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This Sweet Potato Casserole recipe will steal the show on your holiday table this Thanksgiving. It’s sweet, buttery, and creamy, made with brown sugar and cinnamon and a fluffy marshmallow topping.

My Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe is a classic Thanksgiving side dish with fresh mashed sweet potatoes, brown sugar, cinnamon, and topped with marshmallows!

Why I Love This Recipe

This sweet potato casserole recipe has been perfected over many years, trial and error, and quite a few taste tests.

  • Marshmallow Topping – Whether you’re a fan or not, you have to admit that there’s just something about golden brown, meltey marshmallows that makes them irresistible.
  • Simple to Make – The recipe itself is simple and straightforward. Just a sweet, creamy, casserole with just 7 ingredients.
  • Make it Ahead of Time – You can prep the potatoes, or the entire casserole, a day ahead of time and just bake it when you’re ready.
  • Versatile – This classic side dish is almost dessert-like and as perfect for holiday meals as it is for a special Sunday supper.

Ingredients For Sweet Potato Casserole

  • Sweet potatoes – You need 3 pounds of sweet potatoes; there are roughly 2-3 sweet potatoes in a pound.
  • Brown sugar – You can substitute your sweetener of choice, but remember that the addition could loosen up your casserole and make it melt. A little maple syrup or agave can help sweeten without adding too much sugar.
  • Melted butter – for a rich flavor; I recommend using unsalted butter.
  • Ground cinnamon – for warmth. If you like ground nutmeg, that can also be a delicious addition.
  • Milk – be careful when you add the milk, and add it in small amounts. It’s supposed to make your casserole creamy, not soupy.
  • Mini marshmallows – The recipe calls for 2 cups, which should cover the top of your casserole. But feel free to measure that with your heart and add as much as you want!

How to Make Sweet Potato Casserole

See the recipe card below for full, detailed instructions

Images showing the process of making sweet potato casserole.
  1. Cook and mash the sweet potatoes – Boil them until they’re soft, then mash them with a potato masher or whip them with a hand mixer, depending on how creamy you want them.
  2. Season – Stir in brown sugar, cinnamon, butter and salt.
  3. Add Milk – Pour in a little of the milk and stir, adding more as desired until you’ve reached a consistency you’re happy with.
  4. Bake – Pour the mashed sweet potato mixture into a 2 quart baking dish and top with mini marshmallows. Just a few or cover the whole pan like I do. Bake for 20-25 minutes at 375℉.

Topping Variations

While you certainly don’t have to add a topping and can just bake the casserole as is, a topping adds color, texture and pizazz to an otherwise boring looking dish.

  • Pecan Crumble – Candied pecans add a nice crunchy texture and sweetness. Buy them already candied, or try making the crumble with butter, sugar and flour and sprinkle that on top of the casserole.
  • Streusel Topping – A mixture of brown sugar, butter and chopped nuts.
  • Marshmallows – This is my favorite! You can use mini marshmallows, or the jumbo ones, cut in half.
Sweet potato casserole with marshmallows in a baking dish.

How To Prepare Sweet Potatoes

There are two simple ways to cook sweet potatoes for a casserole: Boil or bake.

Baking: Preheat the oven to 425 ℉. Wash and scrub the sweet potatoes with a vegetable brush to remove any dirt. Use a fork or the point of a sharp knife to poke the potatoes several times and bake them for about 40-50 minutes, or until they are tender and easily pierced with a fork or knife.

Boiling: Wash and scrub the sweet potatoes, then peel and chop into large chunks. Add potatoes to a large pot and bring the water to a boil. Cook the peeled potatoes in boiling water until they’re soft and break apart easily with a fork.

Using Canned Yams

While I definitely recommend using fresh sweet potatoes for this recipe, you can use canned in a pinch or to save time. You’ll need 3 29-ounce cans of cut up sweet potatoes. Drain the liquid out using a mesh strainer to get as much out as possible.

To prepare, mash the sweet potatoes and add butter, cinnamon, and salt. Omit the milk as the canned potatoes are wet enough. Taste and add brown sugar if you want them sweeter. They are canned in syrup so they are sweet already. Bake as directed.

Sweet potato casserole with marshmallows and a wooden spoon.

Make Ahead Instructions

This is a great Thanksgiving Dinner make ahead recipe! Prepare the casserole but don’t bake it. Cover it tightly and pop it in the fridge up to 2 days in advance. Wait to add the marshmallows until you’re ready to bake.

About 20-30 minutes before baking (or while you’re oven is preheating) take the casserole out of the fridge so it can come to room temperature. Add the marshmallows and bake as directed.

Storage and Reheating

Storing and Reheating: Cool completely, then tightly cover any leftovers with plastic wrap or in an airtight container. Keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Reheat in the microwave or enjoy cold or at room temperature.

Freezing: Freezing after baking is not recommended. However, you can freeze the prepped sweet potato without the marshmallow topping. Spread the mashed sweet potato in a casserole dish, or even in a freezer bag, and squeeze out as much air as possible. Lay flat and freeze for up to 3 months.

Serving Suggestions

This recipe is on the sweeter side, and can be served as a side dish or as a dessert recipe. It’s a must-have Christmas or Thanksgiving favorite at our house, along with turkey and gravy, vegetables, cranberry sauce, and my homemade stuffing recipe.

We serve it with Glazed Ham for Easter, along with Broccoli Rice Casserole, Deviled Eggs, and Sauteed Asparagus.

It’s also wonderfully easy to serve any time of the year.

Don’t forget the turkey!

Get the best roast turkey recipe, plus TONS of tips!

Sweet potato Casserole in a small dish with a serving on a fork.

More Sweet Potato Recipes

Recipe

Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe

4.95 from 161 votes
My Sweet Potato Casserole with marshmallows recipe is a classic Thanksgiving side dish with fresh sweet potatoes, brown sugar and cinnamon.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 8 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 3 pounds sweet potatoes peeled and roughly cubed
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons butter melted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup milk as up to 1 cup for desired consistency
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows
  • Toasted Pecans for garnish optional
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Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. 
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and boil sweet potatoes until fork tender; about 20 minutes. Drain.
  • Mash the sweet potatoes with a potato masher until smooth. (Use a hand mixer if you want absolutely smooth with no lumps).
  • Stir in brown sugar, butter, cinnamon and salt until well combined. Add the milk a small amount at a time to reach desired consistency.
  • Spray an 11-inch x 7-inch (medium sized) casserole baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Spread sweet potatoes evenly in the prepared casserole dish and top with a layer of the marshmallows.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until marshmallows are golden brown.
  • Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes before serving. Garnish with toasted pecans.

Notes

  • If you find the marshmallows are starting to burn, remove the casserole from the oven sooner. You just need the casserole to be hot throughout, so there’s no worry about under-cooking anything.
  • To make this ahead of time: Refrigerate the potato mixture in the casserole dish overnight and leave off the marshmallows until you’re ready to bake. Add 5-10 minutes to the baking times and add the marshmallows halfway through the baking to avoid burning.
  • Freezing after baking is not recommended. However, you can freeze the prepped sweet potato without the topping. Spread the mashed sweet potato in a casserole dish, or even in a freezer bag, and squeeze out as much air as possible. Lay flat and freeze for up to 3 months.
Keyword sweet potato casserole, sweet potato casserole with marshmallows

Nutrition

Calories: 340kcalCarbohydrates: 73gProtein: 4gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 12mgSodium: 307mgPotassium: 658mgFiber: 5gSugar: 43gVitamin A: 24325IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 116mgIron: 1mg

Nutritional Disclaimer Kristin Maxwell of “Yellow Bliss Road” is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. For accurate calorie counts and other nutritional values, we recommend running the ingredients through your preferred online nutritional calculator. Calories and other nutritional values can vary depending on which brands were used.

Kristin Maxwell

Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.

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Comments

  1. Rachael says:

    I wanted to find a sweet potato recipe that was simple but flavorful, and this one definitely delivered! The brown sugar really helps give it that extra bit of flavor that pairs perfectly with the cinnamon. Since this was for Friendsgiving, I just doubled the recipe, and thank goodness I did, because it was an absolute hit!!! One of my friend’s teenager even dug into it before we all started fixing plates! Lol! I would absolutely recommend this recipe to seasoned cooks and novices alike!

    1. Kristin says:

      Awesome feedback Rachael! Thanks for taking the time to share.

  2. Anthony says:

    Can I use regular creamer ( non flavored half and half)? Thank you!

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      Half and half would be fine as a substitution for the milk. Just extra rich!

  3. Launa says:

    Hey, what would I change about the measurements if I wanted to make it in a 9×13 pan instead of 11×7??

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      You could increase the servings from 8 to 10 and that should be good.

  4. Monica McVay Drees says:

    I’m making this for another family but they wanted a sweet potato casserole with the chunks of sweet potatoes not mashed can I leave the potatoes and chunks in this recipe and if I did do I still need milk help

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      That would be a completely different recipe.

  5. Mina says:

    Can you halve this recipe

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      Sure.

  6. Barb E says:

    I think it was too much cinnamon

    1. Kristin says:

      Thank you for your feedback Barb.

  7. Bri says:

    I made this for a Friendsgiving and it was a hit! The only changes I made were decreasing brown sugar to 1/2 a cup, and increasing milk to 1/2 a cup, and the sweetness and consistency were perfect!

    1. Kristin says:

      Nice! Thank you for your feedback Bri.

  8. Marty DelNevo says:

    This was delicious! I added a 1/4 tsp nutmeg. I made it the day before so added marshmallows half way through the cooking time on Thanksgiving. Everyone raved about this! It’s going into my recipe file since I plan to make it more than once per year.

    1. Kristin says:

      Love the feedback Marty! Thanks for stopping by.

      1. Patricia sutton says:

        I have made a sweet potato casserole for years but this year I have had a lot of health one I’ve lose a lot of my memory so I’m looking for one I can use.

  9. Steph says:

    It tasted good but was too sweet. Next time I’ll add 1/2 or even 1/4 cup of sugar instead of 1 cup.

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      Fair enough. Everyone’s tastes are different. Thanks for leaving a comment and rating!

  10. Tyan says:

    Am I supposed to boil the sweet potatoes with the skin on??

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      No, under the ingredients it peeled and diced.

  11. Judy says:

    It was truly amazing filled with nothing but goodness! So yummy. Can’t wait to make this again. Thank you.

    1. Kristin says:

      You are so welcome Judy! Thanks for stopping by.

  12. Caitlin Hartunian says:

    Hi! I’m looking forward to making this recipe. What percent milk did you use? And what’s the oven temp/time if I’m going to make it from frozen?

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      I always use nonfat milk personally, but any fat milk will work. Just be sure to add only as much as you need to get the texture you like. I don’t recommend baking from frozen because it will get watery. Thaw overnight in the fridge and then bake as directed. You may need to add a few minutes to the cook time, and definitely don’t add the marshmallows until you do the final bake.

  13. Ann says:

    It’s delicious! I’m making it for Thanksgiving!!

  14. April Jackson says:

    I made this for our Christmas dinner and it was delicious! I used coconut sugar instead and it still turned out good! Thank you for this recipe!!

    1. Kristin says:

      You are so welcome April, Thanks for stopping by.

  15. Jennifer says:

    Hi could you tell me what the consistency should be like abd how much of the milk do you think I should use recipe says 1 cup,also can I use a hand whisk and potato masher as I do not have a hand mixer

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      Think of it like mashed potatoes and the consistency you’d want them to be. Sweet potatoes break down the same way. I recommend adding half a cup, then more as needed if you’re concerned they will be too thin. I’d use a potato mashed and a wooden spoon.

  16. Chela says:

    The recipe says “large” marshmallows in the ingredients, but it is clearly mini marshmallows in the pictures. So, should that be 2 cups of mini marshmallows not large?

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      You’re absolutely right! We decided to go with mini after the recipe was written. Honest mistake, enjoy the recipe! 🙂

  17. Renee says:

    I am confused by the pic because sweet potatoes are white. YAMS are orange. Recipe calls for sweet potatoes??

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      Sweet Potatoes are a member of the morning glory family. They have a firmer skin and can be an assortment of colors including copper, purple, white, orange or red. The color of the flesh varies as well to include orange, yellow, purple and white! As the copper skinned sweet potato most resembles a yam, the name was applied to the tuber to differentiate it from it’s lighter counterpart. from https://spendwithpennies.com/sweet-potato-vs-yam/

      1. Renee says:

        Thank you!!

  18. Jennifer says:

    Do you need to add the milk to this recipe? It calls for 1 cup?

    1. Kristin Maxwell says:

      In step 4 you add the milk until the desired consistency is reached.

  19. Karina says:

    This is my first time baking this and I got to say, the instructions were easy to follow. Also it turned out delicious!

    1. Kristin says:

      Thank you Karina, your feedback is so important to me Thank You!

  20. Taylor Smith says:

    Hey Kristin, just curious about this nutmeg listed in the cooking directions. Is this a mistake? How much should I add, if not? Thanks!

    1. Kristin says:

      Sorry that was a typo. It’s just the cinnamon.