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Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecans

Is it acceptable to call this Sweet Potato Casserole with pecans my favorite part of the Thanksgiving meal? That smooth cinnamon infused sweet potatoes topped with crunchy brown sugar pecan crusted crumbles is beyond delicious and simply melts in the mouth.

Pecan Crusted Sweet Potato Casserole a solid, classic side dish for the biggest eating day in America, but I probably like it so much because let’s face it…it tastes kinda like dessert.

A large rectangular casserole dish of mashed sweet potatoes topped with pecan crumble

Confession: I’m one of those people who would eat all the Thanksgiving sides (and desserts, of course) and can do without the turkey or ham.

Yep. I said it. Controversial, I know. And all you meat-loving folks are just confused.

Fear not. I do love the turkey with gravy and cranberry sauce (yes, gravy and cranberry sauce. I need both!). All I’m saying is if I had to pick one, this sweet potato casserole with pecans wins hands down!

Preparing your Thanksgiving feast? We got you covered! Check out Herb Butter Turkey Breast, Apple Stuffing, Gravy From Scratch, Homemade Cranberry Sauce, Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Honey Butter Rolls, and Pumpkin Pie to round up your menu!

Easy pecan crusted sweet potato casserole

There are a million and one sweet potato casserole recipes out there, but I wanted to share my sweet potato casserole with pecan crumble topping that is easy, requires only a few ingredients, and highlights the true star of the dish (sweet potatoes duh) without adding too much fillers to it.

Sweet potato casserole with pecans is go-to sweet potato casserole recipe. Tried and true and perfect.

Sweet potato casserole with a pecan crumble

There’s just something about topping sweet potato casserole with pecan crumbles. (Yes, much better than marshmallows in my humble opinion!)

The crunchy pecan pairs beautifully with the creamy cinnamon infused mashed sweet potatoes. It’s a lovely combination of textures and flavors.

In addition, this pecan crusted sweet potato casserole is fairly light, not overly sweet and heavy, and the sweet potatoes remain a prominent part of the flavor and textures.

I added just enough flavors and spices to enhance mashed sweet potatoes, but am super careful to not burry it in a lot of dairy and flavoring.

If you love a variety of textures in your foods, and like a fairly light and flavorful sweet potato casserole, you will surely love this sweet potato casserole with pecans.

How to make sweet potato casserole

There are two parts to our sweet potato casserole with pecans recipe:

  • Mashed sweet potato filling
  • Pecan crumble topping

Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Start by making the mashed sweet potatoes. Boil sweet potatoes in water for 20 minutes, drain when they are done, and mash them using a potato masher or electric hand mixer.

A bowl of boiled cubed sweet potatoes
Mashing sweet potatoes in a bowl

Let mashed sweet potatoes cool (because we will be adding eggs) and then combine it with the following ingredients:

  • Eggs
  • Brown sugar
  • Unsalted butter
  • Vanilla extract

These are pantry-friendly and straight-forward ingredients.

The goal is to make this Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecans non-complicated and take somewhat of a minimalist approach because these ingredients are there to enhance the sweet potatoes, not overpower it.

Adding eggs, milk, brown sugar to mashed sweet potatoes

Pecans Topping

Now let’s making the crumbles for our pecan crusted sweet potato casserole.

On a separate bowl, combine the ingredients below to make the crunchy sweet pecan topping:

  • Pecans
  • All-purpose flour
  • Brown sugar
  • Unsalted butter

Mix it all together until it is crumbly and in small little pieces.

Pecan crumbles in a bowl

Assemble

To assemble sweet potato casserole with pecans, grab a 9″x13″ rectangular casserole dish or a 12″ oval dish (picture below).

Spread the mashed sweet potatoes evenly at the bottom of the casserole dish, and then topped it with the pecan crumbles.

Whether you use a 12″ or 13″ rectangular or oval dish, bake time should be about the same.

Because oval dish is smaller than the rectangular dish, it’ll yield a slightly thicker sweet potato casserole with pecans.

A rectangular casserole dish filled with mashed sweet potatoes, and a round bowl filled with pecan crumbles
Unbaked Sweet Potato Casserole in a rectangular dish

Once you’ve assembled your sweet potato casserole with the pecans topping, send it to the oven to bake!

It bakes for about 40 minutes 400 ℉ in the oven.

Before you know it, your warm, smooth, creamy (but not heavy) sweet potato casserole with pecans is ready!

What you can expect: amazing flavors and textures in every single bite.

It’s the sweet potato casserole we all dream about stuffing our mouths and stomachs with on Thanksgiving day before going down for a nice, long nap.

It is only appropriate for all Thanksgiving meals to be followed by a nap.

And the best part is, this sweet potato casserole with pecans is super easy to make, and just as easy to make ahead!

Spoon scooping out Sweet Potato Casserole

Make Ahead Instructions

Making ahead your sweet potato casserole with pecans? There are a few ways you can go about this:

  1. Finish baking and store cooked casserole sealed (by covering with a lid or use aluminum foil or saran wrap if the dish doesn’t come with a cover) in the refrigerator for up to two days. When ready to serve, cover with aluminum foil and heat in the oven at 300℉ for 20-25 minutes, or until sweet potatoes are warm.
  2. Assemble casserole but do not bake. Store casserole sealed (by covering with a lid or use aluminum foil or saran wrap if the dish doesn’t come with a cover), in the refrigerator for a day. Let it sit in room temperature for about an hour so that it is no longer cold, then bake according to recipe instructions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a rectangular sized baking dish to bake this?

Yes! This fits a 9’x13′ rectangular sized baking dish as well, and your sweet potato casserole will be slightly thinner than the 12′ oval dish I used.

Does sweet potato casserole freeze well?

Yes! It freezes well in an airtight container. Bring it to a full defrost the night before before following the make ahead instructions above.

Can I make sweet potato casserole ahead of time?

Yes! See ‘Make Ahead Instructions’ right above this for more information.

Can I use canned sweet potatoes?

Yes! That works as well although I always prefer fresh sweet potatoes if I have a choice.

A Thanksgiving must!

Ahh sweet potato casserole with pecans. The star of the Thanksgiving table.

So gooey. So crunchy. So perfect for my sweet-potato-loving soul.

As the weather gets colder, the leaves turn red, and Starbucks starts serving Pumpkin Spice Latte…you know you need some of this pecan crusted sweet potato casserole back in your life to kick off all things Fall. 🧡

Spoon scooping out some Mashed Sweet potatoes

Other Sweet Potato Recipes

Other Delicious Holiday Dishes

DID YOU ENJOY THIS RECIPE? Please comment below and give us a 5-star rating! This will help others find this recipe on Google and Pinterest. We very much appreciate your help! 🤍

Spoon scooping out Sweet Potato Casserole

Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecans

Flavorful and smooth mashed sweet potatoes topped with a pecan crusted crumble and baked to perfection. It's the perfect holiday side dish!
5 from 30 votes
Print Pin
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 12 people
Calories: 340kcal
Author: MinShien

Ingredients

  • 3 lbs sweet potatoes ~5 large sweet potatoes
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Pecan Crumble Topping

  • 1 cup pecans chopped
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter melted

Instructions

  • Peel and slice sweet potatoes into smaller pieces (~2 inches long).
  • Bring water to boil in a large pot, then add sliced sweet potatoes into water. Cook for 20 minutes, or until sweet potatoes are soft.
  • When potatoes are done, drain water, and mashed potatoes with a potato masher or electric mixer until there are no lumps and smooth.
  • Let potatoes cool.
  • While waiting, combine all the crumble ingredients in a bowl.
  • Pre-heat oven to 400 ℉.
  • Once sweet potatoes are cool, add eggs, brown sugar, vanilla extract and 1/4 cup of unsalted butter. Mix well using a spatula or electric mixer to combine.
  • Bring sweet potato filling to a 9" x 13" rectangular or 12" oval casserole dish, then evenly top with pecan topping.
  • Bake in the oven for 40 minutes.
  • Remove and let it cool for 10 minutes.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Notes

Two ways to make ahead:
1) Finish baking and store cooked casserole sealed (by covering with a lid or use aluminum foil or saran wrap if the dish doesn’t come with a cover) in the refrigerator for up to two days. When ready to serve, cover with aluminum foil and heat in the oven at 300℉ for 20-25 minutes, or until sweet potatoes are warm.
2) Assemble casserole but do not bake. Store casserole sealed (by covering with a lid or use aluminum foil or saran wrap if the dish doesn’t come with a cover), in the refrigerator for a day. Let it sit in room temperature for about an hour so that it is no longer cold, then bake according to recipe instructions.
This post was originally published on November 2020 and updated with new photographs on Oct 2021.

Nutrition

Calories: 340kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 80mg | Potassium: 462mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 16368IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 65mg | Iron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe?Take a pic and tag me at @joyous.apron, or hashtag #joyousapron on Instagram!

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Recipe Rating




32 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This Sweet Potato Casserole would be perfect for American thanksgiving! It looks so good!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thanks Christie! Such a classic! πŸ™‚

  2. Allie Chatham says:

    5 stars
    I made this dish for Thanksgiving, and it was my favorite thing I ate. Everyone else loved it too. It’s sweet, and the pecans add a little crunch. I will be adding it to our Thanksgiving menu from now on (and perhaps Christmas too). It’s delicious!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Awesome! So glad you all enjoyed. Thank you so much!

  3. 5 stars
    Made this for Friendsgiving, it was a huge hit! I was hoping there would be leftovers, but everyone gobbled it up.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Happy to hear that you and your friends like it, Erica!

  4. veenaazmanov says:

    5 stars
    Sweet Potato is my favorite and this combination of Brown sugar is very yummy. Love the Pecan Crumble topping too. This is definitely delicious and crunchy.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thank you so much! Happy to hear you liked it!

  5. Amanda Mason says:

    5 stars
    Absolutely delicious! I had to make this before I serve it for Thanksgiving and it turned out amazing! I loved the crust. So flavorful! Great recipe.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thank you so much! So glad to hear you enjoyed it!

  6. 5 stars
    I have some sweet potatoes ready to go. This looks so good and I cannot wait to try my own. Thanks heaps.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Let me know how it goes and I hope you love it!

  7. 5 stars
    Can’t believe how simple and delicious this was, the sweet potatoes went superbly with the pecans!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Wonderful!!

  8. Amy Liu Dong says:

    5 stars
    Oh my gosh, this is so easy and delicious.
    Everyone in the house loves it!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thank you so much! So happy to hear that!

  9. 5 stars
    Such a great side dish for our Thanksgiving festivity! This casserole recipe looks amazingly yummy! Definitely be an instant favorite for everyone!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      I’m so glad you all enjoyed this for Thanksgiving!

  10. 5 stars
    A hit at my Thanksgiving table! The most talked about dish! Usually the least mentioned. Absolutely delicious!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Yay! So happy to hear that, Sharon!

  11. Enri Lemoine says:

    5 stars
    I made this casserole as one of the side dishes of my Thanksgiving meal, and it was simply delicious. Thank you for the inspiration. I wish you and your family the happiest of holidays!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Love hearing that! Happy holidays to you and yours as well!

  12. 5 stars
    Move over marshmallows! The pecan topping on this sweet potato casserole is the perfect crunchy addition.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Pecan toppings are definitely my favorite too!! Hope you love it!

  13. 5 stars
    Such an easy and delicious recipe that’s perfect for the holidays or honestly any family dinner! That pecan crust is amazing!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thank you Lori! We make this year round and love it! πŸ™‚

  14. 5 stars
    This recipe was amazing and I trialed it before the big dinner we will be having this Christmas. And that crumble…??!! Definitely a keeper!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s great! So glad you loved this sweet potato casserole!

  15. 5 stars
    My sister asked me to bring a sweet potato casserole to Thanksgiving dinner. Well, I took it as a challenge as I do not like sweet potatoes. I came across this recipe and was converted. I loved it as did everyone else at the dinner. I’m sold, this will be a regular at all holiday meals!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s wonderful, Lynda! SO happy to hear this recipe converted you to liking sweet potatoes! It’s the best compliment ! πŸ˜€

  16. Michelle Woods says:

    Could I add mini marshmallows to your recipe? If so, should I add to the sweet potato mixture or the topping? Thank you! I can’t wait to taste it 🀀 My oldest daughter made a similar casserole but added crushed pineapple to it. It was heavenly πŸ˜‹

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Yes you can definitely add that! And I would add it to the topping, not the mixture. Check at the 25 minute mark to see if marshmallows are golden brown, if they are I would cover the casserole with aluminum foil for the last 10 minutes or so of baking so that it doesn’t burn.