Southern Sweet Potato Pie

This homemade Southern Sweet Potato Pie is creamy and sweetened with pure cane syrup (paid link) — which is the only way to make a true Southern version of this decadent pie. A bold claim, I know. Although I only make this recipe around the holidays, it is really a great option for any time of the year. And the great thing about sweet potatoes is you can find them year-round.

A slice of sweet potato pie

This is a classic recipe that has been handed down in my family for many years. I’ve been following my grandmother’s version for a while now and really haven’t made any tweaks to it. It’s true to how I enjoyed it growing up.

Ingredients you’ll need to make Southern Sweet Potato Pie:

  • Sweet potatoes are the foundation of this recipe. Three sweet potatoes will make two whole 8- or 9-inch pies. Use any leftovers in my Sweet Potato Pancakes.
  • Steen’s pure cane syrup (paid link) is my go-to. This thick caramel–flavored syrup is a natural sweetener and adds a ton of richness to this dessert. You’ll need both sugar and brown sugar for additional sweetness.
  • The typical spice trio of vanilla extract, cinnamon, and nutmeg are the perfect compliments. No other spices are better for the season or the reason.
  • Eggs help to bind the pie together and since evaporated milk (I use PET) works at high temperatures without curdling, it makes a great choice to add creaminess to the pie filling.
  • While I do love making this pie, I am far from being a baker so I opt for frozen shells that work fine for this recipe. I share a few recommendations later in this post.

How to make Southern Sweet Potato Pie:

Boil the sweet potatoes. Peel and boil your sweet potatoes for 30 minutes. You want them to be very tender when they’re done. This helps to achieve that creamy texture you want. Note: If you boil them skin-on, they’ll need to cool before you can work with them. If you peel them beforehand, you skip that step. See notes in recipe card about baking your sweet potatoes instead of boiling them.

peeling and removing skin from sweet potatoes

Mash the sweet potatoes. Drain your sweet potatoes and mash them using a potato masher (paid link).

Mashing sweet potatoes using a potato masher

All remaining ingredients. Once smashed, add all of your remaining ingredients into the same bowl: sugar, brown sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, melted butter, pure cane syrup (paid link), eggs, and evaporated milk.

adding pure cane syrup to sweet potato filling

Blend. The key to any great sweet potato recipe is the texture of the filling. It must be velvety smooth and free of any noticeable chunks. Using a hand mixer (paid link) and blending for around 5 minutes should get you to the desired consistency.

Fill the crusts and bake. Once you fill your crust, bake them for 55 minutes at 350 degrees. They’ll be ready to serve after cooling for 15 minutes.

Decorate. Sometimes, I take it a step further and toast marshmallows around the edge of my pie. I use a culinary torch to toast them lightly. You can also purchase marshmallow fluff and use the same torching technique.

Southern Sweet Potato Pie FAQs

  • Can you make this pie ahead of time? Yes! You can certainly make the filling beforehand and use it within the next 2-3 days if refrigerated. You can also freeze the filling for 2-3 months. Since the shells are frozen, you’ll want to keep them frozen until you’re ready to use them.
  • Which frozen pie crusts should I buy? There is nothing better than homemade pie crust, but as I shared, making dough is not really my thing. When I’m making pies my first choice is to go with a refrigerated or frozen option. However, while I’m quick to purchase a pre-made crust, all pie crusts are not created equal. I recommend Wholly Wholesome’s Organic Pie Shells. They have a gluten-free option, as well. If you are comfortable buying your pie pans separately, You could use the fresh sheets of flat or rolled pastry dough. Trader Joe’s Pie Crust, Wholly Wholesome’s Organic Pie Dough and Leadbetter’s French Picnic Pastry Sheets are great choices.
  • Can I bake my sweet potatoes? Yes, you can also bake your sweet potatoes instead of boiling them. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Using a fork, make a few holes on the top of the sweet potato. Place them on a baking sheet (paid link) and bake them for 1 hour.

Single slice of sweet potato pie with toasted marshmallows

If you love sweet potatoes, you should check out a few more of my recipes:

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Single slice of sweet potato pie with toasted marshmallows

Southern Sweet Potato Pie

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5 from 3 reviews

  • Author: Eric Jones
  • Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian


This homemade Southern Sweet Potato Pie is decadent, creamy, and sweetened with pure cane syrup (paid link) — a true Southern version of this classic.


Units Scale
  • 3 sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup of butter, melted
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup pure cane syrup (paid link)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 8-inch pie shell, frozen


  1. Peel, slice, and boil sweet potatoes for 30 minutes until softened. You can also bake them (see Notes below).
  2. In a large bowl, mash sweet potatoes. 
  3. Add butter, sugar, brown sugar, pure cane syrup (paid link), eggs, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, and evaporated milk to the same bowl. 
  4. Blend all ingredients until smooth (around 5 minutes) and place filling into frozen pie shell.
  5. Bake for 55 minutes at 350°F.


You can also bake your sweet potatoes instead of boiling them. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Using a fork, make a few holes on the top of the sweet potato. Place them on a baking sheet (paid link) and bake them for 1 hour.

  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Southern


  • Calories: 484
  • Fat: 20.6g

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  1. Angelina Perry says:

    Is there any substitutes for the cane sugar syrup☹️

    1. Eric Jones says:

      Hi Angelina. While we have not tested any of these substitutes, in place of pure can syrup you can use corn syrup, honey, or maple syrup. The taste will be different due to the change in ingredients.

  2. Some strings come off when peeling the potatoes.. Also, when mixing my sweet potato pies the strings attach to the beaters of the mixer and I remove them throughout the mixing process.

    1. Eric Jones says:

      Awesome, thanks Devan!

  3. Leonard Cotton says:

    What about getting the strings out of the sweet potatoes my mother would use this gadget I call it because I don’t know the name of it but she would put the potatoes in it and squeeze it and all the strings would come out of the sides through the holes and I always saying that you got to get the strings out does anyone know the name of this gadget??

    1. Eric Jones says:

      Most of the stringiness comes from the fibrous parts of the sweet potato that are right underneath the skin. When you remove the skin, remove a little of the sweet potato as well. That should help. That’s how I do it and I don’t have any issues with the strings.

      1. ANGELA WHITE-WILSON says:

        When using the hand mixer, I find the strings attach themselves to the beaters. Problem solved.

    2. Phyllis Johnson says:

      The name of the gadget is a potato ricer. I still have my mother ricer and it must be at least 130 years old. (I am 70 years old).