Fool-Proof Baked Sweet Potato Recipe

Baked sweet potatoes are a delicious addition to any meal. In this post, we’ll teach you how to bake sweet potatoes in 3 easy steps and how to flavor and re-purpose your oven baked sweet potatoes!

baked sweet potato with butter on plate

This tried and true baked sweet potato recipe is one of our favorite holiday side dishes and weeknight meals. We’re huge fans of root vegetables and sweet potatoes top the chart for us.

Best Baked Sweet Potato Recipe

This is hands down the best oven baked sweet potato recipe on the internet! Why? They come out tender and perfectly cooked every time!

Plus, we’re keeping things basic with olive oil, salt, and pepper so that you can flavor your sweet potatoes however your heart desires. Keep reading to learn all things sweet taters!

What do sweet potatoes taste like?

Sweet potatoes are a starchy vegetable that have a similar texture to a normal white potato (softer) but are much sweeter in taste. Hence, the name.

Are baked sweet potatoes healthy for you?

Baked sweet potatoes are packed with complex carbs, fiber, vitamin c, and antioxidants making them a healthy addition to any meal. Sweet potatoes are naturally gluten-free, vegan, and paleo-friendly. They’re sweet in flavor and the kids will love them!

Sweet Potato Nutrition Stats

Per 1 cup, cubed: 114 calories, 27g carbs, 0g fat, 4g fiber, 6g sugar, and 2g protein

poking holes in sweet potato

How to Bake Sweet Potatoes (step by step)

Are you wondering: How do I bake a sweet potato? In this section, we’ll give you the down-low of how to get perfect baked sweet potatoes every time!

Step 1: Wash & Poke

First things first. Give your sweet potatoes a nice scrub under warm water. This will remove any dirt and residue. They do come from the land, after all.

Then, use a fork to poke around 6-8 holes in each potato. This helps infuse the potato with olive oil and spices and with cooking circulation.

Do I have to poke holes in my sweet potatoes? 

Most people say to poke holes in your potatoes so they don’t explode in the oven, but we’ve tested this both ways and have never had a potato explode.

Do note that if you’re planning to cook your sweet potatoes in the microwave, the holes DO prevent them from exploding.


Makes sure to use potatoes that are similar in size and thickness so that they cook evenly.

Step 2: Prep

Next, make sure that your potatoes are dry, and then rub each sweet potato with olive oil (any kind of oil works). Then, generously season with salt and pepper.

The olive oil is going to get the skin nice and crispy while keeping the flesh tender and perfect.

Note: if you’re planning to make sweet potato puree, no need to season with salt and pepper.

Flavor Variations

If you’re looking to get a bit fancy with the flavors of your sweet potatoes, you can absolutely season them with more spices. Try any of the following:

  • Garlic powder
  • paprika
  • ground cinnamon

Do I need aluminum foil?

You’re more than welcome to wrap your potatoes with aluminum foil. This will help steam them (great for pureeing). But, if you’re looking for that crispy skin, we recommend not using foil.

Step 3: Roast

We like to roast our whole sweet potatoes at a higher heat so that they come out super tender on the inside with crispy skin on the outside.

Place sweet potatoes on a baking sheet, making sure they are spaced out and not touching. Then, roast sweet potatoes at 425ºF for 45-60 minutes (or longer). You know your potatoes are done when you can easily pierce them with a fork in the thickest part of the potato.

So, how long to bake sweet potatoes?

Bake sweet potatoes at 425ºF for 45-60 minutes.

And there you have it, the most perfect baked sweet potato on the internet!

size matters

The bigger the sweet potatoes you use, the longer they’ll need to roast. The same goes for smaller sweet potatoes. We used large sweet potatoes and they took around 60 minutes.

olive oil on sweet potato

Topping Ideas

Now that your baked taters are out of the oven, it’s time to eat! You can always eat them plain, but you can also jazz them up with different flavor variations. Try the following:

  • Butter + salt + pepper
  • Almond butter + maple syrup + ground cinnamon
  • Beef chili + shredded cheese
  • Greek yogurt + chives
  • Taco meat + salsa
  • Brown sugar + pecans
  • Mini marshmallows

try this!

Get really fancy with your baked sweet potato recipe and stuff them! Check out our Stuffed Sweet Potatoes 3-ways post for more inspo.

What to do with Your Baked Sweet Potato

We’ve given you ideas for how to eat your sweet potatoes fresh out of the oven, but did you know there is so much more you can do with them –> casseroles, dessert recipes, burgers, hummus, etc. Get ready to have your mind blown!

How to make Sweet Potato Puree from Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Got leftover sweet potato? Make sweet potato puree! Here’s a quick tutorial on how to do so:

  1. After you’ve roasted your sweet potatoes, let them cool for 20-30 minutes.
  2. Then, slice them in half and scoop out the flesh.
  3. Place the flesh in a food processor and process on high for 60 seconds. You may need to add a little water to smooth things out depending on how moist your sweet potatoes are.
baked sweet potatoes on baking sheet with holes in them

What kind of sweet potato should I use in this recipe?

There are many different variations of sweet potatoes. Red sweet potatoes, purple, white etc. Any kind will work for this recipe, just make sure that they’re all around the same size so that they bake evenly.

Sweet Potatoes vs. Yams

Wondering what the difference is between a sweet potato and a yam? Though they look similar, yams have tougher skin (similar to tree bark) and starchier flesh (similar to a white potato).

Here is a great article on the difference.


Let sweet potatoes cool completely. Then, transfer them into an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 3-5 days.

Can I freeze baked sweet potatoes?

To freeze baked sweet potato, let it cool completely. Then, tightly wrap it in tin foil and place it in a freezer-safe gallon-size bag for up to 3 months.

2 sweet potatoes on plate with butter and pepper

Back-to-Basics Sweet Potato Tutorials

Sweet potatoes are an excellent, versatile veggie to roast, puree, bake with, add to bowls, the list goes on! Check out some of our back-to-basics sweet potato tutorials.

How to Bake Sweet Potatoes (Baked Sweet Potato Recipe)

Baked sweet potatoes are a delicious addition to any meal. In this post, we’ll teach you how to bake sweet potatoes in the oven in 3 easy steps and how to flavor and re-purpose your oven baked sweet potatoes!

Prep: 5 minutesCook: 60 minutesTotal: 1 hour 5 minutes

Fat 3

Carbs 37

Protein 4

Yield 4 1x


  • 4 large sweet potatoes*
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste


  1. First, preheat oven to 425ºF. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Next, prepare sweet potatoes by thoroughly washing under cold water. Then, pat dry. Use a fork to puncture 6-8 holes into each potato. This will help prevent them from exploding in the oven.
  3. Next, rub each potato with olive oil and then generously season with salt and pepper. If you are using these sweet potatoes to make sweet potato puree, no need to season.
  4. Place sweet potatoes on the baking sheet, making sure they are not touching. Roast at 425ºF for 45-60 minutes. Time will vary depending on the size of the potato. You know your sweet potatoes are done when you can easily pierce them with a fork. If you are planning to make sweet potato puree, we suggest cooking them a little bit longer so you can easily puree it.

Tips & Notes

  • Sweet potato size: this recipe calls for large sweet potatoes. Note that if you use a smaller potato, you bake time will vary.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 potato
Calories: 183
Sugar: 12
Fat: 3
Carbohydrates: 37
Fiber: 6
Protein: 4

Author: Lee FunkeCategory: SideMethod: OvenCuisine: AmericanDiet: Gluten Free

Keywords: baked sweet potato recipe, how to bake sweet potatoes

baked sweet potato recipe on plate with butter

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