by Olena

Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole

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Olena Osipov
5 from 2 votes

Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole with crunchy pecan sugar topping is melt in your mouth, delicious and comforting casserole for your Holiday table without the guilt. Bonus – can be made ahead and frozen. You’re welcome! 🙂

I always have sweet potato casserole at Thanksgiving along with green bean casserole, sauteed brussel sprouts with bacon, and creamy mashed potato!

Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole

This healthy sweet potato casserole is airy, creamy and fluffy. Sweet potatoes mashed with maple syrup, milk, butter with a hint of cinnamon and vanilla. Crunchy pecan topping is absolutely irresistible with only wholesome ingredients. You can even make a version in an Instant Pot!

Sweet potato casserole is not something I grew up with – I barely even knew what sweet potato mash was (though I enjoyed roasted sweet potato). But I feel like I nailed the recipe after making my Ukrainian version for 20 years now.

This Southern classic lightened up is so-so good! Perfect for serving up with roasted turkey breast (or Instant Pot turkey!) or boneless leg of lamb roast

healthy sweet potato casserole

Ingredients for Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole

  • Sweet potatoes: Look for firm, dry sweet potatoes or “yams” with red, brown or light skin and no discoloration.
  • Butter: You can use coconut oil, ghee or vegan butter.
  • Milk: I used whole milk but any works. Use almond milk, soy milk or any plant-based milk for dairy free version.
  • Egg: A flax egg replacer will make this vegan sweet potato casserole. Don’t forget the maple syrup and not honey. Or skip all together if allergic. Egg helps with texture but not critical.
  • Maple syrup: You can use honey, organic cane or coconut sugar. I like to use sugar in a pecan topping. It makes it taste like candied pecans and crunchy.
  • Almond flour: Substitute with almond meal or coconut flour. All of them naturally gluten-free.
  • Pecans
  • Cinnamon, salt and pepper.

sweet potatoes, egg, butter, maple syrup, almond flour, spices

How to Make Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole

Please note this baked sweet potato casserole recipe serves 6. I know many of you serve large crowds on Thanksgiving. Feel free to double or triple the recipe along with using large and deep 9 x 13 baking dish.

  • Boil cubed sweet potatoes: Boil peeled and cubed sweet potatoes until soft. Drain very well to avoid watery sweet potato casserole.
  • Mash potatoes: Mash with butter, milk, egg and spices. Add butter while sweet potatoes are still hot after draining. This ensures butter melts and incorporates into casserole better than if you added with cold milk and other ingredients.
  • Make pecan crumb topping: Combine dry ingredients like pecans, almond flour and sugar first. Then add butter or coconut oil in pieces and incorporate with a fork. You should end up with very crumbly topping.
  • Assemble and bake: Spread sweet potato mixture in a baking dish and sprinkle with topping. Bake for 45 minutes in preheated 350 degrees F oven.

How to make Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole step by step

Make Ahead and Freezing Tips

There are quite a few ways to save time cooking this casserole on Thanksgiving day.

Make Ahead: Prepare mashed sweet potatoes and topping for up to 24 hours. Refrigerate separately – you can spread sweet potatoes in baking dish and store covered with plastic. When ready, assemble casserole and bake as per recipe.

Freeze uncooked: Assemble, cover with a few layers of plastic and freeze for up to 2 weeks. When ready to bake, let dish warm up on a counter for 30-60 minutes to prevent shattering. Then bake by following the recipe plus 20 minutes.

Freeze leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw on a counter or in the fridge for a few hours or overnight. Reheat in a microwave or oven.

More Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes

Or browse through this list I’ve compiled of 50 healthy Thanksgiving recipes!

Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe

Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole

Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole

Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole with crunchy pecan sugar topping is melt in your mouth, delicious and comforting casserole for your Holiday table without the guilt.
5 from 2 votes
Print Save Rate
Course: Casserole
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 357kcal
Author: Olena Osipov


  • 2 lbs sweet potato peeled & cubed
  • 2 tbsp butter or coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 egg large
  • 2 tbsp honey or maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp salt divided

Pecan Topping:

  • 1/2 cup pecans roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup almond flour or meal
  • 1 tbsp cane or coconut sugar maple syrup or honey*
  • 2 tbsp butter or coconut oil


  • In a large pot, add sweet potatoes, 1/2 tsp salt and enough cold water to cover. Place lid on top, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and cook for 15 minutes or until fork tender. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In the meanwhile, prepare pecan topping. In a medium shallow bowl, add pecans, almond flour and sugar. Stir well to mix.
  • Add butter or coconut oil in pieces and using a fork incorporate into the topping. Set aside.
  • Drain sweet potatoes very well.
  • Add butter and mash until smooth.
  • Add milk, egg, honey, cinnamon, vanilla extract and 1/4 tsp salt. Using same masher or spatula stir well to mix.
  • Transfer sweet potato mixture to square 8 x 8 baking dish, level with spatula and sprinkle pecan topping on top. Bake for 45 minutes. Serve hot.


This healthy sweet potato casserole is very forgiving. You can use any kind of milk like almond milk, butter or coconut oil, and liquid or dry sugar.
*I particularly like the taste of sugar in a pecan topping, so I use organic cane sugar. It makes the best candied pecans. It also ensures crumbly topping.
You can omit the egg or use flax egg replacer.


Serving: 1cup | Calories: 357kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 50mg | Sodium: 465mg | Potassium: 595mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 21759IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 109mg | Iron: 2mg
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Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys, a wife to Alex and we reside on magical Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada. This is our healthy family recipes blog. Originally from Ukraine, I grew up on real food. As an adult, I struggled with diets for years because none worked long-term. Now for over 10 years, I cook easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

8 comments on “Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole

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  1. 5 stars
    The best sweet potato casserole ever!! I’m an avid cook and have tried many. Everyone wanted the recipe
    I baked the sweet potatoes for richer flavor. Used canned full fat coconut milk and it was outstanding.
    Also, heated the second time and still was great.

    1. Hi Jeanne! I wouldn’t recommend baking the whole casserole ahead of time. If you are making this ahead of time, prepare the mashed sweet potatoes and topping. But refrigerate them separately. You can even spread the sweet potatoes into a baking dish and store covered with plastic. When you are ready, assemble the casserole and then bake as per recipe. Hope that helps!

  2. If I wanted to add more protein to the meal, could I add shredded cooked chicken or ground turkey?

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