Putting a new twist on a classic with this Bourbon Pecan Sweet Potato Phyllo Casserole. The classic sweet potato casserole filling of bourbon, cinnamon, and a touch of maple. Spread into the layers of buttery phyllo dough, and topped off with savory sage pecans. Together they create a deliciously updated version of a Thanksgiving classic!
Yesterday I shared our 2018 Thanksgiving menu. Over the next couple of weeks I’ll be sharing all the new recipes for this year’s Thanksgiving feast. A while back I asked my HBH Instagram followers what new Thanksgiving recipes they’d like to see this year. I received an overwhelming amount of stuffing, brussels sprouts, and sweet potato casserole recipe requests. Well, I took in all of your suggestions, and will soon be sharing new recipes for all three!
Starting off today, with my updated take on sweet potato casserole.
Sweet potato casserole is one of those dishes that will always have a place on my Thanksgiving table. It’s one of my favorites. But I much prefer the less sweet version, as I’m not much of a fan of the marshmallow topped version. I know, I know, everyone loves the marshmallows on top. But I’m all about a less sweet casserole, and I love replacing the marshmallows with a pecan topping instead.
And this year I’m adding another layer of flavor and texture, with the addition of flaky, buttery, phyllo dough.
Yes, phyllo dough.
It’s one of my favorite pastry doughs. And while many tend to think of phyllo as more of a dessert ingredient, it’s equally as great when used in savory recipes (like my spinach pie).
I loved the idea of giving my sweet potato casserole a crust. So the idea of using phyllo dough excited me greatly. I ran it past my mom, who’s favorite Thanksgiving side dish is sweet potato casserole, and she was just as into the idea as me. So, with her approval I got to work testing it out…
I’ve now made this casserole four times in two days…yes, we’ve been eating a lot of sweet potato casserole!
It. Is. DELICIOUS.
Sweet, but not dessert like sweet. Buttery and cinnamony, with hints of bourbon, crunchy sage pecans, and extra flaky phyllo. The classic flavors, but less sweet, a little more savory, and all things good.
The phyllo dough is really a game changer. It’s layered with cinnamon butter, and when baked up becomes golden, flaky, and pretty much just perfect. Especially when paired with creamy sweet potatoes. You really can’t beat the combo.
Just like with other sweet potato casseroles, this can be prepped in advance and baked before serving. Making this an easy dish for entertaining. My tip? Be sure to cover the casserole well. Phyllo dough can dry out, so it’s important to keep it well buttered, and well covered.
Also, I know phyllo dough can sometimes be a little intimidating. But try not to let is stress you out. Yes, it does tear, but you’ll never notice the tears once it’s baked. I find that the more imperfect it looks going into the oven, the better it looks coming out. It’s kind of like magic that way.
I’ll be the first to admit that when it comes to Thanksgiving I’m all about traditional recipes. I love that this casserole is traditional, but with a fun twist. Hoping it inspires you all to do something a little different this year!
I know it’s scary to branch out, but trust me on this one, it’s worth it. Test it out this week, just so you can be 110% positive it’s Turkey Day good. Which I fully believe it will be. But more importantly, you’ll get to experience these delicious flavors twice this month…which I promise you won’t regret!
If you make this sweet potato casserole please be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to also tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
Sweet Potato Phyllo Casserole
Calories Per Serving: 955 kcal
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
- 4 medium sweet potatoes
- 3 tablespoons real maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons bourbon (optional)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup whole milk or cream
- 6 tablespoons salted butter, melted
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 12-18 sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon real maple syrup
- 1 cup raw pecans, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped sage
- 2 tablespoons cold butter, cubed
- 1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Butter an 8-9 inch spring form pan.2. Poke a few holes in the sweet potatoes and bake for 1 hour or until soft and tender. When the sweet potatoes are cooked, slice them in half and allow to cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.3. Peel the skins away from the sweet potatoes and mash well in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the maple syrup, bourbon (if using), vanilla, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, milk, 2 tablespoons butter, and eggs, mixing until combined. Set aside while you prepare the phyllo dough.4. In a small bowl, mix the remaining 4 tablespoons butter and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. 5. Place 1 sheet of phyllo dough on a clean counter and brush with the cinnamon butter. Repeat, layering 2 more times, placing the sheets of dough over top of each other. Carefully transfer the buttered phyllo to the prepared pan, gently pressing it to fit inside. Repeat, over lapping each layer 3 more times until you have completely covered the bottom and sides of the pan to create the crust (see above photo) and have used between 12-18 sheets of dough.
6. Spoon the sweet potato mixture into center of the phyllo dough. Spread in an even layer. 7. To make the pecans. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, maple, pecans, and sage. Add the butter and use your fingers to mix the butter into the pecans until a crumble forms. 8. Sprinkle the pecans over the sweet potatoes. Transfer to the oven and bake for 30-40 minutes or until the pecans are toasted and the phyllo is golden brown. Serve warm
View Recipe Comments
*Inspired by Martha Stewart.
I’m a little confused. Your tip suggests covering the casserole well but the recipe doesn’t say to bake it covered. Could you clarify? I’m super excited to make this for thanksgiving!!
If you are going to make this ahead of time you will cover it and then uncover when ready to bake:) Please let me know if you have any other questions! xx
I was so happy I made this recipe for my big family Thanksgiving gathering. I one-and-a-halved the recipe for the sweet potato filling and made it in a 9X13 dish since I didn’t have a spring form pan that size and it was absolutely delicious!! Thank you for my new favorite Thanksgiving dish (to make and eat)!
Wonderful!!🎅 I love to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks so much for making it and your comment! xT
I don’t have 4 sweet potatoes but do have one can of yams, any suggestions on how I can make this recipe? It sounds amazing! Should I half the recipe?
I would definitely halve the recipe. Please let me know if you give it a try! xTieghan
I signed up to bring this for our Friendsgiving event today and the stupid store is out of phyllo! I do happen to have some puff pastry sheets on hand. Is there a creative way I could use that instead?
I would follow the recipe as is, use the puff pastry you will probably just need to bake a little longer. I hope it turns out okay! xTieghan
I really would like to try this recipe but I don’t have a springform pan (and I’m on a small island with no shopping options)… do you think I could line a dutch oven with foil/ parchment paper and just spring it out by lifting it out at the end??
That might work well for you, you could also use a deep pie dish if you have one. I hope this recipe turns out amazing for you, please let me know if you give it a try! xTieghan