When it comes to healthy, hearty food, it doesn’t get much better than sweet potatoes. Not only are they full of antioxidants, but they’re also excellent sources of fiber, potassium and beta-carotene (1).
But what if you don’t like a plain old sweet potato? Or what if you have picky kids who need the healthy stuff hidden in a bigger dish?
Here are just a few fun and creative ways to bring sweet potatoes into your kitchen.
This is probably the first thing that popped in your head when you heard the phrase “sweet potato recipes.” Casseroles are a classic way to prepare them, and there’s a good reason for that: You’ll never run out of ideas. There are probably more casserole recipes out there than there are sweet potatoes!
2. Loaded Sweet Potatoes
Loaded sweet potatoes are cooked and stuffed like baked potatoes. The toppings, however, are up to you. Here are a few suggestions:
– Chili powder
– Sour cream
3. Marshmallow-Topped Sweet Potatoes
Typically made with butter and brown sugar, marshmallow-topped sweet potatoes are a great way to enjoy a little sweetness during a hearty meal. You can even add a sprinkle of cinnamon to enjoy its many health benefits (2).
4. Mediterranean Sweet Potatoes
Topped with things like bright red tomatoes and crunchy lettuce leaves, Mediterranean sweet potatoes bring lightness and freshness to what’s usually considered a somewhat “heavy” ingredient. They’ll look amazing on your plate, too!
Thickened with sweet potatoes rather than large amounts of flour, these waffles can be enjoyed at any time of day. You don’t have to limit them to breakfast. They can also be fun snacks at brunch or easy-nibble desserts after dinner. For additional sweetness, create a sugary topping or dipping syrup.
Sweet potato chips are a healthy alternative to the greasy, salty chips that you usually throw in the bowl. This is especially true if you bake them rather than fry them. If you’re looking for something nicer to snack on during Game Day, this is one of the best sweet potato recipes to try.
7. Lemon Alfredo
Wake up your taste buds with a lemon Alfredo dish that also utilizes sweet potatoes. For an even bolder flavor, you can also experiment with garlic powder or Cajun seasoning. The trick is not being afraid of a little zest; if you don’t add enough, it won’t make a difference to your dish at all.
You don’t have to slave over a hot stove all day to create a delicious quiche. In fact, when you use sweet potatoes as one of the main ingredients, it can turn into a relatively simple and healthy dish for all occasions.
9. Knot Rolls
Knot rolls are an easy way to add sophistication to your dinner table. They aren’t plain, boring rolls; they’re knots! When you make them with sweet potatoes, they can also become a lot healthier than their cousins. You can cut your calories in half by using sweet potatoes rather than traditional dough.
The best sweet potato recipes are ones that expand your horizons. You’ve probably never considered something like a feta-and-sweet-potato tart, but why not give it a try? If you can pull it off, it’ll be absolutely delicious!
11. Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Did you know that you can lose weight with sweet potato recipes? The trick is to cook something like roasted sweet potatoes. Without all of the oils, batters and glazes of other potato dishes, you’ll create a dish with a lot less sodium and fat.
12. Ginger Pie
Filled with cinnamon, sugar and an assortment of spices, a ginger sweet potato pie is sure to disappear quickly when you pass it around the table. It’ll be especially popular if you top it with freshly-whipped cream.
Try something a little different with sweet potato quesadillas. They can be baked, fried or grilled depending on your preferences, and they can also be stuffed with all kinds of tasty ingredients like cheese, spinach and red peppers. It’s entirely up to you.
Perfect for busy mornings, muffins can be prepared in less than 30 minutes. You can even use mini-muffin trays to create bite-sized snacks for the kids. Toss them some tiny breakfast treats as they run outside to catch the bus!
Potato wedges are quick and easy to make, and they’re even better when they’re sweet. Use them as an alternative to fries when you need a snack during movie night, or drizzle them with mustard, rosemary and garlic to turn them into sticky, tasty appetizers.
You can make a salad with just about anything, and this includes sweet potatoes. Mix together your choice of corn, cheese, avocado, beans, peppers and vinaigrette toppings. Leave out the meat if you’re a vegetarian, or throw in some chicken or shrimp if you want the protein.
17. Spoon Bread
Spoon bread is a half-sweet, half-savory dish that’s sure to delight your friends and family. There are many different recipes for the kind that involves sweet potatoes, so it’ll be up to you to figure out which flavors tickle your fancy!
18. Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Offering a twist on the classic dish, mashed sweet potatoes are a great thing to whip up when you’re in a hurry. They don’t take long to prepare and they don’t require an excessive list of ingredients. They can be made with nothing more than milk, butter, salt and a bundle of sweet potatoes.
19. Quinoa Salad
One of the advantages of eating a lot of sweet potato is that it can be easily incorporated into both vegan and vegetarian diets. Quinoa salad is a fine example of this versatility: It’s simple, delicious and completely free of animal products.
Sweet potato hash can be made with all kinds of meats and veggies. Here are a few ideas for your own skillet:
– Breakfast hash with eggs and sausage crumbles
– Vegetarian hash with peppers, onions and celery chunks
– Cheesy hash with mozzarella and Monterey Jack
21. Cupcakes with Marshmallow Frosting
This is another dish that combines sweet potatoes and marshmallows, but they’re such a heavenly combination that it’s hard to resist! They work especially well as cupcakes with finger-licking frosting.
22. Chicken Nachos
Who doesn’t love nachos? Whether you’re making them for a party, sports event or just a casual evening with friends, your guests will love a well-stacked nacho dish that includes olives, chicken chunks and sweet potatoes.
There are a million ways to prepare gnocchi, but if you’ve never tried it with sweet potatoes, you’re missing out! Sear it with garlic, parsley and other herbs and spices for an amazing dumpling dish. You can also throw in some broccoli if you want to tick off another section of the food pyramid.
You’ll find a lot of sweet potato recipes that contain or create soup. It’s just so easy to make that it’s a popular and enduring dish, especially when you consider all of the health benefits that you can reap from things like carrot and ginger (3).
25. Autumn Cobbler
An autumn cobbler uses the ingredients of the season. Whether it’s apples, pumpkin spices or sweet potatoes, it should make you feel like fall with every bite. Take a stroll through the leaves for inspiration!
26. Potato Skins
A sweet potato is naturally high in potassium. In fact, it’s one of the most potassium-rich foods that you can consume. Think about that when you’re preparing something like potato skins: If you opt for sweet potatoes instead of regular potatoes, it’ll be good for your body and your taste buds alike!
You might be surprised to learn that you can use sweet potatoes for dip, but they’ll be just as flavorful as your usual cheesy or onion-y concoctions. They’ll also be a lot better for your waistline.
Stew is one of the best meals for a cold day. Sweet potatoes are just the beginning; you can also add carrots, onions, peas, peppers and chunks of beef or lamb.
The great thing about a frittata is that it can be served for any meal. If you’re trying to get rid of those leftover sweet potatoes that weren’t eaten during Thanksgiving, consider whipping up some frittatas.
30. Three-Bean Chili
Made with black beans, pinto beans and soybeans, this dish will really stick to your ribs on a chilly winter’s night. It’ll also warm you up quite nicely with its cumin and chili powder.
Last but certainly not least, you can’t forget dessert! A sweet potato pudding is the perfect way to end your meal, especially when it’s shared among loved ones.
Final Thoughts on Sweet Potato Dishes
There are many ways to use sweet potatoes in everyday cooking. It doesn’t have to be a special occasion. Sweet potatoes might be a staple of the holidays, but you can also dish them up in all kinds of breakfasts, lunches, brunches, dinners, snacks and desserts.
Don’t be afraid of sweet potatoes. Experiment with different meals until you find your family’s new favorite!