Main menu


Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock’s Sweet Potato Casserole (Recipe Review)

We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.

When I first read about the Southern roots of sweet potato casserole, I knew I wanted to see if the legendary Edna Lewis had a version and was delighted to discover that she did. Hers is a brown sugar and pecan topped recipe she wrote with Scott Peacock for their bookThe Gift of Southern Cooking. Their book combines Lewis’s Virginia roots with Peacock’s Alabama tradition. 

How to Make Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock’s Sweet Potato Casserole

Roast whole, small sweet potatoes in a 350°F oven on a baking sheet until tender, about one to one-and-a-half hours. While they’re roasting, make a streusel by cutting cold butter into flour, brown sugar, and pecans. Set aside in the refrigerator while you finish the sweet potatoes.

Once the sweet potatoes are tender, peel and whip them in a stand mixer with a stick of butter, honey, granulated sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Finally, add in a splash of vanilla extract, three eggs, and three cups of milk. Pour the mix into a buttered casserole dish, sprinkle with the streusel, and bake at 375°F for 30 to 45 minutes until bubbly and crusty on top. 

My Honest Review of Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock’s Sweet Potato Casserole

I had no problems with the recipe as written, and it was the only recipe I tested that didn’t need any modifications. As a recipe developer and tester, I really appreciate it when recipes just work as written — especially when it’s for a high-stakes meal like Thanksgiving.

With over a cup of combined sweeteners, I was a little nervous that the recipe was going to be overly sweet. Like Southern sweet tea, I assumed it might be something you just had to grow up with. But I am very much relieved to say I was wrong. This dish is delicious. 

The three different sugars used — honey, brown sugar, and granulated sugar — provide a varied flavor profile rather than just straight sweetness. With the added milk and eggs, the sweet potato mixture is surprisingly light, which would be a nice contrast to so many other dishes on the holiday table. The crunch and generous amount of pecans in the streusel is also really lovely.

If you served this recipe as a dessert any other day of the year, I don’t think anyone would bat an eye, but it works as a side dish to complement other savory dishes, too. The only downside here is some of the sweet potato flavor is lost in all of the dairy. But one of my testers gladly took the leftover pan of this casserole home with her, which speaks for itself.

If You’re Making Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock’s Sweet Potato Casserole, a Few Tips

table of contents title