Easy Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecans
This easy sweet potato casserole is lightly sweetened mashed sweet potatoes topped with an irresistible brown sugar pecan streusel. A delicious make-ahead recipe that’s a must for the holidays.
Sweet potato casserole is a classic holiday recipe that cannot be skipped. There are so many yummy ways to enjoy sweet potatoes, but this easy sweet potato casserole with pecans is one of my favorites. The crunchy, nutty, buttery topping is simply amazing!
This comforting sweet potato casserole is really simple with pretty minimal ingredients, leaving the flavors of the sweet potatoes and pecans to really shine through. It’s so tasty you’re going to want to make it all of the time, and most certainly for the holidays!
So let’s talk everything sweet potato casserole!
How Do You Make Sweet Potato Casserole?
- Roast the sweet potatoes until soft and remove the peels.
- Mash the sweet potatoes and mix with the maple syrup, vanilla, egg, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt. If you have an electric mixer, it makes this step so easy. Transfer the potatoes into a prepared casserole dish.
- Make the pecan topping by mixing together oats, flour, brown sugar, and chopped pecans. Stir in melted butter until everything is moist and combined. Sprinkle the topping over the potatoes.
- Bake the casserole at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.
Feeding A Crowd:
This sweet potato casserole recipe can be baked in an 8-inch or 9-inch square pan or any other shaped baking dish that has a capacity of about 2 quarts. You can easily double or triple this recipe, if you’re feeding a crowd. For a large group, double the ingredient amounts, and use a 9×13-inch pan.
- If you like marshmallows on your casserole, sprinkle about 1/2 cup of mini marshmallows over the top during the last 5 minutes of baking.
- I like to roast my sweet potatoes to prepare them for the casserole, but you can also steam or boil your potatoes to make them soft.
- This casserole can be assembled in advance. See below for instructions.
- Not a fan of pecans? Walnuts or even almonds are a great substitute for pecans. If you want this recipe to be nut-free, simply leave out the pecans.
- For really smooth sweet potatoes, use an electric mixer or food processor to whip them up, rather than mashing by hand.
Make Ahead Option:
If you’re preparing a large holiday meal, it’s great to make a few things in advance. And this dish works extremely well prepped ahead of time!
The base can be prepped up to 2 days in advance and the pecan topping 3-4 days in advance. I would just recommend waiting until you’re ready to bake the casserole before adding the topping over the sweet potatoes.
You may need to add just a bit more bake time to compensate for starting with a cold casserole.
I don’t recommend baking the casserole in advance. It’s best served right after baking. If you try to bake it then reheat it later, the streusel topping may soften and it won’t have quite the same texture.
Leftovers will keep well in the fridge for up to 3-5 days. You can also freeze the sweet potato base, but I do not recommend freezing the casserole with the toppings on top. To freeze the casserole base, first make sure the base has completely cooled. Then, place plastic wrap directly on the sweet potato casserole. Place another sheet of plastic wrap around the pan. Freeze for up to one month.
Is This Easy Sweet Potato Casserole Healthy?
Sweet potatoes are rich in nutrients and a good source of beta-carotene, Vitamin A & C, potassium and fiber.
Even though this dish is really quite healthy, there are a few ways to make it just a bit more nutritious.
- Replace the brown sugar in the topping with coconut sugar.
- This recipe doesn’t use a marshmallow topping, so that decreases the sugar and calories tremendously.
- Use coconut oil in place of butter for the pecan topping.
This easy sweet potato casserole is the perfect side dish to enjoy this time of year! It’s a go-to for Thanksgiving, Christmas, potlucks, parties, or even just served alongside chicken or steak on a weeknight. This casserole recipe is sure to be a family favorite!
Other Thanksgiving Recipes To Try:
Pumpkin Dessert Squares (my personal favorite recipe!)
If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment and if your family loves it as much as mine does, be sure to give it a five star ⭐️ rating! Also, tag @kimscravings on Instagram with a picture of your creation. It’s so fun to see what you’re cooking! Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list to receive more healthy delicious recipes straight to your inbox.
Easy Sweet Potato Casserole
For the potatoes:
- 3 1/2 – 4 pounds sweet potatoes, (about 5 medium), peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/3 cup pure maple syrup or honey
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg, (leave out if vegan)
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup rolled oats, gluten free, if needed
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour , oat flour or almond flour also works
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans, (omit for nut-free recipe)
- 3-4 tablespoons melted butter or coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray an 8×8-inch (or 2 quart) baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
- Scrub sweet potatoes clean and prick them about 5 times each with a fork. Place them on a baking sheet lined with foil and roast until tender, about 1 hour depending on the size of the potatoes. Remove potatoes from the oven and let them cool about 5 minutes. Lower oven heat to 350 degrees F.
- Peel and discard the skins. Place the chunks of the potatoes into a large mixing bowl. Add maple syrup, vanilla, egg, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt. You can mash the potatoes and stir everything together with a fork or use an electric mixer to mix until everything is combined.
- Transfer potato mixture to prepared baking dish and spread top.
- Make the topping by mixing together the oats, flour, brown sugar, and pecans. Stir in the melted butter until everything is evenly mixed. Sprinkle topping over the top of the sweet potato mixture.
- Bake uncovered. Casserole is done when edges and top start to slightly brown, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes. Enjoy warm!