Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

Sweet potatoes are always a winner no matter how they’re prepared.

But when baked into sweetly spiced soft bread, they become even better.

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

I had a couple sweet potatoes to use and rather than just roasting them or making fries with them, I mashed them and baked them into bread. I do it with bananas all the time. Why not sweet potatoes.

I was blown away by the results. The bread turned out ridiculously soft, moist, tender, and richly spiced. It’s almost like cake it’s so soft, tender, and springy. If you like carrot cake or pumpkin-based recipes, you’ll love this bread.


Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

It’s easy to make, and no mixer is needed. Stir everything together and pop the loaf into the oven for about an hour. And your house will smell heavenly during that hour.

Begin by steaming two medium sweet potatoes or one very large sweet potato. Peel the potatoes, dice into one-inch chunks, place in a shallow bowl with a splash of water, cover with plasticwrap and microwave for about 15 minutes, or until fork tender. Drain off any water that’s pooled, and mash with a fork.

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

If you have another method for steaming, go for it. I do it this way because it’s fast and easy. You could roast the sweet potatoes, but that takes almost an hour, the potatoes will be drier from being roasted than steamed, and you’d need to make some tweaks with dry and wet ingredient ratios in your batter.

After the potatoes cool just a bit so you don’t scramble the eggs, crack two eggs over them, add oil, vanilla, buttermilk (or yogurt or sour cream) and whisk.

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

In another bowl, combine flour, sugars, baking soda, and a variety of spices. I used cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves. Feel free to mix-and-match the spices based on what you have and enjoy. Try pumpkin pie spice, cardamom, or other favorites.

I love cinnamon and the bread is well-spiced and robust, without being overpowering. Many times sweet potato, pumpkin, or carrot-based cakes and breads can be so bland and blah. Orange root vegetables are very hearty and can really soak up, and necessitate, plenty of spice. I made sure to account for that, but add spices to taste.

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

Add the wet to the dry, and mix until combined. I had to really stir and stir. And stir some more. The dry ingredients seemed to just multiply in the bowl and in the folds of the batter. Every time I thought I had it all folded together, I’d scape the bottom of the bowl and find more stray white bits. Take your time and make sure everything is well combined, but use a gentle hand when stirring so you don’t over-develop the gluten, resulting in tougher bread.

Turn the batter out into a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan or two 8-by-4-inch pans. I used one 9×5 and will probably opt for two 8×4 loaves next time or bake as a Budnt. It’s a cake-like bread and I think it would bake beautifully in a Bundt pan. Or try it as muffins.

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

The sweet potatoes, oil, and buttermilk all do a wonderful job of keeping the bread supremely soft and moist. Although I’ve compared it to cake, it’s not cakey if that makes sense. It doesn’t have an airy, flaky crumb that many cakes have; otherwise known as being dry.

The interior is tender, springy, and bouncey with a dense crumb. The crust is firmer and slightly chewy. Normally I shun crust and edge pieces on bread, but I found myself seeking them out, like chewy edge pieces on brownies.

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

The bread is sweet, but not too sweet. A slice or two for breakfast, as a snack, or as a healthier after-dinner treat is how we’ve been enjoying it.

The spices are homey and comforting. Warming spices like the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves are my favorites. I have to restrain myself from making Molasses Cookies and other similar treats for most of the year because they’re out-of-season, so to speak. The spices give the bread such great flavor and squelch my cravings. I want to snuggle up on the couch with a blanket and a cup of chai tea to wash it down with.

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

It’s perfect on it’s own and doesn’t even need butter. It’s that moist and flavorful. But twist my arm and a little butter never hurts. Or try a Vanilla Browned Butter Glaze for an extra treat.

Sweet potatoes can do no wrong.

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread - Eating your vegetables via soft, moist bread is the best way! My favorite way to eat sweet potatoes!

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

Sweet potatoes do a wonderful job of keeping the bread extremely soft and moist. It’s almost like cake it’s so soft, springy, and bouncey. The interior is tender with a dense, moist crumb, and the crust is firmer and slightly chewy. The sweet potatoes are complimented by a variety of comforting and warming spices including, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and cloves. The bread is robustly spiced and full of hearty flavor. If you like sweet potatoes, carrot cake, or pumpkin-based recipes, you’ll love this bread.


about 1 1/2 cups mashed sweet potatoes (2 medium or 1 very large)
3 tablespoons water
2 large eggs
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/4 cup buttermilk (or yogurt, Greek yogurt, sour cream, or buttermilk powder)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
pinch salt, optional and to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray one 9-by-5-inch loaf pan (what I used), or two 8-by-4-inch loaf pans, or a 10-cup Bundt pan, or a muffin pan with floured cooking spray or grease and flour the pan(s); set aside.
  2. Peel the sweet potatoes and chop them into 1-inch sized chunks. Place chunks in a large, shallow microwave-safe bowl. Add 3 tablespoons water, cover with plasticwrap, and cook on high power for 15 to 17 minutes, or until potatoes are very fork-tender. Pour off any water. Mash sweet potatoes with a fork. Allow them to cool momentarily so you don’t scramble the eggs.
  3. To the sweet potatoes, add the eggs, oil, buttermilk, vanilla and whisk until combined; set aside. (I used buttermilk powder and added 1 tablespoon powder to the dry ingredients and 1/4 cup water to this wet mixture)
  4. In a large mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients – flour, sugars, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, optional salt, and whisk to combine. Pour the wet sweet potato mixture over the dry ingredients, and stir to incorporate. Take your time stirring until no stray bits of dry ingredients are visible, folding and scraping the bottom of the bowl with a spatula as necessary because it’s very easy to miss dry ingredients hiding at the bottom of the bowl in this batter. Stir and fold with a gentle hand as to not over-mix and over-develop the gluten, which results in tougher bread.
  5. Turn batter out into prepared pan(s), smoothing the top lightly with a spatula. Bake for 60 to 70 minutes for a 9×5 pan, or until top is domed, golden, loaf is springy to the touch, and cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Tent pan with foil in the last 15 minutes of cooking if top is browning a bit fast before interior has cooked through. I estimate that 8×4 loaves will take about 40 to 45 minutes, a Bundt about 1 hour, muffins about 18-20 minutes, but I haven’t tried those versions and they are just guesstimates.
  6. Allow bread to cool in pan for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Bread will keep at room temperature for up to 1 week. I store my bread by wrapping the completely cooled loaf in plasticwrap, and then placing loaf inside a gallon-sized Ziplock.
Only Eats

Related Recipes

Carrot Cake Loaf with Cream Cheese Frosting – My favorite carrot cake recipe of all time and I bake it in a loaf pan rather than cake pans. The recipe is similar to the sweet potato bread except uses carrots rather than sweet potatoes but the spices and ingredients are similar

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake with Chocolate Ganache – My favorite cake on my site. If you crossed the buttery-est yellow cake with pumpkin, added chocolate chips, and draped it all in a rich ganache, this is what you’d get. It’s a one-bowl, whisk-together cake that takes minutes to make, with amazing results. Moist, tender, flavorful, easy and everyone who’s made this cake writes to tell me they make it…again. Always a hit and the flavors, spices, and texture reminds me of the sweet potato bread

Sweet Potato Graham Cracker “French Toast” Sticks – Don’t judge a book by it’s cover. This recipe is how you make potatoes taste like French Toast sticks

Pumpkin Banana Bread with Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting – This quickbread pairs two of my favorites, pumpkin bread and banana bread, with plenty of cinnamon-and-spice and scrumptious frosting to boot

Coconut Spice Cheesecake Bars – Part cheese cake, part spice cake,with the flavors of carrot cake and cream cheese frosting. Chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, and coconut are baked in between the cake and cream cheese layers for richly spiced bars that are very fast and easy to make since there’s a shortcut involved

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Marshmallow Buttercream Frosting – Swap out the pumpkin for sweet potatoes in these easy, fast cupcakes that make a batch size of just 6

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup (vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, microwave-friendly) – Fast, easy, and ready in 15 minutes flat

Roasted Sweet Potato and Goat Cheese Pizza on 1-Hour Whole Wheat Pizza Crust – Those are sweet potato rounds, not pepperoni, and so good. Never buy storebought pizza crust again with this easy, healthy, one-hour dough

Do you like sweet potatoes?

If you have a favorite recipe that uses them, please share the links.

Thanks for the entries in the Canon Rebel T3i Camera Giveaway {$580 value}

289 comments on “Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread”

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  6. Really, really good!!! I made a few modifications to try and cut a bit of the fat down. I added applesauce in place of the oil, egg whites in place of the eggs and I cut the sugar down to 1/2 a cup. I loved this recipe!!! I ended up making 2 loaves with this one recipe. The only thing I would do for next time is puree the sweet potato instead of mashing it with a fork. My kids are picky and they see the small chunks of sweet potato and turn their noses up. Silly boys!

    • That’s great that you got away with applesauce and egg whites and very little sugar! Glad it turned out and you’re happy! And that your boys ate it! :) I mashed mine like CRAZY with a fork until the sweet potatoes are supppper smooth but I can see pureeing it would take out the guesswork! Thanks for trying the recipe!

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  8. I was looking through the comments to see if anyone had mentioned trying these as muffins, but didn’t see anything. I’m not a big bread baker, so I didn’t have loaf pans, but the muffins worked out great. I ended up keeping them in the oven for about 24-25min. I also subbed in 3/4C whole wheat flour along with 1C of AP. Thanks for the great recipe!

  9. There’s a restaurant we love in San Antonio called Twin Sisters that make these delicious sweet potato muffins that we enjoy greatly every time we visit. My kids loved them so much that I decided to replicate them here at home, which is how I came across your recipe. I made this as muffins last night (20 minutes at 350) and they are wonderful. Thank you so much!

  10. My dad sent me this recipe because I couldn’t find the one I’ve used for years, which my mom had made with Pillsbury Date bread mix and grated sweet potatoes. I had eight breads to make as Christmas gifts and the first 3 turned out fine. In the second batch, two of the three loaves caved in completely! I’m sure they will taste fine, but it was embarrassing to gift such an odd-looking thing. I followed your proportions (doubled the recipe and made four 8 x 4 loaves). It’s not humid; I didn’t use too much liquid and only a pinch of salt is called for (these are all things that came up when I searched online for “my bread caved in”). What do you think went wrong?

  11. Thank you for this recipe, I made this for New Years using leftover sweet potatoes & my hubby loved it. I loved not even having to get the mixer out.!

  12. Excellent recipe! Thank you so much!
    I drizzled over a vanilla-maple icing to elevate this even further!

  13. Hi! I’m a senior in high school who came across your recipe while looking for a different bread to bake for my teachers (it was around Christmas time). [I’m not much of a baker, either, so the easier the recipe the better.] When I saw your recipe, I decided to give it a try and I got amazing results. My teachers loved it and my mom loved the way it smelled (lol ^-^). They’ve all asked for the recipe! So far, I’ve given it to about 10 teachers and I hope to bake more for my friends! Thank you so much for posting this. You are now my go-to blog for nice, quick, and unique recipes whenever I’m inspired to cook.

    Much love,


    PS: I see people are posting modifications they’re making to your recipe, so I thought I’d share mine: (1) I used Plain, Probiotic Greek Yogurt instead of the other options, (2) I added crushed walnuts to most of my batters, and (3) even though I switched back and forth between unbleached and whole wheat flour (from Walmart, sorry I forgot the brands :/), I didn’t really taste much of a change in flavor or texture! Also, I would occasionally add just a little bit of liquid aloe vera to give the bread a health boost. [My family is going gluten-free :)]


  15. This bread is wonderful! my whole family loves it. Thats including my 19 month old. My husband doesn’t even like baked goods. I use whole wheat flour. I also used honey instead of granulated sugar. I have not with this recipe yet but I like to substitute the oil for applesauce. Oh, I also make them as muffins. Your cooking time is perfect. Thank you so much for this awesome recipe. I love feeding my family healthy hearty wholesome foods that taste delicious!

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you! Glad the whole family loves it including your 19 mo old! Great that you were able to use w.w. flour, honey, and that you can make them as muffins…all the little tweaks working out for you and the family is happy….love hearing things like this :)

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  17. This recipe sounds wonderful, but there’s way too much sugar!  I’m pre-diabetic and allergic to artificial sweeteners, so what’s the minimum amount of sugar you can use and not affect the quality of the recipe.

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  21. For some reason, when I pinned this to Pinterest, the title that shows is “Thai Chicken Salad with Roasted Peanuts” and not “Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread”.

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  23. how would this go with gluten free flour?

  24. I would like to try this recipe but I’m not sure how much sweet potatoes exactly I will need. How does one “measure” 1.5 cups of sweet potato – level, heaped and how tightly packed? The description of 2 medium or 1 very large potato is not very accurate, either. Are we talking about 1lb/500g or 1.5lbs/700g ? I am sure it will make a big a difference to how it turns out.

    Ingredients such as butter, flour and sugar, I can use a conversion chart. But things like potatoes, onions or cauliflower, I simply cannot fathom out how much will constitutes a cup. Kind regards.

    • Once you have the potatoes mashed up, you measure out 1 1/2 cups. The same way you’d mash bananas for banana bread and then put the mash into a measuring cup until and measure it out. You don’t need to ‘pack’ it into the cup, just put the mashed puree into the cup, and measure. And really, the recipe is pretty forgiving and if you’re a little over or a little under 1 1/2 cups on the nose, more than likely things will be okay. I don’t write or enjoy developing recipes where you need to have things measured out to the very last tenth of a gram. I’m not the kind of cook! Enjoy the bread!

  25. Thanks for your reply. I wasn’t expecting you to measure ingredients to 0.1g. This isn’t biochemistry after all.

    The confusion stems from how we approach the recipe. I normally expect to know the quantity first, then do the preparation and add to the mixture. In your example of banana bread, the recipe I use often calls for 2 ripe bananas, about 250g, mash them and add to the mixture and not mashing them up and measure what is needed. You are correct in that such rustic recipes are very forgiving and a couple of ounces either way won’t make much of a difference.

    I’m going to try this at the weekend and find out what weight will give me 1.5 cups of sweet potatoes. Have you tried boiling the sweet potatoes? Perhaps they will get too watery?

  26. I’ve made it twice and successfully used greek yogurt instead of buttermilk (1/2 cup) and used applesauce instead of oil (but I used 1/4 cup-so basically I swapped the amount of oil with the amount of yogurt). Instead of granulated and brown sugars, I used just 1 cup of agave, and I made it with spelt flour. It’s amazing!

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  28. I made this as muffins for breakfast with Bob’s gf flour and flax instead of egg. I also used 3/4 cup of each sugar. I couldn’t get all the brown sugar lumps smooth in the batter, but during the baking they became delicious bits of caramel throughout the muffins. I will add lumps on purpose the next time I make them (tonight ;) ). Great recipe! Thanks :)

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you as both GF and with a flax egg! Sometimes brown sugar does do that lumpy thing no matter how hard you try to smoosh them out and when it happens in cookies, I love those caramely bits! Glad you’re making them again – tonight! Awesome!

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  31. Thanks so much for sharing this awesome recipe!
    Have a bunch of sweet potatoes and after perfecting the sweet potato fries I wanted to bake something sweet.
    Found your recipe on Pinterest and tried it today. I baked one smaller loaf and 6 muffins. The muffins took 20min, the loaf 40ish.
    I added chocolate chips to the muffins as a bait for kids to try them lol.
    I used 1C sugar only since sweet potatoes tend to be pretty sweet.

  32. I’ve made this bread several times and it is my favorite! However, I learned the hard way that it is best to cook in two loaf pans. Using one resulted in bread that was too done on the outside and underdone in the middle.  

    I just modified it into Pumpkin Cranberry Bread. So I used about 1 1/4 cups pumpkin instead of sweet potato, added 1/2 package of Jello Vanilla Pudding mix (the 5.1 oz package, pudding mix makes your quick breads so moist), and tossed about 1 cup dried cranberries in about 1/4 cup of the dry flour sugar mix before mixing in. I also only used 1 1/4 cup of sugar, and since I didn’t have any brown sugar added a teaspoon of Molasses to the wet mix. Cooked in two loaf pans for 20 minutes at 350, rotated and reduced to 325 for 25 more minutes. AMAZING! (coating your add-ins in flour helps keep them from sinking) So tender and moist.
    Thanks for the recipe, I’ve shared with everyone!

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  37. I made mine gluten free and used a small amount of butter (because I was out of oil :) and didn’t want to go to the store. I also added a cup of cinnamon applesauce and walnuts. It came out good with those additions/substitutions except a tad bit to much allspice and ginger. Next time I think I will pair down on those. Thanks for the receipe!

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  39. This looks great! Can it be made in a bread machine?

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  41. Could I swap pumpkin for sweet potatoes? If so, would I use the same amount of pumpkin puree as I would sweet potatoes? 

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  44. Hi, I want to try this recipe, can I use oat flour and if I want to sub sugar fo honey, in what proportion will I do it

    • I would not sub oat flour as it has very little, if any, gluten and the bread will be very dense.

      Honey is a liquid, sugar is dry. Adding liquid will water down the batter and you will need to be confidant enough in the kitchen to adapt your dry ingredients and leaveners to account for that. Personally I don’t recommend doing so.

  45. I made the sweet potato bread with just a couple of adjustment, subbing some of the white sugar with applesauce and honey. I loved it and shared it with some friends and co-workers. Ilk be making it again!! Thank you for your wonderful recipes.

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  47. Has anyone tried using almond or soy milk instead of buttermilk ?

    • I haven’t tried it – not sure if others have – but I really recommend sticking with buttermilk because it helps the cake rise. Not sure if you added vinegar or lemon juice to ‘culture’ the nondairy milks if that would work or not.

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  50. I had a heaping 1.5 cups of mashed sweet potato, subbed applesauce for the oil, didn’t use any brown sugar or spices other than cinnamon, and used 2% milk not buttermilk, and then baked in a 9×5 for more like 80 minutes, but enjoyed the delicious smell of baking bread and even more, the delicious bread itself! Yum!

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