Can You Freeze Sweet Potato Casserole?
Yes - but there are a few important rules to follow.
By Fraya Berg for Food Network Kitchen
Fraya is a chef and a contributing writer at Food Network.
Freezing vegetables can be tricky. Some you can freeze, others you can’t. Baked vegetable casseroles are amongst the easiest to freeze as long as they’re fully cooked first. Think about what you see in the freezer section at the grocery store: if they can freeze it, so can you. Follow the steps below for the most successful outcome.
Can You Freeze Sweet Potato Casserole?
This is a resounding yes! All you need to do is follow a few simple rules. The most important thing to remember is that you need to cook sweet potatoes before freezing them. That’s because raw sweet potatoes contain a lot of water, and when they freeze, their cells burst, creating mushy, watery sweet potatoes when thawed. Read on for the full how-to.
How Do You Freeze a Sweet Potato Casserole?
- Make the sweet potato casserole. Follow the directions for your sweet potato casserole recipe up to the point of putting on the topping. We suggest checking out our recipe for The Best Sweet Potato Casserole, below, which you can make and freeze up to 3 months ahead of time. The eggs will be raw when you freeze the mix in your casserole dish, but they’ll be fine because they’re completely mixed with the sweet potatoes.
- Wrap the casserole. You can freeze the casserole in the dish you’re planning to serve it from. Cut a piece of parchment to fit the top of the casserole and put it over the sweet potato. Wrap the entire casserole in foil and then wrap it in foil again. Write the directions for making the topping and baking the casserole on a post-it or notecard and put it on top; place the casserole and the note in a zip top bag.
- Freeze the Topping Separately. Make the topping ahead of time and stash the unbaked clumps in a zip top bag. It will hold up in the freezer as long as it’s not touching the sweet potatoes.
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for buttering the baking dish
3 to 4 large sweet potatoes (about 1 3/4 pounds), peeled and cubed
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 large eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup chopped pecans
- For the sweet potatoes: Add 1 3/4 pounds peeled and cubed sweet potatoes to a large pot of salted water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then lower the heat to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are very tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain and cool. Mash the sweet potatoes.
- For the filling: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 2-quart baking dish.
- Whisk together the butter, mashed sweet potatoes, milk, brown sugar, vanilla, salt and eggs in a large bowl. Transfer to the prepared baking dish.
- For the topping: Combine the flour, brown sugar, butter and salt in a medium bowl until moist and the mixture clumps together. Stir in the pecans. Spread the mixture over the top of the sweet potatoes in an even layer. Bake until mostly set in the center and golden on top, 25 to 30 minutes. Serve hot.
How Do You Defrost a Frozen Sweet Potato Casserole?
Take the sweet potato casserole out of the freezer and put it in the fridge, leaving its wrappings on, at least 24 hours before you’ll be baking it. It is important to defrost in the fridge because of the raw eggs.
How Do You Reheat a Frozen Sweet Potato Casserole?
Take the casserole out of the fridge 2 hours before baking it; it should be at room temperature when it goes in the oven. You don’t want the casserole dish going into the oven cold, as a drastic temperature change could cause it to crack. Follow the rest of your recipe’s directions for baking and topping, checking with an instant read thermometer to make sure the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
Can You Freeze Leftover Sweet Potato Casserole?
As long as you’ve followed the safe thawing and reheating techniques detailed above, it’s okay to freeze leftover sweet potato casserole. Transfer the leftovers to a snug airtight container and keep in mind that the topping will get soggy in the freezer – there’s no way around it. Keep in mind that sweet potato casserole doesn’t really keep well longer than 4 months in the freezer, so if it was frozen for several months prior to Thanksgiving, you’ll need to do some math about how much time it has left.
Sweet Potato Casserole Recipes
The flavor of sweet potatoes and coconut milk together are a natural: they’re often used for curry in Thailand. Bring that to your tables with this vegan option.
This recipe brings all the goodness of loaded sweet potatoes, minus the annoyance of carefully assembling them.
Everything happens in the Instant Pot, from beginning to end, even toasting the pecans.
Putting a casserole in ramekins gives them a major wow factor and makes them friendly for a smaller crowd. Everything you want from a sweet potato casserole in a perfect small package.
Hasselback Sweet Potatoes look impressive, but thanks to our hack for hasselbacking which involves a pair of chopsticks, they’re a breeze to pull off.