Stir-Fried Sweet Potatoes with Brown Butter and Sage

Evan Sung for the New York Times

Call me a heretic, but I think that sweet potatoes deserve a better Thanksgiving companion than marshmallows. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that classic casserole, but it’s by no means the only option. Grating sweet potatoes opens up a whole new world of possibilities (plus, they cook in a flash). Here they’re simply stir-fried with brown butter and sage, an accompaniment every bit as “traditional” as marshmallows, and dare I say, even better. (Check out the video here.)

Makes: 4 to 6 servings
Time: 20 minutes


  • 4 tablespoons olive oil

  • 2 to 3 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and grated, 4 to 6 cups

  • Salt and pepper

  • ½ stick butter, more to taste

  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 20 sage leaves


1. Put oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add sweet potatoes and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring only occasionally, until they change color and begin to brown, then stir more frequently until they are tender but not at all mushy.

2. Meanwhile, heat butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and sage; shake pan occasionally. When butter turns brown, turn off heat.

3. Use tongs to remove sage and garlic from butter. Serve potatoes drizzled with butter and garnished with a few sage leaves. Garlic can be served alongside, though it will not be super soft.

Recipe published in The New York Times (Photo: Evan Sung)