No Thanksgiving table is complete without a sweet potato casserole! This healthy and vegan take on the classic dish is finished off with a simple oat crumble and fluffy marshmallows. It’s a total crowd pleaser!
I don’t know about you but I am so ready for Thanksgiving. When I was little, my mom used to make me pasta (no surprise lol) on Thanksgiving because that’s basically all I would eat.
This wasn’t a recipe we made growing up, but the past few years it’s been a favorite of mine!
It starts with a base of fluffy whipped sweet potatoes that are perfectly sweetened with a little brown sugar, and finished off with a cinnamon pecan oat crumble and plenty of mini marshmallows.
SWEET POTATOES. You need about 3-4 large sweet potatoes for this recipe. We’ll bake them so they’re naturally sweet and we don’t need too much aded sugar.
CRUMBLE TOPPING. This is a mix of oats, pecans or walnuts, sugar, flour and oil or butter.
FILLING. We’ll puree the sweet potatoes with some milk (dairy or non-dairy), sugar, melted butter or oil, flax seeds to help absorb some moisture and spices.
MARSHMALLOWS. Totally optional but I love marshmallows with sweet potato casserole! I have tested both mini and regular ones and they’re both great.
How to make sweet potato casserole
Scrub the sweet potatoes and pat dry. Add to a baking sheet lined with foil and bake for about an hour or until easily pierced with a fork.
Remove from the oven and let cool until easy to handle. Before we go any further, yes roasting the sweet potatoes rather than steaming takes longer, but, it also tastes so much better!
The sweet potatoes are sweeter so we don’t have to use as much sugar, and they get much creamier when you beat everything together. It’s worth the wait, I promise.
Combine the oats, coconut sugar, flour, pecans, and oil in a bowl and mix together. Set aside.
Once the potatoes are done, peel the skin off and transfer to a large bowl and roughly mash with a potato masher.
Transfer to a 9×9 baking dish (or something similar) and spread evenly. Sprinkle on top the oat crumble. Bake for 15-20 minutes, then remove from the oven and top with marshmallows.
Bake for an additional 20 minutes or until the tops of the marshmallows are golden brown. Serve hot and enjoy!
How to store and freeze
Once prepared, this sweet potato casserole will store in the fridge for about 5 days. I like to keep it right in the original baking dish and pop it in the oven around 200 degrees to warm it up.
Be sure to keep it covered with foil while in the fridge so it doesn’t dry out.
You can freeze sweet potato casserole, but unfortunately not all of it and not once it’s cooked. If you want to freeze this recipe to make your Thanksgiving prep a bit easier, follow the directions up until step 8, where you put the sweet potato mixture in the baking dish.
Wrap the dish in foil or plastic wrap and freeze. When you’re ready to eat, let it thaw in the fridge overnight and then top with the crumble and marshmallows and bake as usual.
Yams vs. Sweet potatoes
You may be wondering what is the difference between a yam and a sweet potato? Yams and sweet potatoes are technically two different foods. However, their names are often used interchangeably these days, especially in grocery stores.
True yams have a bit more of a starchy than sweet flesh, but if you see something that looks like a sweet potato but is labeled a yam in the grocery store, it probably is a sweet potato.
For this recipe, you want the orange skin and orange flesh variety.
Dessert or side dish?
Sweet potato casserole seems like it would be a dessert given the sugar and marshmallows, but it’s Thanksgiving and anything goes!
Substitutions and variations
The sugar can be subbed for virtually any type of sugar. Light brown, coconut, dark brown, white, or even maple syrup. Different sugars will change the color of the casserole, so keep that in mind.
For reference, I used light brown sugar and it kept the color pretty nice and orange. Dark brown or coconut will make the casserole a bit more brown rather than orange.
The pecans can be subbed for walnuts or left out entirely if you have an allergy or just don’t like them!
You can make this with or without the marshmallows! The mini ones can get a bit crispier which I like, but the big ones puff up nicely and have a more gooey pillowy texture.
Try these Fall recipes next!
- Sweet Potato Smoothie
- Pumpkin Bread
- Sweet Potato Pancakes
- Gluten Free Pumpkin Cake
- Apple Cider Sangria
- Sweet Potato Oatmeal Cookies
Best Sweet Potato Casserole
by: claire cary
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Scrub the sweet potatoes and pat dry. Add to a baking sheet lined with foil and bake for about an hour or until easily pierced with a fork.
- Remove from the oven and let cool until easy to handle.
- Combine the oats, coconut sugar, flour, pecans, and oil in a bowl and mix together. Set aside.
- Once the potatoes are done, peel the skin off and transfer to a large bowl and roughly mash with a potato masher.
- Lower the oven temperature to 350.
- Transfer to a 9×9 baking dish and spread evenly.
- Sprinkle on top the oat crumble. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a bit golden brown, then remove from the oven and top with marshmallows.
- Bake for an additional 15-25 minutes or until the tops of the marshmallows are golden brown. Serve warm and enjoy!