Rosemary Mashed Sweet Potatoes

By Sally Cameron on October 30, 2011

Basics and how-to, Holiday Dishes, Side Dishes, the daniel plan, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Sweet potatoes are a powerhouse root vegetable packed with flavor and nutrition. Skip the marshmallows, brown sugar or maple syrup. Simply simmer until tender, drain, mash and add a little butter or olive oil with fresh chopped rosemary. Rosemary mashed sweet potatoes make a healthy side dish any time of the year and are a good basic to have in your cooking rotation.

mashed sweet potatoes |

Yams or Rosemary Mashed Sweet Potatoes?

One of the oldest vegetables known to mankind, sweet potatoes are filled with magnesium, potassium, vitamin C, iron, copper and the antioxidant beta-carotene, not to mention fiber. Sweet potatoes are a healthy carb to add to your diet.

Sweet potatoes or yams? While many people use the term interchangeably, sweet potatoes and yams are two different root vegetables. What we buy here in the US are really sweet potatoes, not yams, so I am told. True yams do not grow in the US. More starchy and less sweet, you might find them at an ethnic grocer.

How to Cut Up Sweet Potatoes

Large, long and rounded with pointy ends, sweet potatoes can be a challenge to safely cut up for cooking. Here’s how to handle them while staying safe:

  • First peel
  • Cut them in half across the middle for a more manageable size
  • Cut a slice off the long side to give you a flat edge
  • Lay the sweet potato flat on your cutting board for stability
  • Cut those pieces into long planks about a 1” wide
  • Cut the planks into  1″ pieces

Simmer and Whip

Once all of your potatoes are cut into cubes, place them in a large pot and cover them with cold water. Add a little salt and bring them to a simmer. Cook until the potatoes are very soft when pierced with a sharp knife tip. With the small size of the cubes, it won’t take long. Last time I made them it was ten minutes.

Drain, allow potatoes to steam dry for a few minutes in the hot pan, then mash with an electric hand mixer until creamy and smooth. Add a little butter or olive oil and rosemary. Season with salt and pepper and serve. If you’d like more of a garnish, chopped, toasted pecans work perfectly.

If you love sweet potatoes and root vegetables, here is a cookbook helps us all do more with root vegetables. And for another twist on sweet potatoes try these creamy pumpkin mashed potatoes.

Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Rosemary

Sweet potatoes are a powerhouse vegetable packed with flavor and nutrition. Skip the marshmallows, brown sugar or maple syrup. They don’t need it. Simply simmer until tender, then drain, mash and add a little butter or olive oil. Fresh chopped rosemary is a nice addition. Mashed sweet potatoes make a healthy side dish any time of the year. 
Servings 6
Calories 183kcal


  • 2 pounds sweet potatoes
  • 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary or fresh thyme
  • 1-2 tablespoons chopped toasted pecans garnish, optional


  • Peel sweet potatoes. If they are large, cut them in half crosswise to make them more manageable. Trim a piece from the long side of the sweet potato to create a flat surface. Place the flat surface on the cutting board for stability and cut the potato into planks about 1″ in width. Then cut the planks into the same size diced potatoes.
  • Place the potatoes into a medium saucepan or pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Turn down if needed once the potatoes are cooking. You don’t want to boil them (they will fall apart). Cook until the potatoes are very soft when pierced with a sharp knife tip.
  • Drain the potatoes and place them back in the pan on the warm (but turned off) burner for a few minutes.This will steam off excess moisture. Mash the potatoes with an electric handheld mixer or an immersion blender with the whip attachment. Add butter or olive oil and rosemary. Serve warm.


To save time, make the sweet potatoes a day ahead and warm before serving. To heat, place the sweet potatoes in a medium glass or stainless steel bowl over a pan with simmering water. Cover with foil and heat until hot, stirring occasionally. Alternatively place in a warm oven.


Calories: 183kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 83mg | Potassium: 516mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 21460IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 45mg | Iron: 1mg
  1. Jesica @ pencil kitchen - October 30th, 2011

    Healthy healthy indeed… I love sweet potatoes on its own and have never had it mashed… Something new to try 🙂

  2. Anna - October 31st, 2011

    Love your trivia there about sweet potatoes. Loved these tubers even more. Energy boosting dish with vitamins and minerals too! I am sure the rosemary as spice is heavenly! Great post! Look forward to more great dishes…

  3. Sally - October 31st, 2011

    Thanks Anna, and I enjoyed your post on Halloween trivia!

  4. Carrie - October 31st, 2011

    I love your presentation of these sweet potatoes – so pretty! The rosemary/toasted pecan combination sounds lovely.

  5. Editorial Team | Healthy Aperture - October 31st, 2011

    These look delish. We love them.

  6. Sally - October 31st, 2011

    Thanks Healthy Aperature! Thanks for your comment. Nice to discover you. As I focus on healthy cooking, I’ll begin to submit the weekly photo to your site for possible inclusion.

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  8. lo - November 7th, 2011

    I’m such a fan of the humble sweet potato, and I’m wild about rosemary — so you’ve got me with this one. I’m also always thrilled to see sweet potato recipes that allow the potatoes to stand on their own sweetness. Kudos!

  9. marla - November 16th, 2011

    Love it!! Linking back to this today 🙂

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  11. Kelly - December 6th, 2011

    We made this dish at Thanksgiving and added about 1/4 C chopped raisins. We couldn’t believe how deliciously rich they were and yet still so healthy! Our tradition used to involve marshmallows and brown sugar, but we will now have a new, healthier tradition. Thanks Sally!!

  12. Sally - December 6th, 2011

    Great idea Kelly! Thanks for reporting back!

  13. Kirsten- The Foreign Domestic - July 11th, 2012

    I featured your recipe on my blog: Loved it!!

  14. Sally - July 11th, 2012

    Thanks Kirsten! So simple and good, not to mention good for you.

  15. Brandi Koskie - October 5th, 2012

    Hi Sally!

    We included your recipe in this week’s Health Buzz round up at

    Tried to tweet it to you but the page appears to be expired. Thanks! – BK

  16. Sally - October 7th, 2012

    Hi Brandi! Thanks! My twitter is @FoodCentricLife. Glad you liked the recipe.

  17. Erin - December 23rd, 2013

    The fresh rosemary is wonderful!

    Thanks for this recipe. Quick, simple and so delicious! I’ll make it often.

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