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.

5 / 5 ()
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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.
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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}

368 comments on “Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread”

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  5. We love this recipe in our house and it’s really the only way that we actually enjoy eating sweet potatoes.
    It’s a great fall bread and we made it today (first time this year) because we were in a fall mood and needed to kick it off.
    I’d make it just for the smell! Haha

    I thought I’d mention that I have made this recipe and never used buttermilk. When I was a kid we always substituted it for a cup milk to 1 tbls of lemon juice and that’s what we used in this recipe and it’s turned out great everytime!

    My two year old picky eater approves! (And that’s about the highest level of approval you can get around here! Haha)

  6. just made this tonight… it’s amazing!
    I cut out 1/4 cup of white sugar (i usually cut sugar in baked things because I don’t like overly sweet). 
    I will probably add it back in next time.
    This is definitely on my list of quick things to make to bring to fall parties. 

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  10. I made this recipe yesterday and it came out perfect!! It is so yummy I can’t stop eating it!!

  11. Made muffins with this last night, so good! I had to start over with the sweet potatoes, 15 minutes was way too long in my microwave. I should have known that though, it’s very efficient. I didn’t have the variety of spices available so I did 1tbsp cinnamon and 3 tsp pumpkin spice. Greek yogurt for the dairy. 21 minutes to perfection. Made enough batter for about a dozen large muffins (I ended up with 12 medium and then 3 small). Thanks so much!

  12. Thank you so much for this recipe, Averie! I have baked it a multiple times since I found it on your site. People keep asking me again and again for their piece of sweet potato bread and it’s easy to understand why. It’s so easy and tasty.


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  14. Most  excellent. Easy, no exotic ingredients, made two 8×4. I used one can of sweet oitatoes.

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  16. I just made this yesterday and even though I forgot the nutmeg (I even had the grater out and STILL forgot), it turned out delicious! Your recipes are amazing and I’m ever so thankful you share them with us. Thank you! :)

  17. Made both the apple and carrot plus sweet potato. Both turned out brilliantly thankyou for sharing cheers Lesley 

  18. I baked the sweet potato bread gluten free. Everybody liked it.

  19. Made the sweet potato bread but made into muffins. Subbed applesauce for oil. They were moist and so flavorful! Baked for 18 minutes. Will make again!!

  20. I had Korean sweet potatoes leftover and I used this recipe. It turned out wonderful. My husband and 2 year old approved it. I did reduce the granulated sugar by 1/2 cups and used vanilla greek yogurt since I don’t like overly sweet bread. It was just right for us.

  21. Could this recipe be made gluten free? Has anyone tried it?

    • I haven’t tried but if you have a reliable GF flour mix or blend or brand that you use, you could try that in place of the AP flour.

    • This has become my go to sweet potato bread recipe. Both kids love it! Today because I only had a small amount of sweet potato left over from dinner the other night I used about 3/4 cup of canned pumpkin left from another recipe and half a banana to get 1.5 cups total and it was awesome! I have also tried to make this gluten free but the only successful one was when I used Bob’s Red Mill gluten free mix (not the 1:1, but the mix that requires xanthum gum). AND I also cut the sugar by 1/2 cup each time as well. Typically I use 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar and 1/2 cup cane sugar. Oh! And one other substitute this time, in place of the oil, I used 1/4 cup melted coconut oil and 1/4 applesauce. This recipe really is so versatile ?

  22. Could I make this with boiled sweet potato chunks or is it important to steam them?

  23. This has become my go to sweet potato bread recipe. Both kids love it! Today because I only had a small amount of sweet potato left over from dinner the other night I used about 3/4 cup of canned pumpkin left from another recipe and half a banana to get 1.5 cups total and it was awesome! I have also tried to make this gluten free but the only successful one was when I used Bob’s Red Mill gluten free mix (not the 1:1, but the mix that requires xanthum gum). AND I also cut the sugar by 1/2 cup each time as well. Typically I use 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar and 1/2 cup cane sugar. Oh! And one other substitute this time, in place of the oil, I used 1/4 cup melted coconut oil and 1/4 applesauce. This recipe really is so versatile ?

  24. Made this bread once and absolutely loved it! However, made it this time with Greek yogurt instead of milk and ended up getting a really metallic taste and had to throw out the loaf =( any idea what I might be doing wrong? I used the same amount of baking soda as last time, but I’m curious if it’s too much…?

    • When you say milk, I am assuming you mean buttermilk, not milk. But maybe you mean milk.

      If it tasted off when you used Greek yogurt, I possibly wonder if the Greek yogurt was a bit off and not at its peak because really there is not a ton of difference between Greek yogurt and buttermilk in this application because we’re only talking 1/4 cup in a whole loaf. Very hard to say what goes on with baking chemistry in various people’s kitchens, ingredients, etc.

      Since you know how it tastes great given your ingredients, I would stick with that method :)

  25. Thanks! Yeah now that I think about it I’m pretty sure I used buttermilk last time, so that would make sense. Will try that next time =)

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