For weeks, I’ve been stockpiling sweet potatoes, trying to create the perfect dish for Thanksgiving.
My first three attempts turned out tasty, but visually horrific — and that just wouldn’t do.
When cooking healthy meals for the masses (people who aren’t as concerned with nutrition as I), it’s essential that they look tasty, or people won’t even give them a chance.
Despite what the lovely recipe photos on this blog may lead you to believe, I am not a great cook by nature. It often takes me several attempts to get things right, and what you see here is only the best of the best — about 50% off what actually comes out of Whit’s Kitch.
The point of pulling back the curtain on my recipe failures is to send some encouragement to anyone who is afraid of the kitchen.
Messing up is perfectly natural, and often isn’t as bad as you think.
These potatoes were one of the mess-ups. Still look pretty good, right?!
While they didn’t turn out perfect, these Scalloped Sweet Potatoes were pretty yummy and they led me to my next successful recipe attempt:
Sweet Potato Coconut Crisp.
It took a while to get here (and my skin may have turned a bit orange from excessive sweet potato intake) but I succeeded in making a recipe I was happy to eat and present.
This crisp makes an excellent Thanksgiving side dish or dessert. It’s a great replacement for traditional candied yams —which can pack about 300 calories and 48 grams of sugar per serving — and for sweet potato pie, which will also cost you over 300 calories.
The ingredients are very simple. The filling is made predominately of sweet potatoes, coconut milk and egg whites, and the topping is composed of pecans, oats and coconut oil.
Easy, healthy and delicious.
If you follow this recipe precisely, you won’t mess up — and even if you did, it would probably still taste great!
- 2 Sweet Potatoes, peeled & cubed
- ½ C. Coconut Milk
- 2 Egg Whites
- 2 Packets Stevia or ½ C. Sugar
- 2 T. Cinnamon
- 2 tsp. Nutmeg
- 3 T. Coconut Oil, melted
- ½ C. Old Fashioned Oats
- ¼ C. Pecans, chopped
- 1 tsp. Salt
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Peel and cube sweet potatoes. Add to a pot of water and boil for about 20 minutes.
- Drain potatoes from water and puree them in a blender or food processor with the milk, egg whites, 1 packet of stevia, 1 T. of Cinnamon and 1 tsp. of Nutmeg.
- Pour potato mixture into a baking dish.
- Combine pecans, oats, melted coconut oil, and the remaining stevia, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a small bowl. *Tip: Add whole pecans to a plastic sandwich bag, then break apart with a mallet (or even a coffee mug) to make pieces if yours aren't already chopped.
- Evenly distribute topping over the potato mixture.
- Bake uncovered for about 40 minutes.
This recipe comfortably serves 4 to 6 people, but for a larger group, double or triple the recipe. It makes awesome leftovers too – another reason to go for a bigger batch.
It’s moderately sweet, which makes it a perfect side for your Thanksgiving dinner. If you plan on serving it for dessert though, consider doubling the sugar or stevia in both the topping and the filling. You can also add an extra honey drizzle at the end before serving.
I ate this version for both lunch, dinner and dessert on the day I made it, and found it to be just the right level of sweetness. However, the “average eater” might not agree.
Another idea would be to serve it piping hot alongside vanilla ice cream or Pumpkin Banana Froyo (faux-yo)
And with that I’m headed to the kitchen to make another batch.
Looking for more healthy Thanksgiving recipes?
Why not try…
Vegan Pumpkin Waffles (for brunch)
I hope you all have a healthy, happy and heartwarming Thanksgiving!