My Sweet Potato Mash recipe has less than 10 ingredients, and it’s such a yummy and delicious side to almost any protein! Start by boiling the potatoes, toss them with a little garlic butter and sour cream for creaminess! Trust me; these will become a go-to for mashed potatoes!

sweet potato mash topped with butter and  thyme


Actually, they’re not. This sweet potato mash is pretty savory! And it’s seriously the comfort food we all need. Don’t get me wrong, I love my roasted garlic mashed potatoes, my cheddar mashed potatoes, and even my 20-minute garlic and herb ones, but these are in a class of their own. Tender sweet potatoes mashed up and flavored with cinnamon, sour cream, and a few other select ingredients. I’m willing to bet you’ve got most if not all of these ingredients on hand already. And it’s never too early to start testing out the menu for Thanksgiving. Not that you actually need an excuse to make these! 

Serve mashed sweet potatoes as a side dish with just about anything you like, but here are a few suggestions: my cider roast, you could also do my basic pot roast recipe, 1-hour whole roasted chicken, garlic butter salmon, balsamic chicken in cream sauce, crispy chicken tenders, and you already know they’d go beautifully with my perfect turkey recipe. And if you’re thinking sweet potatoes with gravy – here’s the only one you need.

mashed sweet potatoes topped with butter, thyme, and spoon

Ingredients for homemade mashed sweet potatoes recipe:

  • Sweet Potatoes: You’ll need 2 pounds of sweet potatoes for each batch of this recipe. You can easily double, triple, or even quadruple this recipe if you’re making it for Thanksgiving or Christmas. Just be sure to peel and cut the potatoes into 1½-inch pieces so that they all cook up in roughly the same amount of time.
  • Kosher salt: Goes into the potatoes while we’re boiling them and also to flavor them later.
  • Garlic: While the sweet potatoes are boiling, I like to combine the minced garlic with butter to help flavor them.
  • Salted Butter: You can also use unsalted butter and just add a big pinch of salt to the whole thing. I usually have salted butter on hand and use it for most of my recipes!
  • Cinnamon: I like to season the sweet potatoes with a dash of cinnamon but they’re completely savory! I feel like the cinnamon just brings out the natural sweetness of sweet potatoes. You can omit the cinnamon though and use other fresh herbs like thyme or rosemary if you’d like!
  • Creme Fraiche: If you’re being fancy! Otherwise feel free to use sour cream or a full fat greek yogurt instead.
  • Parsley: Chopped parsley or fresh thyme just adds a bit of color and freshness to the mash! Feel free to omit it if you don’t want all that on top!
riced sweet potatoes in cast iron

How to make a homemade sweet potato mash:

  1. Start by boiling the potatoes. You want to peel the sweet potatoes with a peeler. Then cut them into 1½-inch pieces. If you cut them large or smaller, it’s fine, but the time that they take to boil may vary slightly from what I’ve listed. Add the potatoes to a dutch oven, large pot, or a large sauccepan. Add enough water to cover the potatoes by at least an inch and then cook them over high heat until boiling. Lower the heat slightly so that it simmers, then let them go for roughly 15 minutes. When you can pierce the sweet potatoes easily with a fork or a knife, they’re done. The fork should go through without any resistance so that it’s almost effortless to mash them up with a potato masher. Drain the sweet potatoes and add them to a bowl or back into the dutch oven.
  2. Mash them up. You have a few options to mash the sweet potatoes. The first is a traditional potato masher. You can also use a potato ricer or a hand mixer. I used the ricer this time around and though it works fine, the sweet potato masher is much easier and quicker. The hand mixer isn’t something that I often recommend for mashed potatoes, however, it seems to work pretty well for sweet potatoes. The texture is about the same regardless of which tool you use! You can also use a large fork if you don’t have a potato masher/handmixer. I find it’s easier to do that on a cutting board and then scoop the mashed potato into a bowl with a bench scraper.
  3. Finish them off. Melt the garlic and butter together rin a microwave safe bowl until the butter melts and the garlic is fragrant. Pour the butter mixture over the mashed sweet potatoes and stir to combine. Add in the sour cream (or creme fraiche) and fold the sweet potatoes. If they’re a little thick for your liking, you can add in additional sour cream, or a splash of milk to bring them to your desired consistency. Taste and adjust with additional salt and pepper as desired before topping them with parsley or fresh thyme.
swirl of sweet potato mash in dish

FAQs about homemade sweet potato mash

Why do you boil them instead of roasting them?

I prefer to boil the sweet potatoes rather than roast or bake them in the oven on a baking sheet because I find that the potatoes dry out more than way and require more milk/liquid to thin them out later. I also prefer the flavor of boiled sweet potatoes – they seem to have a bit more sweetness.

Can I make these in a pressure cooker/instant pot?

You can! I suggest following a recipe that uses a trivet in the instant pot with water at the base. These will take anywhere from 30-50 minutes to cook all the way through, depending on the size. Once you’ve cooked your sweet potatoes, you can pick up the recipe from step 2.

How would I make them sweeter?

You can add a bit of brown sugar or even maple syrup along with the cinnamon. Feel free to omit the garlic and use just plain melted butter instead.

How can you store leftover sweet potato mash?

Leftovers can be kept in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. You can also pop the sweet potato mash into a ziptop bag and keep them in the freezer for up to 3 months.

If you like this recipe you might also like:

prepared mashed potatoes in dish with spoon
Yield: Serves 4-5

Easy Homemade Sweet Potato Mash

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

My Sweet Potato Mash recipe has less than 10 ingredients, and it's such a yummy and delicious side to almost any protein! Start by boiling the potatoes, toss them with a little garlic butter and sour cream for creaminess! Trust me; these will become a go-to for mashed potatoes!

Easy Homemade Sweet Potato Mash


  • 2 lb. sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 ½ inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 3 tablespoons salted butter
  • ⅛ - ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons creme fraiche (or sour cream/ greek yogurt)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley or thyme


    1. BOIL: Place the cubed sweet potatoes in a stock pot or large dutch oven. Add water to cover the potatoes by an inch. Add the salt and bring to a boil over high heat. Then, cook for 14-20 minutes or until the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork.
    2. MASH: Drain the potatoes, add them to a bowl and mash with a potato masher or rice them. Add the garlic and butter to a small bowl and zap in the microwave until the butter melts. Pour the butter over the mashed sweet potatoes, add the sour cream, and stir to combine.
    3. FINISH: Taste and adjust with salt and pepper as desired. Transfer sweet potatoes to your serving dish and top with chopped parsley or thyme. Serve with homemade gravy if desired.


Variations: Sweet potatoes can be made sweet (these are savory) by omiting the garlic and adding maple syrup, brown sugar, and a small splash of vanilla, if desired.

Have you made this recipe?

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