Loaded Sweet Potato Casserole

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Loaded Sweet Potato Casserole adds a new twist by including both marshmallows and pecan streusel in this favorite holiday recipe. It’s a beloved side dish at every Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter meal!

close up shot of marshmallows and pecans in loaded sweet potato casserole.
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Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Our family must have Loaded Sweet Potato Casserole at every special occasion. Some of us like marshmallows on top, while the rest of us like pecan streusel. I decided to load it up and add both toppings. Now, everybody’s happy!

Adding cream cheese to the filling makes it extra creamy and gives this classic dish incredible flavor. It’s sweet, savory, and crunchy, which makes it almost taste like dessert. Plus, it’s loaded with spices like cinnamon and cloves that just scream autumn!

Sweet Potato Casserole pairs perfectly with Brown Sugar Spiral Ham, and is always served with new and improved Skillet Green Bean Casserole at our family dinners. You’ll see all types of sweet potato dishes out there, and even find a version made famous at Ruth Chris restaurant, but this is the only recipe you’ll ever need!

wooden spoon holding a scoop of loaded sweet potato casserole.

Ingredients

FILLING

  • sweet potatoes (or yams) – the base of deliciousness
  • cream cheese – adds more creaminess than you can imagine!
  • butter – because everything’s better with butter
  • ground cinnamon – the perfect spice
  • ground cloves – to kick it up a notch
  • brown sugar – adds sweetness
  • egg– binds the filling together
  • vanilla extract – provides an extra layer of flavor

TOPPING

  • chopped pecans – crunchy and yummy
  • brown sugar – to sweeten things up
  • all purpose flour – creates the streusel effect
  • butter – binds the topping together
  • mini marshmallows – an extra added bonus!

See quantities in recipe card.

spoon resting on a pottery dish full of sweet potato casserole.

Instructions

1 – To make your prep easier, use a can of sweet potatoes (or yams) that have already been peeled. Drain, then add them to a mixing bowl and beat until creamy. Next, add cream cheese and beat until creamy again. Add butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, ground cloves, vanilla, and a beaten egg.

2 – Mix well and fold into an 8 X 11 casserole dish. I like to use a pretty piece of pottery for this recipe since it’s often made for the holidays.

3 – In a separate bowl, add pecans, brown sugar, flour and butter. Mix with hands until crumbly to create streusel. Sprinkle streusel over sweet potato filling, then fill in gaps with mini marshmallows. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes until marshmallows start to brown.

4 – Watch the casserole carefully during cooking so the marshmallows don’t burn. You’ll know when it’s ready because you’ll smell a sweet candy aroma mixed with cinnamon and pecans wafting through the air!

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Recipe FAQS

What is sweet potato casserole?

Sweet potato casserole originated in the south in the early 1900’s and has become a traditional side dish at most Thanksgiving meals. The basic recipe starts with mashed sweet potatoes that are flavored with various spices. Then, they’re usually topped with either marshmallows or a pecan streusel.

Can sweet potato casserole be frozen?

Yes, you can freeze this casserole before or after baking. If freezing before, leave off the topping and place cooled filling in an air tight container. Freeze for up to 3 months and add toppings before baking. If freezing after baking, place in an air tight container and freeze up to 3 months. Thaw out in the refrigerator for a couple of days before reheating in the oven.

How can I make this casserole healthier?

The sugar has already been cut in half from most sweet potato recipes, but you can substitute honey or maple syrup if desired. You can also leave out the butter and cream cheese in the filling and substitute with almond milk.

spoon lifting casserole in the air.

Serving Suggestions

Allow the casserole to set for about 15 minutes before serving. You can make it ahead and keep in the fridge until ready to bake. If you decide to make it ahead, leave off the streusel and marshmallows and add those just before baking.

Be sure to try my other recipes that go well with Sweet Potato Casserole like Grilled Pork Tenderloin, Creamed Corn and Cornbread Biscuit Dressing.

More Holiday Recipes

If you’re looking for more holiday recipes, try these favorites from my kitchen to yours!

Recipe Card

loaded sweet potato casserole with marshmallows and pecans.

Sweet Potato Casserole

Creamy Sweet Potato Casserole topped with pecan streusel and mini marshmallows tastes so good...it's like eating dessert first!
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Sides
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 450kcal

*See notes in blog post for detailed tips, photos and instructions.

Ingredients

FILLING

  • 40 ounce can of drained sweet potatoes or canned yams
  • 4 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

TOPPING

  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Drain a large can of sweet potatoes (or yams) until all the fluid is gone. Add to a mixer, then beat until creamy.
  • Add cream cheese and beat until creamy again.
  • Add butter, cinnamon, cloves, brown sugar, and egg and vanilla.
  • Mix ingredients well and pour into an 8 X 11 greased casserole dish.
  • In a separate bowl, add pecans, brown sugar, flour and butter.
  • Mix ingredients with hands until crumbly to create streusel.
  • Sprinkle streusel over sweet potato filling, then fill in gaps with mini marshmallows.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes until marshmallows start to brown. 

Notes

  • Allow casserole to cool for 15 minutes before serving.
  • If preparing casserole ahead of time, follow all steps except leave the topping off and add it before baking. Filling can be refrigerated for up to 2 days. 

Nutrition

Calories: 450kcal | Carbohydrates: 63g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Sodium: 197mg | Potassium: 595mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 91mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition info is an auto generated estimate.

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13 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I have made this recipe for years. I can’t wait to try it adding marshmallows and cream cheese!

  2. 5 stars
    SERIOUSLY guys. This is the best sweet potato dish ever! Not too sweet. Very creamy and savory. Oh oh oh must have at every holiday event going forward.

  3. This sounds fantastic! Gonna make this instead of my usual. Always wondered about combining the two toppings! Thanks for sharing! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours! ????

    1. Hey Deby! So good to hear from you! I’m excited that you’re going to try my version of Sweet Potato Casserole. Please let me know how it goes…and Happy Thanksgiving to you too!

  4. My youngest son and I are both allergic to pecans. Will it cook the same if I just leave them out? I would love to make this recipe during the holidays!

    1. Hi Alyssa. Yes, it will cook the same if you leave them out, but you should probably just put marshmallows on top and eliminate the pecan streusel topping ingredients altogether.

    1. Hi Allan. Yes, you can make this recipe with fresh sweet potatoes that are microwaved, boiled, or baked. Enjoy! 🙂

  5. 5 stars
    So so happy I found this it’s AMAZING!!! Been looking for a Good tasting one and this is IT ❤️👍 THANK YOU

  6. Sounds like a delicious recipe gonna have to try it thank you. Carolyn from Illinois.

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