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Black Folks Sweet Potato Pie

Using just a few simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry, you can whip up this delicious black folks sweet potato pie!

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Black folks sweet potato pie recipe

Not a fan of pumpkin pie? Why not try this delectable black folks sweet potato pie recipe instead?

This sweet potato pie will have your taste buds tingling and your tummy warm with buttery, sweet goodness.

Enjoy this Southern staple at Thanksgiving or anytime the craving for something sweet hits!

Using just a few simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry, you can whip up this delicious treat! Keep reading for our quick and easy-to-make sweet potato pie recipe!

Why Make a Pie from Sweet Potatoes?

Many people associate sweet potatoes with a savory dish, but they can make a delicious pie! In fact, Patti Lebelle’s sweet potato pie is a staple in the South and is often seen as the ultimate comfort food. Let’s look at some of the other reasons why you might want to try our recipe:

It won’t cost much. There are no expensive ingredients in this simple recipe, so it won’t put a dent in your pocket. The ingredients are affordable, and you can save money by making your pie crust yourself.

Quick and easy. Don’t have a lot of time to spend in the kitchen? Want something that’s beginner-friendly? Give this recipe a try! You can use store-bought pie crust to save time making a homemade pie crust.

You need simple kitchen equipment. You won’t need a fancy stand mixer to make this sweet potato pie filling.

Make a low-sugar option. Because sweet potatoes have their own sugars, you can’t make a sugar-free version. Instead, you can switch out the brown sugar for xylitol or another low-carb sweetener for a healthier version.

Important Tips for Making Southern Sweet Potato Pie

Before you bake your potatoes in the oven, it’s important to wash them thoroughly. The last thing you want is for dirt to end up in the sweet potato pie you worked so hard to make!

If you prefer a more spicy cake, simply increase the amount of spices you add to get the desired flavor. Be careful with this, though. The spices in this recipe are strong, so err on the side of caution to prevent disappointment.

Never substitute regular milk for evaporated milk. It doesn’t have a high water content and will ensure that you end up with the right texture. Use regular milk, and you’re sure to end up with a soggy sweet potato pie that doesn’t hold its shape well. You will find a substitute for evaporated milk in the section below.

Don’t like whipped cream or ice cream? You can make your Southern sweet potato pie without these toppings or use sliced pecan nuts instead.

Sweet potato on cutting board


Don’t have all the ingredients to make this homemade sweet potato pie? Here are a few substitutions you can make to still enjoy that delicious sweet potato flavor without having to make a trip to the grocery store:

Brown sugar. Use 3/4 cup of granulated sugar if you don’t have any brown sugar on hand. You can substitute brown sugar for a sweetener like xylitol if you are diabetic or prefer a low-sugar alternative.

Evaporated milk. Don’t have evaporated milk? Simply use one cup of heavy cream instead.

Vanilla extract. You can use vanilla essence if you don’t have vanilla extract. However, it’s important to note that this change will result in a slight change in the taste of your pie, as vanilla extract contains more flavor-inducing compounds.

Ginger on table

Make This Classic Sweet Potato Pie Ahead of Time!

Making this dessert in advance is a terrific idea if you’re planning an event like a family dinner or a Thanksgiving meal. You can prepare the pie filling and cover the pie crust.

After that, wrap the pie dish with cling film and store it in the fridge for a maximum of three days. Take it out of the fridge and prepare it according to the recipe.

As an alternative, you can prepare it as instructed. Allow it to cool completely before wrapping it tightly, and store sweet potato pie in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve.

Alternatively, you could store it in the freezer for up to two months, then remove it for at least an hour before serving.

Baked sweet potato on table

Final Thoughts

Sweet potato pie is a fantastic sweet dish to add to your recipe book! Not only is it rich, sweet, and decadent, but it also helps you get in a serving of vegetables, so what’s not to love?

Serve it at Thanksgiving, after Christmas lunch, or whenever the craving for something sweet hits!

Enjoyed this old-fashioned sweet potato pie? Please share your thoughts with us! You can check out the other recipes on our website for more delicious Southern comfort food!

Pie dough in pan

Frequently Asked Questions About This Recipe

In the section below, we answer some of the most-asked questions about our sweet potato pie recipe.

1. Should this pie be served warm or cold?

The temperature at which you choose to serve your sweet potato pie is entirely up to you. You can serve it at room temperature, warm, or cooled, depending on your personal preferences.

Just remember to avoid attempting to eat it right out of the oven to avoid a melty disaster. Before adding ice cream or whipped cream, let it cool for at least 30 minutes. If you’re up for another warm dish, check out my hash brown potato soup recipe!

2. Can I boil the sweet potatoes for this pie?

Absolutely. However, for the finest sweet potato pie you’ve ever had, we strongly advise baking the sweet potatoes instead.

That’s because the sugars in the sweet potatoes caramelize in the oven, resulting in a richer, sweeter, and more delicious mash.

Additionally, the additional water in boiled sweet potatoes can change the cooking process and the final texture of the pie.

3. Can I put pie filling into an unbaked pie crust and bake them both at the same time?

No, we definitely do not recommend using unbaked pie crust. That’s because it will become soggy, which is the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve.

4. Can I freeze sweet potato pie?

Yes, you can! Put the whole pie or slices into a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to two months!

Yield: 6 servings

Black Folks Sweet Potato Pie

Black Folks Sweet Potato Pie

Using just a few simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry, you can whip up this delicious black folks sweet potato pie!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour


  • 1 pie crust for single-crust pie (pre-made pie crust will work)
  • 1 c. brown sugar
  • 3 medium fresh sweet potatoes (roughly 1 1/2 lb.)
  • 6 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 (12 oz.) can of evaporated milk
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. of salt
  • 1 tsp. ground nutmeg


  1. Set the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  2. Poke holes in your sweet potatoes using a fork about 10 times.
  3. Put the sweet potatoes onto a baking sheet and stick them in the preheated oven for 10 minutes per side (20 minutes total). After 15 minutes of baking, poke the sweet potatoes with a fork or knife to determine whether they are soft. They are ready if a fork easily passes through them.
  4. When the sweet potatoes are cooked through, take them out of the oven and allow them to cool for a few minutes.
  5. At this time, if you choose to use store-bought pie dough, bake it using the recommended instructions before filling it, as directed on the package.
  6. Use your hands to remove the skins from the baked sweet potatoes once they are cool to the touch. If they are soft enough, they ought to peel right off.
  7. In a mixing bowl, add the sweet potatoes, brown sugar, melted butter, eggs, ground ginger, vanilla extract, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Mix thoroughly.
  8. Add the salt and milk to the mixture.
  9. Next, take a hand mixer or potato masher and stir/mash the mixture until smooth. You can also use a blender in this step if you don't have a hand mixer or potato masher.
  10. Put your baked pie crust onto a prepared baking sheet and fill it with the sweet potato filling. 
  11. To prevent the pie crust's edges from burning while baking, gently tent strips of aluminum foil measuring one inch across over them.
  12. Bake the sweet potato pie for 45 minutes to an hour after placing it in the oven. When the pie jiggles just a little when you move it, it is ready.
  13. Before slicing, take it out of the oven and let it cool for a few minutes. Serve with some whipped cream or vanilla ice cream!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 483Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 94mgSodium: 318mgCarbohydrates: 63gFiber: 3gSugar: 37gProtein: 6g

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