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What I loved about this side dish was that it was a little bit of the cart before the horse.  Meaning, it was not unlike a yummy, indulgent dessert before you had your turkey and green beans.

I enlisted my Mom to help with scooping out the pulp to create the quaint baking cups for the sweet potato mixture and then topped it all off mini marshmallows and chopped pecans.  The actual sweet potato mixture came together quickly and I’d consider this side dish to be a once-a-year treat.

Don’t you just love those mini marshmallows?

I made this, along with cranberry-orange relish and two delicious simple {but delicious} appetizers.  You can find those here and here.  Believe me, we were absolutely stuffed from our Thanksgiving meal .  I’m not even going to mention that my Mom prepared two additional side dishes {which we found room for as well.}.  Oh, did I mention there were buttery rolls too?

Here they are before they bake in a 350 degree oven for about 15-20 minutes.

 A couple of my marshmallows slipped off during baking {very unfortunate}, however, most of them stayed put.  My kids were intrigued, but wouldn’t try them.  I thought I had them at “marshmallow.”  Since I know you’re going to want to try them for yourself, you can find the original post from Southern Living here.  I found the recipe in last year’s Southern Living Christmas at Home publication.

I really wish my photos showed these off a little more.  One tip I can pass onto you, is to cut off just a thin slice on the bottom of each “cup,” so that they’ll hold steady in the baking sheet and on your plate.  This will probably prevent any of your marshmallows from sliding off while in the oven.

Pecan-Ginger Sweet Potato Cups


6 small sweet potatoes

4 large navel oranges

1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk

3 tbsp melted butter

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 tsp orange zest

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp salt

1/8 tsp ground nutmeg

1/8 tsp ground allspice

1/8 tsp ground cinnamon


Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees F.  Place sweet potatoes on aluminum-foil lined baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes or until tender.  Let stand 20 minutes.  Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

Meanwhile, cut oranges in half crosswise.  Scoop out pulp using a spoon, leaving peel intact.  Reserve orange pulp for another use.

Peel sweet potatoes, and place potato pulp in a large bowl.  Add condensed milk and next 8 ingredients.  Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth, stopping occasionally to remove any tough fibers, if necessary.  Spoon about 1/2 cup mixture into each orange cup.  Place cups in an 13- x 9-inch baking dish.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven; top with pecans and marshmallows, pressing lightly to adhere.  Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until marshmallows are melted and golden brown.

Yield: 8 servings

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