Sweet Potato Casserole With Pecan and Cashew Crumble

Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole. Oil free and Sugar free. | Sproutingzen.com

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Hey friends, 

I've got a good one for you all today - Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole. 

It's oil free, butter free, refined sugar free, and somehow still amazingly delicious.

Whatttt?! Yes. All of the goodness from your favorite holiday dessert (or side dish, however you prefer to eat this) and none of the dirty guilt from eating the traditional not vegan sweet potato casserole. 

Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole, Oil free, Refined Sugar Free. | SproutingZen.com

Of course, there are *no* marshmallows (gasp) ... I know. I miss them too.

There is nothing more mouth watering, than taking a bite out of a sweet potato casserole that has stringy, golden, toasted, melted marshmallows all over it. Sighhh. 

But ya know what helps me get over that? Reminding myself that marshmallows are made out of ingredients such as white processed sugar, gelatin, and water.

Yikes. Not the kinda stuff that screams out VIBRANT HEALTH. And not the kinda stuff we use around sprouting zen anyway. 

So, I set out on a mission to find an alternative topping. Something that would be tasty, sweet, a little crumbly, a little buttery, and make me forget all about those darn marshmallows. 

Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole, Oil free, Refined Sugar Free. | SproutingZen.com

Enter Pecan Cashew Crumble

And I found it you guys. I found the perfecttttt topping for this vegan sweet potato casserole.

And it's super easy to make, fool-proof, and it browns so nicely in the oven and it tastes so darn delicious.

Oh and it makes your whole kitchen smell like bliss, which is always a plus.

Coconut Nectar

I cut out white sugar, and all refined sugars, from my diet for over a year now. And so all the recipes on here are refined sugar free. I love experimenting and testing out alternative sweeteners (but always keeping in mind, that, at the end of the day, it is *still* a sweetener and should be used lightly.) 

Anyway, for this recipe I went ahead and used coconut nectar from Big Tree Farms and I was very satisfied with the results. My first experience with coconut nectar was not a very satisfying one - I used it, but I wasn't "in love" with it. But this brand is totally different. I did purchase the flavor called "Amber", and they do have other flavors such as "blonde", so perhaps the taste may vary depending on that. 

I'm not affiliated with this brand, nor did I receive compensation. I bought it, with my own money, from my local whole foods store, but I love it, and so I am recommending it. They're also big on fair trade practices and sustainability which is always a BIG plus in my book. If you don't have a Whole Foods nearby, Amazon actually sells some of their products and you can find the coconut nectar (affiliate link) that I bought on there. 

Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole, Oil free, Refined Sugar Free. | SproutingZen.com

Sweet Potato As a Health Food

Why turn a beneficial vegetable into an unhealthy dessert or side dish? Why?!!! 

Sweet potatoes are so good for you...

  • they have a ton of fiber, which helps regulate blood sugar levels
  • and that fiber also helps to keep you 'regular', if ya know what I mean... 
  • they're loaded with vitamins such as A and C
  • and that beautiful vibrant orange color is caused by beta-carotenes (I know, big fancy name) which is an antioxidant that does great things to our bodies.

The point is ... don't ruin this amazing veggie by adding butter and oils and sugar. 

Trust me, this vegan sweet potato casserole is gonna make you wanna eat seconds.

And you can, without guilt. 

So go ahead and make this, and impress your family and friends, and neighbors. And maybe, don't even tell them it's vegan, until after they eat it. And then they'll be shocked! 

Serve up as is or with a delicious vanilla flavored vegan ice cream as your finishing touch, and you'll be the superstar of your holiday party!

Let me know below in the comments what is your favorite holiday dish, and how have you veganized it?!

Let's be friends @sproutingzeneats 


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Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole, Oil free, Refined Sugar Free. | SproutingZen.com

Sweet Potato Casserole With Pecan Cashew Crumble

  • Author: Jen
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 8-9 servings 1x


Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole topped with lightly toasted Pecan and Cashew crumble.Oil free and refined sugar free. Perfect side dish for the holidays.



For the sweet potato layer:

  • 4 large sweet potatoes
  • 2 tbsp of coconut nectar (or sub for agave or your favorite sweetener)
  • 1 tsp of pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon
  • a dash of nutmeg (less than 1/8 tsp)
  • pinch of Himalayan salt

For Pecan Cashew Crumble:

  • 1 cup pecans (almonds work well too)
  • 1 cup dry cashews (if you like to soak your cashews, make sure to dehydrate before using)
  • 5 to 6 medjool dates
  • 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp of cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • optional for extra sweetness: 1 tbsp of coconut nectar or agave


  1. Peel and chop sweet potatoes into large chunks. Place in a pot and pour enough water to cover the sweet potatoes. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium/high and continue to boil for another 10 to 15 minutes until sweet potatoes are soft (use a fork to test).
  2. Preheat oven to 375F. Prepare your casserole dish (I use an 8×8 oven-safe glass dish) by lining it with parchment paper to avoid oils.
  3. In the mean time, prepare your crumble – Place pecans, cashews, dates, salt, cinnamon, coconut nectar and vanilla extract in your food processor. Process until nuts are broken down enough that they resemble a crumble. Make sure not to over-process or you will end up with nut butter! (A good sign when to stop is once the mixture begins to stick along the walls of the food processor.)
  4. Once sweet potatoes are soft, remove from heat and drain. Using a fork or a potato masher like this one (affiliate link), mash up the sweet potatoes until there are no large chunks left. You can also totally use your food processor for a much smoother puree. Go ahead and add coconut nectar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt to the sweet potatoes and combine. Spread this layer onto your casserole dish.
  5. Add the pecan cashew crumble on top of the sweet potato layer.
  6. Bake in the oven at 375F for 15 to 20 minutes, until pecan cashew crumble is slightly toasted and golden.
  7. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Serve with a delicious vegan ice cream or as is.

Keep an eye out on your casserole because this heats up quickly and you don’t want a burned dessert 🙁


  • Recipe adapted from Oh She Glows.
  • Using a spatula made the serving process were easy and no mess.
  • You can use almonds instead of pecans and it will work just as well.
  • It’s so good it might not last, but if it does, it tastes even better on day 2 and day 3. Reheat on a pan on the stove top on low/medium heat for 5 minutes.
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Vegan Side Dishes
  • Method: Baking

About Jen

A former registered nurse turned stay-at-home-mama, yoga teacher, and holistic health + wellness enthusiast. I share my homemade healthy recipes + natural living content to help women and moms live healthier and happier lives.


  1. Aryane @ Valises & Gourmandises on December 10, 2017 at 11:56 am

    Sweet potato casserole isn’t something traditional in Canada (at least not in Quebec), but your version sounds super delicious! I love that it’s sugar-free too! 🙂

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