Vegan Candied Sweet Potatoes

Vegan Candied Sweet Potatoes

I tried my mom’s candied sweet potatoes for the first time not long before going vegan.  The ooey gooey marshmallow drew me in and the caramelly sweet potatoes kept me there.  But, not long after, it wasn’t something I could eat.  So, a new, vegan candied sweet potatoes recipe was a must-have!

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Yams vs. Sweet Potatoes

Firstly, some technicalities.  For this vegan candied sweet potatoes recipe, we typically use “canned yams,” despite referring to them as sweet potatoes.  While we tend to use these terms interchangeably locally, here’s a breakdown of the technical differences here in the states.  The short answer? The orange veggies most US grocery stores sell as yams are actually sweet potatoes.

The Classic Thanksgiving Side

Sweet potatoes have been a staple side dish for Thanksgiving for a long time. They are filling, flavorful, and go well with almost any other dish. Plus, they are easy to make and can be adapted to fit any taste.

For a classic sweet potato dish, try roasting them with butter, brown sugar, and a touch of cinnamon. This simple recipe is delicious and always a hit. If you want to get a little fancy, you can add pecans or marshmallows to the mix. No matter what you choose, sweet potatoes are a delicious and traditional part of Thanksgiving.

My Go-To Vegan Candied Sweet Potatoes

Now, as for these candied sweet potatoes.  I didn’t know it at first, but her original recipe was actually fairly easy to veganize.  We almost always have some vegan-friendly “butter” on hand and vegan marshmallows exist in a couple of different forms across the commercial market.

Vegan marshmallows are difficult to find in local stores here in middle-of-nowhere Pennsylvania, and I can’t warrant ordering them every time I make this dish (though you can get them from Thrive Market or Amazon, if you’re in a similar situation!).  Still, these vegan candied sweet potatoes are delicious with or without them!

Vegan Candied Sweet Potatoes

Recently, my local Walmart started carrying a brand of vegan marshmallows—few things have ever made me as happy as seeing them on the shelves! They’re perfect for recipes like these vegan candied sweet potatoes and, just as importantly, make a delicious snack! I’ve been known to put a few of them in a small bowl and make my way through them while working or writing something for the blog.

Got Vegan Marshmallows?

There’s something special about vegan marshmallows. They’re fluffy, sweet, and oh-so-tasty. Plus, they’re perfect for all sorts of recipes and snacks. If you order vegan marshmallows and are looking for more ways to enjoy them after making these vegan candied sweet potatoes, here’s some inspiration for finding your new favorite vegan marshmallow recipes:

  • Vegan s’mores: Toast a couple of vegan marshmallows and layer them with vegan chocolate and graham crackers.
  • Vegan hot chocolate: Add a few vegan marshmallows to a mug of vegan hot chocolate for a sweet and creamy treat.
  • Vegan ice cream: Add vegan marshmallows to your favorite vegan ice cream for a delicious and fluffy sundae.
  • Vegan marshmallow fluff: Combine vegan marshmallows with some aquafaba, water, cream of tartar, and powdered sugar to make a fluffy and delicious fluff. Use it as a dip, topping, or filling for your favorite treats.

With or without vegan marshmallows, these sweet potatoes are the perfect sugary side and are full of delicious autumnal flavors, much like our favorite cranberry sauce!

These vegan candied sweet potatoes are an absolute must-have for any vegan Thanksgiving, but you could whip them up any time of year.  I’m not sure there’s any bad time or place for them!
Try them for yourself and let us know what you think!

Vegan Candied Sweet Potatoes

Vegan Candied Sweet Potatoes

A family recipe veganised! Perfect for Thanksgiving or any time
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 8 people


  • Skillet
  • Stovetop
  • Serving Dish


  • 40 ounce sweet potatoes/yams canned
  • 5 tbsp vegan butter Earth Balance or preferred brand
  • 1/2-3/4 cup brown sugar to taste
  • 1 cup vegan marshmallows eg Dandies


  • Combine canned potatoes, butter, and brown sugar in a large skillet.
  • Simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently.
  • Once thoroughly combined and heated, transfer to serving dish and top with marshmallows.
  • Let sit until marshmallows have melted. Cover to speed up melting.
  • Serve and enjoy!
Keyword Thanksgiving

Have you tried our vegan candied sweet potatoes? Be sure to let us know what you thought in the comments, or tag us @anideallifeblog.

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