Crockpot Sweet Potato Casserole

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This slow cooker sweet potato casserole is the perfect addition to Thanksgiving dinner! Everything is cooked in one vessel, making for an easy and delicious side dish.

If you’re a fan of this cooking method, try my slow cooker cranberry sauce, turkey breast, and Crockpot ham.

Crockpot sweet potato casserole with pecan topping.
Table of Contents
  1. Prep the potatoes
  2. Slow cook the sweet potatoes
  3. Mash into a smooth consistency
  4. Pecan topping
  5. Optional marshmallows
  6. Serve this with
  7. Frequently asked questions
  8. Crockpot Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe

My family always requests my sweet potato casserole for the big holiday feast. However, to save on oven space when juggling the turkey, stuffing, and pies, I like to grab my slow cooker instead or baking dish. Making the sweet potato casserole in a Crock-Pot makes for a simple set-and-forget recipe. It’s the perfect side dish that saves you active cooking time.

The enclosed vessel gently cooks and steams the starchy spuds, which easily crush. I like lightly sweetening the mixture with brown sugar, vanilla extract, and spices for a baked aroma. After a few hours, mash the potatoes in the slow cooker. For crunch, add a buttery and sweet pecan topping. If you’re a fan of melty mini marshmallows for that smores effect, you can melt them right on top.

Prep the potatoes

Pieces of sweet potato that have been cut on a cutting board.
Step 1. Cut the sweet potatoes

I use orange-fleshed sweet potatoes like Beauregard or red garnet. They have a sweet flavor and moist texture that’s easy to mash. Other types of sweet potatoes, like white and purple, can be used, but the texture is more starchy and dry.

Peel and cut the potatoes into ¾ to 1-inch pieces. Four pounds of diced potatoes should yield between 11 to 12 cups.

Slow cook the sweet potatoes

Use a 6-quart slow cooker to hold the large volume of cut potatoes. Add them to the vessel, along with melted butter for richness and brown sugar for a hint of caramel flavor. Add vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt to enhance the potatoes’ natural sweetness.

Add orange juice and freshly grated zest, if available, for a touch of citrus. Stir to combine, then cover and cook. That’s it! To tenderize the potatoes, cook on the high setting for between 3 to 4 hours or the low for 7 to 8 hours. They should pierce easily with a fork.

Mash into a smooth consistency

Potato masher breaking down sweet potatoes inside a slow cooker.
Step 3. Mash the potatoes down

Once the sweet potatoes are fork-tender, crush them! You can do this directly in the slow cooker insert. Use a potato masher or handheld mixer to crush the flesh into a smooth puree.

Alternatively, you can keep the pieces chunky for a rustic appearance. If you want a lighter consistency, stir in whole milk or heavy cream, 1 tablespoon at a time. I add cream to my classic sweet potato casserole for a more whipped texture.

Pecan topping

Add a sweet pecan topping to the mashed sweet potatoes. It’s a simple mixture of chopped pecans, melted butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Walnuts or almonds would be delicious substitutes.

Sprinkle it on top of the spuds, cover it, and let it warm on the high setting for about 10 minutes. I like drizzling some maple syrup and more cinnamon and nutmeg.

Optional marshmallows

Melted mini marshmallows on top of a crockpot sweet potato casserole.
Step 5 (optional). Top with marshmallows

For this recipe, you can stop here or take it to the next level with mini marshmallows. My kids love the melted, fluffy bites. Add some on top and cook for about 10 minutes until it becomes gooey.

If you like a lightly browned surface, toast it using a handheld blow torch. I use this when making the sugary crust for creme brulee. Alternatively, you can brown the surface in the oven. Just sprinkle on the nut mixture and marshmallows. Bake at 350ºF (177ºC) until the surface turns light golden brown. This will take about 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve this with

Frequently asked questions

How do you keep sweet potato casserole from being runny?

You don’t have to add a lot of extra liquid to cook the sweet potatoes in the slow cooker. They contain about 77% moisture, which will release and steam the tubers until tender. If you see excess water on the bottom of the pot once tender, drain a little before mashing.

Should I put eggs in my sweet potato casserole?

For a lighter consistency of the mashed sweet potatoes, you can add 1 to 2 whisked eggs. This will add richness and structure. Make sure to let the potatoes cool below 144ºF (62°C) before adding the eggs. Otherwise, they with curdle. Slow cook for an additional 2 hours on high to cook the eggs.

Can sweet potato casserole be made ahead and frozen?

Yes, you can make each component, the masked sweet potatoes, and pecan topping, then freeze them separately. Defrost before using and reheat in the slow cooker or the oven in a baking dish at 350ºF (177ºC).

Wooden spoon scooping sweet potato casserole out of a slow cooker.

Browning marshmallows in a Crockpot

There’s no way to achieve a toasted surface in the crockpot since the device doesn’t heat above 300ºF (148ºC) even on the high setting. Sucrose in marshmallows will only brown and caramelize above 320ºF (160ºC). You’ll need to use a handheld torch, or you can heat it in the oven at 350ºF (177ºC) until the surface turns golden, about 15 minutes. The Crockpot brand insert can withstand up to 400ºF (204ºF).

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Crockpot Sweet Potato Casserole

If there's no room on the stovetop, then make a delicious sweet potato casserole in your slow cooker!
4.67 from 3 votes
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time4 hrs 10 mins
Total Time4 hrs 40 mins
Servings 12 servings
Course Side
Cuisine American

Ingredients 
 

  • 4 pounds sweet potatoes
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, divided
  • ½ cup brown sugar, packed, divided
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice, or water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, or sea salt, divided
  • 1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup mini marshmallows, optional

Instructions 

  • Prepare Sweet Potatoes – Scrub and wash sweet potatoes with cold water. Pat dry with paper towels. Use a vegetable peeler to remove the skin. Cut into about 1-inch pieces.
  • Slow Cook – In a 6-quart slow cooker, add the sweet potatoes, 4 tablespoons melted butter, ¼ cup brown sugar, vanilla, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg, and ⅛ teaspoon salt. Stir to combine.
    Cover and cook on high setting for 3 to 4 hours or low setting for 7 to 8 hours. The potatoes are ready when fork-tender, cook longer if needed.
  • Mash the Potatoes – Use a potato masher or hand held mixer to crush the potatoes until a smooth puree is formed. Spread into an even layer.
  • Add Pecan Topping – In a medium bowl combine chopped pecans, ¼ cup brown sugar, and 2 tablespoons unsalted butter. Sprinkle on top of mashed sweet potatoes. Cover and cook on high setting for 10 minutes.
  • Add Marshmallows (Optional) – Sprinkle marshmallows on the sweet potato casserole right after adding the pecan topping. Cover and cook on high setting for 10 minutes, or until melted. See notes for alternate instructions on browning the marshmallows in the oven.

Notes

  • Recipe Yield: About 6 cups
  • Serving Size: ½ cup
  • Toasting the Marshmallows: Brown with a handheld torch. Alternatively, add the pecans mixture and marshmallows on top. Bake at 350ºF (177ºC) until the surface lightly browns, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Make-ahead: The mashed sweet potatoes can be stored in the cooled slow cooker insert for up to 3 days in advance. Warm in the slow cooker, then add toppings when ready to serve. 
  • Storing and reheating: The casserole can be cooled completely, covered, and refrigerated for up to 5 days. Reheat small portions in the microwave on high setting in 30-second increments until hot.
  • Make it Dairy-Free: Use plant-based butter instead of dairy butter. 
Nutrition Facts
Crockpot Sweet Potato Casserole
Amount Per Serving
Calories 288 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Fat 12g18%
Saturated Fat 4g20%
Trans Fat 0.2g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 15mg5%
Sodium 138mg6%
Potassium 564mg16%
Carbohydrates 44g15%
Fiber 5g20%
Sugar 18g20%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 21636IU433%
Vitamin C 5mg6%
Calcium 62mg6%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Jessica Gavin

I'm a culinary school graduate, cookbook author, and a mom who loves croissants! My passion is creating recipes and sharing the science behind cooking to help you gain confidence in the kitchen.

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