Candied Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are baked in a sweet, buttery sauce with hints of maple syrup and warm autumn spices in this satisfying side. The syrup thickens and becomes sticky as it rests; sprinkling on grated orange zest at the end balances the sweetness of the dish. These candied sweet potatoes are perfect for Thanksgiving, and also pair well with roast pork loin, ham, or chicken. For a more uniform dish, try finding sweet potatoes that are similarly shaped and sized.

Candied Sweet Potatoes
Photo: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Chelsea Zimmer / Prop Styling by Kay Clarke
Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 50 mins


  • 3 pounds medium-size sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices

  • ½ cup (4 ounces) unsalted butter

  • cup granulated sugar

  • cup packed dark brown sugar

  • cup pure maple syrup

  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream

  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt

  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, divided

  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest (from 1 small orange)

  • ¼ teaspoon flaky sea salt (such as Maldon) 


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Arrange sweet potato slices in a shingle pattern in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish in 3 to 4 columns total.

  2. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium. Add granulated sugar, brown sugar, and maple syrup; cook, stirring constantly, until melted, about 1 minute. Bring to a simmer over medium. Add cream, and reduce heat to medium-low; cook, stirring often, until thick and saucy, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in salt, cinnamon, vanilla, and 1/8 teaspoon of the nutmeg. Pour mixture evenly over sweet potatoes. Cover dish with aluminum foil.

  3. Bake in preheated oven until sweet potatoes start to soften, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven; remove and discard foil. Gently brush some of the glaze in dish over sweet potatoes to coat. Continue baking, uncovered, until sweet potatoes are tender and glaze is bubbling and sticky, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven; brush more glaze over sweet potatoes. Let cool 30 minutes. Sprinkle with orange zest, sea salt, and remaining 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg. Serve.

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