These Roasted Sweet Potatoes are succulent and creamy with crisp edges in a delectable glaze. After roasting, it is glazed in a mixture of butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, rum and vanilla.
They are easy to prepare and perfect for snacking or adding to your favorite salad or a side dish for your holiday gatherings.
Sweet potatoes are healthy and great to have on its own. Of course, a sugar glaze makes it less healthy but it adds a delicious twist to its flavor.
This Roasted Sweet Potatoes recipe is an easy side that you can make for your turkey or ham dinner for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Cooking in the oven is much easier especially if served during gatherings but I should say, they are also delicious deep fried. If you like to go this route, you might even like it better.
How to pick sweet potatoes
Here in the US, sweet potatoes are also refered to as yam. Most grocery stores carry the orange-fleshed sweet potatoes while some supermarket like Sprout might carry both sweet potatoes and the “real” yam, so be sure to pick the right one.
Red Garnet, Jewel and Beauregard are common varieties of orange-fleshed sweet potatoes. My favorite is the red garnet for its moist, sweet and creamy texture.
Look for firm sweet potatoes and avoid shriveled skins, bruised or soft spots, growth on the skin or blemishes.
If not using right away, say for a week, store it in room temperature but longer than that they prefer cool, dark and dry area.
How to cut sweet potatoes
Wash sweet potatoes before peeling and cut into 1 inch cubes. They have irregular shapes so just try to cut them same sizes so they cook at the same time.
They come in different sizes. Some are elongated and narrow while others are thicker or bulkier with firm flesh. You need to exert some effort when cutting them.
For sweet potatoes that are long and narrow, cut it in half at the center, lengthwise. Cut each halves in half then into cubes.
If sweet potatoes are thick or bulky, cut it into 1 inch rounds then cut each round into 4 to 6 pieces.
How to caramelize sugar
Brown sugar or granulated sugar can be caramelize on its own but it will scorch easily. To slow the caramelization process, it needs some moisture like butter or water.
In a heavy pan, melt butter over low-medium heat. Add brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, rum and water. Stir thoroughly until sugar is completely dissolved.
Once it starts to boil, raise heat to medium. Continue stirring for about 4 – 5 minutes, scraping the sides and bottom of pan until it caramelize and turns amber.
Remove from heat when texture is like syrup (not too runny nor too thick). It can burn easily at this point.
Note: I used a non-stick pan which is easier to clean. Scrape all areas with spatula to remove the caramelized sugar before it hardens. For other types of pan, soak it in soap and hot water as soon as your done.
- Roast sweet potatoes in a non-stick baking rack with ½ inch gap or a checkered baking rack. If you have one, this is perfect for roasting, no need to turn sweet potatoes to cook evenly with crisp outside.
Otherwise use a non-stick baking pan and turn sweet potatoes every 15 minutes.
Note: I used 2 racks with baking pans underneath. Also, I used the same pan to mix sweet potatoes and olive oil.
2. Caramelize brown sugar a few minutes before sweet potatoes are done or after it’s done. Mix it together right away before caramelized sugar hardens. Transfer to baking pan and separate each cube so they don’t stick to each other. After 5 minutes, transfer to serving plate.
Note: Line baking pan with parchment paper for less clean-up, if you like.
3. Store leftover in an airtight container up to 2 days in the fridge. Heat in the microwave in increments of 15 to 20 seconds. Sugar glaze will melt though.
Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Roasting Sweet Potatoes
- 4 - 5 pounds sweet potatoes peeled and cubed
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 2 ½ tablespoons butter
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon rum
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ cup and 1 tablespoon water
- Wash sweet potatoes before or after peeling and dry with paper towel. Cut into 1 inch cubes.
- Pre-heat oven at 400 degrees F.
- In a bowl or baking pan, coat sweet potatoes with olive oil.
- Roast sweet potatoes for 30 – 35 minutes at the middle rack. Remove from oven. Note: Use a toothpick to check if done.
- Make glaze 3 minutes before sweet potatoes are done or after it’s done.
- In a heavy bottom pan, melt butter at medium-low heat.
- Add brown sugar, cinnamon, rum and water. Stir thoroughly to combine all the ingredients.
- Once it boils and sugar starts to caramelize, raise heat to medium and continue stirring until consistency is syrupy (not too thin or too thick) about 4 to 5 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of pan to prevent mixture from sticking to the pan. Keep an eye on the mixture as it can burn easily at this point. Note: It is easier to use a non-stick pan.
- Remove pan from heat and add roasted sweet potatoes. Stir quickly until sweet potatoes are coated with glaze.
- Transfer sweet potatoes in baking pan and separate each cube to avoid sticking from each other. Set aside for 5 minutes and transfer to a serving bowl.
2. Clean pan and baking pan right away before sugar glaze hardens. Soak in hot water and soap.
3. After a couple of hours of serving, sugar glaze might start to melt if room temperature is quite warm.
4. Store leftover in an airtight container up to 2 days in the fridge. Heat in the microwave in increments of 15 to 20 seconds. Sugar glaze will melt though.