Not Using Canned Milk
All custard pies require dairy of some kind most rely on milk, cream, or half-and-half. But as sweet potato has Southern roots a region with high temperatures canned milk is more distinct to the birthplace of sweet potato pie. Evaporated milk add a sweetness and density that fresh milk cannot replicate.
Follow this tip: Use evaporated milk instead of cream or half-and-half. It adds sweetness and creaminess to the pies texture.
Tips For Baking Sweet Potatoes
- Select similar sized sweet potatoes.
- Do not let them touch while cooking.
- Do not wrap them for cooking as this will trap the steam and cause the skin to be too soft. Only wrap is using them in another dish where the skin will be discarded, such as sweet potato casserole.
- An instant read thermometer should register between 205º F and 212º F in the thickest portion of the potato when perfectly cooked.
Not Giving The Pie Enough Time To Rest
Like any custard pie, sweet potato pie isnt ready to cut and serve right after baking. While the sweet, fragrant aroma might entice you, give the pie time to thoroughly cool so your guests get the picture-perfect slice your pie is capable of.
Follow this tip: For the best possible results, give your pie 24 hours to cool and rest before cutting into it. If youre on a tighter schedule, four hours is the bare minimum.
Meghan is the Food Editor for Kitchn’s Skills content. She’s a master of everyday baking, family cooking, and harnessing good light. Meghan approaches food with an eye towards budgeting both time and money and having fun. Meghan has a baking and pastry degree, and spent the first 10 years of her career as part of Alton Brown’s culinary team. She co-hosts a weekly podcast about food and family called Didn’t I Just Feed You.
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Ready The Dough For Blind Baking
The first thing youll do is prepare the pastry crust and pie dish for blind baking. Roll out the dough on a floured work surface, and then transfer it to your pie dish and poke holes across the bottom using the tines of a fork. Crimp or fold the edges and then, gently lay a sheet or two of aluminum foil across the dough.
Mold the foil over the dough so that it covers the dough completely and then transfer to the refrigerator to chill.
To Use Butter Or Shortening Or Lard
Basically, the debate exists on whether to use butter, shortening, lard or some combination for the flakiest, best-tasting pie crust. I like a combination of butter and shortening for pie crusts. The shortening helps it to be super flaky, tender and sturdy, while the butter gives it the delicious buttery flavor. The combination results in a delicious, flaky, yet perfectly sturdy crust that works for even heavier pie fillings.
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How To Make Sweet Potato Pie Step By Step
Step 1: Cook the Sweet Potatoes
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Poke holes all over the sweet potatoes and place them on a microwave-safe place. Microwave for 5 minutes flipping the potatoes over halfway through. Poke a knife through the potato. If there is no resistance they are ready. If not, continue to microwave in 30-second intervals until soft. Let the potatoes cool to room temperature.
Step 2: Peel Sweet Potatoes
Remove the peel from the potatoes and place in a large bowl. Whip them with an electric mixer until smooth.
Step 3: Make the Filling
Add in the softened butter and mix until combined. Add the brown sugar and granulated sugar and mix until smooth, followed by the eggs. Finally add the heavy cream, flour, lemon juice, vanilla, salt, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg, and mix until smooth and combined. Scrape the sides of the bowl if needed.
Step 4: Prepare Pie Crust
Place the pie crust into a 9 inch pie plate and crimp the edges. Add the filling and smooth out the top.
Step 5: Bake
Bake for 45-50 minutes until slightly set. The filling will be slightly jiggly, but it is ready when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean and a thermometer inserted in the center reads between 170-175 degrees. Allow the pie to cool to room temperature on a wire rack before slicing.
Sweet Potato Pie Ingredients
There are a few key ingredients to ensure this Sweet Potato Pie recipe turns out perfect:
- Sweet potatoes Baked, for the reasons I mentioned above.
- Unsalted butter At room temperature so it is easier to mix in.
- Granulated sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Spices: Cinnamon, nutmeg , cloves.
- You could also use a little pumpkin pie spice instead. I recommend doing 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice in place of the cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
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How To Make Vegan Sweet Potato Pie
You will find full instructions and measurements in the recipe card at the bottom of the post. This is a summary of the process to go along with the process photos.
- Its so simple to make this sweet potato pie!
- Simply add sweet potato purée to your blender jug along with coconut milk, brown sugar, cornstarch, vanilla, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves and ground ginger. Blend until smooth.
- Pour this out over a 9-inch uncooked pie crust in a pie dish and smooth down.
- Bake for 1 hour at 350°F bringing it out at the 40 minute mark to tent with foil if it shows any signs of over-browning and putting it back in for the remaining 20 minutes.
- Let it cool on the counter for at least 2 hours before slicing and serving. You can also put it in the fridge once cooled and then let it chill some more. The more chilled it is, the better it will slice!
- Serve with some chopped pecans for decoration and some vegan whipped cream!
Spices For Sweet Potato Pie
Again, the two pies are so similar, you can pick and choose among your favorites: cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, mace, allspice, cloves, or five-spice powder , are all contenders.
Pumpkin isnt as bold in flavor as sweet potatoes. Therefore, it depends upon a good amount of added spices. But I see no reason not to spice up sweet potato pie in the same way.
Most Southern cooks will tell you that nutmeg is traditionally the favorite spice.
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Does The Butter Need To Be Cold
Absolutely make sure that the butter is cold or even frozen. Cold fats in your dough are a must. It helps the crust to be flaky, tender and so delicious when the bits of cold butter and shortening melt in the hot oven as the crust bakes. If butter and shortening are too warm in the crust before baking, it can result in a hard, greasy and even crumbly pie crust. Some people freeze all of the ingredients before mixing the dough.
What Are The Best Apples For Apple Pie
While Grandmother only used one type of apple in her apple pie, through the years of experimenting, I found I loved to use a combination of apples. Baking apples for how soft they become, eating apples for their crispness and texture, and Granny Smith for their tartness. But, of course, you can experiment for the combination, or lack of combination, of apples that you prefer.
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The Secret To The Perfect Sweet Potato Pie
Ready to learn how to make homemade sweet potato pie? We’re sharing our secret for the ultimate pie, plus a few of our favorite sweet potato pie recipes. Before the baking begins, be sure to select the best sweet potatoes possible for your pie. You’ll end up with a sweeter pie that is beautifully colored and quickly devoured.
Next Place The Sweet Potatoes Into The Boiling Water And Let Them Sit For 15
Of course, my cooking skills being what they are, this was where my first mishap occurred. I had filled the pot too high, and once the potatoes were dropped in, the water threatened to boil over.
Stick the potatoes with a fork to check if they are soft enough to pierce through. If not, let them boil for a little longer, checking them every five minutes or so.
Once the potatoes have softened, take them out of the water and place them into a mixing bowl.
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Best Thanksgiving Dessert Recipes
As much as I love the savory dishes we make for Thanksgiving, its just not complete without all of the desserts! After stuffing ourselves full of turkey and potatoes and various side dishes, its time to move on to the pies. Pumpkin, Pecan, Apple, French Silk, and a Homemade Sweet Potato Pie recipe.
Sweet potatoes are a big part of the holidays when it comes to food, so you have to serve the classic sweet potato pie. Its hands down one of the best Thanksgiving dessert recipes. Dont forget to add this dish to your dessert table!
Do You Need Both Baking Powder And Soda
Some recipes call for both baking powder and baking soda. Basically, the reason for both is because sometimes you need more leavening than you have acid available in the recipe. Its all about balance. Another reason to use both baking powder and baking soda is because they affect both browning and flavor.
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Sweet Potato Pie Toppings
You dont need any toppings for this specific sweet potato pie recipe. But, I have some ideas for potential flavorful toppings you can add.
- Whip Cream
- Ice Cream
- Cool Whip
You can top your sweet potato pie with a Marshmallow Fluff, and you can strike it with a torch. A dollop of homemade whip cream is the second-best topping choice. Its the most classic and always a delicious topping for sweet potato pie.
Best Southern Sweet Potato Pie
Sweet Potato Pie is a classic southern dessert thats irresistible! Made with simple ingredients and warm spices in a buttery crust, this pie is perfect for a weeknight meal and is a MUST on your holiday table.
When you say sweet potato in my house, the gang comes running but when you say sweet potato pie, well, then there might just be a stampede in the kitchen! We love these flavor-packed potatoes and eat them at least once a week.
With Thanksgiving right around the corner, Im starting to test drive a few recipes just to make sure the flavors are right and this pie has made the cut.
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The Best Sweet Potato Pie Topping
. Since I cant let well enough alone, I topped the pie with a fluffy cloud of marshmallow whipped cream. Its creamy, puffy, not-too-sweet, and puts marshmallows where they belong: on dessert.
- Fans of the marshmallow-topped sweet potato casserole: I dont get the hype but to each their own.
- Check out my Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole for my take on this classic Thanksgiving recipe. You can top it with marshmallows if you must just dont tell me.
Toasted Coconut. Last, since Im a bit of a texture freak, I couldnt resist adding a little crunch. Toasted coconut flakes, while optional, put this pie squarely over the top.
How Do You Know When Sweet Potato Pie Is Done
To determine if your Sweet Potato Pie is fully cooked and ready to pull from the oven, give it a gentle nudge! If the center of the pie jiggles ever so slightly, its ready to come out!
If you want to get specific with it, you can take the internal temperature of the pie using an instant-read probe thermometer. The pie is fully cooked when it reaches 175°F!
As mentioned above, the pie needs to finish cooking during the cooling process, so do not attempt to cut into it right away! For best results, allow for four hours of resting time minimum!
MORE SWEET POTATO RECIPES YOULL LOVE:
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Things To Consider: Boiled Or Baked Sweet Potatoes
For this sweet potato pie recipe, I highly recommend baking your sweet potatoes. You must also consider how long do you bake a sweet potato pie. When you mash the sweet potatoes, they are usually much drier relative to a baked sweet potato. You can cook the sweet potatoes in the water and boil it on a burner. If you boil the sweet potato, the moisture stays inside.
Another advantage of baking the sweet potatoes is you do not have to mess a huge cooking pot. Youre going to have to keep them on top of the burner while they cook. Just bake the sweet potatoes in the oven with foil and a baking dish. You dont have to think about it, and its simple, hands-off planning time.
If you want to boil your sweet potatoes, you may need to apply some extra butter and milk. Otherwise, it can turn out very dry to the finished dessert. Remember to follow the steps on how long do you bake a sweet potato pie.
Southern Sweet Potato Pie
Sweet Potato Pie is a delicious southern classic and one of my favorite pie recipes! Its simple, creamy and delicious and is absolutely perfect in the fall or anytime! This pie recipe is a family recipe passed down from my great grandmother. Its a favorite at family suppers during the fall and has always been a part of my familys Thanksgiving dessert table!
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My Dad Is Pretty Particular About The Method In Which He Mixes His Ingredients
Truthfully, the next few steps could be done in any order. My father swears by following the directions “the correct way” for the most authentic cooking experience, but feel free to go about it how you see fit.
Begin by fully mashing the sweet potatoes. Then, add in the butter while the potato mash is still hot and mix. Cut the lemon in half, and squeeze the juice into the mash to taste .
Measure out the vanilla extract, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Then, pour into the bowl and mix. Pour the evaporated milk into the sweet potatoes, and mix. Finally, add sugar or another sweetener of your choice to taste.
As you can see, that’s a lot of steps included in the “pour everything in a bowl and mix together” step. But my dad is nothing if not by-the-book. This is a man that will not even go five miles over the speed limit.