Brown Butter Coconut Mashed Sweet Potatoes

by Marla on November 16, 2011 · 77 comments

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Brown Butter Coconut Mashed Sweet Potatoes on ©

Today I am sharing one of our favorite recipes for mashed sweet potatoes. Can you believe Thanksgiving is just a week away?! The Food Network is hosting a virtual Thanksgiving feast called The Communal Table. You can enjoy my sweet potato recipe virtually, or go ahead and make some. They are quick, simple and the payoff is huge.

We all welcome you to #PullUpAChair (use this on Twitter) and enjoy the food…

Please cast your daily votes for my Thai Spiced French Fries over at Alexia Foods Facebook page …. thanks bunches. We are in the lead to be the next fry flavor, but the competition is fierce!

We LOVE Sweet Potatoes on

Any excuse I have to cook with sweet potatoes I do. Thank goodness ’tis the season!

Have you ever had anything with brown butter? If so then you know the magical flavors that it creates in your mouth. If not, then you must experience it now. Go ahead, fire up your skillet and burn some butter. I’ll be here waiting…

Brown Butter Coconut Mashed Sweet Potatoes on ©

This sweet potato mash has a rustic, comfort food charm. In reality it is healthy and quite light.

Enjoy it as a Thanksgiving or Christmas holiday side dish or as I do…for breakfast with a side of eggs. Top with some crunchy toasted nuts too. Pecans, walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts…anything goes. Coconut milk adds so much to this recipe too.

Those little dark dried fruits on top are dried Black Mission Figs that I found at Trader Joe’s. Get some and thank me later. Or slice up some fresh ones.

Brown Butter Coconut Mashed Sweet Potatoes on ©

I sprinkled a little bit of demerara sugar on top too. Have you ever had that? I love the large crystals and hearty molasses flavor. This sugar is spun in a centrifuge and is drier than other brown sugars, this makes it catch the light beautifully. It has a nice crunch too.

Brown Butter Coconut Mashed Sweet Potatoes on ©

Does anyone know what these little pumpkin things are?

Find your Whole Food Thanksgiving recipes on

I don’t think they really pumpkins, but they sure are pretty for holiday table decorations. Are they persimmons?

I really have not a clue…

Find your Whole Food Thanksgiving recipes on

If you topped little ramekins of this mash with oats, honey and some more butter you would have my Sweet Potato Crisp recipe. If you have not tried that one then you need to. I am so in love with my new Le Creuset Mini Cocottes. Be prepared to see them in my photos all the time. The cobalt color is spectacular…then again so is every color.

I think I need them all. My bank account does not think so though.

Brown Butter Coconut Mashed Sweet Potatoes on ©

Enjoy your holiday feast with a side salad. We love bright little pomegranate seeds and creamy goat cheese on top of our greens. Like here…

Festive Holiday Salad on ©

Another favorite salad is my Sweet Potato, Bacon and Pomegranate Salad with baby spinach.

Speaking of salad, we were sent some samples of Marzetti Simply Dressed Salad Dressings. We love to make our own dressings, but in a time crunch their Pomegranate flavor is an excellent pairing for holiday feasts. I added a few fresh pomegranate arils to our dressing. You can see that in the little ramekin in the photo. Pretty huh!

Pomegranate Salad Dressing on

What is your favorite fall/winter holiday side dish recipe?

Brown Butter Coconut Mashed Sweet Potatoes on ©

Do you love sweet potatoes as much as I do? How do you like to prepare them?

Brown Butter Coconut Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 2 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 4 1/2 cups (36 ounces) or 8-10 servings


  • 3 pounds Sweet Potatoes (Garnet Yams), cleaned
  • 2 tablespoons Butter
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) light unsweetened Coconut Milk
  • fine Sea Salt to taste
  • a few pinches ground Cinnamon
  • Vanilla Stevia Drops, Maple Syrup, Honey or your favorite natural sweetener to taste
  • Optional Toppings
  • dried Figs
  • Coconut Flake
  • Pomegranate Seeds
  • Raisins
  • Nuts
  • Coconut Milk


  • Boil sweet potatoes for about 20 minutes, be sure well submerged in water. Check to see they are fully cooked by piercing with a knife or fork. Remove from water and let them cool a bit. Remove the skins easily with your fingers. Heat butter in a small skillet over medium high heat until it is brown and bubbling, the butter will be burnt.
  • Put sweet potatoes in a large bowl with brown butter, coconut milk, salt, cinnamon and sweetener. Use a masher to combine thoroughly. I used my blender and puréed until well combined.

Mashed Sweet Potato Recipe Links

A Communal Table Blogger Links

Cocktails, Appetizers, Soups and Salads:
Sweet Life Bake: Pumpkin Margarita
Easy Peasy Organic: Thanksgiving Ginger Cocktail
Dishin and Dishes: Butternut Squash Bruschetta With Sage Pesto
Mooshu Jenne: Green Salad
Two Peas and Their Pod: Maple-Roasted Butternut Squash Apple Salad
Jones is Hungry: Roasted Vegetable Salad
Purple Cook: Pasta and Bean Stew With Tomatoes and Broccoli Rabe
From My Corner of Saratoga: Curried Pumpkin Soup

CIA Dropout: Turkey and Stuffles Roulades With Squash Mash
FN Dish: Alton Brown’s Good Eats Roast Turkey
My Angel’s Allergies: Cranberry-Glazed Cornish Hens

Cafe Terra Blog: Cranberry Pumpkin Stuffing
Virtually Homemade: Twice-Baked Cheddar and Chive Potatoes
Easy Eats Magazine: Sausage and Dried Cranberry-Walnut Stuffing
The Sensitive Epicure: Oyster Dressing and Gravy
Daily*Dishin: Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes Supreme
What’s Gaby Cooking: Rustic Herb Skillet Stuffing
Family Fresh Cooking: Coconut Brown-Butter Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Silvana’s Kitchen: Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Mushroom-Rye Stuffing
The Cultural Dish: Cranberry Sauce

I Am Baker: Pumpkin Cake
Heather Christo: Pumpkin Vanilla Ice Cream Pie
And Love It Too: Pumpkin Custard (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)
Haute Apple Pie Girls: Double Pumpkin Mini Pies With Candied Pecans
Ladles and Jelly Spoons: Not Your Same Old Pumpkin Pie
Daydreamer Desserts: Cuban Diplomatic Pudding
Thursday Night Dinner: Red Wine Chocolate Cake
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Caramel Apple Pie

Family Fresh Cooking disclosure: I was one of the bloggers selected by T. Marzetti Company to review Simply Dressed Refrigerated Salad Dressings. I have been compensated for my time commitment to the program as well as my writing about my experience. I have also been provided products for review. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.

{ 61 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Rosa November 16, 2011 at 6:14 am

A fabulous fall puree! Nice clicks too.




2 Kitchen Belleicious November 16, 2011 at 6:19 am

Oh simply beautiful and delicious looking. I could eat a whole bowl by myself!


3 Margy November 16, 2011 at 6:56 am

Those little pumpkins are called pumpkin vines. They are grown in Africa typically and actually are a variety of eggplant! So fun and they are really hearty. They last forever. Really fun in arrangements with sunflowers and some alright greenery.


4 Marla November 16, 2011 at 7:14 am

Margy, thanks so much for that info! I knew one of my smart readers would have an answer for me. A type of eggplant? How interesting! Also neat that they are from Africa. Bet they are stunning growing in their natural setting.
Tasty too? I will need to cook with them. I am happy the arrangement will last a long time because we love looking at them. How do you recommend cooking?


5 Kristen McLane November 16, 2011 at 9:27 pm

I’ve heard them referred to as ornamental eggplant as well. They always catch my eye at the farmers market. Thanks for little history lesson. I had not know that they originated in Africa.


6 Margy November 17, 2011 at 7:44 am

Eek.. the woman at the market said you should not try to eat them. I think they are purely ornamental. I asked as well. You are very welcome. I fell in love with them when I saw them at work in one of the floral arrangements . It became my mission to find them as my table centerpiece for my pumpkin carving party.


7 Marla November 17, 2011 at 8:54 am

Margy, we will not eat ours. I’ll do a bit more research on these beauties :)


8 Lauren from Lauren's Latest November 16, 2011 at 7:09 am

I love sweet potatoes. Never thought to add in coconut milk! Smart!


9 Heidi @foodiecrush November 16, 2011 at 7:36 am

Sweet potatoes, sweet maple sugar and coconut milk? Your recipe looks sweet! And I too love your Le Creuset Mini Cocottes, my heart belongs to the orange variety. Great post and happy t-day!


10 Marla November 16, 2011 at 10:40 am

Heidi, I am also in love with the Le Creuset orange/red flame color. I have a large one in that shade. Now I need the minis too 😉


11 Teanna November 16, 2011 at 8:18 am

Wow what an amazing fall recipe! Looks gorgeous!


12 Bev Weidner November 16, 2011 at 8:27 am

Um, YES. I could bathe in these potatoes.



13 Marla November 16, 2011 at 9:27 am

Bev, I would like to see that 😉


14 Lauren (Diary of a Vegan Girl) November 16, 2011 at 9:10 am

This sounds incredibly yummy!


15 carolinaheartstrings November 16, 2011 at 9:40 am

That looks just fantastic. I know it tastes even better. Come visit. We have a terrific mulled cider recipe!


16 Marla November 16, 2011 at 10:38 am

Oh I live mulled cider. Perfect for this time of year…I will pop over to check it out :)


17 jennifer @ peanut butter and peppers November 16, 2011 at 9:53 am

I just love Sweet Potatoes, and adding the coconut milk into it sounds devine. I went to Trader Joe’s this weekend to get Coconut Milk and they were out, I guess thats a good excuse to go back and get some, and pick up some of those dried figs.!


18 Marla November 16, 2011 at 10:37 am

Jennifer, both of those are great excuses to get back over to TJ’s. Girl that place has become my second home!! You gotta try those figs :)


19 Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. November 16, 2011 at 9:56 am

so pretty girl!


20 Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga November 16, 2011 at 10:43 am

Marla this looks soooo good! And your pics, of course, are gorgeous.

I saw those little pumpkin trees at my TJs. Didn’t buy one but stood outside their store and snapped some pics of them about a month ago.

Thanks for our awesome meetup and catch-up session yesterday.

Happy holidays to you and the fam…see you in….2012. That sounds so far off!



21 HeatherChristo November 16, 2011 at 12:01 pm

these are amazing Marla!! I would never in a million years have thought of this, but they look delicious!


22 Living The Sweet Life November 16, 2011 at 12:50 pm

Coconut Milk adds this textural creaminess that you just can’t get with any other milks. This is a lovely addition to any holiday menu


23 Marla November 16, 2011 at 2:10 pm

Sharana, you are right….coconut milk does add a special kind of creaminess and flavor like nothing else can :) Happy holidays to you!


24 Cassie November 16, 2011 at 1:05 pm

What a great idea…I bet the coconut and sweet potato go so well together. Sounds delicious, Marla!


25 Marla November 16, 2011 at 2:09 pm

Cassie, for some reason sweet potatoes and coconut are a natural flavor pairing to me. Perhaps it is because they are both a touch sweet – but just a touch. Combined with a little bit of sweetener is pure bliss!


26 Courtney @ Food on the Table November 16, 2011 at 1:35 pm

Interesting mix of toppings! I might try to find something green to sprinkle on top too. I hope to find those figs at Trader Joe’s too, never tried them before.


27 Marla November 16, 2011 at 2:07 pm

Courtney, dried cranberries or raisins are easier to find and would taste great too! Hopefully you can find the figs though 😉


28 Angela November 16, 2011 at 3:05 pm

I have those same beautiful blue Le Creuset minis–love them. I love the browned butter in the recipe.


29 Kristina Vanni November 16, 2011 at 3:07 pm

I like the addition of figs and pomegranate seeds. Never tried those flavors with sweet potatoes and it sounds wonderful!


30 Katie @Dishin and Dishes November 16, 2011 at 3:33 pm

I love the coconut milk paired with the sweet potatoes! After seeing your Thai fry recipe, it made me wonder how a little red Thai curry paste would be added in! Wonderful!


31 Katrina November 16, 2011 at 4:20 pm

This is so fun! Can’t wait to try this yummy recipe :)


32 Courtney November 16, 2011 at 5:47 pm

Love that you used coconut milk! Yum!!


33 TC November 16, 2011 at 7:07 pm

Those Mini Cocottes are beautiful!! The soup looks pretty fantastic too.


34 Claudie November 16, 2011 at 7:56 pm

Wow. I would have never thought that mashed sweet potatoes can look as pretty as that. The way you’ve added pomegranate and figs on top makes it look fairy-like and so, so delicious.


35 Marla November 16, 2011 at 9:03 pm

Claudie “fairy-like” gosh I love that. I want all my styling & photos to have that feel :) Thanks so much!


36 Cookin' Canuck November 16, 2011 at 8:06 pm

This is so pretty, Marla and I can only imagine how good it tastes with the nutty addition of browned butter. Okay, I’m digging those little pumpkin decorations, but I have no idea what they are.


37 Marla November 16, 2011 at 9:01 pm

Dara, a reader says they are actually an variety of eggplant from Africa. Perhaps not so edible. Not sure.


38 Jeanette November 16, 2011 at 8:22 pm

We’ve been eating lots of sweet potatoes lately. Just made a batch of mashed sweet potatoes for a friend who just had a baby. It’s such comfort food. Love all the pretty toppings you used. Pomegranate seeds had so much visually and texturally. Love that pop of juice you get when you bite one.


39 Marla November 16, 2011 at 9:02 pm

Jeanette, I know pom seeds are just so pretty & fun. That little pop of juice is a zinger every time :)


40 SunnyB @ andloveittoo November 16, 2011 at 8:29 pm



41 Nutmeg Nanny November 16, 2011 at 8:33 pm

These sweet potatoes look great! As always the pictures are gorgeous!


42 Kristen McLane November 16, 2011 at 9:30 pm

Beautiful recipe. I harvested my first ever garden crop of sweet potatoes this past week. I was giddy that they actually grew! I am a lover of all things sweet potato. I made your sweet potatoes with edamame recipe last Thanksgiving. It was a hit.


43 Joanne November 17, 2011 at 4:45 am

You know…I think I need to come to your place for T-Day. It seems to be where.It’s.At.


44 Sommer@ASpicyPerspective November 17, 2011 at 6:45 am

Marla, that is so pretty. I can just imagine placing little crocks of sweet potato around the table this Thanksgiving. :)


45 BigFatBaker November 17, 2011 at 7:21 am

This sounds so freaking good. I have to bookmark this for turkey day, my family will love it!


46 Heather | Farmgirl Gourmet November 17, 2011 at 10:34 am

I’m so hungry now Marla!! I totally love this idea. I wonder if my guests would be disappointed by not having traditional mashed potatoes? :)


47 Nancy@acommunaltable November 17, 2011 at 11:51 am

I have yet to pair yams with coconut and and I know that it rocks with both figs and pomegranates! I love those little bakers too (wish I had them in all colors as well!!)


48 SugarFreeMom November 17, 2011 at 2:08 pm

Your pictures are truly spectacular! The recipe sounds wonderful, full of flavor. I will definitely try it for Thanksgiving! Thanks!


49 Terra November 17, 2011 at 7:01 pm

I love the idea of using brown butter with sweet potatoes, beautiful! I made brown butter for the first time the other day, it is just way too good, it may be my new love! It was fun cooking with you at the Communal Table with Food Network! Take care, Terra


50 Marla November 17, 2011 at 7:56 pm

Hi Terra! The Communal Table was a great idea. Isn’t brown butter a great find? Once you cook with it there is no turning back!


51 Allison [Girl's Guide to Social Media] November 17, 2011 at 7:51 pm

Interesting flavor combo. I’ll def give it a try!


52 Alyssa (Down To Earth) November 17, 2011 at 11:02 pm

This recipe is exactly what I have been looking for for about 2 weeks now…I’m having a “Friendsgiving” this weekend and wanted to make a more unique mashed potato dish – this is perfect! Thank you for sharing!


53 Marla November 18, 2011 at 5:12 am

Hi Alyssa, glad I could offer up something fun and tasty for you to bring!


54 Esi November 18, 2011 at 7:59 am

There is something so magical about browned butter!


55 Curt November 19, 2011 at 5:53 am

I just love figs and really miss having them in my backyard like I did when I lived in Texas. Come to think of it, I miss Texas too!


56 Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} November 20, 2011 at 7:00 am

Added to my list for Thanksgiving dinner. I bet is tastes even better than it looks!
Stunning photos as usual Marla!


57 Marla November 20, 2011 at 7:26 am

Roxana, I am so glad that you added this to your Thanksgiving menu! Can’t wait to hear what you guys think :)


58 sweetsugarbelle November 24, 2011 at 8:04 pm

Marla, these are georgeous!!!


59 sweetsugarbelle November 24, 2011 at 8:04 pm

shoot, I meant gorgeous!!!


60 Scott Jones November 26, 2011 at 4:53 pm

This looks and sounds seriously delicious, Marla

Glad we were at Food Network’s Communal Table together!

Best regards, Scott
(Facebook: Jones Is Hungry; Twitter: @JonesIsHungry)


61 Patrick Del Rosario November 25, 2012 at 4:23 am

I would definitely add this to my Holiday menu.


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