Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Sweet Potato Casserole with Brown Sugar Pecan Streusel

The first question people usually ask me when they learn about my food blog, is, "why?". Well... The truth is, there are a lot of different reasons that spring to mind: I like to cook (and eat!); I enjoy writing to keep my sanity while raising two young kids; food styling appeals to my artistic side; and, of course, I starting blogging as a way to share great recipes!

The idea was really sparked last Thanksgiving. We spent a busy day cooking many, many dishes, and a busy night hosting many, many people for dinner. After the leftovers were put away, and the last fork was dried, I began getting requests to forward the recipes we had put together. I had always cooked a mix of my own recipes, family secrets, and, of course, things found on my favorite blogs, when I got to thinking: rather than just forwarding the instructions, why not start writing about them!

This Sweet Potato Casserole with Brown Sugar Pecan Streusel was one of the dishes that I made that night, and created the buzz that soon brought this blog about. Based off of a famous Ruth's Chris Steak House recipe, I tweaked it to fit my tastes. Butter-whipped sweet potatoes are baked with vanilla, sugar, and egg to create a fluffy and satisfying side dish. Topped with a brown sugar-glazed butter pecan crunch... well, this vegetable side dish is probably the best sweet potato recipe ever. Seriously. By the end of dinner, not a smidgen was left in the house.

Sweet Potato Casserole with Brown Sugar Pecan Streusel
modified from Ruth's Chris Steak House
12-14 portions

4 pounds sweet potatoes (about 4 large potatoes)
1 cup sugar (3/4 cup if you like things less sweet)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 stick of butter, melted
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt

For the Topping

3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup flour
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup chopped raw pecans

Preheat your oven to 375F.

Wash and dry your sweet potatoes. Take a large microwave safe bowl, and add a splash of water to the bottom. Fork-prick the potatoes several times and add two potatoes to the bowl.

Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high for 10-15 minutes, depending on your microwave (I did 13 minutes), to steam the sweet potatoes. Be very careful when peeling back the plastic wrap as the steam escapes quickly! Repeat with the other two potatoes.

Meanwhile, butter a large baking dish. Reserve.

After the sweet potatoes have steamed and cooled, scoop the flesh into the bowl of a stand mixer.

Melt the stick of butter and add to the potatoes. Combine the white sugar, 2 lightly beaten eggs, vanilla, and salt to the bowl, and mix well on the stand mixer. Start on low speed and gradually beat on medium high speed for 3 minutes. Add a splash of half & half if the mixture seems too thick.

After mixing, pour the sweet potatoes into the greased baking dish. Bake for 25 minutes.

If you are reserving for a later occasion, allow the casserole to cool, and then refrigerate, covered, for up to 3 days. Bring to room temperature about 30 minutes before baking and add the topping.

For the Topping

Roughly chop the pecans and add to a small mixing bowl. Combine the melted 1/3 cup of butter, flour, cinnamon, and light brown sugar to the pecans. Stir to combine.


Sprinkle the topping evenly over the room temperature sweet potato casserole. Bake, uncovered, in a 375F oven for 12-15 minutes, or until golden and crunchy.

Allow to set for 20 minutes before serving.


  1. Never tried sweet potato in a dessert before.. this is totally something I need to make!!

    1. This is a really good one to try, but I usually serve it as a semi sweet side dish. It could totally pass as a dessert as well! Let me know how you like it!