Classic Sweet Potato Pie is a sweet and savory dessert and the perfect comfort food. This recipe features simple ingredients and loads of flavor!
Sometimes the old school recipes with simple classic flavors are the best. And that’s exactly what this Sweet Potato Pie is… simple, classic, comforting, and flavorful. This fall favorite is made with roasted sweet potatoes, butter, evaporated milk (the secret ingredient), brown sugar, and a blend of warm fall spices. It tastes pretty close to pumpkin pie, but with a bit of a milder flavor that I much prefer.
What is Sweet Potato Pie?
Sweet potato pie is a favorite southern dessert served any time of year but mostly during the crisp, fall months and holiday gatherings. This dessert pie features a filling of mashed sweet potatoes, sugar, milk or cream, eggs, and spices, like cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. Then it is poured into a pastry or graham cracker crust and baked in the oven.
As compared to pumpkin pie, sweet potato pie is sweeter in flavor than the pumpkin pie. It is also typically lighter in density and more of a custard-like consistency than pumpkin pie.
Why should you use evaporated milk?
For me, using evaporated milk in this is a must. Some folks refer to it as Carnation milk or canned milk. Now, this is not the same thing as sweetened condensed milk – which my grandmother still calls “Eagle Brand Milk.”
While they both are concentrated milks, sweetened condensed milk is sweetened – just as the name implies. Evaporated milk, on the other hand, is concentrated but no extra sugar is added. It is also denser and creamier than regular milk, and it has a slightly caramelized flavor because of the high heat at which it is cooked.
Evaporated milk makes this pie super rich and creamy. That said, if you can’t get your hands on a can of evaporated milk, heavy cream will work as a substitute.
Sweet Potatoes – Now, my recipe calls for you to roast the sweet potatoes to get them cooked before they go into the pie filling. Many recipes, though, call for you to boil them. Either way will work just fine. I just think I prefer the flavor of them better when they’ve been roasted.
Light brown sugar – Pack it down y’all! No skimping on the sugar!
Eggs – Let your eggs sit out to warm to room temperature before you begin your mixture. This allows the eggs to more easily mix in with the other ingredients.
Butter – I recommend unsalted butter, but if all you have is salted butter… don’t let that get in the way of you and this delicious dessert!
Evaporated milk – I know it sounds like an odd choice, but trust me on this one. And, if you want my reasoning behind using evaporated milk, check out the section above.
Cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt – You can use whatever brand you have on-hand or can easily find in the baking and spice aisle of your local grocery store.
Vanilla extract – Any brand will do. Just make sure you have at least 1 teaspoon.
Pie crust – I suggest a 9-inch unbaked deep dish pie crust.
Whipped topping – Some may decline it, but I’m definitely not some. If a dollop of Cool Whip on the top of my sweet potato pie is wrong, I don’t want to be right. Or even better… marshmallow cream! Hit the top with a blow torch to get it all toasty… Wooo, doggie, that’s some good stuff right there! Y’all enjoy!
If you tried this Classic Sweet Potato Pie recipe, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it turned out in the comments below.
Classic Sweet Potato Pie
- 1 pound sweet potatoes
- 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 1 (5-ounce) can evaporated milk
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 (9-inch) unbaked deep dish pie crust
- Preheat the oven to 425° and line a rimmed baking sheet it aluminum foil. Wash the sweet potatoes and prick them a few times with a fork. Place them on the baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes or until tender. Remove from the oven and allow to cool enough to handle. Peel the potatoes when cool.
- Using a mixer, mash the potatoes until smooth. Add the sugar, eggs, and melted butter and mix to combine. Add the evaporated milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, giner, salt, and vanilla and mix until combined and smooth.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Place the unbaked pie crust on a foil lined, rimmed baking sheet. Pour the pie filling into the crust and bake in the center of the oven for 55 to 60 minutes, or until the pie is set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean. Allow the pie to cool. It may sink some as it cools. Refrigerate if desired. Serve topped with whipped cream or toasted marshmallow cream, if desired.
If nutritional values are provided, they are an estimate and will vary depending on the brands used. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, I recommend grabbing your favorite brands and plugging those ingredients into an online nutritional calculator.