Skip to content

The BEST Sweet Potato Casserole

This sweet potato casserole is the ultimate Thanksgiving side dish. Filled with tender sweet potatoes, butter, and brown sugar and topped with toasted pecans.

One of my favorite Thanksgiving side dishes (and of course with a big slice of pumpkin pie).

Sweet potato casserole with pecans on top.
This post may contain affiliate links. Read disclosure policy.

Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecans

We always make this delicious dish for our Christmas dinner and Thanksgiving menu. It’s a holiday staple and one that my family requests every year, along with my cheesy green bean casserolecorn casserole, easy cheesy potatoes, and cranberry sauce.

You will love this sweet and savory sweet potato casserole recipe filled with tender sweet potatoes, brown sugar, butter with toasty pecans.

Recipe Ingredients

Every holiday meal is in need of a delicious casserole and this is the one!

Sweet potato casserole with marshmallows ingredients on counter.

Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.

  • Sweet potato filling: The key to this casserole is using pre-baked sweet potatoes. Mashed and mixed together with sugar, eggs, melted butter, evaporated milk, salt, and vanilla.
  • Brown sugar and pecan crumble: The nuttiness of pecans is paired with the depth of sweet brown sugar and a little bit of cinnamon for spice. Softened butter and flour bring it all together to create an irresistible crumble.


Add a crunchy, salty, and sweet topping to this delicious sweet casserole. The layers of the casserole all blend together from the top to the bottom.

  • Pecan crumble: The crumble topping on this casserole is seriously the BEST part! It pretty much tastes like candied pecans on top of the sweet potatoes and will become your new favorite after just one bite. It’s made with a mixture of brown sugar, cinnamon, flour, butter, and pecans.
  • Marshmallows: If you want to take the dish up a notch, make sweet potato casserole with marshmallows. You can add mini marshmallows during the last few minutes of cooking.

How to Make Sweet Potato Casserole

Use either sweet potatoes or candied yams for the filling. You will love how easy this is to make!

Showing how to make sweet potato casserole in a 4 step collage.
  • Baking your sweet potatoes is the key to making the best sweet potato casserole. It brings out such amazing flavor and makes them tender and caramelized. It’s super easy and my favorite way to cook them.
  • Mix. Scoop cooked potatoes into a bowl and mash. Add white sugar, eggs, salt, butter, milk and vanilla. Mix together until smooth. Pour into a 9×13″ baking dish (or 11×8″ dish if you’d like your casserole a little thicker).
  • Topping. In a separate bowl, mix together the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and butter with a fork or pastry cutter. You may need to use your hands to create the crumble. Then stir in the pecans.
  • Bake. Sprinkle the topping over the sweet potatoes and then bake at 325°F for 25-30 minutes.
Sweet potato casserole in a white baking dish.

Tip: For an easier version, try these baked candied yams. They have similar flavors as the casserole, but instead of using mashed sweet potatoes, all you have to do is dice the potatoes into slices and then bake. You can even add a crumble or marshmallow topping to this version too.

Helpful Tips

The sweet potato casserole recipe is a classic side dish everyone loves! These helpful tips will help make this side dish quick and easy to make.

  • Sweet potatoes. Choose the right sweet potatoes! A sweet potato should be firm and have a bright orange flesh coloring to it. If you can find sweet potatoes without bumps and cuts on them, that would be best.
  • Prepare. Peeling the sweet potatoes Cut the sweet potato in large chunks evenly to help ensure the cubes cook together at the same time.
  • Seasoning. Add seasoning to the sweet potato casserole. A pinch of ground cloves, allspice, or with any fall seasoning you love.
  • Overcooking. Try not to overcook the casserole. The texture will become dry. Bake just until the sweet potato casserole is heated through.
  • Garnish. Make it like a dessert and add mini marshmallows on top for a sweet potato casserole with marshmallows dish. Sprinkle pecans or make a streusel topping.
Sweet potato casserole with pecans.

Recipe FAQs

Should I add marshmallows to this sweet potato casserole recipe?

That, my friend, is completely up to you. There are differing opinions on whether marshmallows belong in sweet potato casseroles, and it all comes down to what you want to do. I have added instructions to the recipe if you would like to go the route of a sweeter side dish.

Can I make this sweet potato casserole ahead of time and freeze it?

You absolutely can! It can be made and frozen up to 3 months in advance. Cover the unbaked casserole with a double layer of aluminum foil. The day before serving, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator. Let it come to room temperature 30 minutes before baking.

Do I have to pre-bake the sweet potatoes?

Not at all. You can always opt to use canned or boil them instead. I prefer the flavor you get from baking, as it adds an extra element of sweetness, but do whatever works best for you.

5 star review

I love this recipe! We topped with marshmallows and the nutty brown sugary layer was a fun little surprise! I made it the sweet potato layer the day before and then right before cooking I added the brown sugar layer. It worked perfectly!

– Tennille
Sweet potato casserole in baking dish.

Storing Sweet Potato Casserole

Place the cooled sweet potato casserole in an airtight container and store it in the fridge for three days. When ready to reheat, place in the oven or heat in the microwave until it is warmed through.

Do you love holiday dinners?! This sweet potato casserole dish deserves a main event like this oven-roasted turkey or smoked turkey.

More Holiday Side Dishes

HUNGRY FOR MORE? Subscribe to my newsletter and follow on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram for all the newest recipes!

Sweet potato casserole with pecans.

Sweet Potato Casserole

5 from 76 votes
↑ Click stars to rate now!
Author: Jamielyn Nye
Mashed sweet potatoes topped with toasted pecans and a delicious brown sugar crumble. Add in marshmallows to make this sweet potato casserole the ultimate holiday side dish. 
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 12



Brown Sugar Topping

  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup salted butter , softened
  • ½ cup chopped pecans


  • 5 prebaked sweet potatoes *see notes
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter , slightly melted
  • cup evaporated milk (can use milk or cream)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon Kosher salt

Optional: 1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows


    • Preheat the oven to 325°F. 

    Brown Sugar Topping

    • In a medium bowl, mix together the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and butter with a fork or pastry cutter. You may need to use your hands to create the crumble. Stir in the pecans.


    • Scoop flesh from pre-baked potatoes into a large bowl and mash with a potato masher. It should be about 3 cups.
    • Stir in sugar, eggs, butter, milk, vanilla, and salt until smooth. Spread evenly in a 9×13-inch baking dish (or an 11×8-inch baking dish for a thicker casserole). Sprinkle the topping evenly over the sweet potatoes. 
    • Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until the topping is lightly browned and caramelized. 
    • If adding marshmallows, sprinkle over the top and broil for 2 minutes, or until golden brown and gooey. 


    Bake Sweet Potatoes: Follow these easy instructions to bake your sweet potatoes.
    1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
    2. Place sweet potatoes on a baking sheet and pierce with a fork. You can wrap them with foil if you prefer.
    3. Bake for 45 to 60 minutes or until fork tender.
    Instant Pot: You could also make them in the pressure cooker similar to how I prepared them in my Instant Pot mashed sweet potatoes recipe. Both ways will work!
    Save time: For an easier version, try these baked candied yams. They have similar flavors as the casserole, but instead of using mashed sweet potatoes, all you have to do is dice the potatoes into slices and then bake. You can even add a crumble or marshmallow topping to this version too.
    Make-ahead: This recipe can be made 1 to 2 days in advance. Simply pour the sweet potato mixture into your pan cover it tightly and store it in the refrigerator. You can make and store the topping separately. Wait to add the topping until ready to bake.
    Storage: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
    Note: Marshmallows are not included in the nutritional value. 


    Calories: 282kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 53mg | Sodium: 202mg | Potassium: 388mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 13661IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 1mg

    Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.

    Course: Side Dish
    Cuisine: American

    Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

    Let’s connect

    Join our community of over 5 million!

    Featured on

    • Taste of Home
    • Martha Stewart
    • Country Living
    • BuzzFeed
    • Yahoo
    • Food Network
    • Today