A Super Classic All-American Sweet Potato Casserole That’s Sweet as Can Be
Grandma knew a thing or two about what people really want on the table on Thanksgiving, and as much as we love recipes that bring a little freshness to the table, we’ve got a super soft spot in our junk-food loving hearts for classic, sticky, creamy, rich sweet potato casserole. And why is our sweet potato casserole recipe the best ever? Well, we pull NO punches and we haven’t modernized it in the slightest! We’ve got good old mini-marshmallows—layers of them—along with a fluffy, sweet, creamy sweet potato filing and a toasty, sweet pecan streusel topping that takes things way over the top in this is-it-a-dessert-or-is-it-a-side-dish recipe.
Sweet Potato Casserole Ingredients—Starting With Those Mini-Marshmallows!
We’re betting that the grocery list for this sweet potato casserole recipe is going to overlap a lot with all of the other ingredient lists you’ve got going for Thanksgiving. Warm, holiday baking spices, heavy cream, butter, pecans. You probably need those same things for making pies, mashed potatoes and, well, everything else that’s going on that heavily-laden holiday table! You can buy all of it way ahead of time, too, if you’re a super prepared person. Here’s everything you’ll need to make this classic, easy sweet potato casserole:
Cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg
Why Do Americans Put Marshmallows on Sweet Potato Casserole? A Brief History of Sweet Potato Casserole With Marshmallow Topping.
This is a fantastic question, because—even though many of us grew up eating sweet potato casserole with marshmallows on it—this is kind of an oddball recipe when you stop and think about it. Like a lot of oddball recipes, this one actually grew out of a marketing scheme! What else? Back in the early 1900s, a company called Angelus Marshmallows was trying to get Americans to eat more of their fluffy, squishy marshmallows and so they came up with a bunch of recipes that featured marshmallows, one of which was the now-classic, marshmallow-topped sweet potato casserole. You can read more about the history of this very American dish over on the Smithsonian’s website.
How To Make Sweet Potato Casserole with Marshmallows
Our sweet potato casserole recipe is designed to be easy, of course, but also to be the best sweet potato casserole recipe ever. So it’s easy, but it’s not open-a-few-cans easy. Because best is more important than easy on a day like Thanksgiving, right? So here’s how to make this traditional sweet potato casserole:
Cook the sweet potatoes!
Mix together the butter , salt, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon to make the streusel topping.
Smash together the potatoes, butter, brown sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, lemon juice, heavy cream, salt, eggs, nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger to make the filling!
Spread the sweet potato mixture in a baking dish.
Top it with marshmallows, streusel, pecans and more mini-marshmallows.
Bake! It’ll take about 30 minutes.
Thanksgiving Game Plan: Make Your Sweet Potato Casserole Ahead of Time!
One of the best things about sweet potato casserole is that you can make it ahead of time! Simply make it all the way through to the point of baking, and stop right before you’d put it in the oven. Then, cover your sweet potato casserole with foil and store it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to bake it, pull it out of the oven and let it come to room temperature. Then pop it in a preheated oven and bake! Yay for anything you can do ahead of time on the oven-and-stove juggle that is Thanksgiving Day! Unfortunately, this sweet potato casserole doesn’t freeze well.
It’s the most wonderful time of year to get into the kitchen with your loved ones and get cooking! We hope this sweet potato casserole recipe is exactly what you’re looking for. When you try it, we’d love to hear about it! Share a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper so that we can see your stuff! Happy eating!