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}

307 comments on “Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread”

  1. I posted about this amazing bread on my blog. Check it out! It brought back awesome memories. :)

  2. Hi! This is probably a dumb question, but if the sweet potato tastes bland/bad, will the bread also taste bad? I tasted the sweet potato mash (without anything added) and I think I picked a pretty bad tasting (not sweet, kinda weird tasting) sweet potato haha..should I still use it, or should I throw it out? :( or could I add enough sugar to make up for its lack of sweetness ? Thank you!

    • Just make the batter as written and taste it and it should be plenty spiced – with 1 tbsp of cinnamon and everything else, I think you will be fine but if it still tastes bland, season more before baking. But most sweet potatoes are pretty….bland. I mean they’re a potato so to be expected. I wouldn’t worry.

      • Hi! I did go and finish making it! IT TASTED SOO YUMMY !! I actually made it in two steps because I realized I had homework to finish, so I just made the wet mixture and froze it for a week…but then I still used it :) it stayed super moist for days (maybe even a week? I kept the loaf at my friend’s apartment, as I live in a dorm with a broken oven and also because I would’ve eaten it all in one day..seriously.) My friends loved it too, though they did say it tasted more just cinnamony than sweet potato-y haha..I think I will try this with purple yams next time or better quality sweet potatoes :) Thank you sooo much!! Going to be making this a lot–Thank you so much :)

      • Yes lots of nice cinnamon flavor (better than potato-ey flavor, right! haha!) Glad you loved it and given your dorm/apt/oven situation, it still worked out – that’s great!

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  5. I recently had an odd desire to try to make a breakfast muffin with sweet potatoes!! I added shredded zucchini and crushed pineapple with some whole wheat flour. I was very happy with the results!!

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  7. This looks incredible! Is it possible to substitute canned sweet potatoes?

  8. Once again, you have created a winner!!! We had more sweet potatoes in our CSA than my husband and I could eat, and this was a perfect way to use up the remaining potatoes. This moist bread really hit the spot! Plus, I feel like I’m getting more vitamins from this bread than usual with those yummy sweet potatoes ;) Thanks for this great recipe! Nothing but delicious from your recipes so far!!

    • Oh, and I used greek yogurt instead of buttermilk and it worked wonders! Just in case anyone is wondering :)

      • Thanks for trying the recipe and glad to know that Greek yog worked instead (I’m sure it would; it’s thicker than buttermilk so I bet your bread was supremely moist!) and yes to using up those CSA taters! Thanks for trying the recipe & glad it worked so well for you as have my others!

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  10. Could I use canned yams for this??

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  12. I used canola oil instead of vegetable oil and whole milk instead of buttermilk and organic flour. I also made my own brown sugar so that it didn’t have sulfite. Served it for easter dessert and it was a huge hit. Definitely should make two loaves when u make it. Yum yum. Also I skipped the allspice. Fabulous and will make again.

    • I use canola when I make this or coconut oil (not everyone is a fan, but I am!) and that adds another dimension of flavor. If you like coconut oil, try it here! Glad you loved the bread and will make it again!

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  14. Hi there, can you use olive oil instead of vegetable or canola oil or ones it just not work? I am clueless but I only have olive or coconut oil in my pantry :-). I am going to make this tonight!

    • I really don’t love the taste of olive oil in my sweets/baking recipes and so I personally wouldn’t use it. I do love baking with coconut oil and I would totally use that! In fact, this recipe would be amazing with coconut oil! LMK how it works out!

      • The bread is amazing, I used the coconut oil and pumpkin pie spice instead of all spice & cloves as I did not have. This bread ticked all the boxes for us, I ‘loved’ it and my hubby went for 2 serves last night. I am an Aussie with an infatuation for all the American pumpkin type baking recipes which are not common here at all :-)

      • Thanks for trying the recipe, Jo! I’m so glad you and your hubby both loved it and that you used coconut oil, too. I love baking with it and it’s great in this bread! I have a book coming out with lots of recipes that you’re going to love – stay tuned for announcements :)

  15. Wow, this recipe looks sooo good, I’m definitely pinning it for later. Though I must admit I have a serious pet peeve with the use of the term ‘quick bread’ in the English language. In Spanish we call everything cake (torta or pastel, according to the country), though cakes baked in a loaf pan are usually referred to as budín.
    So, what would be the difference between a quick bread and a cake? Other than the method, of course (if you cream a quick bread or mix everything together on a cake, I’m sure they’ll turn out pretty much the same).

  16. Averie, I see that the recipe calls for sweet potatoes but in your picture it looks like yams. Which one do you use?

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  18. I love a new twist in recipes. I want to try the sweet potato bread. BUT it has way too much sugar in the recipe. Any suggestions?

    • You could reduce the level to something you’re comfortable with. For me, if sweet potato and/or pumpkin recipes aren’t adequately seasoned and with a reasonable amount of sugar, they taste horribly bland and just not good and I’d rather not even bother. I assure you this bread doesn’t taste “too sweet”. It’s nice, but not overwhelming. I recommend making the recipe once as written and then altering it, to your taste.

  19. I am addicted to Sweet Potato! I use it in breads, cupcakes, cakes, custard, cookies and even frosting!! They are my favourite dessert vegetable.

  20. Where’s the chopped nuts? Pecan pieces would be great, I think. I’m going to make this delicious sounding recipe tonight! Thanks for sharing!!

  21. Hey! I just found this recipe on Pinterest and just HAD to try it. We love sweet potatoes and I had a few on hand that I kept forgetting to cook. So, we put them to use with this gem of a recipe.

    I had more than enough to make a single batch, but not enough to make a double batch, so I went with 3 parts sweet potato and 1 part butternut squash. I used sour cream instead of buttermilk, and I went with cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom and ginger for spices. I made two loaves and a bundt.

    The results were DELICIOUS, MOIST AND AMAZING!! Even my husband who doesn’t even like sweet potatoes OR butternut squash (which boosted to vitamin content without affecting the flavor at all, by the way) said it was fantastic! He ate two pieces last night and one or two for breakfast today! We’re almost through the second loaf already, and it’s been less than 24 hours!

    I’m saving the bundt for a potluck next weekend. I’m wrapping it and freezing it until we’re ready to use it. Wish me luck that it freezes well. If so, I know a new healthy & easy-to-eat food to make for new moms. Thanks for sharing! :)

    • Thanks for trying this and love the idea of 3 parts sweet potato and 1 part butternut squash. I have no worries about this freezing well; bread in general usually freezes well. And glad that you were able to get 2 loaves and a Bundt of of this!

  22. Hi. I was wondering if using dark brown sugar instead of light would make much of a difference in the recipe?
    Thanks :)

    • In this particular recipe, it shouldn’t change the outcome adversely. The taste may be a little bolder/darker more molasses-ey since dark vs. light brown sugar tends to do that, but I think you’ll be fine.

  23. Hi,
    I made the sweet potato bread last night. We just cut into it and it has green chunks in it…. Has anyone else experienced this? It looks like I put zucchini in the bread…. Maybe the potatoes turned green?? I’m not sure what happened.

    • No but I bet there is a connection between the baking soda and the sweet potatoes and a chemical reaction. I have heard of people having this issue with quickbreads, in general, from time to time. For example sunflower seed butter tends to turn green in quickbreads and it’s a chemical reaction with the leaveners. I bet you could google the answer to baking soda + sweet potatoes + green and see what pops up! I’m certain it’s one of those baffling baking science things and that the bread tastes fine. I’ve never had this happen to me though!

  24. Can this be made with Yams?

  25. Damn this looks good! I had an idea like this recently and wondered if I could use grated uncooked sweet potato.

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