Stovetop Candied Sweet Potatoes with Pecans on white plate with gold fork on marble background

Stovetop Candied Sweet Potatoes with Pecans

  • Author: Caitlin Shoemaker
  • Prep Time: 5 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 Minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 2 to 4 1x
  • Category: Side, Dessert
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan


These Vegan Stovetop Candied Sweet Potatoes are packed with flavor and totally fuss-free! Coated in a spiced brown sugar glaze, they make a delicious Thanksgiving side or festive fall dessert.


  • 500 g sweet potatoes, peeled, quartered, and sliced into 1/4 inch slices
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vegan butter or high-heat oil
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) brown sugar (or sub coconut sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (60 g) pecan pieces
  • Optional: flaky salt, for serving


  1. Steam: prepare a steam bath for the sweet potatoes; I filled a large pot with 1/2″ of water and placed a metal sieve over top of it. Once the water starts to steam, add in the sweet potatoes and cover. Steam for 10 to 12 minutes, until fork tender. Once tender, remove from the pot and set aside; save 2-3 tablespoons of the steaming water for step 3.
  2. Make it Sweet: Melt the butter in a large saucepan or skillet over medium heat. Once melted, add in the brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and salt and whisk well, until a glossy syrup forms. Add 1 tablespoon of the steaming liquid to the pot and quickly whisk until the brown sugar has melted (add more water only if necessary).
  3. Time to Candy: Add the steamed sweet potatoes and pecans to the butter/sugar mixture, spreading them evenly across the pan. Use a spatula to flip or stir the mixture every 2 min, cooking for 10-12 minutes total. Potatoes are done when slightly browned and nuts are golden.
  4. Serve: Transfer to a serving dish and top with flaky salt, if desired. Serve warm; leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


  • Sweet Potatoes: I used garnet yams for this recipe, which have a red skin and orange flesh. This recipe could work with other varieties of yams or sweet potatoes, but you may need to steam them longer, as they tend to me a little more firm and starchy. This recipe could also be made with butternut or kabocha squash for a fun twist!
  • Substitutions: pecans can be replaced with walnuts, or pepitas for a nut-free version.