I know, I know. Steph making a recipe for Mini Sweet Potato Pies?!
You might be wondering who the heck I am even. See, I rarely make baked dessert recipes for a bunch of reasons.
First, dessert recipe development just isn’t my forte. I’m terrible at it.
Second, when it comes to food, I really lack the type of precision and patience it takes to bake. I’m more of a “toss it all in the pan and get it done” type of gal.
And third, I dunno, there’s already a bajillion gluten-free, grain-free dessert recipes out there.
That being said, sometimes, inspiration hits me out of the blue. And these these Mini Sweet Potato Pies are exactly the result of that.
Interesting side note: Did you know the Greeks and Romans considered “genius” to be an external spirit that would follow a person around? Sometimes it wouldn’t be there, sometimes it would.
So, you “had a genius”…you weren’t a genius. I quite think that takes the pressure off creative people to “be” a certain way. Anywho, that was a bit of a tangent. You probably came for the Mini Sweet Potato Pies recipe, not my philosophical musings…haha!
I’m gonna preface this one by saying it’s one you’ll want to make if you have some time on your hands. If you’re rushing to get to a party or dinner’s happening in an hour, it’s probably not the one.
But if you’re in for a relaxing afternoon and want to make a bit of a special treat, these Mini Sweet Potato Pies may do you well.
Here’s the low down and how it all comes together in a muffin tin:
First, you’ll make a simple crust. It gets pressed into the bottom of each muffin cup and gently baked until set.
While the crust is baking, you’ll make the filling. It comes together so easily! Just pop all the filling ingredients in a blender and whiz until smooth.
You’ll add the filling to each muffin cup. Then, it’s time to top with some pecan halves and bake.
These Mini Sweet Potato Pies are super fun because they’re basically bite-sized pies. (Okay, maybe two bites.) For some reason, mini anything is way more fun, am I right?
They’d be great to take to a holiday party or bake sale.
And the best part is that unlike traditional pie, these are lightly sweetened and have no refined sugar. That means no sugar coma to worry about.
Let’s dig into this Mini Sweet Potato Pies recipe a bit more:
The “crust” is gluten-free and grain-free. I recommend using a super-fine, blanched almond flour for the best results. Click here to see the almond flour I used.
I used coconut crystals to lightly sweeten the crust, and I think you’d have best results sticking with a non-liquid sweetener. Swapping it with honey or maple syrup, for example, introduces more moisture and could affect baking time.
Feel free to test out substitutes, but remember that baking is quite precise. You may not get the same result so swap things out at your own risk.
Instead of a traditional crust that must be rolled out – seriously, I don’t have patience for that – the mixture is pressed into the bottom of each muffin cup. Easy.
This is a sweet potato filling. I highly recommend using canned sweet potato chunks. Click here to see what I used. Yes, these are also called yams…don’t be confused.
These canned chunks often have added sugar, but you’re draining any syrup away. Give it a rinse if you’re extra concerned. And if you’re gonna stress out about it too much, get the puree in a can. You do you, boo.
If you can only find canned sweet potato puree or you’re going to use whole roasted sweet potatoes, the filling may come out more dense and take longer to cook.
I used maple syrup in the filling because I think the flavor pairs well with the sweet potatoes and pecans. But feel free to swap honey if you’d like.
The arrowroot helps thicken the filling just a bit. If you can’t find arrowroot, tapioca flour works just the same.
If you can’t eat coconut milk, try swapping almond milk instead.
Walnuts or almonds more your style? Rather have no topping? Each of those options works.
Being the fussy food photographer I am, I painstakingly arranged the pecan halves on top of these Mini Sweet Potato Pies. If you’re not feeling that, you could also chop the pecans up and sprinkle them on top once the mini-pies are baked.
And if you’re feeling extra extra fancy, serve with a dollop of whipped heavy cream or whipped coconut cream.
If you’re looking for an egg-free recipe for the holidays, I recommend my Paleo Pumpkin Sweet Potato Custard recipe instead. It’s thickened with gelatin instead of eggs.
As always, oven times can vary. I recommend setting a timer for each step and checking frequently. It’s easy for things to burn if you’re not careful.
I like to err on the side of caution, cook it for less time, then add more if needed.
Mini Sweet Potato Pies Recipe – Gluten-Free
For the Crust
- 3/4 cup super-fine, blanched almond flour
- 2 tbsp coconut crystals
- Large pinch sea salt
- 1 tbsp melted ghee*
- 1 egg white
For the Filling
- 29 oz can sweet potato chunks, drained**
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tbsp coconut milk
- 3 large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup arrowroot flour
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- Large pinch sea salt
For the Topping
- 2 cups pecan halves
- Honey or maple syrup for glazing, optional
Make the crusts:
Line a standard size muffin tin with paper or foil liners. I used a 12-muffin tin. Preheat the oven to 325F.
In a large bowl, combine the almond flour, coconut crystals, and salt. Mix until combined.
Then, add the melted ghee and egg white. Mix until everything is well combined. The crust mixture will be a bit sticky but should hold together.
Divide the crust mixture evenly by spoonfuls into the muffin cups. Lightly moisten your fingers with water and press the crust down into just the bottom of the muffin cups.
Bake at 325F for about 8 minutes or until the edges are lightly golden. While the crusts are baking, you can start making the filling. Remove the muffin tray from the oven and set aside. Note: Keep an eye on these because almond flour can burn easily.
Make the filling:
In a blender or food processor, combine all the filling ingredients: sweet potato chunks, maple syrup, coconut milk, eggs, vanilla, arrowroot flour, cinnamon, and salt.
Blend on high for 15-30 seconds until the filling mixture is smooth.
Divide the filling mixture evenly into the 12 muffin cups. You can fill them up pretty close to the top. They'll puff up a bit during baking but not too much.
Place the pecan halves on the top of the filling mixture.
Bake about 25 minutes on the same oven temp, 325F. To test if they're done, insert a knife or toothpick into the center. If it comes out mostly clean, they're done.
Let cool and serve. If you like, brush a little honey on top before serving for a shiny finish.
* Swap out the ghee for coconut oil to make it 100% dairy-free.
**If you substitute 2 cans of sweet potato or pumpkin puree, only use 1-1/2 cans of the puree. Refrigerate or freeze the leftovers for later.
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