Thanksgiving Game Changer

There has been a lot of talk around town lately about Thanksgiving side dishes (#embracethegrape).

All of that conversation is moot because we all know that next to the turkey the best thing is the sweet potatoes.

However, for too long we have held to the tradition that our sweet potatoes must be covered with a solid layer of marshmallows.

The recipe dates back to 1917 when Janet McKenzie Hill, the founder of the Boston Cooking-School Magazine, added the fluffy sugar bombs.

But let’s go for something more modern this year that’s healthier and utilizes a lot more natural ingredients.

Thanks to local Minnesota food company wholeme, I have the answer – Toasted Almond Coconut Sweet Potatoes.

The beauty of it is that the easy version of the recipe involves just two store bought products: Trader Joe’s Roasted Mashed Sweet Potatoes and wholeme’s Almond Coconut Clusters:

Trader Joe’s Roasted Mashed Sweet Potatoes contain only Covington sweet potatoes; while the Almond Coconut Clusters from Wholeme contain almonds, coconut, honey, pepitas, sunflower seeds, coconut, almond extract and salt.

That’s it. Those are all the ingredients in the dish. It’s grain free, gluten free, dairy free and Paleo. Plus, the recipe (courtesy of Wholeme) is super simple and takes about 30-minutes from prep to finish:

  • Place 2 bags of the roasted mashed sweet potatoes in microwave safe dish and thaw for 6 minutes.
  • Place sweet potatoes in 13×9 glass dish and sprinkle 1 entire bag of Almond Coconut Clusters on top, spreading evenly.
  • Bake in oven for 20 minutes at 380F.
  • Remove from oven and let cool.

I made the dish over the weekend and had some friends join me in the taste test. All three of us agreed it was delicious and started having daydreams of just eating it straight out of the Pyrex while watching the Garfield holiday special on TV.

It’s a warm and comforting dish that gets an extra kick of flavor from the coconut and some crunch from the almonds.

I anticipated the dish would be so good that I stocked up on extra bags of the sweet potatoes and almond coconut clusters. The cost of the dish is $12 in total and yields 6-8 servings.

As an alternative, you could make it a bit more homemade by using raw sweet potatoes. You would just put them in a large pot and cover with cold water.

Bring to boil, and cook about 15 minutes. Then remove from heat and mash until smooth. From there just follow the rest of the recipe steps listed above.

Try it this year as it’s the perfect side for a healthier, happier Thanksgiving or Sunday supper. Enjoy!

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