This is a super simple Thanksgiving recipe that can easily be made vegan and will satisfy the pickiest of eaters. You can even make this casserole a day or two ahead of time and heat it up with your desired toppings the day you would like to serve it. I personally like candied pecans on top of my casserole, but I have replaced the pecans for marshmallows in the version in the pictures. I have added instructions for a pecan topping at the end. Enjoy!
You want to begin by boiling 6-7 sweet potatoes (with the skins still on!) for approximately 35-45 minutes. You will know the sweet potatoes are done when you can easily stick a fork through them. Drain out the water and put the sweet potatoes in an ice bath to cool them off until you are easily able to manage them. Remove all of the skins and place the sweet potatoes in a greased 13 x 9 in. baking dish.
Chop your butter up into cubes and add it to the sweet potatoes. I used regular butter, but you can definitely use a vegan butter spread. I love EarthBalance vegan butter spreads, but I ran out of my last tub of buttery goodness right before I made this recipe. I use an old-fashioned potato masher to incorporate the butter and sweet potatoes. If the sweet potatoes are thoroughly cooked, this should be very easy to do and not take a lot of effort.
Add in the half & half (or almond milk!), brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and salt to the mashed sweet potatoes. Give everything a few good stirs to be sure that the casserole is even throughout.
You will want to bake the casserole for 30 minutes at 350 degrees (F). Take the casserole out of the oven and put the marshmallows evenly on top. Turn your oven on broil (high) and put the casserole back in the oven for the marshmallows to toast. You will want to keep a VERY close eye on the casserole to be sure that the marshmallows do not burn. You should only leave them in the oven for 2-5 minutes depending on how hot your oven gets. My version turned out a little crispy on one end compared to the other. I guess it is a good way to find out how evenly your oven heats up 😉
The casserole is a melt-in-your-mouth heaven that I wish I made more often than just Thanksgiving. It stores in the refrigerator for at least 1 week and reheats very nicely. You will not regret making this recipe!
6-7 sweet potatoes
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup half & half (or almond milk)
1 stick of butter (or 1/2 cup of vegan butter spread)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 cups mini marshmallows (omit for vegan option)
Optional pecan topping:
1 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup of melted butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
Combine all of the pecan topping ingredients in a bowl and spread evenly over the casserole and bake the casserole at the same 350 degrees for an additional 10-15 minutes.
Questions for you:
Are you a marshmallow or pecan topping person?
Do you love sweet potatoes, or canned yams?