Sweet Potato & Parsnip Mash Recipe on Food52 (2024)


by: hardlikearmour



2 Ratings

  • Serves 4

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Author Notes

This is a variation on the technique Cook's Illustrated uses for making mashed sweet potatoes. I've used half sweet potatoes and half parsnips. To add some dimension I've incorporated freshly grated horseradish root. I've cooked part of the horseradish root with the vegetables to soften it's pungency plus stirred some in after cooking for added pizzazz. I find the combination to be sweet with enough of a bite to add interest, but not clear the sinuses! If you don't find it to be sweet enough, add a small amount of sweetener. Feel free to adjust the pungency to your taste with additional horseradish. —hardlikearmour

Test Kitchen Notes

I'm always a fan of recipes that only dirty one dish from start to finish. The parsnips are wonderful with the sweet potatoes. The kick of horseradish adds something special to the dish and a tablespoon of maple syrup made it complete. - biffbourgeois —Stephanie Bourgeois

  • Test Kitchen-Approved

What You'll Need

  • 1 & 1/4 pounds orange-fleshed sweet potatoes
  • 1 poundparsnips
  • 1/3 cupheavy cream
  • 2 tablespoonsunsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoontable salt
  • 1 packed tablespoon freshly grated horseradish, divided
  • additional salt and horseradish to taste
  • sugar, maple syrup, or honey if needed to sweeten
  1. Peel sweet potatoes and parsnips, and cut into 1/4-inch thick slices.
  2. Combine sweet potato and parsnip slices, cream, butter, salt, and half of the horseradish root in a 3 or 4 quart saucepan with a tight fitting lid. Heat over low heat, stirring occasionally, until vegetables have softened. This will take about 40 to 50 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and mash with a potato masher to desired texture. Stir in half of remaining horseradish making sure to incorporate well. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt, additional horseradish, and/or sweetener if needed. Serve hot.


  • Potato
  • Horseradish
  • Milk/Cream
  • Parsnip
  • Sweet Potato/Yam
  • Gluten-Free
  • Vegetarian
  • Side
Contest Entries
  • Your Best Recipe with Horseradish
  • Your Best Root Vegetable Side
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See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Brette Warshaw

  • Sandra L Trautwein

  • QueenSashy

  • EmilyC

  • wssmom

I am an amateur baker and cake decorator. I enjoy cooking, as well as eating and feeding others. I live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with my husband and our menagerie. I enjoy outdoor activities including hiking, mushroom hunting, tide pooling, beach combing, and snowboarding.

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21 Reviews

Brette W. November 30, 2013

Made this for Thanksgiving -- it was perfect. Since we keep kosher, I subbed oil for the butter and almond milk for the cream -- still totally delicious.

Sandra L. November 22, 2013

loved this recipe. I will try this thanksgiving.

Karen P. November 20, 2013

If you are not fond of the "bite" of horseradish, you can saute the horseradish in a bit of butter -- this gives it a nice, soft, nutty flavor -- and add it when you are mashing the parsnips and potatoes. (I frequently prepare just parsnips this way it is one of my family's favorite vegetable dishes.)

QueenSashy November 14, 2012

Love this recipe, have a crowd coming next week for a post-Thanksgiving feast and I am definitely going to give it a try.

hardlikearmour November 15, 2012

I really love the combo of parsnips and sweet potatoes, and I hope you do to!

pickled November 23, 2011

Be sure to purchase the orange-fleshed variety of sweet potato. Our local grocery labels the orange sweet potatoes incorrectly as yams so our family Thanksgiving grocery runner purchased the white flesh variety labeled sweet potatoes instead. We attempted this recipe with the white variety and it simply did not work. It came out bland and boring.

hardlikearmour November 24, 2011

Yikes! I'm sorry to hear that. I never use the white-fledged sweet potatoes so it didn't occur to me to specify.

EmilyC October 17, 2011

Congrats on the Editors' Pick, HLA! I love sweet potatoes and parsnips but have never combined them before. Saving your recipe -- it looks and sounds so delicious.

hardlikearmour October 17, 2011

Thanks, EmilyC! They are a great combo. I was just looking at your sweet potato with bacon and arugula recipe and thinking how amazing it sounded! Congrats yourself.

wssmom September 25, 2011

How did I miss this first time around? LOVE the horseradish!

hardlikearmour September 25, 2011

Thanks, wssmom! The horseradish is really nice with the sweet veggies - it adds a little punch w/out being overwhelming.

fiveandspice March 28, 2011

Yum! Just yum!

hardlikearmour March 28, 2011

thanks, 5&spice. My tummy thought it was yummy!

gingerroot March 28, 2011

This looks really yummy. I love the contrast of sweet and hot, with the cream and butter rounding everything out.

hardlikearmour March 28, 2011

thanks, gingerroot! It's a nice flavor combo.

checker March 27, 2011

For some reason I get locked in on a veggie for a few weeks at a time, and I have been into parsnips for about three weeks now. I think I'll be making this soon.

hardlikearmour March 27, 2011

Parsnips is one of my favorites! I'm actually working on a parsnip cake (think carrot cake) recipe currently. Hope to get it posted in the fairly near future.

TheWimpyVegetarian March 26, 2011

This looks really wonderful! I hadn't thought of the sweet potato-parsnip-horseradish combo. It sounds perfect!

hardlikearmour March 26, 2011

It was a case of me getting some fresh horseradish w/o having an idea of what to do with it, then looking through the fridge and pantry! It worked out well - nice combo of sweet with a little kick from the horseradish.

Sagegreen March 26, 2011

Love the way this is tempered with the cream. Delicious!

hardlikearmour March 26, 2011

Cream does have a way of making things especially yummy!

Sweet Potato & Parsnip Mash Recipe on Food52 (2024)


How do you make Ina Garten mashed sweet potatoes? ›

Place the sweet potato meat into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and add the orange juice, cream, butter, brown sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt, and pepper. Mix together until combined but not smooth and transfer to a baking dish. Bake the potatoes for 20 to 30 minutes, until heated through.

Why is my parsnip puree gummy? ›

Parsnips are a starchy root vegetable and running them through the food processor too long or at too high of a speed can cause the starches to congeal. I recommend pulsing the parsnips with additional coconut milk or water to prevent an undesirable gummy texture.

Is sweet potato mash better for you than normal mash? ›

Though they can both be part of a healthy diet, sweet potatoes are generally healthier than regular potatoes, partly because of their incredibly high vitamin A content. Sweet potatoes are also lower on the glycemic index, meaning that they are less likely than regular potatoes to make your blood sugar spike.

How do you keep sweet potato mash from getting watery? ›

How Do I Make Sure My Mashed Sweet Potatoes are Not Watery? To make sure your potatoes aren't watery, don't overcook the potatoes. It's also important to drain the potatoes completely once you're done boiling them to avoid having unwanted water lingering in your pot.

Why not to boil sweet potatoes? ›

Despite their sweet taste, these potatoes have an intermediate glycemic index (GI) level, meaning they are digested and absorbed fairly slowly, leading to a more gradual increase in blood sugar levels. But, a lot of these benefits, including nutrients and taste, can be lost by boiling sweet potatoes.

Should I peel sweet potatoes before boiling? ›

There is not much difference between boiling sweet potatoes with the skins on versus peeling them, but you will get a boost of fiber and potassium if you keep the skin on. The skin also adds a subtle texture to each bite. If you're looking for a smoother mash, peel the potatoes first before boiling.

Is it better to boil sweet potatoes or bake sweet potatoes? ›

Why You Should Bake Sweet Potatoes Instead. While boiling makes sweet potatoes tender, it doesn't help much with their flavor. Most dishes that call for boiled sweet potatoes would be improved if you used roasted or baked sweet potatoes.

When should you not eat a parsnip? ›

Store in the refrigerator in an unsealed bag for 3+ weeks. If a raw parsnip becomes soft and squishy, this is a sign of rot and it should no longer be eaten. For better flavor, cook the parsnip with the skin on—after cooking, you have the option to eat the skin or not!

Why should you not peel parsnips? ›

Some vegetables, like celery root, have tough outer peels, which we always remove. Parsnips we assess on a case-by-case basis; the best flavor is actually right below the skin, so we try to avoid removing too much.

Why do parsnips upset my stomach? ›

Parsnips often contain a group of natural toxins called furocoumarins. These are probably produced to protect the plant when it has been stressed. The toxin is mostly found in the peel and the surface layer of the plant, as well as around any damaged areas. One of the toxins can cause stomach ache.

How does Ina Garten bake sweet potatoes? ›

  1. Preheat oven to 425*F.
  2. Cut sweet potatoes in wedges or like french fries.
  3. Place wedges on large baking pan or cookie sheet. ...
  4. Now sprinkle over brown sugar, salt, and black pepper. ...
  5. Spread out in a single layer. ...
  6. Place back in oven and bake another 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy on the outside.

Why do you soak sweet potatoes before baking? ›

The cold water bath helps rinse the starch off the sweet potatoes so they're a bit more crispy. That said, if you do not have the time, you can still get crispy baked sweet potato fries by using high heat and a little drizzle of olive oil.

Do sweet potatoes cook at the same time as regular potatoes? ›

However, as a general guideline, sweet potatoes typically take about 45 minutes to 1 hour to bake at 400°F (200°C), whereas regular potatoes may take closer to 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes to bake at the same temperature.

What do professional chefs use to mash potatoes? ›

The secret weapon, a good potato ricer (affiliate). This pushes the potatoes into strings, which helps them soak up every bit of the cream and achieve maximum fluffliness.

How does Gordon Ramsay make smashed potatoes? ›

Gordon Ramsay begins by boiling the potatoes in salted water. Next, he drains the potatoes. After that, he stirs in butter, sour cream, herbs, and seasoning. This is Gordon Ramsay's version of smashed potatoes, which differs from the one in this recipe.

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