Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

I want to go everywhere I haven't been, and back to everywhere I have been.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Sweet Potato Casserole - Like Mom Used To Make

Sweet Potato Casserole - Just like mom used to make! | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Have you ever realized out that you've been calling something by the wrong name, 
for your entire life?

I'm sure there are lots of things I get wrong that I'm not even aware of,
but one thing I learned is that 
the sweet potato "pie" my mother made every year for Thanksgiving,
was clearly NOT a pie.

 This realization hit me a few years ago when I was discussing 
Thanksgiving menus with a co-worker.
She was telling me about all of the pies her family makes for dessert each year...
Apple, pumpkin, pecan, sweet potato.

Say what?
"You have your sweet potato pie for dessert"?

She looked at me like I had the IQ of a turkey,
and said, "uh, don't you"?

Let's just say I ate a big slice of humble pie right then and there.

Sweet Potato Casserole - Just like mom used to make! | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

All this time, I'd grown up thinking that 
the sweet potato side dish my mom made was a pie.
That's what she called it, and I never thought to question it.
True, it had no crust, but recipes abound for crustless sweet potato pie.
However, one of the prerequisites a pie must have,
 is that it can be sliced into a nice, solid triangular piece.
If sweet potato "pie" is served with a spoon,
and deposited on a place like a dollop of mashed potatoes, 
well, then, it's just a casserole masquerading in a pie plate.

Sweet Potato Casserole - Just like mom used to make! | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

My mother made this pie, er, casserole, every Thanksgiving that I can remember.
I'm guessing that she found the recipe in the 1960's 
on the back of a sweet potato can, or in a magazine, like McCall's.
She always used canned sweet potatoes, but I use fresh.
She also added butter, which definitely ups the YF (Yum Factor);
I prefer to leave it out to keep it healthier. 

Sweet Potato Casserole - Just like mom used to make! | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

 Recipes like this are all over Pinterest, so I'm well aware 
that I'm not coming up with anything new here;
I just want to share one of my family's Thanksgiving favorites.
It happens to be darn tasty, by the way. 

And it's easy as pie...even though it's not pie. 

Sweet Potato Casserole - Just like mom used to make! | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Some notes you may find useful:
I use a 9" deep dish pie plate. 
Four to five large sweet potatoes are just the right amount.
Canned sweet potatoes are fine to use, if you prefer.
Only about half of the 20 oz. can of crushed pineapple is needed. 
Use the other half for my Cranberry Awesomesauce.
Blot the pineapple rings and cherries with paper towel to remove excess moisture.
Feel free to add more brown sugar, to suit your taste.
The casserole can be made in advance, and kept in the refrigerator 
until ready to bake. 
Marshmallows should be added during the last 10 minutes of baking.

Ready? Let's (casser)ROLL!

Sweet Potato Casserole - Just like mom used to make! | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

(recipe source unknown)

4-5 large sweet potatoes (or 48 oz. canned sweet potatoes)
1 20 oz. can crushed pineapple, undrained (the recipe uses only half the can)
1 20 oz. can pineapple rings
2 tablespoons brown sugar (or more, to taste)
1/3 - 1/2 stick butter, melted (optional)
Maraschino cherries (about 12)
Marshmallows (about 7)

If using fresh sweet potatoes, peel, and cut into large chunks. Place potatoes in pot and cover with water. 
Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are soft, and easily pierced with a fork (about 15-20 minutes). Drain.
Mash potatoes until creamy. 
Stir in half the can of crushed pineapple, including the juice. Potato mixture should be moist. 
Add brown sugar, and mix thoroughly.
If using butter, add, and stir until completely incorporated.
Transfer potato mixture into a 9" deep dish pie plate, and smooth top.
Decorate top with pineapple rings and cherries (blot the pineapple rings and cherries with paper towel to remove excess moisture).
Bake at 350°until hot, approximately 30 minutes.
Add marshmallows last 10 minutes, and watch carefully so they do not burn.

Sweet Potato Casserole - Just like mom used to make! | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

 I'd put money on the fact that many of you who are reading this 
probably make a mean sweet potato pie...the real deal.
I'm curious -- do you eat it with the main course, or for dessert?
Crust or crustless?

Sweet Potato Casserole - Just like mom used to make! | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Now that I've gotten over the sheer embarrassment of 
my sweet potato "pie" faux pas,
and embraced it for what it is...
my casserole is welcome to have a place at my Thanksgiving table, 
 alongside the turkey, stuffing, and cranberry sauce.
But I'm still going to call it a pie.

Sweet Potato Casserole - Just like mom used to make! | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes


  1. It's not Thanksgivjng without sweet potato 'pie'. That's what I call it too!

    I'm always teased when I make this. Some people call it the 'white trash side dish', but guess what? Everyone eats it and loves it, so just call me Ellie May. ;).


  2. I have never made a sweet potato pie before (married 30 years now) but your recipe looks so absolutely delicious that I am going to make it! Thank you for such a nice recipe (and story). I really love reading your blog! Happy Thanksgiving!

  3. This sounds so good and you make it in a pie plate, so why not call it a pie? I have never made sweet potato pie but I do make something called Senator Russell potatoes. I am actually making them tonight at my son's request. I have no idea why they are named after a Senator but they are fabulous. A little different than yours, topped with a brown sugar/pecan mixture.

  4. Oh Amy my mouth is watering looking at that Sweet Potato Pie!! I wish I could have some right now. Lol.
    Thanks for sharing this recipe.
    Julie xo

  5. Such a yummy, nostalgic dish. I remember seeing it at lots of people's houses growing up. Our sweet potatoes were slightly different with a pecan and brown sugar streusel (?) on top. I'm also not sure what ours are really called, but I can't imagine Thanksgiving without it! Yours is beautiful--Have a warm holiday!

  6. I'm the one in my family that usually gets asked to bring the sweet potatoes. I'm making it for Thanksgiving and my husband's family Christmas gathering. Mine is different from yours, but yours looks equally delicious! I bet the pineapple adds a nice taste to it as it also looks good. I just baked a sweet potato pie given to me from my husband's cousin. It was delicious and now I want the recipe. I love anything sweet potato related!

  7. This looks and sounds delicious, Amy, but we always called it a casserole! And sweet potato pie was something that got made occasionally, not often. Sweet potato casserole, every Thanksgiving!

    Glad you still put marshmallows on yours! I notice that there is never a marshmallow left on the plate!

  8. Hi Amy, have done this for sure with things my mom and grandmother have made. I have never seen a recipe like this and I am very interested in trying it out. Thanks for sharing.


  9. This is far too pretty to eat!!! Sounds super might just have to make the menu this holiday season!

  10. OMGosh Amy I have been missing out on Thanksgiving yumminess all my life ... i have never eaten this "no calories" recipe from heaven! Thanks for sharing.

  11. I've made regular ones, with brown sugar and orange juice, and there is one that everyone raved over a few years back that was made with them mashed but I've not had a recipe like this yet with the pineapple! This might be the one that I'll do for Thanksgiving! :)

  12. Such a wonderful casserole!!
    I've never eaten something like this, and I honestly cannot wait to try.
    Thanks so much for sharing it :)

  13. Wow, it looks amazing.
    You can't beat a mums cooking ...

    All the best Jan


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