Sweet Potato-Pecan Kugel Recipe

A sweet and creamy treat inspired by the American South.

This creamy sweet potato-based kugel, which comes topped with a pecan crumble, is representative of how Jewish communities in the American South incorporated local ingredients and flavors into traditional Ashkenazi dishes.

Reprinted with permission from “The Jewish Cookbook,” by Leah Koenig (Phaidon Press, 2019).

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pumpkin kugel with pecan

Sweet Potato-Pecan Kugel

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5 from 4 reviews

This Southern-inspired sweet potato kugel has a sweet, crunchy pecan topping.

  • Total Time: 1 hour 55 minutes
  • Yield: 6-8

Ingredients

For the kugel:

  • 3 lb sweet potatoes (about 3 medium)
  • 1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled and grated on the large holes of a box grater
  • 2 Tbsp light brown sugar
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp finely grated orange zest
  • 1 ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

For the topping:

  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter or coconut oil, melted
  • 1 ½ cups pecans, roughly chopped
  • ½ packed cup light brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • ½ tsp kosher salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Prick the sweet potatoes in several places with a fork and place on a large, rimmed baking sheet. Roast until the flesh can be easily pierced with a knife, about 1 hour. Remove from oven, cut in half to facilitate cooling, and let cool to the touch. Scoop flesh into a large bowl, discarding the skin, and mash well with a potato masher. (This step can be completed up to a day in advance.)
  2. Lower oven temperature to 350°F and grease a 9-inch square baking pan. Combine mashed sweet potato, apple, brown sugar, eggs, flour, orange zest, salt and pepper in a bowl and mix well. Spread mixture into the prepared baking pan.
  3. Stir together the melted butter, pecans, brown sugar, flour and salt in a medium bowl. Sprinkle evenly over the kugel. Bake, uncovered, until kugel sets and lightly browns around the edges, 35-40 minutes.
  • Author: Leah Koenig
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

7 comments

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  • Judith

    Can this be made ahead? Thinking of Thanksgiving. Also, family member cannot have nuts. What do you think of subbing oatmeal in the topping?
    Judith

    • The Nosher

      Hi Judith, we have not tried freezing this recipe but the first step (roasting the sweet potatoes) can be done a day in advance. Re: subbing the pecans for oatmeal, we haven’t tested the recipe with this swap. It should work, though the texture and taste of the dish will slightly change. Please let us know how it goes. Rachel at the Nosher.

  • Maureen

    I double the recipe, cut the Kugel into individual portions and freeze…this is one of my absolute Favorite dishes !!! Absolutely Delicious !!!






  • Anna

    I made it this past Shabbos. Now I’m printing the recipe to keep in my binder of go-to recipes—the highest compliment!






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