This Sweet Potato Chess Pie Recipe is a fun holiday twist on a classic Southern pie! Roasted sweet potato is mixed with a deliciously rich custard and poured into a homemade Pie Crust. If you love this pie, you will love this Chess Pie, Sweet Potato Pecan Pie, Chocolate Chess Pie, classic Sweet Potato Pie, Sweet Potato Cobbler, Pecan Pie, Buttermilk Pie and Key Lime Pie.
The BEST Holiday Pie: Sweet Potato Chess Pie Recipe!
The holiday season makes my soul complete. It really does seem to have this restorative power that makes the entire year worthwhile. I think the fact that I’m surrounded by my family, blessings, laughter and delicious recipes brings everything full circle. Every major holiday starts pretty much the same way in my family. I wake up in a place very far from my Chicago home: Mississippi. Winona, Mississippi to be exact.
It is where my grandparents live and where our holiday usually plays out. After a big breakfast, the women in my family get to working on the main feast. We work side by side chopping, stirring, dicing, and preparing the meal that our family will enjoy together. This is hard work for sure, but there is so much fun and love that I forget the work part. Our family’s favorite anecdotes get told in the kitchen over and over again, and I never quite get tired of them. After preparing everything from fried turkey to my aunt’s cornbread dressing, our savory sensations receive lots of attention – but it is the desserts that grab mine.
Ingredients for Sweet Potato Chess Pie
Here are some of the key ingredients that will work:
Eggs are truly the stabilizer in this key. It creates the creamy custardy texture that makes this pie so delicious. Coupled with the richness of butter and sugar, you are already starting something super special!
Cornmeal and vinegar are the ingredients that really set chess pie apart. It adds grit and a uniqueness that is absolutely delicious. Finally I add roasted sweet potato along with some flavors like cinnamon and vanilla.
Tip: To roast my sweet potato, I pierce the skin then lightly oil the outsides and add to foil. I bake at a high heat of about 400 F for about an hour. When the sweet potato is completely tender, I mash it and set it aside. It should be very easy to mash at this point.
Tip: The key for these ingredients to work wonderfully is for them to be at ROOM TEMPERATURE. Trust me, I have tried to bake a chess pie with cold eggs or colder butter and the custard didn’t set.
My big mama’s sweet potato pie is a highlight that truly represents our heritage. It is a recipe that has been passed down from generation to generation. It never fails to make an appearance on our holiday dessert table. It means a lot to the tradition of our holiday season. Her sweet potato pie is also quite famous. I remember seeing locals drop by her home to get a pie for their own holiday. Nothing is better than my big mama’s sweet potato pie, and the whole neighborhood of Winona seemed to agree.
How to Make Sweet Potato Chess Pie
I love watching my grandmother prepare it and sometimes imagine making it for my grandchildren one day. She sits in her kitchen chair and starts mixing the beautifully tender sweet potatoes into oblivion with butter, sugar and spices galore. After removing all of the strings, the mixture would become silky smooth and ready to pour into prepared pie crusts and baked. Peering inside the oven was a favorite pastime of mine. Watching a pie bake is truly magical indeed. You slowly see the pie set and the crust brown into golden perfection.
This sweet potato chess pie is a tribute to the original, and no holiday in my family is complete without a sweet potato pie. It adds a wonderful richness to our holiday celebration in the most authentic and traditional way. I love remixing the traditional recipes in my family to bring them new life, and this pie does just that for the holiday season.
It still has all the warmth of Big Mama’s original but with a little freshness to keep the holiday dessert table from getting stale. I know this sweet potato chess pie will be just the treat that my parents, brother, aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents will enjoy this year.
Sweet Potato Chess Pie
- 1/2 cup Land O’ Lakes unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons yellow cornmeal
- 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vinegar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups mashed sweet potatoes About 1 ½-2 medium sized sweet potatoes peeled, diced, boiled until tender and mashed
- 1 prepared pie crust in pie pan
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Beat butter and sugar together on high until light and fluffy (about 4-5 minutes).
- Add eggs one at a time and mix together until well incorporated.
- Next add cornmeal, flour, cinnamon, vinegar and vanilla and finally slowly add mashed sweet potatoes into batter and beat until completely smooth.
- If using my pie crust, roll one of the disks out into the pie plate then use a fork to poke holes along the sides and bottom of the pie crust. Line the pie crust with parchment paper. Fill with pie weights, making sure the weights are evenly distributed around the pie dish. Pre-bake the crust for 10 minutes. Carefully remove the parchment paper/pie weights. If you would like, you can brush some egg wash on the outside of the crust as well (just take 1 egg and whisk together with a teaspoon of water).
- Pour batter into prepared pie shell and bake for 45-50 minutes. If you find that your pie crust is browning quickly, add a pie shield or foil around the outside halfway through the bake.
- Cool for at least 4 hours and serve.