Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe: A Delicious Classic Dish

Imagine the smell of perfectly baked sweet potatoes slathered in butter and topped with a crispy layer of sugared pecans, a classic southern-style dish that warms the soul. The Sweet Potato Casserole is a staple on any southern dining table, especially during the holidays. It is the ultimate comfort food that brings loved ones together to share laughter and create lasting memories.

In this article, I will be sharing my recipe for Sweet Potato Casserole – Southern Style, an easy-to-follow guide to making the perfect casserole that will leave your guests asking for more. This recipe is a combination of traditional ingredients such as sweet potatoes, brown sugar, and pecans but with a unique twist on how they are prepared.

As a chef specializing in southern-style cuisine, I’ve spent years perfecting this recipe – tweaking it, adjusting ratios and flavors, and finally achieving the ideal balance. So take out your apron, turn up some good ol’ country music, and let’s get baking!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Sweet Potato Casserole - Southern Style
Sweet Potato Casserole – Southern Style

If there’s anything that you’ll ever love about Southern food, it’s the sweet potato casserole – the ultimate comfort food. And if you’re a fan of this classic dish, you have come to the right place. This southern-style sweet potato casserole is one for the books because of its decadent and soul-warming flavor, making it a guaranteed crowd-pleaser!

First off, let’s talk about one of the significant ingredients here – sweet potatoes! These hearty spuds are packed with essential vitamins like Vitamin A and fiber, making them a nutritious and delicious base for a side dish. The casserole is then elevated to an even greater level with the help of other ingredients like vanilla extract, unsalted butter, and light brown sugar. The flavors work together flawlessly; while the sweetness from the potatoes creates a lusciously soft texture, the flavors from the rest of the ingredients add depth and dimension.

One highlight of this recipe is its pecan topping – perfect for anyone who appreciates a little bit of crunch to complement their creamy potatoes. Plus, it adds extra warmth and sweetness that will tantalize your taste buds!

Now, if all of that hasn’t convinced you yet, just wait until you try this dish yourself. Your palate will thank you—for indulging in this classic southern dish that has been passed down through generations.

So, whether you’re looking to bring some “southern charm” into your next gathering or just want something cozy to enjoy on a cold day at home, this sweet potato casserole is “the” recipe to make!

Ingredient List

 Just in time for the fall season, enjoy this sweet and savory southern-style sweet potato casserole.
Just in time for the fall season, enjoy this sweet and savory southern-style sweet potato casserole.

Here’s what you’ll need for this mouth-watering southern-styled sweet potato casserole.

  • 3 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the topping:
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cup light brown sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
– mini marshmallows (optional)

This recipe makes 8 to 10 servings and is a great side dish for fall or winter holidays.

The Recipe How-To

 Made with fresh sweet potatoes, this casserole is perfect for your next family gathering or holiday meal.
Made with fresh sweet potatoes, this casserole is perfect for your next family gathering or holiday meal.

Now it’s time to get cooking! Follow these simple steps to create your very own delicious southern-style Sweet Potato Casserole.

Step 1: Preparation

First, preheat the oven to 350°F. Take a 2-quart casserole dish and butter it thoroughly, making sure that there are no dry spots.

Step 2: The Potato Mixture

Peel and cut 3 pounds of sweet potatoes into small cubes. Add them to a pot of boiling water and let them cook until they are nice and tender (around 20-25 minutes). Drain the water and move onto the next step.

Step 3: Mash the Potatoes

Take your cooked sweet potatoes and mash them into a large mixing bowl. Add 1 cup of granulated sugar, 1/2 cup unsalted butter, 1/2 cup milk, 2 eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Mix the ingredients together until they are well combined.

Step 4: Pecan Streusel Topping

For the pecan streusel topping, take another mixing bowl, combine 1/4 cup flour with 3/4 cup light brown sugar. Next, add in 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter and mix the ingredients together until they reach a crumbly texture. Finally, add in 1 cup chopped pecans and give it a final mix.

Step 5: The Final Touches

Take your prepared baking dish and pour in half of the sweet potato mixture. Add half of the pecan streusel mixture on top of it. Repeat with the remaining mixture by layering out the remaining sweet potatoes then top with the rest of the streusel mixture. If you want to go all out, feel free to add some marshmallows on top. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, or until it is heated through and the topping is golden brown.

That’s it! Your southern-style Sweet Potato Casserole is now ready. Enjoy your dish hot as a comforting side dish with your favorite main course.

Substitutions and Variations

 Topped with a sweet and crunchy pecan streusel, this dish is sure to impress.
Topped with a sweet and crunchy pecan streusel, this dish is sure to impress.

Now that you’ve got the basics covered, it’s time to get creative! There are plenty of ways to personalize this Southern-style Sweet Potato Casserole, so don’t be afraid to try out different ingredients and variations.

For instance, if you’re looking for a nut-free option or simply want to switch things up, consider swapping out the traditional pecan topping with some mini marshmallows. This will add a delightful sweetness and a slightly gooey texture to your casserole.

On the other hand, if you can’t get enough of pecans, feel free to add some more toppings or even mix them directly into your mashed sweet potatoes mixture. You’ll have a delightful crunch that everyone will love!

If you’re looking for a lower sugar alternative, using brown sugar in place of white sugar can help achieve that desired level of sweetness while also enhancing the overall flavor profile of the sweet potatoes.

Lastly, don’t be afraid to experiment with different spices, such as cinnamon or nutmeg. Adding these flavors will create an elevated warmth and aroma that truly embodies the essence of Southern cuisine.

Overall, this casserole is incredibly versatile and adaptable. So feel free to take inspiration from other dishes such as soul food staples like candied yams and potato souffle, or look up recipes from Southern Living magazine for further variations. The possibilities are endless—enjoy!

Serving and Pairing

 Every bite of this casserole is a warm and comforting hug from the south.
Every bite of this casserole is a warm and comforting hug from the south.

Treat yourself to a hearty and satisfying meal by serving this southern-style sweet potato casserole as a side dish to your favorite main course. This recipe is undoubtedly delicious and perfect for any occasion no matter how big or small.

Serving suggestion: Let your casserole cool down for about 10 minutes before serving it hot from the oven. This will allow it to set perfectly so you can easily cut it into squares or spoonfuls.

Pairing suggestion: This dish pairs perfectly with juicy roasted chicken, baked ham or a slow cooked turkey roast. You can also add a crisp and colorful green salad on the side for some added freshness, and delicious collard greens for a true Southern-style feast.

For a complete Southern-inspired meal, serve up this sweet potato casserole alongside creamy mac n’ cheese, savory cornbread, and some spicy Cajun-style shrimp for that extra zing of flavor!

So whether you’re hosting a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, or craving some soul food on a Sunday afternoon, this sweet potato casserole is nothing short of divine. Be prepared to hear your guests ask for seconds!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Let the aroma of cinnamon and nutmeg fill your kitchen as this casserole bakes to perfection.
Let the aroma of cinnamon and nutmeg fill your kitchen as this casserole bakes to perfection.

Making ahead of time:

Preparing this southern-style sweet potato casserole in advance is easy and convenient. The good news is that it can be made up to 2 days ahead of time! Once you prepare the casserole, let it cool completely then cover it tightly with plastic wrap and store it in the fridge until you’re ready to heat it up.

Storing leftovers:

If you happen to have any leftovers, you can store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. It’s best to transfer single servings into individual containers for the convenience of reheating small portions.

Reheating your casserole:

There are different ways you can reheat your sweet potato casserole. One option is microwaving it but remember that this can cause the topping to become soggy. My personal favorite way to reheat my sweet potato casserole is by using the oven. To do this, preheat your oven to 350°F and place your casserole on a baking sheet. Cover the top with foil and let it bake for about 20-25 minutes or until heated through.

Keep in mind:

It’s important to always check the temperature of your reheated food before consuming it. Make sure that the internal temperature reaches at least 165°F before serving.

Tips for Perfect Results

 This recipe is easy to make and can be prepared in advance for stress-free entertaining.
This recipe is easy to make and can be prepared in advance for stress-free entertaining.

Now, let’s discuss some tips that will help you achieve the perfect sweet potato casserole every time. Trust me, these tips will make your dish stand out and impress everyone at the dinner table.

Tip 1 – Use Fresh Sweet Potatoes:

It may be tempting to use canned sweet potatoes, but using fresh ones will make a significant difference in taste and texture. Fresh sweet potatoes are more flavorful and have a firmer texture, which is perfect for making a creamy casserole.

Tip 2 – Don’t Overcook the Potatoes:

If you overcook the sweet potatoes, they will become mushy and watery, ruining the texture of your casserole. To avoid this, cook the potatoes until they are just tender enough to be mashed easily with a fork.

Tip 3 – Mash the Potatoes Completely:

Make sure to mash your sweet potatoes completely. Lumps in your casserole will affect the texture and consistency. Use a potato masher or a hand mixer until your mashed sweet potatoes are creamy and smooth.

Tip 4 – Use Real Butter:

Using real unsalted butter will give your casserole a rich, buttery flavor that margarine or other substitutes won’t provide. These substitutes also contain additives that may alter the taste or melt differently.

Tip 5 – Toast the Pecans:

Toasting pecans adds an extra level of crunchiness and enhances their flavor significantly. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C), spread chopped pecans on a baking sheet, and toast them for 6-8 minutes while keeping an eye on them to prevent burning.

Tip 6 – Add Marshmallows at The End:

If you prefer marshmallows in your sweet potato casserole, add them near the end of the cooking time. Putting them too early may cause them to melt beyond recognition or burn. It only takes a few minutes for them to become lightly toasted.

Tip 7 – Use a Pecan Streusel Topping:

A pecan streusel topping instead of marshmallows provides texture and crunch to your casserole. You can also add a bit more butter or flour to adjust the crumble texture according to your preference.

By following these tips, you’re sure to make a spectacular southern-style sweet potato casserole that’ll be an instant classic with your family and friends.


Now, it’s time to answer some frequently asked questions that you may have about this Southern style sweet potato casserole recipe. From ingredient substitutions to reheating recommendations, I’ll do my best to address all of your concerns, so you can have complete confidence in making this delectable side dish for your next family gathering or special occasion. So, let’s jump straight into the FAQ section!

Why add eggs to sweet potato casserole?

When it comes to a delicious sweet potato casserole, the egg plays a significant role in creating its perfect consistency. It not only enhances the taste but also adds a firm texture without weighing it down. Just remember to allow the sweet potato mash to cool a bit before adding the egg to avoid it from cooking awkwardly. Also, mix it well to prevent any traces of cooked egg white in the final dish.

Is it better to bake or boil sweet potatoes for a casserole?

When it comes to preparing sweet potatoes, boiling them can help to preserve their antioxidant properties more effectively than roasting and steaming. Boiling causes the cell walls to thin out and the starch to gelatinize, which may increase the availability of nutrients. In contrast, baking sweet potatoes may not have the same beneficial effect on nutrient bioavailability when examined on a microscopic level.

Why do Americans put marshmallows on sweet potato casserole?

Let’s talk about a dish that’s been a part of Thanksgiving for a while now, the sweet potato casserole that’s topped with mini marshmallows. As delicious as it may be, it’s surprising to know that this recipe wasn’t actually passed down from our grandmothers. It was created by a company that wanted to promote their marshmallows and turned it into a popular holiday dish.

How do you keep sweet potato casserole from being runny?

When preparing sweet potatoes by boiling, it is essential to ensure that the pieces are uniformly sized to ensure even cooking. Additionally, be mindful not to overcook them as sweet potatoes have a tendency to soak up water, which can lead to a soggy filling.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, I hope this southern-style sweet potato casserole recipe has given you a taste of true Southern hospitality. With its rich and sweet flavors, it’s a classic and beloved side dish that will bring warmth to your holiday table.

This casserole is not only delicious but also incredibly versatile, allowing for substitutions and variations to make it your own. Whether you choose to top it with marshmallows or pecans, or add a little bit of both, the result is bound to be amazing.

Don’t hesitate to give this recipe a try – I guarantee that once you do, it will become a staple in your holiday traditions. From the moment you smell the aroma of cinnamon and nutmeg from your oven, your taste buds will be dancing with joy.

So gather your loved ones around the table and enjoy this soulful dish together. Let this dish transport you to the warmth of Southern comfort and happy memories. This southern-style sweet potato casserole is more than just a recipe – it’s a piece of tradition that will keep your family coming back for more year after year.

Sweet Potato Casserole - Southern Style

Sweet Potato Casserole - Southern Style Recipe

I absolutely love this dish. I got the recipe from my mom, but have added a couple of things to it. It is usually something that our family makes for the holidays, but we love it so much that I make it throughout the year.
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Prep Time 1 hr
Cook Time 45 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Southern cuisine
Calories 275.6 kcal



  • 5 -6 sweet potatoes
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup margarine
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • chopped pecans (optional)
  • marshmallows (optional)


  • Boil or microwave potatoes until tender. Wait for them to cool enough so, that you can peel them. The peeling should slide right off.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Mash the potatoes.
  • Combine all the ingredients for the base.
  • Add them to the mashed potatoes and stir well.
  • After mixed, place in a casserole dish. I usually use an 8 x 14 rectangle. Depending on how little or how much you are making.
  • Combine ingredients for topping. Except marshmallows, if using them. The mixture should be kind of crumbly.
  • Spread evenly on top.
  • Place in oven and cook for 35 to 40 minutes.
  • When done spread marshmallows on top and put back in the oven for about 5 minutes or until golden brown.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 104gCalories: 275.6kcalCarbohydrates: 43.8gProtein: 3gFat: 10.2gSaturated Fat: 4.2gCholesterol: 49.4mgSodium: 147.2mgFiber: 2.1gSugar: 28.5g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Christmas, Inexpensive, Low Protein, Oven, Potato, Thanksgiving, Vegetable, Yam/Sweet Potato
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