There are certain side dishes that are must-have classics when the holiday season rolls around

I have to have sweet potatoes or yams, and one of my favorite ways to make them is this Easy Mashed Sweet Potatoes recipe.

They’re so simple to make and give you all that classic flavor. If you’re looking for a bit more savory mashed sweet potatoes, this recipe skips marshmallow topping. It does use brown sugar to pack some extra sweet though. You could easily add some marshmallows to the top if you’re looking for that taste.

Scroll down for the printable recipe card or read on for detailed instructions and tips!


I’m a huge fan of sweet potato casserole for Thanksgiving and Christmas. If you want to an easy recipe, try our Crock Pot Sweet Potato Casserole. It’s another way to make the classic side dish and it leans on the sweeter side with the gooey marshmallow topping.

The mashed sweet potatoes you get when you make this recipe don’t have the marshmallow topping, so you get the natural sweet flavor of the sweet potatoes/yams enhanced by a bit of brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. But the butter gives it a great creamy texture. 


To make this recipe, you’ll need a handful of pantry basics.

Sweet Potatoes/Yams (you can use either)
Brown Sugar
Black Pepper
Half and Half

Exact measurements for each ingredient are included in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.


For these sweet potato mashed potatoes, you do need to peel the sweet potatoes and cubes them before boiling them. Peeling the sweet potatoes is what will take you the most prep time, so be sure to account for that.

Sometimes I’ll peel and cube them ahead of time. Then they are ready when I’m to the point in the meal prep to get them started.

You can also boil sweet potatoes in the skin and then allow them to cool before peeling the skin off. If you do that, be sure to cube them before mashing. I find that I make a bigger mess if I go that route so I prefer to peel, cube, and boil.


My biggest tip is to peel the sweet potato from root to tip. It seems like common sense but I haven’t always done it that way!

If you have a vegetable peeler that has a serrated edge, they work well with sweet potatoes. You can also use a pairing knife. Be sure to remove any woody/rooty parts first.

Another option is to boil the potatoes and when they are cooled enough (use an ice water bath), you can peel the skin off. For this recipe, you want the sweet potatoes warm enough to melt the butter so you get a creamy sweet potato mash. That’s why I peel and then boil.


If you don’t have a potato masher, you can use a large fork to mash the sweet potatoes. You can mash them to a coarser consistency to make smashed sweet potatoes or continue mashing them with the fork until you get your desired consistency.

You can always use a hand mixer to blend them together until they are smooth.


This recipe makes about 8 servings. You need about 10 minutes of prep time and about 10 minutes of cook time. So it’s not only easy to make, it’s pretty quick too and you can put it together right near the end of your holiday meal preparation.

You will need to peel and cube your sweet potatoes for this recipe.

Then place the cubed sweet potatoes in a large saucepan and cover them with water. Bring the water to a boil and allow the sweet potatoes to cook for about 10 minutes or until they are tender.

Drain the water from the sweet potatoes and put them in a large bowl.

Add all of the ingredients, except the half and half, to the bowl and mash with a potato masher until you have a smooth consistency.

Then add the half and half. Use a whisk to mix until well combined and smooth.

All the potatoes to rest for five minutes and then fluff them with a spoon before serving. You’ll have the best mashed sweet potatoes around!

I know I talk a lot about mashed yams being a holiday side dish, but they’re really great for any time of the year! If you’re looking for another easy way to make them, try making Air Fryer Sweet Potatoes. It’s the way I usually make sweet potatoes when we’re not in holiday season.

Easy Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Course Side Dish

Prep Time 10 minutes

Cook Time 10 minutes

Servings 6


4 pounds sweet potatoes peeled and cubed

6 tablespoons butter

¼ cup light brown sugar

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon black pepper

¼ teaspoon nutmeg

1 cup half and half


Peel and cube the sweet potatoes.
Place the cubed sweet potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are tender, around 10 minutes.
Strain the potatoes from the water and add them to a large bowl. Add the butter, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, black pepper, and nutmeg to the bowl and mash with a potato masher until smooth.
Add the half and half and whisk until smooth and well combined.
Allow to rest for five minutes, then fluff the sweet potatoes with a spoon before serving.

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