My mom always served sweet potato pie as part of the meal, a side dish if you will, but never for dessert. We like things sweet in our house and sweet potatoes are technically a vegetable, so of course this is a dish that was served alongside a ton of other side dishes.
One of the reasons this recipe is so simple is that you can start with a can of already cooked sweet potatoes. My mom always used either Bruce’s Yam or Princella Cut Sweet Potatoes that both come in a 40 oz can to make this a breeze to put together. However, you can definitely start with your own sweet potatoes.
To do this, make sure you bake them in advance so they can cool a bit before you use them. You’ll want to mash your baked sweet potato really well, so that your sweet potato pie comes out smooth. You may even want to give it a whir in a high speed blender or with an immersion blender to make sure sure it’s the right texture. I do the same thing with the canned potatoes as well.
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Is sweet potato pie for holidays or for everyday?
Now, in some families a sweet potato pie would be seen as a Thanksgiving dish and not for any other meal. In our house, we like to look at it as an all purpose side dish. Need something a little bit sweeter for Rosh Hashana, Sukkot, Hanukkah, Passover or Shabbat, look no further.
Want to fancy up burger night? Here’s a simple side dish. Having steak on a Tuesday, works here too. Looking to make a super simple dessert that people will rave about? Add some coconut flakes to the topping mix, serve with some cool whip or whipped cream and voila, fancy dessert.
This really is a versatile dish that you’ll want to have in your repertoire through the fall and winter.
Can this be made dairy-free, gluten-free, or nut-free?
Sure can. With just one or two substitutes, this sweet potato pie can easily be made to fit most special diets.
To make it dairy-free you can easily substitute the butter for margarine or other plant based butter substitute (like Country Crock, Betterine, Earth Balance). And, while the recipe is written with almond milk (because I like the flavor), you can make it with regular milk, soy milk or non-dairy creamer (like Rich’s Whip).
Need to make this a gluten free side dish? You’ll want to substitute the flour in the topping for a gluten free alternative. I would use either almond flour or Trader Joes’ all purpose gluten-free baking mix. They will both work for this topping.
Want to make the sweet potato pie nut free? Sub the almond milk for soy or dairy milk and swap the pecans for oats. You’ll need to up the amount of oats, a bit, but you’ll still get a delicious topping for this dish.
How far in advance can sweet potato pie be made?
Luckily, this is a great dish to make ahead and freeze. I would bake it all the way through, and then let it cool before putting into the freezer. Be sure to wrap in plastic wrap and then foil for best results. Sweet potato pie freezes well up to three months.
Additionally, you can make it a day or two before you need to serve it and keep in the fridge. Before serving, bring to room temperature on the counter and then reheat on 300 for about 20 minutes. You don’t want to dry it out, just warm it up.
Tips and Tricks:
- Want to make this Passover friendly? Substitute the flour for cake meal and voila, ready for Passover
- Want to make this gluten free? You can substitute the flour for almond flour or gluten-free all purpose flour.
- If you want to make this more dessert than side dish, try adding sweetened coconut flakes to the topping. Then serve with a dollop of whipped cream or cool whip.
- Planning on freezing your sweet potato pie? I would think about baking it in an disposable aluminum pan, so you can go straight from oven to freezer without tying up your baking dishes for too long.
Looking for other simple side dishes? Check these out!
the simplest sweet potato pie
- 40 oz can sweet potatos/yam drained
- ½ cup or less sugar
- ½ cup almond milk or whole milk, soy milk, coffee rich
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup brown sugar packed
- ½ cup flour
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- ¼ cup butter or margarine, plant based butter substitute
- Prepare an 8” springform pan by spraying liberally with cooking spray and wrapping the bottom in aluminum foil
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
- In a blender or large mixing bowl with a hand mixer, combine drained sweet potatos, sugar, almond milk, vanilla, and eggs
- Pour smooth mixture into the prepared springform pan
- In a small bowl (or use mixing bowl), combine brown sugar, flour, pecans and butter.
- Put this mixture on top of sweet potato mixture.
- Bake at 400 for 35-40 minutes, until the middle is set. If it’s getting too dark, but middle is not yet set, lightly cover with foil.
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