Sweet Potato Creme Brûlée

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

This sweet potato creme brûlée is the perfect dessert for the holidays. It features tender cinnamon-spiced sweet potatoes topped with a creamy custard and that quintessential brown sugar shell.

Spoonful of sweet potato creme brûlée.

I just had to bring you this sweet potato creme brûlée dish and I promise it’s not as hard as it looks. Diehard sweet potato fans will fall in love when their standard dish is topped with a decadent brûlée, and single guys and gals who make this will end the meal with a marriage proposal, possibly more than one! LOL

If you like sweet potato casserole, you need to try this sweet potato creme brûlée recipe. It features three layers to make a dessert that’s perfect for the holidays. First, we have tender cinnamon-spiced sweet potatoes, which are topped with a creamy custard and that brown sugar shell that’s made for cracking!

Now, this recipe is going to seem long and drawn out, especially compared to my usual ones. But it really is simple if you just look at the steps. I make this a day ahead of time, usually the day before Thanksgiving and then just sprinkle the topping on and put it under the broiler just before serving. That way it doesn’t take up so much of my time on the big day.  

If there is just a smidgeon left, it makes a great breakfast eaten cold right from the baking dish. 

Recipe Ingredients

  • Sweet potatoes
  • Melted butter
  • Vanilla
  • Cinnamon
  • Light brown sugar
  • Whipping cream
  • Sugar
  • Eggs

How to Make Sweet Potato Creme Brûlée

Bake sweet potatoes until tender.

I bake my sweet potatoes at 425 until tender in the middle (about an hour) a day or so ahead of time and stick them in the fridge.

Doing it that way, the skin just pulls right off easily and sweet potatoes that are baked in the oven, in their skins, have more flavor than when you peel and slice them and cook them in water.

Place cinnamon, sugar, and sweet potatoes to mixing bowl.

Either way, get the skin off and place the baked sweet potatoes in a large bowl with cinnamon, sugar… 

Add melted butter and eggs to mixing bowl.

The melted butter and two eggs. 

TIP: If you just got done cooking your sweet potatoes before this step, make sure they’re cool because if they are really hot when you do this, they’ll cook the eggs.

Mix ingredients well.

 Mix that up really well with an electric mixer until well combined and there are very few lumps.

Spread into the bottom of a baking dish.

Spread the sweet potato mixture into the bottom of a baking dish and set it aside. 

Add custard ingredients to a pot.

Make the Custard

 Now, combine your egg yolks, whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla. 

TIP: You’ll have some egg whites leftover from this recipe. I just put those in a mason jar and stick it in the fridge because if you’re making Thanksgiving dinner you’re sure to need them to make meringue on a pie :). I suggest lemon meringue pie or peanut butter pie.

Whisk custard ingredients together over low heat until sugar dissolves.

Whisk your ingredients together really well until combined and smooth.

Place this pot over medium-low heat and whisk constantly just until warm and your sugar dissolves (about five minutes).

Or, as I always say, until you’re tired of fooling with it. 

Pour custard over sweet potato in baking dish.

 Gently scoop and pour the cream mixture over your sweet potatoes. 

Place dish in another dish filled with one-inch of water.

Place your dish in a larger dish and fill it with water until it is at least one-inch deep. 

You can use any type of oven-proof pan that is big enough to accommodate your pan and an inch or so of water.

Bake this at 325 for about an hour or until a knife inserted in the center comes out almost clean.

This won’t be set in the center by then, but most of the dish will be set except for the middle. There will just be a little bit of a jiggle in the center. 

Carefully remove from the oven and allow to cool by placing the dish on heavy dish towels or a wire rack. 

Once cool, cover with foil and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. 

I make this the day before Thanksgiving.

Broil brown sugar topping on top of sweet potato creme brûlée.

Broil the Topping

About half an hour before your meal, remove the dish from the fridge and let it sit on your counter for about 30 minutes. 

Turn your oven to low broil and sprinkle brown sugar over the top. 

Place in the oven, about 5 inches from your broiler, for 5 to 7 minutes, or until most of the sugar melts. 

Watch this constantly as different ovens cook at different speeds on broil but it will always go faster than you think!

Digging into sweet potato creme brulee.

 Allow it to sit for five minutes before serving to allow sugar to harden.

Enjoy your sweet potato creme brûlée!! I sure do! 


Store covered leftovers in the fridge for up to 2 days. As mentioned, I like to eat this cold for breakfast the next day, but you can quickly put it under the broil again to warm up.

Recipe Notes

  • If you like, substitute the white sugar you mash with the sweet potatoes with brown sugar.
  • For individual creme brulees, you can follow these steps but use ramekins instead of a casserole dish. Check them after 30 to 40 minutes.
  • You can use canned sweet potatoes or canned yams instead of fresh sweet potatoes. However, they’re usually already flavored, so you might not want to add as much of the other ingredients. Add a little and taste test to see if it needs more cinnamon and sugar.
  • Another option is to substitute sweet potato for fresh pumpkin.
  • If you like, garnish with whipped cream and a Maraschino cherry or fresh fruit.
  • You can also add 1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg to the mashed sweet potato for added flavor.
  • I use sugar in the custard. But you could use Stevia or Monk Fruit or your favorite sweetener instead to make this a ‘sugar-free’ dish, except there is brown sugar on top, of course. These substitutes are much sweeter than sugar so some experimentation may be necessary to get the right taste.

Check out these other terrific Thanksgiving treats:

Easy Pumpkin Pie Recipe From Scratch

No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake

Chocolate Pecan Pie Recipe

Pumpkin Praline Cake With Cream Cheese Icing

Italian Cream Cake with Pecan Cream Cheese Icing

spoonful of creme brulee

Sweet Potato Creme Brûlée

This sweet potato creme brûlée is the perfect holiday dessert, with tender sweet potatoes topped with custard and that brown sugar shell.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Chill Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 9 hours 30 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: dessert recipe, potatoes, sweetpotato
Servings: 8
Calories: 360kcal


For Sweet Potatoes

  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 eggs

For Custard

  • 2 cups whipping cream or heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For Topping

  • 1/3 cup brown sugar


  • If you like, you can cook the sweet potatoes the day before you are ready to make the dish and store them in the fridge overnight. Bake at 425 until tender in the middle (around 15-25 minutes). This allows the skin to fall right off the next day.
    2 large sweet potatoes
  • Place the sweet potato filling ingredients into a large bowl and beat them with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Spread into the bottom of a baking dish and set it aside.
    2 large sweet potatoes, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/4 cup melted butter, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 2 eggs
  • Place all of the custard ingredients into a medium-heavy saucepot (or transfer to one before heating) and stir well. Place over medium-low heat and whisk constantly for five minutes or until just warm. It will be very runny.
    2 cups whipping cream or heavy cream, 1/2 cup white sugar, 4 large egg yolks, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Using a measuring cup, gently scoop and pour the custard over the sweet potatoes.
  • Place the baking dish in the center of a larger baking dish and pour water into the larger dish until it is about an inch deep.
  • Bake at 325° for 1 hour or until a knife inserted in the center comes out almost clean. Carefully remove it from the oven and remove the baking dish from the water. Allow it to cool by placing it on a heavy dish towel or wire rack. Once cool, cover with foil and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
  • Before serving, remove it from the fridge and allow it to sit at room temperature for half an hour. Sprinkle brown sugar over the top and turn the oven to low broil. Place the dish on a baking sheet and put it in the oven, about 5 inches from the broiler, for 5-7 minutes, or until the sugar is mostly melted. Remove from the oven and allow it to sit for a few minutes before serving to allow the sugar to harden. Note: Not all of the sugar will melt but it will form a thin coat across the top of the dish.
    1/3 cup brown sugar


I use sugar in the custard. But you could use Stevia or Monk Fruit or your favorite sweetener instead to make this a 'sugar-free' dish, except there is brown sugar on top, of course. These substitutes are much sweeter than sugar so some experimentation may be necessary to get the right taste.


Calories: 360kcal
Tried this recipe?Mention @southernplate or tag #southernplate!


Every day is a holiday, every meal is a banquet!

~unknown, submitted by John (thanks, John!)

Share your favorite motivational or uplifting quotes by clicking here.

Similar Posts


  1. I can’t wait to make the sweet potatoes and I love reading your “sayings”. I especially am inspired by your love of our Lord. I know you think you had the best grandmother on earth and I have to challenge that because I know I did :)! One of the things she was especially good at was to make me feel loved, even when I was in the dog house. Before she admonished me, she would first say, “I always love you and I don’t always like some of the things you choose to do”. I wish you/your loved ones and all the readers of your blog a blessed Thanksgiving. It is my most favorite holiday of the year; a day with a special opportunity to say THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart all the way up!
    P.S. Thank you for today’s giggle. I can’t think how a pie crust that has had a water bath would turn out. I swanny, I laughed so hard I had tears in my eyes.

  2. You had me at creme brulee! Recently, on a cruise, had creme brulee 8 nights out of 9 and could have eaten it for breakfast. Now, with your recipe…I can and I will…grin…thanks!

  3. Hey Christy! I’m planning on making this for our Thanksgiving meal and I will make it exactly as you have listed but I have a question. Why do you pour (with your measuring cup) the custard. I would have just poured the whole pot at one time so I’m guessing there’s a reason for this??Lol! Thanks!

    1. I think if you dumped the pot it would make a low spot in the whipped potatoes and you wouldn’t get an even layer of custard(?). I’ve seen other recipes where the layers are added slowly to help them stay separate.

  4. Could you follow the same process using a deep dish pie shell? I think my family would accept it as a dessert if it is a pie instead of a casserole?

    1. This isn’t really a casserole so it doesn’t feel that way serving it, I promise 🙂 I’ve never tried cooking a pie crust in a water bath so not sure how it will work, with the extended cooking times as well. Of course, there is a chance it will be perfect but there is also a possibility of going in the opposite direction. If you decide to go your own way with the recipe please report back and tell us how it works out!

  5. Thanks for another favorite recipe!! This was on our Thanksgiving table today. My son-in-law usually brings his family’s sweet potato casserole, but he’s been under the weather this week. I had saved this recipe, thinking what’s not to like with sweet potatoes and creme brulee? Absolutely nothing!! Great stuff 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe or Post Rating