A savory sweet potato casserole! Imagine that, no marshmallow topping, no pecans, no brown sugar. Instead, sweet potatoes get the savory treatment with sage, shallots, Parmesan and a little bit of Dijon. The creamy mashed sweet potato filling is to die for and the crunchy crouton-sage topping makes it heavenly.

oval casserole dish with a serving spoon set in it with sweet potato casserole topped with croutons and sage

Why I Love this Recipe

First and foremost, I love this recipe is because it’s savory, not cloyingly sweet like so many sweet potato casseroles. I find savory ingredients like cheese, shallots and Dijon do a better job of highlighting the flavor of sweet potatoes, not mask it.

I also love how easy this sweet potato casserole is to make. The croutons and fried sage can be cooked on the stovetop while the potatoes roast in the oven. Once the potatoes are tender they’re tossed in a blender and mixed with the rest of the filling. This dish is stunning and impressive while requiring very little work.

oval casserole dish with a serving spoon set in it with sweet potato casserole topped with croutons and sage

Ingredients in this Savory Sweet Potato Casserole

Kosher salt, black pepper and olive oil are assumed ingredients.

  • Sweet potatoes, are the base of this recipe! You’ll need 2 to 3 medium sweet potatoes.
  • Fresh sage is an important ingredient in this recipe. There’s really no substitute because the leaves get fried in oil. If you want to skip the frying of the herb, you can use fresh thyme or minced rosemary instead. 
  • Sourdough bread, you can also use a hearty whole-grain bread if you prefer.
  • Shallot
  • Olive oil or avocado oil mayonnaise, I really like Sir Kensington’s mayo.
  • Grated Parmesan, you can find grated Parmesan in the specialty cheese section.
  • Egg is important for binding and giving the casserole a bit of structure.
  • Dijon mustard adds savoriness to the casserole.
  • Nutmeg compliments the flavors of sweet potato, Parmesan and sage. It also adds a slight warmth to the dish. 
  • Lemon zest gets sprinkled over top and adds a nice brightness to balance out all of the savory flavors. 

How to Make this Sweet Potato Casserole

  1. Roast the sweet potatoes in the oven until soft.
  2. Meanwhile, fry the sage leaves in olive oil on the stove top.
  3. Toast the bread pieces on the stove top as well; set croutons aside.
  4. Cook the shallot in oil until softened; transfer to a blender.
  5. Add the cooked sweet potatoes, mayo, Parmesan, egg, Dijon, and nutmeg to blender with cooked shallot and blend until smooth.
  6. Transfer the sweet potato mixture to a baking dish and top with fried sage and croutons. Bake until topping is crispy and golden brown and filling is hot.
  7. Finish with fresh lemon zest and serve.
oval casserole dish with a serving spoon set in it with sweet potato casserole topped with croutons and sage

FAQs and Test Kitchen Tips

Is there a substitute for the mayonnaise?

I haven’t tested this, but you should be able to substitute the mayo with an extra egg and ¾ cup half-and-half, heavy cream, or melted butter.

Can I make this ahead of time?

You can prep the filling and the toppings up to 3 days ahead of time. Store the filling in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Store the croutons and sage in an airtight container on the stove top. 
Assemble the casserole and bake when ready to serve.

More Thanksgiving Recipes to Love…

Did you make this Savory Sweet Potato Casserole? Let me know in the comments below!

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oval casserole dish with a serving spoon set in it with sweet potato casserole topped with croutons and sage

Savory Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe

  • Author: Lauren Grant
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 68 servings 1x
  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

A creamy and savory sweet potato casserole topped with fried sage leaves and crunchy sourdough croutons.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 ½ pounds medium sweet potatoes, halved lengthwise
  • ¼ cup sage leaves
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 ½ cups sourdough bread broken into craggy pieces
  • Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • ½ cup olive oil or avocado oil mayonnaise*
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan (2 ounces)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350°F (176ºC) with racks set in upper-third and lower-third of oven. Line a baking sheet with foil. Place potatoes, cut side down on prepared sheet and prick skins with fork.
    roasted sweet potato halves on a foil-lined baking sheet
  2. Roast potatoes until very tender 1–1½ hours. Cool completely on sheets. Increase oven to 400°F (204ºC).
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high in a sauté pan until shimmering. Add sage and cook until starting to brown and crisp, 2–3 minutes.
    sage leaves fried in a skillet
  4. Transfer sage to a paper-towel lined plate. Add bread to remaining oil in pan and cook, stirring frequently, until crispy and golden brown, about 4 minutes; season with salt and pepper.
    torn bread pieces toasted in a skillet
  5. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in sauté pan over medium, add shallot and cook, stirring occasionally, until starting to brown, about 5 minutes.
    diced shallots cooked in a skillet
  6. Scoop flesh from potatoes and transfer to a blender; discard skins. Add cooked shallots, mayonnaise, Parmesan, egg, Dijon, nutmeg and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper to blender with potatoes; blend until smooth.
    sweet potatoes, parmesan, dijon, shallots, and mayo in a blender
  7. Transfer potato mixture to a shallow 1-quart baking dish, smooth top with a spatula then create some divots.
    pureed sweet potato in a blender
  8. Sprinkle sage and breadcrumbs evenly over sweet potatoes. Bake casserole on upper rack until top is golden and crisp, 20-25 minutes. Sprinkle lemon zest over top and cool 10 minutes.
    casserole dish filled with sweet potato filling and topped with croutons and sage

Notes

Recipe can easily be doubled to serve 12, in that case bake the casserole in a 2-quart baking dish.

Casserole can be prepped up to 1 day ahead of time. Leave the breadcrumbs and sage off until right before baking.

I prefer Sir Kensington’s Mayo here.

This recipe is adapted from a recipe I originally developed for Sir Kensington’s.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: ⅛ of the recipe
  • Calories: 309
  • Sugar: 8g
  • Sodium: 368mg
  • Fat: 18.5
  • Saturated Fat: 3.5g
  • Carbohydrates: 30g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Protein: 6g
  • Cholesterol: 33mg

Keywords: Savory sweet potato casserole

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About The Author

Lauren Grant is a professional culinary food scientist, food writer, recipe developer, and food photographer. Lauren is a previous magazine editor and test kitchen developer and has had work published in major national publications including Diabetic Living Magazine, Midwest Living Magazine, Cuisine at Home Magazine, EatingWell.com, AmericasTestKitchen.com, and more.

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Comments

  1. I made this for Thanksgiving yesterday because we didn’t want the traditional ultra-sweet casserole. It is a new favorite and we may never go back to the sweet version! I wasn’t sure about the lemon zest, but it was a wonderful compliment to the dish.