Sweet Potato Casserole with Cornflake Pecan Crust
The BEST Sweet Potato Casserole with Cornflake Pecan Crust is the only sweet potato recipe you need for any occasion. REAL sweet potatoes, brown sugar and pineapple are whipped together for a fluffy, creamy bite you’ll quickly become addicted to. A must have for Thanksgiving and Christmas, this simple dish is a staple for family gatherings all season long.
Recipe originally published November 2013 and updated October 2019.
Just a few more weeks until we can stuff ourselves silly without having to apologize for it….isn’t that the best day ever? I look forward to Thanksgiving every year because there are recipes I save just for this day….like my favorite Mashed Potatoes that are so sinfully delicious that they HAVE to be saved for special occasions.
And this stuffing recipe….because it takes a bit of time to make but is sooooooo totally worth every single second. The most amazingly easy Turkey recipe which stays moist and tender no matter how much you screw it up….everyone who makes it raves about it’s flawlessness. And the BEST Sweet Potato Casserole with Cornflake Pecan Crust.
This is not the sweet potato casserole with marshmallows I remember growing up. The one I recall was a mixture of buckets of brown sugar and butter with whole canned yams……and topped with marshmallows. Lots of marshmallows….big and small.
I know a lot of you are die hard lovers of the mini marshmallow topped sweet potato casserole but I’m not one of them. To be honest, I don’t think I ever tried that version because it just looked like it would make my teeth hurt from the sweetness and I’d end up having a sugar crash about an hour later….possibly face planting in my Apple Pie. You know what I’m saying?
I may be missing out on some ridiculous culinary concoction but my mind just says no. This recipe was, basically, “inspired” by both my MIL and our favorite steakhouse. So, in a nutshell, it’s very much like the Ruth Chris Sweet Potato Casserole if you were ever so lucky to try it.
It’s a mix of sweet and savory with a crunchy, buttery pecan crust that I could just eat with a fork. All by itself. It’s soo, sooooo amazing.
SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE RECIPE
Southern Sweet Potato Casserole is like dessert masquerading as a side dish. A proper vegetable side dish with the perfect amount of sweet that you can get the most veggie hating kid to eat the whole casserole dish.
It’s so simple to prepare and it could be called by so many names but I’m sticking with Sweet Potato Casserole because that’s what I know it as.
I have tried a sweet potato souffle…which is actually yams, I know, but tell that to the restaurant that served it. It was amazing. Like a crustless pie with a praline topping. Absolute heaven.
And THEN I tried a sweet potato casserole at my in-laws house one Thanksgiving that I absolutely loved but was never able to get the recipe. My mother in-law used the praline topping, if I recall correctly, and I’m pretty sure it had pineapple in it.
I would bet like $90 it had pineapple so I knew that’s the direction I wanted to go. And so…..this, the very BEST Sweet Potato Casserole with Cornflake Pecan Crust was born.
Like the marshmallow topping from my past, I felt the praline topping was a little too sweet. Like more suited for the dessert table and topped with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. (Which wouldn’t be too bad now that I’m thinking about it.)
So I borrowed the cornflake topping idea from my hash brown casserole recipe and came up with something a little different with a ton of crunch, a great contrast to the soft, pureed potatoes….er, um, yams.
INGREDIENTS YOU WILL NEED
For the most part, the ingredient list is pretty simple and there’s not one canned yam to be found. You can make parts of the recipe in advance to help speed up the process of cooking it before serving.
- Unsalted Butter
- Light Brown Sugar
- Half and Half
- Crushed Pineapple, canned
- ground ginger
So, the only thing from a can is the pineapple and if you’re feeling really ambitious you can totally make your own from a real pineapple but why make life more difficult. It’s just one ingredient.
Are Yams the same as Sweet Potatoes?
Contrary to popular believe, yams and sweet potatoes are not the same thing. Real yams are an entirely different root vegetable with starchy, bland flesh and thick, bumpy skin that’s similar in appearance to tree bark.
Sweet Potatoes, on the other hand, have a dark, reddish brown skin that’s thinner and a little smoother. While there are several versions of sweet potatoes at the grocery store, the most commonly found sweet potato is the orange sweet potato. A lot of people will say these are yams, but, technically…real yams are hard to find in the United States.
You can also find white sweet potatoes which are less sweet than the orange but you can totally use them interchangeably. You just won’t have the vibrant color that an orange sweet potato gives to this casserole.
If you’re here for a real deal yam recipe, try these Southern Candied Yams.….they’re AMAZING!
HOW TO MAKE IT
This easy Sweet Potato Casserole is simple to make and you can even make it in advance! I love the cornflake topping but you could also top your’s with marshmallows if you prefer.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the cooked, peeled yams, butter and brown sugar.
- Mix on low to combine.
- Add the egg, half and half, pineapple, cinnamon and nutmeg mixing to combine.
- Pour the mixture into a greased oven safe casserole dish and set aside.
- In a small bowl, mix together the cornflakes, butter, pecans and light brown sugar.
- Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the top of the casserole and bake for 25-30 minutes.
- Serve immediately.
MAKE AHEAD TIPS
- Bake the sweet potatoes up to 2 days in advance and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to assemble.
- To make the casserole in advance, assemble according to instructions leaving out the topping. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours. Sprinkle with the topping right before baking.
- To FREEZE Sweet Potato Casserole, assemble according to instructions leaving out the topping. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and foil. Transfer to the freezer and freeze for up to 3 months.
- To bake from frozen, uncover the casserole and bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes. Sprinkle with the topping and continue baking for an additional 30-40 minutes or until cooked through and golden brown.
MORE SWEET POTATO RECIPES
- LOADED Pulled Pork Stuffed Sweet Potatoes…aka The Hot Mess
- Sweet Potato Cupcakes with Marshmallow Meringue Frosting
- Brown Butter Mascarpone Mashed Sweet Potatoes
- Duck Confit Sweet Potato Fries
Get the Recipe: Sweet Potato Casserole with Cornflake Pecan Crust
- 4 large yams, roasted and peeled (roast for approximately 30-40 minutes or until fork tender.)
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup half and half
- 20 ounce can crushed pineapple, drained
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 1/2 cups crushed cornflakes
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the yams, butter and brown sugar. Mix on med-low speed to combine. Add the egg, half and half, pineapple, cinnamon and nutmeg and mix to combine thoroughly.
- Pour the mixture into a greased oven-safe casserole dish and set aside.
- In a small bowl, mix together the cornflakes, butter, pecans and light brown sugar. Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the top of the casserole and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes or until the top starts to brown.
- Serve immediately.