Sweet Potato Cookies

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
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Fall in love with these decadent Sweet Potato Cookies, topped with a luscious swirl of cinnamon cream cheese frosting. Their pillowy soft texture and rich flavors are the perfect balance of sweet and spice, making them a standout dessert for any occasion!

Why I Love These Frosted Sweet Potato Cookies

Pumpkin gets all of the love during the fall season (not that I’m complaining)! While I do love me some pumpkin, sweet potatoes are also pretty autumnal in their own right. When I first served these cookies at a little get-together with friends, everyone was shocked to learn that these cookies got their orange hue from sweet potatoes and not pumpkin. But trust me – there were no complaints! These soft frosted fall cookies practically flew off the plate and I knew I had a winner. Check out what makes them such a hit:

  • Beautifully soft and fluffy. Sometimes you just want a cakey, soft cookie… especially with rich, decadent frosting. Think lofthouse cookies, think whoopie pies, and definitely think about these easy sweet potato cookies. They’re super fluffy, beautifully soft, and loaded with fall flavor.
  • Sweet potatoes add natural sweetness. The sweet potatoes also go a long way toward making the cookies flavorful and naturally sweet. Honestly, sweet potatoes are so under-utilized in desserts – they are just as good as pumpkin, and maybe even better in some recipes! They have a gorgeous color, mild, sweet taste, and silky texture.
  • Quick and easy. This sweet potato cookie recipe requires an hour for the dough to chill but the actual active time is just around 30 minutes. Either way, you can have them ready to enjoy in 2 hours or so.

Looking for more sweet potato dessert ideas? Try my sweet potato pie and sweet potato cake recipes!

The ingredients for sweet potato cookie recipe in order from top to bottom: granulated sugar, melted butter, baking soda, nutmeg, baking powder, cinnamon, powdered sugar, cornstarch, all purpose flour, egg, sweet potatoes, cream cheese and vanilla.

Key Ingredients

So what will you need to make these sweet potato cookies in your own kitchen? Let’s take a look. You probably already have most of these ingredients on hand! Scroll down to the recipe card below for the full ingredient list and exact amounts!

  • Flour: Plain, all-purpose flour – no need for self-rising flour or cake flour here.
  • Cornstarch: Just a bit of cornstarch makes for extra-soft, smooth cookies.
  • Baking Powder and Baking Soda: You will need both rising agents for this recipe. One activates in the batter, and one activates in the oven, to keep the cookies from being dense. Make sure that neither is expired!
  • Sweet Potatoes: One cup of canned sweet potatoes, drained and mashed. I used Bruce’s Yams Cut Sweet Potatoes in Syrup. However you can also use mashed sweet potatoes.
  • Sugar: Granulated sugar is fine. You could also use light brown sugar, for a hint of molasses flavor.
  • Cream Cheese: Let the cream cheese soften at room temperature before you use it in this recipe. That way, it will whip up nicely.
  • Powdered Sugar: You will need several cups – the exact amount depends on how firm you want the frosting to be.

Are Canned Sweet Potatoes Just as Good as Fresh?

For this recipe, canned sweet potatoes are definitely just as good as fresh, and much easier to use. You just open the can, drain the syrup, and mash the sweet potatoes with a fork. But if you want to bake whole sweet potatoes and mash those instead, or use leftover baked sweet potatoes, that will work just fine as well.

Sweet potato cookies with cream cheese frosting on a white work surface with a cloth napkin and bundle of cinnamon sticks.

How to Make this Fall Cookie Recipe

These sweet potato cookies with cream cheese frosting may sound hard to make, but I promise they are very easy. The hardest part about this recipe is waiting an hour while the dough chills in the fridge! Below is a quick recipe overview, but please scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post for full instructions.

  • Make the dough. Whisk the dry ingredients together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the mashed sweet potatoes, butter, and sugar. Add the egg and vanilla extract. Beat the flour mixture into the sweet potato mixture to form a smooth cookie dough.
  • Chill. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  • Bake. Drop spoonfuls of dough onto the cookie sheet and gently flatten into rounds 1/2 inch thick. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on wire racks.
  • Make cream cheese frosting. Beat together the frosting ingredients, except the sugar, until well combined. Add the powdered sugar and beat until smooth.
  • Frost the cookies. Once the cookies are completely cool, frost each one. Dust with cinnamon on top if desired. Enjoy!

Do You Need to Refrigerate Cream Cheese Frosting?

Yes, and no. I usually recommend keeping anything frosted with cream cheese frosting in the refrigerator, and it’s a good way to keep your frosted items fresh for longer.

However, if you’re going to serve and eat the cookies within a few hours, you can keep them at room temperature instead. In fact, if your house stays cool (under 70°F), you can keep cream cheese frosting at room temperature for up to two days, according to Cooking Light!

Overhead shot of a round dish with seven iced cookies arranged on it.

Chef’s Tips and Variations

  • Butter: If you use unsalted butter in this recipe, you will need to add 1/2 teaspoon of salt to the cookie dough.
  • Add nuts: Sprinkle chopped walnuts or pecans into the cookie batter before chilling it for a lovely crunch.
  • Spoon your flour: When you dunk a measuring cup straight into a bag of flour, you end up really packing it in there. Packed flour results in too much flour! So instead, spoon the flour into the measuring cup and level it with a knife.
  • Pie spice: Cinnamon and nutmeg make a simple spice profile for this recipe, but feel free to substitute pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice instead for a more complex flavor.
  • Frosting: Sweet potato cookies can also be topped with a simple, crisp glaze (try the glaze from my old fashioned iced oatmeal cookies). Let the glaze dry and they are good to go – and easier to store, too.
  • Marshmallows: Take a cue from your favorite candied yams recipe, and add some marshmallows to your sweet potato cookies. Press a few mini marshmallows into the batter before baking, and allow to cool before serving. Or frost your cookies with marshmallow fluff!
Close-up shot of cookies with piped frosting and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
4.5 from 91 votes
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Yield: 36 Cookies

Sweet Potato Cookies with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

These decadent Sweet Potato Cookies are pillowy soft, spiced sweet potato cookies frosted with a rich, sweet cinnamon cream cheese icing!
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Additional Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 30 minutes

Ingredients

Sweet Potato Cookies:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup Bruce’s Yams Cut Sweet Potatoes in Syrup, drained and mashed
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, melted
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 4 tablespoons salted butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon, plus more for garnish, if desired
  • 3 to 4 cups powdered sugar, add until desired consistency/firmness

Instructions 

  • In a medium sized bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl whisk together sweet potatoes, butter and granulated sugar. Add egg and vanilla extract.
  • Beat in flour mixture until well combined. Cover bowl with foil or parchment paper and refrigerate for one hour or overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Using a medium cookie scoop, drop dough by onto prepared cookie sheets. Grease the bottom of a flat glass with butter and gently press cookie dough into flat disks about 1/2 inch thick.
  • Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until tops are set. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

Frosting:

  • Beat together cream cheese, butter, cinnamon and vanilla until well combined. Add powdered sugar and beat until smooth.
  • Generously frost on top of each cookie and dust with extra cinnamon if desired. Serve immediately and store any leftovers in the refrigerator.

Video

Notes

  • Storage: For maximum freshness, arrange these cookies in a single layer in shallow, airtight containers. Store in the fridge for up to 5 days. 
  • Freezing: Store the sweet potato cookies cookies, unfrosted, in airtight containers for up to three months. I recommend separating layers of cookies with parchment or wax paper before freezing, so that they don’t stick to each other. Thaw to room temperature and frost before serving.
  • Butter: If you use unsalted butter in this recipe, you will need to add 1/2 teaspoon of salt to the cookie dough.
  • Add Nuts: Sprinkle chopped walnuts or pecans into the cookie batter before chilling it for a lovely crunch.
  • Pie Spice: Cinnamon and nutmeg make a simple spice profile for this recipe, but feel free to substitute pumpkin pie spice instead for a more complex flavor.
  • Frosting: Sweet potato cookies can also be topped with a simple, crisp glaze (try the glaze from my Old Fashioned Iced Oatmeal Cookies). Let the glaze dry and they are good to go – and easier to store, too.
  • Marshmallows: Take a cue from your favorite candied yams recipe, and add some marshmallows to your sweet potato cookies. Press a few mini marshmallows into the batter before baking, and allow to cool before serving. Or you can frost them with marshmallow fluff.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cookie, Calories: 256kcal, Carbohydrates: 54g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 16mg, Sodium: 87mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 43g

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More of My Favorite Fall Cookie Recipes

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My husband named them Dangeous, best cookie he ever ate.

I just made these, and OH MY GOODNESS, they were sooo good!!! I did make a few tweaks- I cut the recipe in half and used 1c of mashed sweet potatoes (regular boiled, not canned) and 1c of flour, but all I can say is WOW! They are pillow soft, full of flavor and not too sweet. The icing complements the cookies so well. I’ve convinced myself that these are a vegetable and that I can eat them for breakfast. They were perfect with my coffee this morning, it’s officially Fall Thanks so much for this recipe!

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Do you think these would tase okay with fresh sweet potatoes?

I want to eat this by the spoonful! It looks so good!

5 stars

Now this is my favorite cookies recipe. This looks amazing! I cannot wait to give it a try. Thank you for sharing this great recipe. YUM!

These cookies look amazing! Love how soft and fluffy they are!

These look really good! My kids will surely enjoy these!

Yum! These Sweet Potato Cookies with Cream Cheese Frosting look AMAZING! I LOVE that cream cheese frosting, but I wonder how they would taste with a homemade marshmallow cream frosting & cinnamon or even with added chopped pecans or soft pre-plumped raisins.? Regardless, I can’t wait to try your recipe as is! I do believe these cookies willl make a wonderful addition to our Thanksgiving menu.

I am loving these super soft cookies. And that frosting!!

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Jessica
For the past 15 years, Jorge & Jessica have loved getting to share their families' favorite recipes with all of you. They live in Florida with their 3 kids.