Rustic Mashed Sweet Potatoes & Carrots

On Valentine's Day, the "Veggie Evangelist" expresses her new love, a marriage of sweet potatoes and carrots, just mashed sweet potatoes with a twist, actually two twists!

Rustic Mashed Sweet Potatoes & Carrots ♥, an unexpectedly magical marriage of two everyday vegetables.

Real Food, Fresh & Inventive. Just Four Ingredients. Hearty & Filling. Year-Round Kitchen Staple. Budget Friendly. Weeknight Easy, Weekend Special. Great for Meal Prep. Low Fat. Weight Watchers Friendly. Vegetarian & Easily Converted to Vegan. Naturally Gluten Free.

  • "Made these for Thanksgiving-YUM!" ~ Lisa

Be Still, My Vegetable Heart

Call me fickle but with each new year, I fall in love with a new vegetable – not the slick new-guy vegetable who rides into town but the boy-next-door vegetable, the one who’s been around forever but is suddenly appreciated with new tastebuds, progressing fast from infatuation to devotion and promises of everlasting love.

And then I move on.

My first true love were beets. Then I fell in love anew with green beans. Then my heart moved for the unlikely radish. Soon, cubes of butternut squash captured my heart, spurred by finally figuring out how to safely cut up a butternut squash.

And so it goes, each year, a new love.

My New Love(s)

This year, my heart longs for a pair of ubiquitous root vegetables – everyday, inexpensive sweet potatoes and carrots – which merge like soulmates right in the cooking pot, even while maintaining distinct identities.

Roughly mashed with a little butter, a pinch of sweet cardamom and a sprinkle of good salt, theirs is a marriage to last a lifetime, less sweet than plain mashed sweet potatoes and less bitter than plain mashed carrots.

What's In Rustic Mashed Sweet Potatoes & Carrots? Pantry Ingredients!

In all my recipes and most well-written recipes, every ingredient serves a purpose. Each one matters. Each one contributes to the overall dish. It's not that an ingredient can't be substituted by something else but when choosing the substitute, it's important to understand why the original ingredient was present in the first place.

Equal Amounts (by Weight) Sweet Potatoes and Carrots No special vegetables are required here, just regular grocery-store sweet potatoes and carrots work great.

No scale? No problem. Here's how to measure the vegetables without a scale. Carrots usually come in one or two-pound bags. So hold a pound's worth (either a whole bag or half a bag) in one hand, then roughly measure out the same weight of sweet potatoes in the other, good news, there's no need for precision.

You'll want to peel the sweet potatoes, some times I peel the carrots, mostly I don't. Cut these into one-inch chunks, again, no stress, just cut up the vegetables in roughly equal size so they'll cook in about the same length of time.

After cooking, both the sweet potatoes and the carrots become soft enough to mash with nothing more than a potato masher, no kitchen power tools required unless you'd prefer something super-smooth. I happen to a-d-o-r-e the rustic texture when mashing the vegetables by hand, part soft and smooth, part tiny chunks.

Three Kinds of Salt Well-salted cooking water is so important here, remember, you're seasoning a full two pounds of vegetables! Table salt is inexpensive and appropriate for cooking water.

Once the veggies are mashed, season with salt and pepper, here I'd use a kosher salt or sea salt.

Then, once the mashed vegetables are in a serving bowl, sprinkle the top with a good finishing salt like fleur de sel or Maldon.

What if you only have table salt? No problem, just skip the last finishing salt, table salt is just too harsh. What if you only have kosher salt or sea salt? No problem, use that for all three applications.

Butter Salted or unsalted butter both work, whatever you have on hand. A vegan butter would work well, so does an equal measure of good olive oil.

Cardamom Many of my recipes call for generous amounts of spices. Here, however, restraint really pays. A mere 1/8 teaspoon of ground cardamom adds an unforgettable touch.

Should you buy pricey cardamom just to make mashed sweet potatoes and carrots? Hmmm. Dare I say, yes? But if not, try cumin, cinnamon or nutmeg. Star anise is lovely!

Favorite Kitchen Gadgets

A handheld potato masher comes in handy more often than I'd have believed. It's more than adequate for mashing soft-cooked sweet potatoes and carrots.

I've had this sturdy but inexpensive potato masher (affiliate link) for almost two years now. It does the trick!

Hungry Yet?
A Menu for New Love

Olivada on Crisp Toasts

Fast Roast Chicken
~ Rustic Mashed Sweet Potatoes & Carrots ~
(recipe below)
Roasted Pear Salad or
Salad Greens with
Orange & Cumin Vinaigrette

Lemon Pudding Cake

They Don't Call Me the Veggie Evangelist for Nothing!

If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetables, it’s called A Veggie Venture and is home to 1000+ vegetable recipes from Asparagus to Zucchini! Whatever you have in mind, seasonal to staples, savory to sweet, salads to sides, soups to supper, simple to special, A Veggie Venture is your one-stop spot for vegetable-recipe inspiration.

You'll Love Rustic Mashed Sweet Potatoes & Carrots If ...

  • Plain mashed potatoes are getting a little boring
  • Your menu needs color and even a little sweetness
  • Mashed sweet potatoes are just a little bit too sweet

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How do you save and share favorite recipes? recipes that fit your personal cooking style? a particular recipe your mom or daughter or best friend would just love? If this recipe for Rustic Mashed Sweet Potatoes & Carrots hits the mark, go ahead, save and share! I'd be honored ...

Rustic Mashed Sweet Potatoes & Carrots ♥, an unexpectedly magical marriage of two everyday vegetables.


Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Time to table: 45 minutes
Makes about 3 cups
  • Water to cover
  • 1 tablespoon table salt
  • 1 pound (450g) carrots, trimmed and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 pound (450g) sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 2 tablespoons butter (1 tablespoon also tastes plenty rich)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cardamom (see TIPS)
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • A sprinkle of "finishing salt" such as Maldon or fleur de sel

SIMMER IN WELL-SALTED WATER In a large pot, start the water to bring to a boil, then add the salt. (Don't forget the salt!) Add the vegetables as they’re prepped, carrots first since they take a little longer to cook, then cover the pot and and bring the water to a full boil. When the water boils, reduce the heat to maintain a slow simmer to gently cook the carrots and sweet potatoes until they're cooked through and quite soft, you can tell when the tip of a sharp knife easily slips into the center of a piece of carrot, err on the side of cooking longer rather than shorter.

DRAIN, MASH & SEASON Drain the vegetables and return them to the still-hot pot. (If the vegetables are soggy, turn the heat on for a minute or two to cook off some of the excess liquid.) Mash with a hand-held potato masher or a meat fork – you want the mixture to be mostly mashed but still hold visible bits of both carrot and sweet potato. Stir in the butter and cardamom. Taste, then add additional cardamom if needed, then salt and pepper. Transfer to a serving dish, sprinkle with finishing salt. Serve and savor!

MAKE-AHEAD This is a favorite side dish for company! Cook, mash and season the sweet potatoes and carrots just before your guests arrive but leave the pot on the stove while everyone gathers, has a drink, etc. Once dinner's close to ready, bring them back to temperature to serve hot.

LEFTOVERS Form leftovers into small patties, dust with flour and brown in a little olive oil in a non-stick skillet.

ALANNA’s TIPS My old stove took for-evah to boil water. To move things along, I learned to heat an inch or two of water in the cooking pot, then add boiling water from a tea kettle. Worked like a charm! If there’s no cardamom in the cupboard, cinnamon and nutmeg work too, so does cumin for a savory version. Or what about star anise? That was a surprise hit!
NUTRITION INFORMATION Per Half Cup, made with 2 tablespoons butter: 129 Calories; 4g Tot Fat; 2g Sat Fat; 10mg Cholesterol; 120mg Sodium; 22g Carb; 4g Fiber; 7g Sugar; 2g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS Old Points 2 & PointsPlus 3 & SmartPoints 5 & Freestyle 4 & myWW green 4 & blue 4 & purple 2 & future WW points CALORIE COUNTERS 100-calorie serving = 1/3 cup (1g protein).

Love Mashed Potatoes? More Creative Combinations

~ Mashed Potatoes & Carrots ~
~ Those Pink Potatoes ~
~ Smashed Potatoes & Broccoli Casserole ~
~ more vegetable recipes ~
from Kitchen Parade

~ Mashed Butternut Squash & Sweet Potatoes ~
~ Potato, Cabbage & Rapini Colcannon ~
~ Fennel Mashed Potatoes ~
~ more purées & mashes ~
from A Veggie Venture

More Sweet Potato Recipes

~ sweet potato recipes ~
Lemon-Honey Chicken Skillet ♥, a one-pot chicken dinner with a medley of spices and vegetables.

Confetti Potato Salad ♥, a colorful mix of sweet potatoes, potatoes and vegetables. No mayonnaise.

Turkey Sweet Potato Soup ♥, one of my oldest recipes, a healthy colorful soup made with sweet potatoes and leftover turkey.

Favorite Sweet Potato Recipes ♥ Sides to salads, soups to suppers and more.

Shop Your Pantry First

(helping home cooks save money on groceries)

~ sweet potatoes ~
~ carrots ~

~ All Recipes, By Ingredient ~
~ How to Save Money on Groceries ~

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Quick Suppers are Kitchen Parade favorites and feature recipes easy on the budget, the clock, the waistline and the dishwasher. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, for more scratch cooking recipes using whole, healthful ingredients, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. If you make this recipe, I'd love to know your results! Just leave a comment below.

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2010, 2019 (repub) & 20222

Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. Adanna2/14/2010

    LOVE the "boy-next-door" as a vegetable!

  2. Anonymous10/17/2013

    My mom made a similar recipe with rutabaga instead of sweet potatoes, plus salt, pepper, sugar & butter/marg. Loved it as she only made it during family dinners and holidays.

  3. Made these for Thanksgiving-YUM!


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna