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These roasted sweet potatoes have a crispy caramelized exterior and a soft irresistible interior. The optional seasoning blend adds a perfect accent to these potatoes without masking their natural sweetness or flavor.
You probably won’t be surprised to hear that sweet potatoes are my favorite vegetable. With the plethora of sweet potato recipes on my site, it’s probably obvious we are eating them all.the.time. (Luckily the boys and the hubs are obsessed as well!)
Today we’re going back to the BASICS with these roasted sweet potatoes. I’ll share how to make these roasted sweet potatoes two different ways: (1) with a seasoning blend and (2) plain, which is best when using the sweet potatoes in another recipe.
But before we jump in, let’s talk about how to pick out a good sweet potato.
How to pick a good sweet potato
- Red and orange sweet potatoes are often labeled as “yams” at the grocery store which is actually inaccurate. True yams are starchier and drier than sweet potatoes with a thick and fibrous skin. (They’re also usually hard to find in American grocery stores.)
- There are lots of different varieties of sweet potatoes: Here’s an article that describes some of the different varieties and characteristics.
- I recommend skipping tan or purple skinned sweet potatoes (known as the “dry” varieties) and sticking with orange or red skinned sweet potatoes. This variety (known as “moist” varieties) are sweeter and have a creamier texture.
- My favorite sweet potatoes for roasting? Either Red Garnet or Jewel.
- When picking a sweet potato at the grocery store look for firm potatoes without growths or discolorations on their skins. Avoid soft or wet potatoes.
- For questions on freshness/how long a sweet potato lasts, check out this article.
Now that you’ve got some sweet potatoes, let’s talk cutting.
There are a lot of different ways that you can cut sweet potatoes for roasting – you can make roasted sweet potatoes wedges or crispy roasted sweet potatoes fries. You can even roast sweet potato halves! Thicker, bigger cuts will need a longer bake time, and thinner cuts will need a shorter amount of time in the oven. For this particular recipe, we’re making roasted sweet potato cubes, and I recommend cutting the sweet potato into ½ inch chunks.
While there isn’t one single way to cut a sweet potato into cubes, I’ll share my favorite way to cut them below.
How to cut a sweet potato for roasting
- Peel the sweet potato: for the best flavor and texture, I recommend peeling the sweet potato first.
- Cut off the ends and a lengthwise strip: removing a thin lengthwise strip on the bottom of the potato allows you to set the sweet potato sturdily on your cutting board. That way, when you make the other cuts, you don’t have to worry about the potato rolling or sliding around which increases the chances of cutting yourself.
- Cut into rounds: cut the sweet potato into equal 1/2 inch rounds.
- Chop into pieces: cut each sweet potato “round” into 1/2 inch equal sized pieces. On the larger rounds, you’ll cut in half lengthwise and then make 2-3 more cuts width-wise. Smaller rounds can be cut in half and then half again.
Now that we’ve got the perfect cubes for roasting, let’s talk about the rest of the process.
How to make roasted sweet potatoes
- Cut the potatoes, trying to get each cube roughly the same size. See above for cutting instructions.
- Toss the cubes with the oil and seasonings.
- Cook at 425 degrees Fahrenheit, tossing the sweet potatoes every 10-15 minutes to prevent them from burning and to get an even cook and caramelization.
- Use a LARGE sheet pan: the more space the vegetables have (the less crowded they are) the better they roast. When vegetables are overlapping on a sheet pan, they end up steaming instead of roasting. This definitely affects the end taste/texture. I’ve started using this 15×21 inch sheet pan – which is practically the width of my oven. Using a huge sheet pan makes a big difference for roasting vegetables!
- Different varieties of sweet potatoes cook differently and there can be quite a lot of variance between ovens, so it is important to check the sweet potatoes rather than relying solely on a time.
- These oven roasted sweet potatoes need to be tossed every 10-15 minutes to ensure an even bake and caramelization, so just pay attention to the color and tenderness of the sweet potatoes when tossing them to check if they’re done.
Roasted Sweet Potatoes FAQs:
Should I boil sweet potatoes before roasting?
While you certainly can boil your sweet potatoes before roasting, it’s not necessary and I would discourage it. Boiling sweet potatoes creates more steps, more dirty dishes, and it affects the taste for the worse in my opinion.
Do you have to peel sweet potatoes before roasting?
This comes down to personal preference, but I highly recommend peeling the potatoes for this recipe to ensure best texture and flavor.
The skin can stay on for other types of roasted sweet potatoes such as sweet potato wedges.
How long does it take to roast sweet potatoes?
At 425 degrees, these ½-inch thick sweet potato chunks take 27-35 minutes to cook.
More Sweet Potato Recipes
- Pesto Couscous Bowls
- Wild Rice Salad
- Sweet Potato & Quinoa Salad (Reader Favorite!)
- Sweet Potato Enchiladas
These roasted sweet potatoes have a crispy caramelized exterior and a soft irresistible interior. The seasoning blend adds a perfect accent to these potatoes without masking their natural sweetness or flavor.
- 2 pounds (~3 large) sweet potatoes (I like Red Garnet OR Jewel sweet potatoes best), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt (kosher salt; use less if using table salt)
- 1 tablespoon light brown sugar, lightly packed
- 2 pounds (~3 large) sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt (kosher salt; use less if using table salt)
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground chili powder*
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
PLAIN ROASTED SWEET POTATOES: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Peel and cube the sweet potatoes into 1/2 inch pieces. Add to your largest sheet pan and add the melted coconut oil, salt, and brown sugar on top. Toss to coat all the sweet potatoes and then spread out to arrange in an even layer. You don't want any potatoes overlapping or you'll end up with steamed potatoes instead of roasted potatoes. Flip every 10-15 minutes cooking for a total of 27-35 minutes. (I flip every 10 minutes and bake around 30 minutes)
SEASONED ROASTED SWEET POTATOES: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Peel and cube the sweet potatoes into 1/2 inch pieces. Add to your largest sheet pan and add the olive oil, salt, pepper, chili powder, paprika, cumin, and garlic powder on top. Toss to coat all the sweet potatoes and then spread out to arrange in an even layer. You don't want any potatoes overlapping or you'll end up with steamed potatoes instead of roasted potatoes. Flip every 10-15 minutes cooking for a total of 27-35 minutes. (I flip every 10 minutes and bake around 30 minutes)
*Use chipotle chili powder and/or smoked paprika for a smokey flavor. If you want to make your sweet potatoes even spicier, add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper.