Turn up the volume on your sweet potatoes and make these brown butter mashed sweet potatoes! Brown butter adds a wonderful nutty flavor to the sweet potatoes. Finish them off with a little fresh rosemary for a side dish that’s great any night of the week and perfect for the holidays!
We’re heading into the holiday season and if you’re like me, you start browsing the internet for recipes to try this year. Potatoes are almost always a given at the dinner table.
If we’re doing white potatoes, my go-to recipe is this skinny cheesy potato casserole. If we’re going with sweet potatoes, I guarantee you’ll find these brown butter mashed sweet potatoes on the table.
Unlike the aggressively sweet marshmallow or crumb topped sweet potato casserole, these are savory mashed sweet potatoes. Besides the natural sweetness of the sweet potato, there is a bit of maple syrup added in, but the real star is the brown butter.
Ingredients For Brown Butter Mashed Sweet Potatoes
- sweet potatoes
- unsalted butter
- maple syrup
- ground cinnamon
- fresh rosemary
- pecans (optional)
How To Brown Butter
Cut the butter into slices rather that putting in a big chunk. This will ensure it melts evenly. Use a light-colored saucepan when browning butter so that you can see when the brown bits start to form. This will help to prevent you from burning it.
Heat the butter over medium heat, stirring it occasionally. Once it’s melted continue to let it cook. Foam will appear at the top, this is normal. Continue to stir the butter and as the foam dissipates you’ll see flecks of brown at the bottom of the pan and the butter will have a nutty aroma.
Once the bottom of the pan is covered in the brown flecks, remove it from the heat to stop the cooking process. Brown butter can burn if cooked too long. The whole process should take about 5-8 minutes depending on the amount of butter you’re using.
How To Make Brown Butter Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Scrub the sweet potatoes under cold water to remove any dirt or debris. Peel and cut them into cubes. I like to cut mine into smaller cubes so they cook faster, but that’s up to you.
Place the sweet potatoes in a pot of cold, salted water and bring it to a boil. You want the water to cold to start so that the potatoes cook evenly. Once boiling, lower the heat and let them simmer until you can easily slide a fork in and out of them.
While the sweet potatoes cook, brown the butter using the steps listed above. Remove the brown butter from the heat and set aside until the potatoes are cooked through.
Drain the sweet potatoes and return them to the pot. Over low heat, add in the brown butter, milk, maple syrup, cinnamon, and rosemary. Season with salt and pepper and use a potato masher to mash them until your desired consistency is reached.
You may find that you need to add more milk depending on how creamy or lumpy you want them. Taste the potatoes for seasoning and adjust as needed. Put them into a serving bowl and top with the pecans and any remaining brown butter or chopped rosemary.
What’s The Difference Between Sweet Potatoes And Yams?
Grocery store make is difficult to know the difference between a sweet potato and a yam, because in general the “yams” you’re looking at aren’t true yams. What you’re probably looking at is two varieties of sweet potatoes. The kind with a white flesh is known as a firm sweet potato and the other with the orange flesh is a soft sweet potato.
Your grocery store likely labels “yams” as the ones with the orange flesh and sweet potatoes as the ones with the white flesh. When you’re making these brown butter mashed sweet potatoes or a sweet potato casserole you’ll more than likely need to buy the ones labeled yams.
In reality most of us have probably never eaten a true yam. Below are some of the major differences.
Skin – The skin of a yam is dark and looks similar to tree bark. Sweet potato skin is a reddish copper color and much smoother.
Flesh – The flesh of a yam is generally white while a sweet potato is orangish.
Taste and Texture – Yams are much starchier and dry in comparison to sweet potatoes. The flavor is more similar to a white potato. Sweet potatoes are almost always sweeter than yams.
More Sweet Potato Side Dishes
- Cinnamon Maple Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Butternut Squash
- Maple Orange Sweet Potato Salad
- Cranberry, Pecan, Goat Cheese, Sweet Potato Bites
- Cheesy Chipotle Lime Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes
- Roasted Sweet Potato Lentil Salad
- 3 pounds uncooked sweet potatoes, washed, peeled and cubed
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/3 - 1/2 cup milk of choice
- 2 - 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons toasted chopped pecans (optional)
- Scrub the sweet potatoes under cold water to remove any dirt or debris. Peel and cut them into approximately 1-2 inch cubes. Place the sweet potatoes in a large pot and cover them with cold water. Add a good amount of salt to the water and bring it to a boil.
- Once boiling, lower the heat and let the potatoes simmer uncovered until you can easily slide a fork in and out of them, about 8-12 minutes.
- While the sweet potatoes cook, brown the butter. Add the butter to a small saucepan over medium heat. Melt the butter stirring frequently. Continue to cook the butter until brown bits form at the bottom of the pan. It will take about 6-8 minutes. Once the butter is brown remove it from the heat.
- Once the sweet potatoes are tender, drain them. Over low heat, add in the brown butter, milk, maple syrup, cinnamon, and rosemary to the sweet potatoes. Season with salt and pepper and use a potato masher to mash them until your desired consistency is reached. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed. Add additional milk for a creamier mashed sweet potato. Garnish with the chopped pecans and additional brown butter and rosemary if desired.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 279Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 16mgSodium: 135mgCarbohydrates: 53gFiber: 7gSugar: 17gProtein: 4g
Nutritional information is an estimate. Please consult a registered dietician for the most accurate nutritional information.