Sweet potato casserole with an oat, pecan and cranberries topping and naturally sweetened with maple syrup. Gluten-free, no refined sugar added!
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This sweet potato casserole was almost a no-go.
Since American Thanksgiving is coming up, I wanted to test out some healthier versions of traditional sides.
My first attempt was a big pile of mush that was a result of trying to make it healthy AND vegan, which meant subbing applesauce for eggs and coconut oil for butter.
Running out of maple syrup mid-way through didn't help either, since I also was going sugar-free.
After wasting that much sweet potato, I almost gave up.
Then that night I was snacking on the pecan mix I used in these “nachos” and realized that same sweet and savory combo with pecans & dried cranberries would be a great topping for my next attempt.
Re-inspired and re-stocked with more pure maple syrup, I hit the kitchen again.
I still made 2 out of 3 of my original goals – while it's not vegan, it's still a healthier version and NO added sugar.
(Also accidentally gluten-free since I used an oat topping instead of flour.)
Don't worry, it's still sweet from the maple and has some of the best holiday spices for flavor.
Bonus – you can forgo an extra bowl if you want and just mix it up in your casserole dish!
I'm probably not the first to put dried cranberries on top of a sweet potato casserole but I think it's pretty amazing.
I know fresh cranberries are all the rage this time of year but the dried ones add just the right flavor.
You're going to want to make a big batch of mashed sweet potatoes so that you can make this casserole and those amazing rolls I shared with you the other day. Okay?
Healthier Maple Sweet Potato Casserole
For sweet potatoes:
- 3 cups mashed sweet potatoes (about 1.5 pounds or 5 medium potatoes)
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 cup pecan pieces
- 1/4 cup rolled oats
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons salted butter , melted (or unsalted butter with an extra pinch of salt)
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
For sweet potatoes:
- In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the mashed sweet potatoes and eggs until combined. Stir in milk, maple syrup and cinnamon.
- Transfer to a 9 inch casserole dish and top with sea salt and nutmeg.
For pecan topping:
- In a small bowl, mix together the pecan pieces, oats, maple syrup, cranberries and butter.
- Pour pecan mixture evenly on top of sweet potatoes. Bake at 350°F for about 30 minutes, or until lightly browned. Serve hot.
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