Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

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This nutritious Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet is so quick and easy to make. It’s ready in 30 minutes or less and loaded with good-for-you ingredients and tons of flavor!

This meal is a great all-in-one dish, so it doesn’t need much in the way of sides, but a Fruit Salad or Cucumber Salad would pair well with it.

A pan full of ground turkey sweet potato skillet, accompanied by a bowl of rice, presenting a hearty and savory meal.

Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

After a week of testing new cookie recipes (or making this Eclair Cake a few times), I am craving a healthy meal that’s still loaded with flavor. Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet fits the bill perfectly. I had some ground turkey in the fridge that originally was going to make these mini Turkey Meatloaves (a family favorite!), but I was missing a few of the veggies. I also had some sweet potatoes that needed to be used up, and so… this recipe came about. 

While this meal could certainly have garlic, onion, and/or other veggies added in, the whole point of this dish is a fast prep time. The goal is to have this meal on the table in 30 minutes or less, so to accomplish that, the only chopping required is for the sweet potatoes. Even that chopping job is simple because the sweet potatoes are soft from being microwaved first.

This meal is relatively low carb, very high in protein, and has so much flavor (even with the fairly short ingredient list)! 

Preparing sweet potatoes: washing, piercing, microwaving until tender, slicing in half, peeling, thinly slicing, and finally dicing into small pieces.

The sweet potatoes

As I mentioned, this dish focuses on a fast prep time, so you may be wondering how to accomplish that with sweet potatoes. Typically, sweet potatoes take quite a bit of time to cook until tender. (These Roasted Sweet Potatoes take about 35 minutes to bake.) They can also sometimes be hard to chop when they’re unbaked.

The shortcut we use here is the microwave oven. It totally works, and the texture is still fantastic; microwaved sweet potatoes have tender flesh and soft skins that peel off in a cinch. These microwaved sweet potatoes are a great complement to the rest of the ingredients in this Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet.

  • The only prep you have to do is poke a few small holes in the potato to provide a place for the steam to escape. Take a fork and pierce the potato a few times.
  • An 8-ounce (1/2 pound) sweet potato takes about 5 minutes to cook on 100% power. Larger sweet potatoes will take longer, and when cooking multiple potatoes at the same time, it will take even longer. Continue to microwave the potatoes in 1-minute bursts until the potatoes are cooked through.
  • You’ll know the potatoes are ready when they are easily pierced in the center with a fork.


 When purchasing sweet potatoes, choose two or three of the smallest potatoes you can find. I try to pick 5-or-6-ounce potatoes. This will ensure they fully cook in a timely manner.

If you’re not microwaving the potatoes, I’d recommend cooking the potatoes according to this Baked Sweet Potatoes recipe first.

Combining seasonings, mixing them together, browning the meat, adding seasonings, cooking thoroughly, adding beans, heating through, and topping with cheese and optional toppings.

Ground turkey

You can further jazz up the ground turkey by adding an onion and garlic or even a bell pepper,  if you have extra time and want more veggies in this dish. That said, the seasoning blend makes this dish plenty flavorful. 

Seasoning blend:

  • Chili powder. We use McCormick® chili powder (not sponsored) and do not find it overly spicy. Chili powder does vary greatly from brand to brand; outside of the U.S. it is typically a little spicier, so you may want to scale back on the chili powder in this dish. Adjust to personal preference; I find this spice adds a lot of flavor and gives you a well-balanced meal.
  • Ground cumin.
  • Onion powder.
  • Garlic powder. We love roasted garlic powder for even more flavor.
  • Cayenne pepper. A little goes a long way! This spice also adds a lot of flavor. Reduce, omit, or increase the cayenne, depending on personal spice preferences.
  • Salt and pepper. Don’t be afraid to add more salt and pepper; I find ground turkey typically needs more seasoning than other ground meats.

Generous serving of ground turkey sweet potato skillet, hot and freshly prepared, inviting and ready to savor.

How to serve Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

  • Add a sauce. My husband is lactose-intolerant, so I typically only add cheese when making this dish for me and the kiddos. When preparing it without cheese, I whip up a quick sauce to add that finishing element and a little bit of creaminess. I’ve included the sauce recipe in the notes section of the recipe.
  • Make it creamy. As mentioned above, the sauce adds great creaminess. For a healthier creamy element, we like adding a ripe, chopped avocado. Fat-free or light sour cream (or even plain Greek yogurt) is another great creamy addition.
  • Serve with a low-carb base. To keep the low-carb theme going, we like to serve this meal over cauliflower rice. To keep it fast, I grab frozen cauliflower rice and pan sear it until lightly browned and tender. (We love Trader Joes® or Birds Eye® cauliflower rice.)
  • Add some freshness. To add a burst of freshness, add in some chopped cilantro or Italian parsley. A squeeze of lime also makes a nice addition.
  • Try other additions. Again, the goal is getting a quick meal on the table, so these will add time to the prep; but any of these would be great additions to this recipe: try diced onion, minced garlic, frozen corn, diced sweet bell pepper, and/or diced cherry tomatoes.

Finished meal, beautifully garnished with slices of avocado, fresh cilantro, and a wedge of lime.

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Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

5 from 26 votes
This nutritious Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet is so quick and easy to make! It's ready in 30 minutes or less and loaded with good-for-you ingredients and tons of flavor!
A pan full of ground turkey sweet potato skillet, accompanied by a bowl of rice, presenting a hearty and savory meal.
Print Recipe

Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

A pan full of ground turkey sweet potato skillet, accompanied by a bowl of rice, presenting a hearty and savory meal.
5 from 26 votes
This nutritious Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet is so quick and easy to make! It's ready in 30 minutes or less and loaded with good-for-you ingredients and tons of flavor!
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Keyword Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Chelsea Lords
Calories 294kcal
Cost $6.82


  • 1 pound sweet potatoes (~2-3 small potatoes -- See Note 1)
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
  • 1/2 teaspoon EACH: onion powder, garlic powder
  • Fine sea salt and freshly cracked pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound (16 oz.) lean (93/7) ground turkey
  • 1 can (15 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup freshly grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • Optional: fresh cilantro or parsley, fresh lime. For a creamy element add a diced avocado, sour cream, or add a sauce! (See Note 2)
  • Optional: serve over cauliflower rice


  • SWEET POTATOES: Wash and scrub two or three (1 pound total) sweet potatoes. Use a fork to pierce the skin-- about 6-8 pierces. Cook on a plate in the microwave for 5 minutes. Flip and microwave for another 3-5 minutes, or until potatoes are tender and can easily be pierced by a fork in the center. The time will vary, depending on the size of the potatoes. I have tested this recipe with 5 and 6-ounce sweet potatoes; larger potatoes will take longer. Remove from the microwave and let cool slightly.
  • SEASONINGS: Measure out the seasonings: 1 tablespoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, and salt and pepper. I add 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  • GROUND TURKEY: Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the ground turkey, and cook until the ground turkey is mostly cooked through, about 5-7 minutes. Break up and crumble the meat with a wooden spoon as you cook. Drain off any accumulated liquid if needed. Add the seasonings to the mostly cooked ground turkey and cook for another 2-3 minutes or until fully cooked through.
  • FINISHING: While ground turkey is cooking, finish the potatoes. When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, cut off the ends and slice the potatoes in half. They should be tender enough that you can easily pull the skins off and discard. Dice the sweet potatoes into small 1/2-inch pieces. Add the diced sweet potatoes to the cooked ground turkey mixture, along with the drained and rinsed black beans. Stir everything to warm through and then sprinkle with cheese.
  • SERVE: Cover the skillet and allow the cheese to melt for 3-4 minutes (If needed, pop the skillet under the broiler for 1-2 minutes.) while preparing any desired toppings. Serve with your choice of toppings: freshly chopped cilantro or parsley, and fresh lime wedges. Add diced avocado, sour cream, or the sauce in Note 2.

Recipe Notes

Note 1: Sweet potatoes: When purchasing sweet potatoes, choose two or three of the smallest potatoes you can find. I try to find 5-6-ounce potatoes. This will ensure they are fully cooked in a shorter time.
Note 2: Sauce: If we make this dish without cheese, I like to add a sauce. If you're a sauce person or want the extra creaminess, you'll love this sauce with the dish!
  • 1/2 cup Hellman's® mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce or Sriracha sauce
  • pinch salt and pepper
Stir ingredients together and drizzle over individual servings.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 4servings | Calories: 294kcal | Carbohydrates: 41.4g | Protein: 40.6g | Fat: 21.7g | Cholesterol: 100.5mg | Sodium: 760.4mg | Fiber: 10.7g | Sugar: 5.1g

We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed.


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5 from 26 votes (8 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating


  1. I love all the receipes. I have tried several from Chelsea’s Receipes they are never a disappointment!

  2. Could you use something other than ground turkey? Would it be good with ground sausage instead? Just curious by boyfriend loves sausage. Love all of your recipes! Thanks! (:

    1. I haven’t tried anything else, but I don’t see why sausage (or ground beef) wouldn’t work! 🙂 I do think ground beef would go better with the seasonings, so if you use ground sausage, you may want to change those seasonings up a bit 🙂

  3. 5 stars
    Super easy and sooooo delicious! Definitely making this one again. There was sheer chaos going on with my toddler while making this meal and honestly it didn’t matter. It was so easy to put together. Very little mess and one pan!!

  4. 5 stars
    We loved this recipe! It was really easy to make even with a 1 year old in my other arm. I made some noodles to put underneath to stretch the recipe a little bit because we loved it so much. Even the 1 year old enjoyed it.

  5. 5 stars
    I made this tonight for my family and it was a hit! Delicious! It will certainly become a dish we will keep on our dinner rotation. Thank you! Yum!

  6. 5 stars
    WOW!!! This was a surprising treat! I, my husband, and our very picky 5 year old LOVED it. I left out the ceyenne pepper and black pepper, but otherwise followed the recipe and only addition was a dollop of sour cream in each bowl. We’ve only had takeout twice since the pandemic started, and I am SO tired of cooking and coming up with stuff to cook. This was so simple to make and made me feel like I was being treated to a really tasty dish from a restaurant. This will definitely be added to our menu every few weeks. Thank you so much for the joy this brought us tonight! You just never know when a blog post you send out into the universe is going to make someone’s day so much better! Keep up the good work! 🙂

  7. Looking forward to making this! How can I prepare the potatoes without a microwave? How long should I bake them in the oven?

    1. I didn’t use a microwave, just peel and cut the sweet potatoes add to the meat add some broth, I use veg. broth. Cooks fast.

  8. 5 stars
    Absolutely delicious! Hubby kept oohing and aahing. We served it with cauliflower rice, and topped ours with avocado and fresh tomatoes, and your incredible sauce. YES, fingers were still dipping into the bowl as we were packing up the leftovers for tomorrow. Yum! So glad we’ll have it for lunch. 🙂

  9. 5 stars
    I have been making this recipe for my husband who likes to have it for breakfast. It is a WONDERFUL recipe full of taste and is healthy.

    1. I haven’t tested it with lemon but it should be fine! Let me know how it turns out for you! Hope you enjoy! 🙂

  10. 5 stars
    Omg. This was so easy and delicious. And i love that you added the measurement amounts in the directions as well (most don’t). We also made the sauce and it’s delicious! I added sautéed zucchini to this recipe and you MUST try it with umami seasoning from trader joe’s. Makes it heavenly!!

  11. 5 stars
    I made this for dinner tonight. OMG! My husband loved it!!! It was so easy to make too! Will be adding this into our cooking rotation.

  12. 5 stars
    This recipe (you NEED the sauce) is so good it makes me want to cry because it is sooo easy. Second time making it in a week my husband and I are obsessed.

  13. 5 stars
    This was so good!!! I put the lime and cilantro with a mirroring of some of the main dish spices into the cauliflower rice to zap that up as well. I will definitely make this again. Ground Turkey, yams, black beans, are all a staple in our house and it’s nice to have a new dish in the rotation.

  14. 5 stars
    I prepared this recipe today and it came out great. I used almost all of the combined seasonings. I served brown rice blended with sautéed zucchini and onions mixed in on the side. It was very easy to make and enjoyed very much.

  15. 5 stars
    I just made this and it delisious! I made it a little different, I cut the sweet potatoes raw and add them to the meat, also added a can of corn and a some vegtable broth, and I had it on top of mix greens with shreded cheese. Yummy.

  16. I love the pics of the steps. Makes it a very easy to follow. I was so happy when I typed in the ingredients that I had on hand and your recipe came up. I can’t wait to make it tonight. I will for sure make a follow up comment as I know this will be a wonderful dish…xoxoxo

  17. 5 stars
    Made for dinner tonight and it was absolutely delicious! My 16yr old son couldn’t get enough. Followed recipe to a tee except added a bit of chicken stock. Highly recommend making the sauce. So yummy.
    This recipe is a keeper. Thanks!

  18. Paprika is mentioned in the text as an ingredient for the spices, but don’t see it in the recipe. How much do you recommend?

  19. 5 stars
    Super yummy! All of your recipes are so good. I did not add the cheese, I chose to use the sauce. The sauce takes it to the next level-saving this recipe for sure!

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