Thanksgiving Prep: Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Cranberries and Pecans

By Katie, 5:40 am

I’m excited to eat many things this Thanksgiving – turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pie. But I just might be most excited about this dish.

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Cranberries and Pecans

I love sweet potatoes, always have. So when my mom called me up and said she’d volunteered me to be in charge of sweet potatoes this Thanksgiving, I was quite pleased. But of course I wanted to practice my dish before the big day. And of course I reached out on Twitter for suggestions.

I got a variety of answers to that question, but I decided to go with this roasted sweet potato dish because A) we’re already having mashed white potatoes, and B) several members of my family specifically requested no marshmallows in the sweet potato dish. Fine by me.

So the test run began. First I peeled and cubed 3 pounds’ worth of sweet potatoes.

What? You mean you don’t have a fish-shaped cutting board? ;-)

Then I tossed said sweet potatoes in a delicious mixture of brown sugar, orange juice, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, and a bit of salt.

Poured them in a baking dish and scattered some dried cranberries on top. A few chunks of butter too.

That dish went into the oven for about a half hour. While it was cooking away, I made the pecan topping by combining flour, brown sugar, and some more cinnamon and ginger. Plus more butter. Yes, this is a decadent dish. Yes, it tastes wonderful.

I think my chunks of butter were too big, because I wasn’t having much success “cutting them into” the rest of the ingredients. So I gave up and used my hands. Worked much better.

Hello, pecans!

Then I pulled my sweet potatoes out of the oven, poured on the topping, and popped them back in. Yep, we’re talking two rounds of cooking. Totally worth it.

When I pulled them back out, the sweet potatoes were soft and caramelized, and the topping had browned nicely.

You can’t really see the sweet potatoes, but they’re under there!

YUM! A perfect Thanksgiving side dish!

I was a little unsure about the cranberries because I’d never had that combination before. Turns out, it’s delicious.

All-in-all, a successful Thanksgiving test run! I fully plan to serve this sweet potato dish on Thanksgiving Day, unless one of my blog-reading family members has a genuine objection. Speak now or forever hold your peace! :lol:

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Cranberries and Pecans
from McCormick
Makes a heaping 9 x 13 pan

3 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
3/4 cup packed brown sugar, divided
2 tbsp freshly-squeezed orange juice
2 tsp pure vanilla
1.5 tsp cinnamon, divided
1.5 tsp ground ginger, divided
1/2 tsp salt
6 tbsp butter, cut up, divded
1 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup flour
1 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 400Âș. Mix 1/4 cup of the brown sugar, orange juice, vanilla, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ginger, and salt in a large bowl.

2. Add the cut-up sweet potatoes, toss well.

3. Spoon mixture into a 9×13 baking dish, and scatter the cranberries evenly on top. Also scatter 2 tbsp of the cut-up butter. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.

4. While the sweet potatoes are cooking, mix flour, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1 tsp cinnamon, and 1 tsp ginger in a medium bowl. Using a fork or your hands, cut in/crumble in 4 tbsp of cut-up butter until large crumbs form. Add the pecans and mix well. Remove the sweet potatoes from the oven, stir gently, and sprinkle with the pecan topping.

5. Bake uncovered for another 20 minutes, until sweet potatoes are soft and the topping is lightly browned.

Do you ever “practice” making a dish that you’re taking to an event or social gathering? Obviously I do!


Are you cooking or baking anything for Thanksgiving this year?

33 Responses to “Thanksgiving Prep: Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Cranberries and Pecans”

  1. I am actually hosting Thanksgiving this year, both my family and my husbands family will be coming.

    So far, I am planning to make the turkey, green beans with bacon and mushrooms and some sort of sweet potato dish (maybe this one!!) as well as chocolate peanut butter fudge.

    Yum :D

  2. Sweet potato casserole is my all time favorite Thanksgiving dish. I could eat a plate full of it! I like the idea of mixing cranberries into it too.

  3. Becca says:

    Cute chopping board! I’m really tempted to do a Thanksgiving dinner as a practice run for Christmas. I’m addicted to sweet potatoes at the moment, so that sounds perfect!

  4. Sarah says:

    I would have never thought to mix cranberries and sweet potatoes but it sounds delicious! I also do a test run because I tend to experiment so much that I have more fails than successes and Thanksgiving is not a day for a fail!

    Where did you get the adorable cutting board? I love fish :)

    • Katie says:

      It was a totally random find at a local craft show…one of those adorable things I couldn’t pass up!

  5. Dave says:

    Seriously, you all have to try this. She’s understating how delicious it is!!!

  6. Liz @ Blog is the New Black says:

    Yum! Can’t wait for Thanksgiving!

  7. christina says:

    holy heck, that sounds delicious!!

  8. Pat says:

    Hi Katie, this looks great. I’m in Canada, so we won’t be making any big meals this weekend, but this looks like a nice side dish to add to our Christmas meal. do you have the nutritional values on this dish (calories, carbs, etc.) or do you know where I can find them. Because I’m trying to be so careful right now on my intake, this would be helpful!

    Cheers, and have a Happy Thanksgiving tomorrow!

    • Katie says:

      Hi Pat! Unfortunately I don’t have the nutritional information because I’m not good at handling that sort of thing…but perhaps you can use one of those online recipe calculators?

  9. Katie, you’re such a great cook! This looks sooo delicious!!!

    P.S., love that your hubby commented. So sweet. :)

  10. Shawnee says:

    Okay. I wasn’t so sure I was hungry until I read this. YUMO! I am looking forward to my aunts Italian stuffing with sausage! :)

  11. Sarah says:

    Yum! I am a big fan of sweet potatoes!
    This year, I am planning to make honey whole wheat rolls (from Saving Naturally) and a green bean casserole (from Eating Well) for dinner at my parent’s house. My mom and I are also planning on making Jenna’s Vegan Lentil Walnut Loaf together.
    I am not quite sure what I am making to bring to my mother-in-law’s dinner yet. (Thankfully, both dinners are on separate days this year. That is usually not the case!)

  12. I’m a big sweet potato fan too and this dish looks amazing. I bet the cranberry and pecan combo complements the rest of the ingredients nicely.

  13. I’m starting to think about what to bring to Thanksgiving dinner as well. I think I actually want to go the healthy route (since my sister in law’s stuff will not be but this dish does look amazingly tempting! Well done, Katie :)

  14. Wow, I need to find someone in this country who celebrates Thanksgiving… or just make this anyway, it looks delicious!

  15. This looks so yummy, and better than the usually marmallow covered dish.

    Too bad I’m traveling for T-day and not in charge of making anything.

  16. Bev says:

    I’m a blog-reading family member and the only objection I have is that I have to wait until next Thursday to eat those delicious potatoes!

  17. Lindsey says:

    mmmm this post just made me hungry! :)

  18. Mmm that looks so decadent! I’m so glad you shared the recipe! This is first year that I am co-hosting THanksgiving! It’s just me and the mother-in-law! Perhaps this is a dish I should make!! Thanks!

  19. Yum! I would totally make that for any meal of the week, not just saving it for Thanksgiving. And I would make a big batch of it too, eat some and save the leftovers for lunch.

  20. You totally made me just changed my recipe list for Thanksgiving.

  21. This dish caught my eye! Something I would totally love.

  22. This looks great. I added it to my Thanksgiving menu- I was searching high and low for a sweet potato recipe! How many would you say it serves?

    • Katie says:

      It makes a heaping 9 x 13 pan, which I bet will serve 10 or so on Thanksgiving since it will be one of many sides. I hope you enjoy it, Stephanie!

  23. Katherine says:

    I am hosting a vegan thanksgiving this year… would love some recipes that work:) I can use the sweet potato recipe with some switching butter to vegan butter:) any others?????

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