If your Thanksgiving experience is similar to ours, you grew up with yams (or sweet potatoes) covered in toasted marshmallows. While that version of sweet potatoes is nostalgic – with its gooey and crispy layer of marshmallows, I’ve since come to love a more complex flavor pairing which marries sweet, spicy and tangy. That’s what we’ve created with these simple Thanksgiving yams.
Trying new things
Our Thanksgiving yams are easy to make and provide a fresh spin on an old favorite. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday…it’s all about the food and the people. It just doesn’t get better than that, and with these Thanksgiving yams nothing is lost. They are just as comforting and even more flavorful than my old, pre-paleo favorite. Switching to a real food lifestyle has been a constant reminder that stepping out of my comfort zone and trying new things, taking some risks and being open minded often leads to some new and exciting experiences.
Making new traditions
The holidays are drenched in long-time family traditions, and sometimes breaking out of those can be hard. But just like changing my diet and opening up to trying new things has led to so many exciting experiences, playing with holiday traditions and adapting recipes and creating new ones has led to new holiday traditions, too. And it’s been fun thinking about the traditions we are creating that will be the norm for our kiddos and family one day.
Simple ingredients + easy to make
This real food Thanksgiving yams recipe has only 7 ingredients, most of which are spices you likely have in your pantry already. We don’t use canned yams because let’s be real…the real deal is just better, and we like how you can keep them a little chunkier if you like more texture. This is a quick recipe – just peel, slice and boil your yams and then mash them up and add the rest of the ingredients. You can make them in real time and serve them right up. Or you can also make them in advance and put them in an oven safe dish and reheat before serving.
Some other recipes perfect for Thanksgiving
- Loaded Mashed Cauliflower
- Simple Roasted Radishes
- Garlic and Sage Brown Butter Mushrooms
- Apple Walnut Spinach Salad
- Paleo Pumpkin Pie
- Paleo Pumpkin Bars
Your turn to try our Thanksgiving yams
Make some new holiday traditions this year, starting with these healthy Thanksgiving yams! Leave a comment below, and let us know how it goes. Also, take a picture and tag it on Instagram @realsimplegood so we can check it out! Don’t forget to give us a follow if you don’t already – let’s stay connected!
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- 3-4 yams, peeled, (yams or sweet potatoes work)
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 2 tbsp grassfed butter or ghee, (or coconut oil for dairy free)
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp cloves
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1 orange, zest and juice
- Peel and cut your yams into cubes.
- Boil your yams until they are soft, but not mushy, about 10-15 minutes. Once they are done remove from heat and drain them.
- Return drained yams to the same pot and mash, keeping them a little clumpy.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until everything is combined.
- Serve your Thanksgiving yams or place them in an oven safe dish and reheat later for serving.
I love this recipe! I made it for Thanksgiving and it was a big hit!
So happy to hear you enjoyed it! Thanks for coming back to leave a review! 🙂
I just made this recipe for Thanksgiving dinner and it was easy and delicious! Will definitely be making it again very soon. Thank you for the fabulous recipe 🙂
So happy you enjoyed it! Happy holidays! 🙂
Oh my goodness. I LOVE this recipe so much! I love the citrus flavor. THANK YOU! I have to bring my own GF/DF sides to Thanksgiving. This is perfect.
So happy you found it! Enjoy and happy Thanksgiving 🙂
Does this recipe make enough to fill up a 9×13 casserole dish?
It probably won’t quite fill that sized dish unless they are large yams. You can add more to fill if needed.
Amazing recipe, so simple. Instead of boiling, I baked my potatoes the night before and cleaned them out of the skins. I also found that the orange juice alone was enough sweetness – but potato flavors vary, so taste as you go!
Glad you enjoyed it Shannon!
For the orange – juice and zest from the entire orange? Do you mean to add all of the juice from the orange in with the spices? Not used to have orange juice in my sweet potatoes so just needing a little clarification. 🙂
Thanks for your question! You’re probably not the only one! 😉 Zest your orange first, and then juice it right into the mixing bowl with the rest of the ingredients. Compost or toss out the rest of the orange. Let us know how you like sweet potatoes with orange in them. Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment. We hope you’ll be back soon! Happy Thanksgiving!