.
Baking vs. Boiling
Most people boil their regular potatoes before mashing them and mixing them with loads of butter, sour cream, and milk. And for sweet potatoes, they usually add in brown sugar, a little butter, and molasses.
Instead, I like to bake mine. This helps to naturally caramelize the sugars these tubers already have in them and at the same time, it really amplifies that natural sweet potato taste.
Why This Recipe is Delicious
It also uses a bay leaf infused half and half or cream for and underlying herbaceous flavor and a super-rich mouth feel like you get with regular mashed potatoes. I am a fiend for butter, so I still add a pat when serving so you really get to taste it.
This version of whipped sweet potatoes recipe is a little more versatile while remaining traditional, making it the perfect side dish for holiday meals and one that the whole family will love.
I like to add these to my holiday table as an alternative to regular sweet potatoes throughout the year and especially around the holidays, but they’re great for any weeknight dinner too.
- Sweet potatoes – Raw, whole sweet potatoes are what we need here. Sometimes they sell white potatoes, or even purple, at the grocery store but in order to get that classic orange color, be sure you grab regular sweet potatoes.
- Half & half or cream – You could add a little more or less than the recipe calls for based on your desired consistency.
- Bay leaves – Infusing fresh herbs into the cream is my favorite method to taking this savory sweet potato mash up a notch. The flavor is the perfect accompaniment to this tasty side dish.
- Orange juice – And now for my secret ingredient. Orange juice, and even some orange zest if you’d like, is a great addition to the flavor profile of these easy mashed sweet potatoes.
- Brown sugar – Although this delicious recipe leans more towards the savory side, I still like to add an element of sweet with the orange juice and brown sugar.
- Salt – I use Kosher salt for this recipe. You can add to taste, but it really helps bring out all of the flavors of this smooth mash.
How to Make Creamy Mashed Sweet Potatoes
- Prepare oven and potatoes. Preheat your oven and scrub and clean sweet potatoes. Prick all over with a fork and place in an oven safe baking dish. Bake until fork tender.
- Make infused cream. Allow the potatoes to cool. Meanwhile, bring half & half or cream to a low simmer, add bay leaves. Simmer, but do not boil or scald.
- Remove inside of potatoes. Cut each sweet potato in half and remove meat. It should easily peel away from the sweet potato skins. Place into a large food processor.
- Add rest of the ingredients. Combine half & half mixture, orange juice, brown sugar and Kosher salt in the blender, puree until smooth and it lightens in color. I like using a food processor to achieve that creamy texture, but you could also use a potato masher or potato ricer if you like your sweet potato mash recipe to be a little chunkier.
- Serve and garnish. Serve immediately. Garnish or serve with traditional mashed potato toppings like sour cream, butter, salt and pepper or scallions.
- Spicy – If you want the spicy version, add some crushed red pepper flakes or chili powder when blending and top it with cooked and crumbled chorizo sausage.
- Dairy-free or vegan – Instead of half & half, you could use a dairy-free alternative like coconut milk or almond milk. If you’re staying vegan, make sure you top your with vegan butter.
- Herbs – You could substitute some fresh thyme or even rosemary for the bay leaves if you’d like to change up the flavor a bit.
- Sugar – If you’d like to add another flavor element to the best sweet potatoes, you could use pure maple syrup instead of the brown sugar.
- Bacon – If you want to jazz them up a bit, you could top them with crispy bits of bacon for some salty sweet action that is sure to not disappoint.
Did You Know SweetPotato is One Word?
Did you know that sweetpotato is actually one word? Most people still use two, so we do as well, but in 1989 this nun (not an adjective) was officially changed to one word to help standout against it’s very commonly confused cousin the yam.
And as we know, sweet potatoes are not yams! You’ve likely never even had a yam in your lifetime because they aren’t grown in the US. So bring up this little bit of trivia at your table tonight.
Storage and Freezing
Store any leftover mashed sweet potatoes in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to five days.
You can also freeze them for up to six months. Just allow them to fully cool before you do.
- Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecans
- Cast Iron Sweet Potatoes with Honey and Cinnamon
- Southwestern Sweet Potato Pancakes
- Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes
Mashed Sweet Potato Recipe
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Scrub and clean sweet potatoes. Prick all over with a fork and place in an oven safe baking dish. Bake for 45 minutes or until fork tender.
- Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, bring half & half or cream to a low simmer, add bay leaves. Simmer for 5 minutes, do not boil or scald.
- Cut each sweet potato in half and remove meat. It should easily peel away from the skins. Place into a large food processor. Combine half & half mixture, orange juice, brown sugar and Kosher salt in the blender, puree until smooth and it lightens in color.
- Serve immediately. Garnish or serve with traditional mashed potato toppings like sour cream, butter, salt and pepper or scallions.
- If you’ve tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was!