Sweet potato cupcakes are tender, soft treats topped with fluffy marshmallow frosting. They’re a perfect addition to the Thanksgiving dessert table!
This recipe was originally published November 2016. It was last updated October 2020.
Ooh Thanksgiving… The dessert menu is my responsibility and this year I wanted to introduce a non-pie dish. Sorry pie, but you get the spotlight every year. I thought, “Why not try sweet potato cupcakes?”
Why this recipe works: The sweet potatoes are shredded similarly to how you would make carrot cake. There is plenty of moisture and spice for a delicate and flavorful cupcake. The marshmallow frosting us easy to make in a stand mixer and recalls a baked sweet potato dish.
Step by step instructions
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners.
- Whisk together dry ingredients—flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Set aside.
- Beat together wet ingredients—eggs, sweet potato, brown sugar, sugar, vegetable oil and vanilla.
- Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix just until combined.
- Transfer batter to prepared muffin tin and bake for 18 to 22 minutes. Let cupcakes cool completely before frosting.
- Beat butter, marshmallow cream, salt and vanilla until combined. Slowly add confectioners’ sugar until incorporated. Mix in milk if necessary for desired consistency.
- Transfer frosting to a piping bag with preferred tip and frost the cooled cupcakes. Garnish with chopped pecans.
How to make marshmallow frosting
The marshmallow creme frosting sits on top of these cupcakes like a sweet fluffy cloud. Light and airy, the frosting packs quite a bit of sweetness, which holds up well with the warm flavors in the spiced sweet potato cupcakes. Marshmallow frosting is simply butter, marshmallow creme, vanilla and confectioners’ sugar. I like to add a pinch of salt and milk to mine for desired consistency.
Make sure all your ingredients are room temperature. Beat the butter, marshmallow creme, vanilla and salt together (a whisk attachment is best to keep the frosting fluffy). Add the confectioners’ sugar and mix until combined. Add milk if you need a thinner consistency.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use sweet potato puree in this recipe? I have not tried this, but it should work. Use about 3/4 cup sweet potato puree instead of the shredded sweet potato.
How to store sweet potato cupcakes: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. Cupcakes will keep at room temperature, but the frosting will lose its shape and consistency.
Can you freeze sweet potato cupcakes? Yes. Unfrosted cupcakes may be individually wrapped and stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to one month. Defrost in the refrigerator before bringing to room temperature and frosting.
I must admit though, at Thanksgiving I usually go straight for a slice of pecan pie or my mom’s apple pie, but this year I will definitely be reaching for sweet potato cupcakes first. These sweet treats are just what I’ll be craving after the savory Thanksgiving meal. And since they’re mini, I’ll definitely be going back for seconds!
Sweet Potato Cupcakes
Sweet Potato Cupcakes
- 1 1/2 cups (187 g) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Pinch of ground cloves
- 2 large eggs, slightly beaten
- 2 1/2 cup (12 ounces or 340 grams) peeled, shredded, sweet potatoes*
- 3/4 cup (150 g) packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup (50 g) granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (125 ml) vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Chopped pecans for garnish optional
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 7 ounce jar marshmallow creme
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 cups (240 g) confectioners' sugar, sifted
- 1-2 teaspoons milk (if necessary)
Sweet Potato Cupcakes
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer (fitted with a paddle attachment (or using a hand mixer), combine the eggs, shredded sweet potatoes, brown sugar, sugar, oil and vanilla. Mix until well blended, about 1 minute.
- Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and use a rubber spatula to stir together until just combined, about 20 seconds. Do not overmix.
- Spoon batter into prepared cupcake liners until about two-thirds full. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow cupcakes to cool completely.
- In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine the butter, marshmallow creme, salt and vanilla. Mix until creamy, about 1 minute. Add one cup of powdered sugar and mix until combined. Add remaining one cup of confectioners' sugar and mix until smooth and creamy. Add milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached (I used 1 teaspoon).
- Transfer frosting to a pastry bag fitted with a tip. Frost cupcakes and garnish with chopped pecans (optional). Cupcakes are best when served the same day. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days.
Inspired by The Recipe Critic.