How to Cook Sweet Potatoes

When you are learning how to cook sweet potatoes, you might get them confused with yams as many people often do. Yams vs sweet potatoes; what is the difference? Actually the two are totally unrelated; for that matter the sweet potato is not even related to the white potato.

Yams vs sweet potatoes; why the confusion? Much of this confusion is due to the fact that the sweet potatoes are marketed under the name “yams”. Why? I do not know. Although many varieties of the sweet potato are marketed under the name of yams here in the United States, true yams are native to Africa and are rarely seen here in the United States.

Sweet potato nutritional value; keep in mind when learning how to cook sweet potatoes that the yams are not as rich in vitamins as the sweet potatoes. Yams grow much larger sometimes up to one hundred pounds. The yams do contain potassium and as a carbohydrate they are one of the main staples of Africa.

Sweet potatoes get their delicious flavor from an enzyme which changes the starches to sugar. Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of beta carotene an antioxidant. Sweet potatoes are a great source of dietary fiber, vitamin A,C, B6, potassium and iron; all the more reason to eat this tasty food.

How to Cook Sweet Potatoes with Butter, Cinnamon and Brown SugarHow to Cook Sweet Potatoes with Butter, Cinnamon and Brown Sugar

When learning how to cook sweet potatoes, the varieties with light colored skins are dry and mealy. Those of a deeper orange or reddish skin are more moist and sweet. When selecting, choose those with a firm smooth skin without soft spots or discoloration. Avoid any which have shriveled at the root end.

When you look at how to cook sweet potatoes you will find many of the recipes are like dessert recipes. Although these sweet dishes are very delicious, I also love them baked like you bake a regular white potato; as a child this is the way we ate them most of the time. When sweet potatoes are cooked a natural sugar is released in the flavor.

baked sweet potatoesBaked Sweet Potatoes Right from the Oven

Wash and dry the sweet potatoes and place in any type of baking pan. Place in the oven at 350-375F degrees and bake until tender. Depending on the size and thickness of the sweet potatoes, it might take between 45minutes to a little over an hour. Poke the thickest part of the potato with a fork to check for doneness. These are delicious plain right out of the oven but I love them with butter and a little brown sugar and cinnamon.

Discover many ways to cook potatoes and how to make the creamiest mashed potatoes.


Orange Glazed Sweet PotatoesOrange Glazed Sweet Potatoes
  • 6 Medium sweet potatoes cooked (or use canned sweet potatoes)
  • 1 Cup orange juice
  • 2 Teaspoon orange rind
  • 1 Tablespoon corn starch
  • 3 Tablespoon melted butter
  • ½ Cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 Cup white sugar
  • Pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350F degrees.

Slice sweet potatoes and place in a buttered flat casserole baking dish. Blend remaining ingredients and pour over the sweet potatoes. Bake for 30 minutes.

SWEET POTATO SOUFFLE’ a delicious side dish when you learn how to cook sweet potatoes

  • 3 Cups cooked sweet potatoes, mashed
  • 1 Cup white sugar
  • ½ Teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 Cup melted butter
  • 2 Teaspoons vanilla
  • ½ Cup coconut
  • 2 Beaten eggs
  • ½ Cup cream
  • 1 Teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¾ Cup miniature marshmallows

Preheat oven to 350F degrees.

Blend all ingredients and pour into a buttered flat casserole dish. Mix topping and crumble over top of the sweet potato mixture. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes.


  • 1 Cup brown sugar
  • 1 Cup chopped pecans
  • ½ Cup melted butter
  • 1/3 Cup flour


  • 3 Large sweet potatoes
  • 1 Cup brown sugar
  • 1 Cup milk
  • 3 Tablespoons butter
  • 1/3 Cup coconut

Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
Peel potatoes, slice and place in greased covered baking dish.
Mix sugar and milk and pour over potato slices.
Dot top with butter and sprinkle with coconut.
Cover and bake 60 to 90 minutes until syrup is thick and potatoes are soft.
Remove cover and leave in oven to brown coconut.

APPLE CASSEROLE RECIPE with sweet potatoes

  • 1 ½ Pints sliced apples
  • 3 medium sweet potatoes
  • Pinch salt
  • ¼ Teaspoon nutmeg
  • 6 Tablespoons sugar
  • ¼ Cup butter
  • ¼ Cup bread crumbs

Wash sweet potatoes and cook in boiling water until tender.
Peel and slice potatoes.
Place alternating layers of sweet potatoes and apples in a greased baking dish.
Season each layer with salt, nutmeg, sugar and butter.
On top sprinkle the bread crumbs; drizzle melted butter over the top
Bake in preheated oven at 350F degrees for 40 minutes or until apples are tender.