Easy Savory Mashed Sweet Potatoes

This recipe for easy Savory Mashed Sweet Potatoes is a perfectly balanced side dish. Freshly minced rosemary is mixed with the natural sweetness from sweet potatoes that get mixed with butter and milk for a comforting side to serve at any holiday meal! 

savory mashed sweet potatoes in a bowl with a rosemary spring on top

Danae here from Recipe Runner and I’m thrilled to share a delicious sweet potato recipe that is both sweet and savory and takes just 4 simple ingredients to make!

When you think of Thanksgiving sides, one of the first things that can come to your mind (besides Thanksgiving Turkey) is mashed potatoes. If you love sweet potatoes, then you are going to love this recipe. Serve these savory sweet potatoes for Thanksgiving or any time of the year.

Simply boil fresh sweet potatoes until fork-tender, then mash them up with milk and butter. The savory note in this dish is freshly minced rosemary which adds a bold herb taste that pairs perfectly with sweet potatoes. 

You can also change it up a bit by using browned butter or your favorite fresh herb. No matter how you make it, these savory mashed potatoes will be your next go-to side dish at any holiday dinner table!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • You can use regular butter or browned butter to add a deeper flavor to the mix. 
  • A great way to use sweet potatoes for a holiday meal that isn’t in casserole form. 
  • The savory sweet potato dish takes under 30 minutes to make which is perfect for when you’re short on time but need something satisfying and delicious. 
a wooden bowl filled with mashed sweet potatoes with brown butter and rosemary

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Sweet Potatoes – Use about 2 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes. Any variety works great. Peel and cube them for the recipe.
  • Milk – Gives the sweet potatoes the perfect texture. You can thin them out while still keeping them creamy. Use any milk you enjoy!
  • Butter – Adds a rich buttery taste to the sweet potatoes that adds an extra level of comforting flavor. Unsalted or salted butter works fine.
  • Fresh Rosemary – This herb adds a perfect bold contrast to the naturally sweet flavor of sweet potatoes making them the perfect sweet and savory side dish. 
  • Salt & Freshly Ground Black Pepper – These flavor enhancers make sure the potatoes, herbs, and butter are well balanced throughout. 
Brown Butter and Rosemary Mashed Sweet Potatoes | Four ingredients are all you need to make these delicious savory mashed sweet potatoes!

How To Make Easy Mashed Sweet Potatoes

  1. Prepare the sweet potatoes: Wash the sweet potatoes thoroughly, then peel off the skins using a vegetable peeler. Using a sharp knife, cut them into cubes. 
  2. Cook the sweet potatoes: Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add the sweet potato cubes. Keep them boiling until they are cooked through and fork-tender. This should take about 15-20 minutes depending on the size of the sweet potatoes. 
  3. Mince the rosemary: While the potatoes are cooking, cut the rosemary into a fine mince so there are no large chunks in the mix. 
  4. Drain and mash: Once the potatoes are cooked through, drain them in a colander removing any excess moisture. Add them back to the pot along with the rosemary, butter, milk, salt, and pepper. Using a potato masher, mash the sweet potatoes to your desired consistency. 

If you do not have a potato masher, you can mash the potatoes with the other ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment or use a hand mixer.

Brown Butter and Rosemary Mashed Sweet Potatoes | Four ingredients are all you need to make these delicious savory mashed sweet potatoes!

Expert Tips

  1. To decrease the cooking time, chop the sweet potatoes into smaller cubes so they cook faster to save you time. 
  2. Purchase sweet potatoes that are medium size,  as larger sweet potatoes tend to hold a lot more water making the inside less flavorful when cooked. 
  3. You can use a potato masher to mash the potatoes or use a hand mixer for a super smooth consistency. 
  4. Finely mince rosemary. Large pieces of rosemary can be tough to chew and will take away from the smooth texture of the sweet potatoes. 
  5. Using milk with a higher fat content to make the savory mashed sweet potatoes more creamy. Use whole milk or heavy cream for a thick and creamy sweet potato mash. 


  • Using browned butter: Stirring brown butter into the mix will add a nutty caramel-like flavor to the mashed sweet potatoes. Simply heat up the butter over high heat in a skillet and cook for up to 5 minutes until the butter is browned and not burned. You should smell a nutty caramel aroma. 
  • Use roasted sweet potatoes. You can also use roasted sweet potatoes baked on a baking sheet instead of boiling the potatoes. This will create more of a roasted sweet potato flavor as opposed to a classic mashed potato flavor and consistency.
  • Vegan savory mashed sweet potatoes: To make this recipe suitable for a vegan lifestyle, simply swap out the butter for a vegan butter substitute, and use plant-based milk that has a higher fat content such as coconut milk or cashew milk. 
  • Substitute with other potatoes. Any variety of sweet potatoes will work for this recipe including purple sweet potatoes and white sweet potatoes. You can even use butternut squash. 
  • Add spicy flavor. Give these potatoes a kick of spice by adding a pinch of cayenne pepper for flavor. Add a pinch of smoked paprika for smoky flavor.
  • Add brown sugar or maple syrup. Sprinkle the top with brown sugar or maple syrup to enhance the naturally sweet flavor of the sweet potatoes. 
  • Use olive oil. You can also use olive oil instead of the butter to make the sweet potatoes savory.
  • Add Parmesan cheese. For even more savory flavor, feel free to mix in freshly grated Parmesan cheese.


How do you make mashed sweet potatoes not watery?

Make sure you are purchasing medium-sized sweet potatoes and not large ones as they tend to hold more water. You also want to make sure that you are fully draining the sweet potatoes after boiling to reduce any excess moisture.

How do I make my sweet potato mash thicker?

Sometimes sweet potatoes may be more watery depending on how they are grown. If your mash has too much liquid, you can mix 2 tsp of cornstarch with water then slowly whisk it into the mashed sweet potatoes until thickened.

What savory spices go with sweet potatoes?

The savory flavor comes from using fresh savory herbs like fresh thyme, rosemary, sage or a mix of fresh herbs. Use any type of savory fresh herb that you enjoy. You can even add freshly minced garlic cloves.

Did you try these Savory Mashed Sweet Potatoes with rosemary and browned butter? If so, leave a recipe rating and review below!

Brown Butter and Rosemary Mashed Sweet Potatoes | Four ingredients are all you need to make these delicious savory mashed sweet potatoes!

Savory Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Yield: 6 servings approximately
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Four ingredients are all you need to make these delicious savory mashed sweet potatoes!
5 from 3 votes


  • 3 medium sized sweet potatoes, about 2 1/2 pounds
  • 4-5 tablespoons skim milk or milk of choice
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted (optional: use browned butter)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • Wash and peel the sweet potatoes, then cut them into chunks and add them to a pot of water.
  • Bring the potatoes to a boil and let them cook until tender.
  • While the potatoes are cooking, mince the rosemary and brown the butter.
  • When the potatoes are fork tender, drain them then return them to the pot.
  • Add in the salt, pepper, minced rosemary, milk and brown butter.
  • Use a potato masher to mash them to your desired consistency.


Storing: Cooled leftover mashed sweet potatoes can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Reheat using the microwave or place in an oven-safe dish and warm at 325F for 20 minutes. 
Freezing: If you’d like to freeze any leftovers, place them in a freezer-safe bag laid flat with as much air removed as possible. Freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before reheating and serving. You may need to add a touch of milk to enhance the texture. 


Serving: 0g, Calories: 96kcal, Carbohydrates: 13g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 11mg, Sodium: 364mg, Potassium: 232mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 9365IU, Vitamin C: 1.6mg, Calcium: 31mg, Iron: 0.4mg
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Author: Ashley C.
If you try this recipe, don’t forget to leave a review below or share a photo and tag @spoonfulofflavor on Instagram.

Other Potato Side Dish Recipes

This recipe was originally published in 2015. It was updated with new tips and variations in November 2021.

2 comments on “Easy Savory Mashed Sweet Potatoes”

  1. Delicious recipe! Will be making often this fall!

  2. I’ll never want sweet potatoes any other way. This recipe was incredible!

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