Bourbon Maple Sweet Potatoes
Savory sweet potatoes cloaked in maple glaze is the perfect side dish. Bourbon maple sweet potatoes will leave your Thanksgiving guests wanting more.
Favorite Thanksgiving food—GO! Okay… that’s not fair. Each food has a special place in my heart, but one of my favorites is the sweet potato dish. Yes, that’s my sweet tooth talking again and this time it’s calling for bourbon sweet potatoes.
Usually I take the reins when it comes to dessert and bake a pecan pie or something, but this year I wanted to try my hand at a side dish. Sweet potatoes it is.
Why this recipe works
The mix of textures is simply divine! Thin potatoes are creamy with crispy edges from the skin. Pecans add more crunch and the sauce will mingle with everything else on your plate. It’s also hands-off once you prep it, and will simply bake for a while as you handle other details.
- Sweet potatoes: A classic Thanksgiving staple presented in a new way! No boring vegetables here. You can also use yams.
- Bourbon: The alcohol bakes off in the oven so the dish is perfectly fine for all ages.
- Maple syrup: A touch of sweetness offsets the bourbon and dresses up the potatoes.
- Cornstarch: This is the secret to a thick, syrupy glaze that really sticks to the dish!
How to make bourbon maple sweet potatoes
- Mix up the Glaze: Stir together the glaze mixture until it reaches a sauce-like consistency. Reserve 1/4 cup separately.
- Rinse and scrub sweet potatoes. Thinly slice cleaned sweet potatoes and toss in a large bowl with the glaze (still keeping that 1/4 cup separate!).
- Let the potatoes soak up some of the sauce as you preheat the oven and spray a casserole dish so all this goodness comes back out.
- Line up the potatoes in rows or a circle, depending on your dish. Pour any remaining glaze over the top before covering and baking.
- Add the chopped pecans to the reserved glaze and set aside.
- Pour the pecan glaze on top of the sweet potatoes and bake uncovered for 10 more minutes or until the potatoes are fork tender.. Let rest before serving.
To differentiate its consistency from the mashed potatoes, I opted for a gratin-like style of potatoes, sliced into 1/4-inch thick disks. Keeping the skins on also gave the potato slices a crispy edge.
The best method to get nice and thin potato slices is to use a mandolin. This handy kitchen tool makes the job quick and easy.
If you have a steady hand and sharp knife, the old fashioned slicing method works too!
Frequently Asked Questions
You bet! They can be made up to 6 hours in advance and just sit on the kitchen counter. Reheat in the oven just before serving.
You can use the classic marshmallows in addition to or instead of the pecans. Just add them for those final 10 minutes – or if you are making ahead, add the marshmallows when reheating.
I left the peel on for a little extra crispy texture when baked, but if you aren’t a fan you can go ahead and peel them. Just keep in mind you’ll lose that extra layer and the potato rounds may not stay perfectly stacked without the skin to support them.
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Bourbon Maple Sweet Potatoes
- 3 pounds sweet potatoes, about 6 medium-sized sweet potatoes, thinly sliced 1/4-inch thick (preferably with a mandoline or food processor)
- ½ cup bourbon
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup butter, melted
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon all spice, optional
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- ½ cup chopped pecans, optional
- In a small bowl stir together the bourbon, maple syrup, brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, nutmeg and all spice. Gradually add corn starch and stir until the mixture reaches a sauce-like consistency. Set aside and reserve 1/4 cup separate.
- Rinse and scrub sweet potatoes. Cut the ends off and cut the rest of the potatoes into slices about a 1/4-inch thick. Place the sliced sweet potatoes into a large bowl and toss with bourbon-maple mixture (remember to reserve 1/4 cup).
- Let the potatoes soak up some of the sauce as you preheat the oven to 400° F. Spray a 10-inch oval casserole dish or 9×9 baking dish with some nonstick cooking spray.
- Line up the slices in the prepared baking dish. If there is any glaze left in the bowl, pour it over the potatoes in the baking dish. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes.
- While the potatoes are cooking, take the 1/4 cup of reserved maple-bourbon mixture and stir in the chopped pecans. If you feel the glaze is too thick, add a tablespoon more syrup.
- After 40 minutes of baking time has passed, remove cover and pour the pecan glaze on top of the sweet potatoes. Place the dish back into the oven uncovered and bake for 10 more minutes. The sweet potatoes are finished when they are tender when pierced with a fork.