A baked whole sweet potato can take an hour, or longer, to cook. And that hour-long bake time doesn’t always result in soft potatoes. Ugh!  Below, I share the secret to making the best and quickest baked sweet potatoes in under 30 minutes! This recipe is unlike any other baked sweet potato recipe. The caramelized flavor and quick nature of this recipe will leave you craving this vegetable all year long.

Perfectly soft, caramelized sweet potatoes in under 40 minutes. Prep these sweet potatoes in advance for a quick and easy real food option throughout the week.

How to Bake Sweet Potatoes

There are different ways to roast and bake sweet potatoes:

  • Chop sweet potatoes into cubes, drizzle with olive oil, then bake on sheet pan at 425F for 30 minutes.
  • Pierce sweet potatoes with a fork, wrap in foil, then bake in the oven for 1 hour, until soft and tender.
  • Then there’s the no-baking way to bake a sweet potato in the Instant Pot.

All of these methods and recipes will render a delicious end result, but nothing is like the method I’m about to teach you. Prepare to be majorly wowed by the flavor of this recipe. Even if you don’t like sweet potatoes, I think this recipe will change your mind. And the best part, this recipe only requires 3 ingredients: sweet potatoes, olive oil, and salt.

Just real-food goodness that’s flavorful and super healthy! Just as real food should be.

What Readers Say:

“I made this recipe exactly as it stated. Omg! They came out delicious! Thank you so much for the easy way to bake a sweet potato. l will continue to use this recipe as it’s so easy!”

GLORIA
Perfectly soft, caramelized sweet potatoes in under 40 minutes. Prep these sweet potatoes in advance for a quick and easy real food option throughout the week.
The secret to making the BEST and QUICKEST sweet potatoes is to cut them in half!

How to Make the Best & Quickest Oven Baked Sweet Potato Recipe

The secret to creating the best and quickest baked sweet potatoes is to first slice each potato in half. Sweet potatoes are an incredibly large and dense vegetable, in their raw state, which means they take forever to fully cook. When the sweet potatoes are halved, the baking time is dramatically reduced.

But something else happens when the potatoes are halved. The halved potatoes, when cooked flesh-side down, caramelize. Caramelization = incredible flavor and texture. 

The end result is the best baked sweet potatoes!

I won’t ever go back to the slow method for baking a sweet potato ever again. Give this method a try and tell me what you think.

How to make this recipe…

  • Step 1: Scrub any dirt or debris off the potatoes (you’ll want to eat the delicious and nutrient-dense potato skin once baked)
  • Step 2: Use a large sharp knife to cut the potatoes in half.
  • Step 3: Place a piece of parchment paper on a sheet pan. This will keep clean up quick and easy for you.
  • Step 4: Drizzle the halved potatoes with olive oil.
  • Step 5: Sprinkle sea salt over each potato half.
  • Step 6: Flip the potato halves so the sweet potato is flesh side down.
  • Step 7: Bake for 30 minutes at 400F in the center rack of the oven.
Perfectly soft, caramelized sweet potatoes in under 40 minutes. Prep these sweet potatoes in advance for a quick and easy real food option throughout the week.
Once halved, drizzle the sweet potatoes with olive oil and salt.

How to Serve Baked Sweet Potatoes

This recipe can be used in so many different ways to create a variety of nutrient-dense meals, from breakfast to lunch to a dinner main meal or side dish. Here are a few ideas:

baking sweet potatoes on sheet pan
Flip the sweet potatoes, flesh-side down, on the sheet pan.

How to Prep Sweet Potatoes in Advance

Baking sweet potatoes in advance will save you a ton of time and make eating healthy, real-food meals easier during the busy week.

To prep sweet potatoes in advance…

  • Bake the sweet potatoes: cut in half, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, then roast on a sheet pan for 30 minutes.
  • Once baked to perfection, allow the sweet potatoes to cool on the sheet pan. You don’t want to place the sweet potatoes directly into a storage container while hot as this will cause condensation to build in the container.
  • Once fully cool, place the potatoes in a storage container and place in the fridge. (Read: My best tips for storing fresh food in the fridge.)
Perfectly soft, caramelized sweet potatoes in under 40 minutes. Prep these sweet potatoes in advance for a quick and easy real food option throughout the week.
Then bake until the sweet potatoes are soft and caramelized! Look at that caramelization…so much flavor!

How to Reheat

To reheat the prepared potatoes, place the cold potatoes on a sheet pan and warm in the oven (at 350F), in a skillet, or in the microwave or a toaster oven.

Perfectly soft, caramelized sweet potatoes in under 40 minutes. Prep these sweet potatoes in advance for a quick and easy real food option throughout the week.
The potatoes are so flavorful, you don’t need to add anything to the potatoes. But if you want, top with butter, salt, or cinnamon.

You’ll also love…

  • This sweet potato casserole isn’t the marshmallow and brown sugar casserole from childhood. Oh no, it’s healthy, flavorful, and sure to have everyone asking for the recipe.
  • Sausage and sweet potato hash is a protein and fiber rich breakfast that you can prep in advance on the weekend and reheat throughout the week.
  • Apple and sweet potato bake is a sweet and savory side dish or topping for ice cream during the cooler months.
The Best and Quickest Baked Sweet Potatoes
4.75 from 86 votes

The Best and Quickest Baked Sweet Potatoes

The best, quickest, perfectly soft, caramelized sweet potatoes in under 30 minutes. This recipe is allergy friendly: vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free. And the potatoes can be prepped in advance to save time.
Kristin Marr
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
Calories 76 kcal
Cost: $3

Ingredients

  • 3 sweet potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon oil avocado oil, extra virgin olive oil, or melted coconut oil
  • salt

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400F. 
  • Cut the sweet potatoes in half, lengthwise, with a sharp knife. Place the potatoes on a rimmed baking sheet. 
  • Drizzle the potatoes with one tablespoon of oil, then rub the oil on the flesh of each potato. Sprinkle each potato with just a pinch of salt. 
  • Flip the potatoes over, flesh-side down on the baking sheet. Some oil will spill over on the sheet pan–that's normal and okay. 
  • Bake the sweet potatoes, uncovered, for 30-35 minutes, until the skins begin to look shriveled and soft. Remove the potatoes from the oven. 
  • The baked sweet potatoes should be slightly brown and caramelized on the top of the flesh and soft throughout the potato. Enjoy the potatoes warm (I love to add a tablespoon of butter and cinnamon, or see other ideas in the post above), or place them in an air-tight container in the fridge to enjoy later in the week.

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 76kcalCarbohydrates: 13gProtein: 1gFat: 2gSodium: 35mgPotassium: 219mgFiber: 1gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 9220IUVitamin C: 1.6mgCalcium: 19mgIron: 0.4mg
Tried this recipe?Let me know how it was!
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Perfectly soft, caramelized sweet potatoes in under 40 minutes. Prep these sweet potatoes in advance for a quick and easy real food option throughout the week.

155 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    You are a genius! I’ve conservatively been eating sweet potatoes once a week for 6 years, and this IS the easiest, most AWESOME way I’ve every made them! They were fabulous! Soft all the way through, almost creamy in texture, and so sweet! Thank you so much for this recipe!

  2. 5 stars
    Thank you very much for this. I too reached my wit’s end on how to accelerate the healthy sweet potato cooking process. I was wondering if you thought blanching them first, might make it even speedier; then halfing, and baking. Thank you for this.

  3. Hi! I’m a college student tinkering in the kitchen with healthy foods. I’ve never made a sweet potato before, and I did it this way for the first time and they turned out great!! It was so fast and so easy and SO YUMMY! Thanks for the tips and tricks! Xoxo

  4. Is it just me, or is it very difficult to cut the sweet potatoes in half lengthwise? I washed them first, and they were slipping all over the cutting board. Thanks for the extra advice.

  5. Well, that is just brilliant! I cook sweet potatoes often and will try this next time to speed up… and get that yummy caramelization. Thanks!!

  6. I just tried your recipe. Followed the instructions exactly. However, the potatoes took ove an hour to bake.

  7. 5 stars
    I love sweet potatoes, but they generally tend to be covered in very tough dirt where I buy them from, so i usually scrub and peel them. Should I keep the skin on or will they come out fine if I peel them?

  8. 5 stars
    I made these and they came out unbelievably delicious! Can you follow the same method for a russet potato? If so, is there anything else you would season The Flash with aside from oil and salt?

  9. Absolutely love this recipe! It’s become a staple in my house. When you heat them up, what method do you recommend? I’m looking to include them in my meal prep rotation, but unsure of how to warm them up so they are as delicious as the first time. Thanks!

  10. This has to be good, cant wait to have them with a slice of butter and spring onion on top, would cut a little pouch to let the butter melted thru the flesh ; ). Will report you back with feedback once im done cooking them this evening!

  11. 5 stars
    Wanted to say this recipe has saved me time and again. Don’t have to have more than an hour to bake sweet potatoes any more and my family loves them baked this way, too. Thanks for sharing this tip with all of us!

  12. 5 stars
    This recipe is a lifesaver. I was about to give up on baking sweet potatoes before I found this because I could never get them cooked thoroughly or they took forever. Thank you!! ?

  13. 5 stars
    Hi Kristin,
    Thank you SO much for that wonderful hint! They are the best sweet potatoes I’ve ever had! Low in calories yet taste like they’re loaded with all that fattening stuff. Will never make a sweet potato any other way!

      1. Hi Kristin,

        Just wondering if I could cook the sweet potatoes in a toaster oven, or do you need to do them in the oven?

        Arbara

  14. Baking the potatoes flesh down is a great idea! Can’t wait to try this tonight (:

    You have a great blog! Also, thanks for the informative affiliate information!

  15. 5 stars
    Your baked sweet potatoes are looking amazing. It’s a first for me to bake them and I am super excited. I also like that you cut them in half, this way I can try it with two different toppings ?

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