A delicious alternative to mashed potatoes, mashed sweet potatoes are – you guessed it – sweet, and with a fantastic smooth texture. Baked sweet potato gives the best flavour, so much better than boiling, but you can prepare in advance.
Serve as a side or use for topping dishes like vegetarian sweet potato cottage pie. This is a simple recipe but there are lots of ways you can change it up. Keep the base the same but add spices, make it creamy, mix in nuts, and so on.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Sweet potatoes: while they are sometimes labeled as yams, make sure you are using sweet potatoes. They have a thin skin, usually orange, while yams have a thicker, brown skin that looks a little like tree bark or the top of a mushroom.
- Milk: use any milk you like, non-dairy or dairy. Be sure to use something unsweetened and unflavoured and avoid canned coconut milk.
- Olive oil: use another oil if preferred or switch it out for vegan or dairy butter.
Step by Step
Step 1: place halved sweet potatoes cut-side down on a baking sheet.
Step 2: roast until fork-soft.
Step 3: remove the peels from the sweet potatoes and add the flesh to a mixing bowl (or pot) with the other ingredients.
Step 4: purée until smooth and serve immediately.
Add spices: cinnamon is a delicious addition, but toasted coriander and cumin are some of my other top picks. Nutmeg is nice but can be a bit strong, so add sparingly.
Add nuts: toasted walnuts and pecans are fantastic, but chopped hazelnuts are great too. Try mixing in some chestnuts if you have them.
Add creamy elements: vegan cream cheese is a nice way to add some body and a big boost of flavour. Goat cheese or a veg substitute is good sprinkled overtop, and sour cream can be used to replace some of the milk.
Other extras: roasted garlic is delicious, as are chopped soft herbs like chives. To add winter herbs like rosemary or sage, chop and fry them briefly before adding.
How to Store
Storage: keep in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to three days. I recommend reheating in a pot with a splash of milk.
Freezing: transfer fully cooled leftovers to an airtight container and freeze for up to a month. Thaw in the refrigerator before reheating as usual.
- Feel free to blend: sweet potatoes don’t contain the same starch level as potatoes, so blending won’t turn them into glue. You can use an immersion blender, standing blender, or food processor.
- Roast, don’t boil: boiling will make the potatoes soggy and bland compared to roasting or baking. Cooking them in the oven brings out more of their natural sweetness.
- Mix with potatoes: if you want a more traditional feel but still want to add some of the flavour of sweet potato, use half (boiled) potatoes and half sweet potato. In that case you’ll have to mash and not blend.
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Mashed Sweet Potatoes
- 2 medium sweet potatoes halved lengthwise
- 50 ml non-dairy milk or milk of your choice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ teaspoon sea salt to taste
- Place the sweet potatoes cut-side down on a lined baking tray and bake for about 30 minutes at 200°C (400°) or until fork-soft. See more about baked sweet potatoes here.2 medium sweet potatoes
- Once the potatoes are cooked, carefully remove the peel – you may need to let them cool first – and add to a mixing bowl or heat-safe blender with the milk, olive oil, and salt.50 ml non-dairy milk, 1 tablespoon olive oil, ½ teaspoon sea salt
- Mix or mash until very smooth, then taste and add any additional seasoning if necessary. To jazz things up, try mixing in some cream cheese or cinnamon and top with toasted walnuts or other nuts.
- If the sweet potato mash is cold, gently reheat in a covered saucepan until warmed through again and serve hot.
* For American cup measurements, please click the pink link text above the ingredient list that says ‘American’.
Nutrition is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate. If this information is important to you, please have it verified independently.