I have a bit of a reputation in my family for being a terrible baker. I am too used to riffing with whatever is available in the garden to be precise about measurements, specific kinds of sugars or sifting anything. Usually my desserts come out tasting great, but aesthetically they might as well be baby food. Now that I’ve really sold you on trying my recipe, I am so excited to tell you that I finally made a beautiful AND delicious dessert! If I can bake this chocolate sweet potato pie, you can bake this chocolate sweet potato pie.
Growing and harvesting sweet potatoes
The only way I’ve ever grown sweet potatoes is in a hoophouse. The idea is that since the plastic on hoophouses can create a climate as warm as a few zones south, sweet potatoes would thrive in a replica of their native Central and South America (not exaaaactly the same climate but you get the picture). The sweet potatoes were watered with drip irrigation. This came in handy when the sweet potato vines formed a dense canopy covering every inch of the ground.
Growing them this way was a tremendous success, but also a tremendous amount of work. These babies are dug carefully by hand, and one slip of the shovel will scrape and destroy the delicate, uncured skin. It’s backbreaking work but some of the most rewarding. All of the farm’s customers and workers agreed that they were the best sweet potatoes they’ve ever tasted in their life. The field mice agreed and took their fair share of chomps as well.
Chocolate Sweet Potato Pie Ingredients
The sweet folks at Crow & Moss enjoyed my Turkeytail Mushroom Hot Chocolate and sent me a few more of their delicious inclusion chocolate bars to play around with in the kitchen. Naturally, I took a look at my pantry and decided to sneak some veggies into this recipe. Sweet potatoes and chocolate can make an amazing vegan frosting, but they’re next level when blended with soaked cashews and coconut milk.
For this recipe I used a whole bar of Crow & Moss India Anamalai chocolate, and used the Vanilla Smoke chocolate as garnish on top. Their chocolate is direct-trade, bean-to-bar chocolate from Northern Michigan. The flavor and quality of this chocolate alone makes it worth investing in, but it’s also an important food to source sustainably.
Tips for making chocolate sweet potato pie
- This recipe can easily be made vegan by substituting the butter in the crust for vegan butter or coconut oil. If you don’t have a spring-form pan, use a 9” oven-safe pie or tarte pan.
- You’ll need to plan ahead a little for this recipe by soaking the cashews. I’ve had the best results using halved cashews from this brand, and soaking them in hot water to cut down on soaking time. A high-speed blender like a Vitamix will do the best job of making the filling supremely creamy.
- Keep the pie frozen until just ready to serve (the best make-ahead dessert for hosting a crowd). Bring it out of the freezer 10-15 minutes before serving. Run a sharp knife under hot water before slicing for the best looking pieces.
Chocolate Sweet Potato Pie
- 1 cup pecans
- 1.5 cups rolled oats
- 1/4 cup melted butter vegan or regular
- 3 T maple syrup
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1.5 cup soaked cashews
- 1.5 cup cooked sweet potato
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 70 grams dark chocolate bar melted
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Soak cashews in hot water for at least 2 hours. Cook sweet potato by piercing with a fork and microwaving for 5 minutes, or baking in tin foil for an hour at 375 degrees. Peel and let cool.
- Make the crust. Set oven to 350 degrees. Grease the inside of a 9″ spring form pan with butter. Add oats and pecans to a food processor and whiz until the texture of sand. Add melted butter, maple syrup and salt and whiz again to combine. Working in batches, evenly press the dough into the spring form pan along the bottom and halfway up the sides. Pierce the bottom of the crust with a fork to allow moisture to escape. Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden and set aside to cool.
- Make the filling. Drain and rinse the soaked cashews. In a high-speed blender, combine all filling ingredients and process until super smooth. Pour into cooled spring form pan and put into the freezer for at least 2 hours.
- To serve, remove from freezer 15 minutes before serving. Garnish with chopped pecans, flaky sea salt, buckwheat and cacao nibs.
Did you make this recipe?
Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and tag @growingwithgertie on Instagram.