If you’re looking for a sweet potato casserole recipe that is vegan AND just as delicious as the original that you grew up eating then you need look NO FURTHER! This recipe is tried and true and sure to please everyone. It comes together with simple ingredients and can largely be prepped ahead of time for easy holiday meals.

I’m on a ROLL with the holiday dishes lately! This is actually a SUPER old recipe of mine that really needed a facelift. I veganized it and figured that while I was at it, I’d go ahead and give it fresh new photos AND a new video!

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But first- tell me: what ARE your feelings about sweet potato casserole? I figure that since you’re here, you don’t totally hate it…?

I’ve learned that most people either love it or hate it and I most certainly fall into the LOVE IT group (the best group obviously). I’m not sure that a Thanksgiving has gone by where I didn’t eat sweet potato casserole and I never want to experience that.

sweet potato casserole topped with candied pecans being pulled out of a casserole dish

Another question for you: how do you feel about nuts in your casserole??

I know that not everyone loves pecans in their sweet potato casserole but since I love them so much, I just can’t resist. Instead of mixing them into the sweet potato mash, I candy them and place them on top. It adds a nice extra bit of sweetness and crunch BUT makes it super easy for nut haters to push them to the side and still enjoy the casserole.

top down shot of sweet potato casserole in a casserole pan topped with candied pecans. a spoon hanging out the side

Growing up I always enjoyed marshmallows on the top of my casserole. However, I haven’t had a lot of luck with vegan marshmallows on this. Feel free to give it a try with your favorite marshmallows if you desire.

But, I’m a huge fan of this recipe JUST the way it is with the candied pecans on top.

side shot of sweet potato casserole in a casserole pan topped with candied pecans. a portion of the casserole is gone and a spoon is in the dish

Can this Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole be prepped ahead of time?

When making a holiday menu, I know it’s always nice to know what can be prepped ahead of time to make things so smoother.

This CAN definitely be made ahead of time. Here’s what I suggest: make the recipe as written including making the pecan topping. Place the pecan topping in an air tight container and set aside for later. It will stick together but you cna just kind of break it apart when ready to use. Make the sweet potato casserole and put it in your prepared casserole dish but DON’T put the pecans on. Cover and place in the fridge.

When you’re ready to serve it, you can take it out of the fridge, cover with the pecans and bake as directed. You may end up wanting an extra few minutes on the bake time since you’re baking it from cold.

sweet potato casserole topped with candied pecans being pulled out of a casserole dish

Ingredients we’re working with (and substitution suggestions):

  • Sweet potatoes- really any kind that you prefer will work here. I always go with the classics! If you can, weigh them so that you get a more accurate amount. Potato sizes can vary SO greatly so I always like to know I’ve got the proper weight.
  • Maple syrup– really love the maple flavor in this recipe. It’s subtle but adds a really nice touch and also provides an extra touch of creaminess to the casserole.
  • Vegan butter– I used to make this with coconut oil but really prefer it was a vegan butter. Either will work well though!
  • Brown sugar– this recipe was tested with all maple syrup but I just really prefer how it tastes with the brown sugar in it.
  • Spices– because all good holiday recipes has a bit of cinnamon and nutmeg in them, right?
  • Pecans– these used to be mixed into the dish but I really love them on top. It also makes it easier for nut haters to push them to the side if they don’t prefer them (weirdos!). I grew up eating marshmallows on my sweet potato casserole but I haven’t found one that I like on top of this casserole.

See how to make the Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole here:

More side dishes to add to your meal:

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Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole

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  • Author: Brita Britnell
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 68 servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


This Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole is simple to make and tastes JUST like the original that we all grew up enjoying!



For the Sweet Potato Mash:

  • 4 pounds of sweet potatoes (ends up being about 4 large sweet potatoes), peeled and roughly chopped into cubes
  • 3 tablespoons of vegan butter (can sub for coconut oil as desired)
  • 2 tablespoons of maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons of packed brown sugar (light or dark)
  • 3 tablespoons of plant based milk
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon of salt

For Pecan Topping:

  • 1 1/2 cups of pecans (whole or chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon of vegan butter or coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons of maple syrup
  • dash of cinnamon


  1. Place the sweet potato chunks in a large pot and fill with water until the sweet potatoes are completely covered. Place over high heat, bring water to a boil, and then reduce heat so that the water is at a steady simmer. Simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the sweet potatoes are very tender.*
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a casserole dish (about 9×13) and set aside.
  3. In the meantime, prepare the pecans by toasting them in a skillet over medium-high heat. Toss frequently and let them toast for about 5 minutes but be sure not to let them burn at all.
  4. To the pecans, add the butter, maple syrup, and cinnamon. Stir to coat the pecans and let toast for an additional minute. Remove from heat and set aside to cool a bit.
  5. Once the sweet potatoes are fork tender, drain and add them to a large bowl along with the vegan butter, maple syrup, brown sugar, milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Using a potato masher or hand mixer, mash the potatoes so that everything is combined and very few potato chunks remain.
  6. Spoon the sweet potato mash into the casserole dish and smooth it out so that it’s even. Top with the pecans spread evenly out across the casserole.
  7. Bake for 17-20 minutes.
  8. Let cool just slightly and ENJOY!!!


*this part can easily be done a day in advance and then you can store the potatoes in the fridge until you’re ready to bake the casserole. You can also make the whole casserole as written and simply wait to add the pecans until ready to bake.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Category: side dish
  • Method: baking
  • Cuisine: american