Sweet Potato Casserole

5 from 223 votes

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This Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping is creamy, crunchy, toasty, and so divine! So sweet it almost tastes like dessert!

Featured with this recipe
  1. Ingredients in Sweet Potato Pecan Casserole
  2. Sweet Potato Casserole Pecan Topping
  3. Frequently Asked Questions about Sweet Potato Casserole
  4. How to Re-Heat
  5. Thanksgiving Side Dishes
  6. More Delicious Sweet Potato Recipes
  7. How to Make Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping
  8. Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping Recipe

This Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping recipe is, hands down, the best recipe for sweet potato casserole I’ve ever tasted, and we’ve had many many recipes pass over our Thanksgiving table over the years. Tender sweet potatoes, whipped to perfection, and topped with a pecan streusel topping (pecan crumble topping) that makes the whole baking dish taste like it should be on the dessert table. It’s versatile enough that you can add or take away topping ingredients depending on your guests tastes.

Ingredients in Sweet Potato Pecan Casserole

Let’s start with the base of this dish, the sweet potato mixture. It’s easy, made with real ingredients, and so yummy! Here’s what you need:

  • Sweet potatoes – you can use some canned sweet potatoes or about 3 ½ cups cooked and mashed sweet potatoes. If you like it more chunky use a potato masher, if you like it whipped use an electric mixer.
  • Milk – any type will work
  • Brown sugar – dark or light brown works great
  • Butter – melted, I prefer unsalted butter
  • Egg – slightly beaten (large to extra large eggs)
  • Vanilla extract – just about a teaspoon
  • Salt – half a teaspoon or to taste

Optional Add Ins

  • Cinnamon
  • Apple
  • Maple Syrup
  • Honey

Sweet Potato Casserole Pecan Topping

The toasted coconut and pecan topping is what makes this dish. The streusel-like topping so easy to throw together and gives the dish such a unique flavor and texture that pairs so beautifully with the creamy sweet potatoes. After you try this brown sugar pecan topping, you’ll never use the classic marshmallow toppings again. It truly is the best sweet potato casserole recipe.

  • brown sugar
  • pecans – chopped
  • shredded coconut
  • flour
  • butter – melted
A scoop of sweet potato casserole on a plate with a gold fork

Frequently Asked Questions about Sweet Potato Casserole

Are canned yams and sweet potatoes the same?

Canned candied yams sold in grocery stores in the United States are sweet potatoes, and this is what we use in this recipe for sweet potato casserole. However, actual yams and sweet potatoes are quite different. To learn more, visit the North Carolina Sweet Potatoes website. Did you know more than 50% of the sweet potatoes grown in the United States are grown in North Carolina?

Can this casserole be made ahead of time?

Yes! This is good news for those of you hosting Thanksgiving this year. Assemble your casserole ahead of time, chill in the refrigerator, then bake the day of. It will be delicious!

Does it need to be refrigerated?

Sweet potatoes can be stored in the fridge for up to five days. And if the casserole is left out for more than a couple of hours, it should be discarded, so make sure to store the leftovers as soon as you can.

Is Sweet Potato Casserole Gluten Free?

When making Sweet Potato Casserole the traditional way, it is gluten-free. To make this recipe with the crumbly topping GF, swap out the all-purpose flour in the coconut topping for coconut flour, rice flour, or any other favorite gluten-free flour mixture.

Do you put eggs in sweet potato casserole?

Yes, we do use an egg in this sweet potato casserole as a binding ingredient. We recommend using a fork to stir the egg in a small dish before adding it to the sweet potatoes, and then blending it in well so it distributes through the mixture.

How to Re-Heat

To reheat this casserole, warm it in the oven at 350 degrees until warmed through, about 20 minutes. If you put it in the microwave, the pecans will become soft and you won’t get that good crunch.

Thanksgiving Side Dishes

Sweet potato casserole is the perfect complement to your Thanksgiving turkey, in addition, here are a few more sides to serve up with Thanksgiving dinner:

Side view of a sweet potato casserole with a scoop taken out

More Delicious Sweet Potato Recipes

Thanksgiving or not, sweet potatoes are always a delightful side dish, and a sweeter alternative to regular potatoes. Try a couple of these favorites:

How to Make Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping

Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping

5 from 223 votes
Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping is creamy, crunchy, toasty, and so divine! You'll never top your sweet potatoes with marshmallows again.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 9 servings





  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl or mixer, combine sweet potatoes, milk, brown sugar, melted butter, egg, vanilla, and salt.  Beat ingredients with a hand mixer (or in a mixer) until the sweet potatoes are light and fluffy.
    Mixing sweet potatoes for casserole
  • Transfer sweet potato mixture into a greased 9×9 inch baking pan.
    Mashed Sweet Potatoes in a casserole dish
  • Stir all of the topping ingredients together in a small bowl.
    Coconut Pecan topping in a glass bowl
  • Sprinkle the topping evenly over the sweet potatoes.  
    Sweet Potato Casserole before it is baked
  • Bake uncovered for 35 minutes.
    Baked Sweet Potato Casserole with wooded spoon next to it


Recipe Tips

  • Sweet potatoes or yams can be used in place of the canned sweet potatoes in this recipe. Peel and dice the sweet potatoes, then boil them until fork tender. Mash them with a little milk to reach your desired consistency, then follow the recipe instructions as written.
  • We recommend using a hand or stand mixer when blending the sweet potato mixture to get a light, airy texture. Be sure to mix until it is completely blended – no chunks!
  • This recipe can be double and cooked in a 9×13 baking pan to serve 12-15 people.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 300kcalCarbohydrates: 42gProtein: 3gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 39mgSodium: 274mgPotassium: 387mgFiber: 4gSugar: 24gVitamin A: 13230IUVitamin C: 2.2mgCalcium: 59mgIron: 1.1mg

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About the author

Erica Walker

Erica lives in Boise, Idaho with her husband, Jared, an attorney, and her three beautiful girls. Beyond the world of recipes, she loves adventuring with everything from kayaking, to cruising, to snowboarding and taking the family along for the thrill ride.

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  1. 5 stars
    This by far my favorite Thanksgiving side dish! I have never tried it with the coconut though and can’t wait to give it a try !

  2. 5 stars
    I loved this recipe. I usually buy this pie at the store. Your recipe was so much better. I’ll be making this again.

  3. 5 stars
    I love this choice for a side dish. loving squash & sweet potatoes, so close in flavor this indeed will be added to another side dish On Thanksgiving Day.

    Thank you!

  4. 5 stars
    I’m the only one in our family that isn’t fond of sweet potato casserole; it’s just not something I grew up with. However, my hubby and everyone else LOVES this recipe so it’s a keeper.

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