Maple Pecan Sweet Potato Pie

Last Thursday we made pie crust. Today we’re filling it. Next Thursday we shall feast! I have been working on the recipe for this sweet potato pie for a couple weeks now, and I think it will make a beautiful addition to any Thanksgiving table (even if it’s just a Party of One, Two or Three. No shame in gorging on a whole pie). For extra fanciness, use purple sweet potatoes. For extra craziness, arrange pecans in concentric circles, in honor of my friend Lauren, the patron saint of painstakingly measuring things to make holiday treats.

Makes: 1 pie


  • pie dish
  • stand mixer or electric mixer


  • 1 single pie crust

For Sweet Potato Mixture

  • 2 largeish sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

For Pecan Mixture

  • 2 cups pecans
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • pinch salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom


  • Roast sweet potatoes. Preheat oven to 425°F. Rub a small amount of olive oil onto potato skins, prick potatoes with a fork three or four times, and roast for 45 minutes to one hour, until a fork easily slides into the potatoes. This step can be done ahead. 
  • Preheat (or lower oven temp) to 350°F.
  • Roll out pie crust and place in pie dish. Do something pretty with the crust edges 🌟 Place in fridge while the filling is prepped. (Check out my recipe for making and rolling out pie dough.)
  • Remove potato skins (they should come off easily after roasting). Mash potatoes with stand mixer or electric mixer until smooth. Add other sweet potato filling ingredients and mix until well-combined, about a minute. Taste mixture and add more spices or adjust flavor as needed.
  • Fill pie crust with potato mixture, then top with pecans. 
  • Whisk together remaining pecan mixture ingredients. Pour over top of pie.
  • Bake for about one hour, until top of pie is caramelized. Check halfway through the bake to see if the top is browning too fast. If so, place a sheet of aluminum foil over the top of pie for the remainder of the bake.

Sweet Potato Fly

Howsabout a fizzy, slightly sweet soda that isn’t a sugar bomb? A sweet potato fly is a wild-fermented soda carbonated through yeast and lactic acid bacteria, which is present on the skins of sweet potatoes. It’s similar to kvass, another wild-fermented fizzy drink from Russia made with beets and/or bread.

Makes: 1


  • 1/2 gallon mason jar with lid (or 2 quart jars)
  • fine mesh strainer
  • funnel
  • clean plastic bottles with caps


  • 2 cups grated sweet potato
  • 2 quarts water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • grated ginger, turmeric, or other herbs or spices (optional)


  • Add grated sweet potato, sugar, any flavorings, and water to the mason jar, seal lid and shake until sugar dissolves. 
  • Unscrew the lid but leave it covering the jar, so no dust or dog hair can get in but any CO2 built up during the fermentation process can escape. Allow jar to ferment at room temperature for 5-7 days. 
    To prevent mold or yeast formation on the surface, give the contents of the jar a daily shake. Screw on the lid first, shake, and then unscrew the lid again.
  • Strain the solids out (save them to add to bread, savory pancakes, or brownies) and drink as is. 
  • (optional). For a drier, fizzier drink, pour the liquid into a plastic bottle. Leave about 2 inches of headspace. Seal tightly and allow to carbonate at room temperature for several more days. When the bottle feels rock solid, know it’s fully carbonated. Transfer to fridge to cool before drinking. When ready to drink, slowly open and enjoy!