Roasted sweet potatoes that are crispy and seasoned to perfection make the best side dish for any meal! We are sharing all the tips for making them the best.
Years ago I started to piece together different recipes for the most incredible roasted potatoes ever until I had what I thought was the best recipe ever. And then I saw a post all about adding baking soda to the water that you boil the potatoes in followed by a toss in an empty pan to make the edges all shaggy thus creating a crust on the potatoes and I’ve been sold ever since. Obviously I had no choice but to try the method on sweet potatoes (yams are fine) and my goodness, BEST DECISION EVER!!!
They are crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, and I literally cannot stop putting them into my mouth.
Ingredients for Roasted Sweet Potatoes
You only need a few ingredients to make these crispy sweet potatoes and you’ll feel like you’re eating at a fine dining restaurant. Good grief, I’m totally craving them now! Here is what you will need:
- Kosher Salt – seasons the water for boiling which will add flavor to the sweet potatoes
- Baking Soda – boiling the potatoes in baking soda draws out the starch and allows the outside to get brown and crispy
- Sweet Potatoes – yams work fine too
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil – gets infused with rosemary and garlic and is the key to getting that crispy exterior
- Rosemary (fresh) – you want fresh for sure to get the max flavor, can you fresh thyme instead if desired
- Garlic – infuses the oil with tons of flavor
- Black Pepper – fresh cracker preferred
- Parsley (fresh) – used for a topping after roasting, add a fresh pop
Tips for Making the Best Roasted Sweet Potatoes
We promised all the tips for the best roasted sweet potatoes on the planet and now we deliver…
- Cut the sweet potatoes into similar sizes so that they roast evenly.
- Infuse the olive oil with the garlic and rosemary (or thyme) for optimum flavor.
- Parboil the potato chunks with baking soda. This draws the starch out and helps the potatoes get crispy and golden on the outside.
- After boiling and draining the potatoes, shake and toss them in a bowl so that a mashed potato-like paste builds up on the outside of the pieces.
- Place the sweet potatoes in a single layer on a large sheet pan so that the pieces aren’t touching. This helps the chunks roast rather than steam.
- Roasting the sweet potatoes at a high temp caramelizes the natural sugars creating that crusty exterior.
- Toss the potatoes frequently while roasting to keep them loose and browning on all sides.
- Serve and eat while toasty warm!
How to Cut a Sweet Potato for Perfect Roasting
After peeling the sweet potatoes, I cut them into thick circles (about an inch) and then quarter the circles. You want the pieces to be bite size and fairly uniform.
How to Add Food to a Hot Liquid without Getting Burned
The secret to adding something to boiling water or hot oil is counter intuitive. Reach your hand down close to the hot liquid and gently let go of the food. It will slide in rather than plop and save you from burns.
Should I Peel Sweet Potatoes for Roasting?
This is totally up to you! I usually do peel them, but I have left them with skin on before and they are very tasty. I prefer the texture of them without the skin myself, but do what you love.
How to Choose a Good Sweet Potato
When you’re picking out your sweet potatoes, look for ones that are evenly shaped that are firm with no squishy spots. It is also awesome if they feel heavier than they look.
What to Eat with Roasted Sweet Potatoes
I love to make this roasted sweet potato recipe as a side dish to a classic comfort food main dish like a roasted chicken or a garlic butter steak.
You could also add them to a salad or in our sweet potato enchiladas. Toss them in a taco or into a burrito bowl. These also make a great breakfast alongside some scrambled eggs and bacon.
Storing and Reheating Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Store roasted sweet potatoes in an airtight container. They will keep for 3 to 5 days in the refrigerator.
Sweet potatoes that have been roasted are best eaten fresh, but if you do have some leftover, reheat them in the microwave for a minute or two. They will lose that crunchiness that they have when you first roast them, but the flavor will still be delicious. You could also reheat them in the air fryer at 350-400 degrees for 3-4 minutes.
I’m mildly obsessed with sweet potatoes and all sweet potato recipes, but this is my new fave. The best roasted sweet potatoes need to check a few boxes…crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, flavored perfectly and totally irresistible…and this recipe checks all the boxes!
More Sweet Potato Recipes:
- Sweet Potato Casserole
- Sweet Potato Risotto
- Mini Sweet Potato Gratin
- Homemade Sweet Potato Rolls
- Cheesy Gruyere Sweet Potato Stacks
- Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes
- Sweet Potato Enchiladas
- Sweet Potato Pie
Mouth Watering Crispy Roasted Sweet Potatoes
- Kosher Salt
- 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 4 pounds Orange Sweet Potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks about 2 1/2-3" pieces
- 5 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Rosemary, fresh, chopped (or thyme)
- 3 Cloves Garlic, minced
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- 1 Tablespoon Parsley, fresh, minced
- Adjust the oven rack to the center position and preheat oven to 450.
- Heat 2 quarts of water in a large pot and 2 tablespoons of kosher salt over high heat until boiling.
- Add in the baking soda, and gently drop in the potatoes and stir. The secret to adding something to boiling water or hot oil is counter intuitive. Reach your hand down close to the hot liquid and gently let go of the food. It will slide in rather than plop and save you from burns.
- Return to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until a knife can slowly be inserted into a potato chunk without it being hard or falling apart, about 10 minutes after returning to a boil.
- Meanwhile, combine olive oil, with rosemary, garlic, and a few pinches of black pepper in a small saucepan and heat over medium heat. Cook, stirring the pan constantly, until garlic just begins to turn more yellow, about 3 minutes.
- Quickly strain oil through a fine-mesh strainer set in a large bowl and set aside the garlic/rosemary mixture, reserving it separately.
- When the potatoes are ready, drain the water off carefully into the sink and let the potatoes rest in the hot pot for about 30 seconds to so that any excess moisture can evaporate.
- Transfer to the bowl with infused oil, season to taste with a little more salt and pepper, and then shake and toss the potatoes around vigorously until a thick layer of mashed potato–like paste has built up on the chunks. Transfer the sweet potatoes to a large rimmed baking sheet and separate them so they aren't touching.
- Transfer the pan to the oven and roast for 20 minutes. Using a thin, flexible metal spatula like this one to release any stuck potatoes, shake the pan and turn the sweet potatoes.
- Continue roasting until a golden deep brown color appears and they are crisp all over, turning and shaking them a few times during cooking, 25 to 35 minutes longer.
- Transfer the sweet potatoes to a large bowl and add the garlic/rosemary (or thyme) mixture and minced parsley. Toss to coat and season with more salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve immediately.
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In step 8 if you use a colander to drain and shake the potatoes to create the paste/crust it works much faster and gives the outer finish you want with jagged edges.
That’s an awesome tip! Thank you Scott!