Monday, November 23, 2015

Friendsgiving: Sweet Potato Edition

Another year, another friendsgiving! As nice as it will be to not have to deal with the holiday rush of traveling during Thanksgiving, I'll definitely miss celebrating beforehand with my law school friends. It's a tradition I've come to look forward to, and one I can hopefully continue in the future with new friends (maybe I'll have cool work friends next year?).

Last year I made my signature chocolate pecan bourbon pie, and this year I decided to change up my routine a bit. I made this sweet potato casserole my 1L year when a few of us stuck around for actual Thanksgiving, and it was a hit so I figured I should give it another go for Friendsgiving. The recipe has a few steps between roasting the potatoes, to mashing them to baking them, but it's all super simple.

I wouldn't say the coconut oil the recipe calls for is absolutely necessary. I used it, and I'm not sure I could taste too much of a difference in the finished product... but hey on the flip side at least there's plenty left over for some oil pulling.

I don't usually alter recipes, but since I've made this a couple of times I've modified the amount of ingredients. I doubled the amount of sweet potatoes, the pecans, and the corresponding spices each is mixed with to fill out my casserole dish a bit more. If you don't want such a deep casserole, feel free to stick with the original amount of the sweet potato and spice mixture, but I would definitely recommend doubling the pecan mixture as I did – this is ideal for a solid layer of crunchy pecans on top (arguably the best part of any casserole!). I also used the roasting method from my superbowl sweet potatoes. It's definitely easiest and quickest to cut the potatoes in half lengthwise before roasting, rather than placing them whole in the oven. The first time I made these potatoes it took forever for them to get cooked through!

And last but not least, save those potato skins! Maybe I'm crazy, but even after scooping out all the flesh, I thought the skins were delicious as an afternoon snack – kind of a healthier version of potato chips? Or you could also leave a little sweet potato in the skins and actually make loaded skins with the leftovers. Whichever you'd prefer, but I just usually go for the easier route!


Sweet potatoes: 6 pounds
Virgin coconut oil: 2 tbsp, melted
Orange juice: 6 tbsp
Brown sugar: 8 tbsp, divided
Butter: 4 tbsp, melted, divided
Orange zest: 2 tsp
Ground cinnamon: 1 tsp, divided
Kosher salt: 1/2 tsp
Ground ginger: 1/4 tsp
Pecans: 1 cup, roughly chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Wash the sweet potatoes, cut in half lengthwise, and place on a greased foil-lined baking sheet. Pierce the potatoes several times with the tip of a sharp knife, brush with the coconut oil, and sprinkle with a pinch of kosher salt.
  2. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour until tender. Remove from the oven and reduce the heat to 350°F.
  3. When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, scoop the flesh into a bowl, and mash until smooth. Stir in the orange juice, 4 tablespoons of the brown sugar, 2 tablespoon of the butter, orange zest, 1/2 teaspoon of the cinnamon, ginger, and salt. Place in an 8 x 8-inch baking dish, and smooth the top with a rubber spatula.
  4. For the topping combine the remaining brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, and pecans. Sprinkle over the sweet potato mixture. Bake until the nuts are toasted and the casserole is heated through for about 30 minutes.

Recipe Source: slightly adapted from Parade magazine

1 comment:

  1. Coconut oil is supposed to be a superfood so at least it was extra healthy!


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