Hasselback sweet potatoes (Oven or Air Fryer)
Hasselback sweet potatoes are a fun way to present a classic dinner side. Slice most of the way through, bake until soft and top with your favorite sweet or savory additions. Perfect for your holiday table or just a weekend dinner at home.Jump to Recipe
Where does the word hasselback come from?
Once upon a time, there was a restaurant in Stockholm, Sweden where someone had the brilliant idea to start slicing potatoes very thinly, but not all the way through, dousing them in butter and other goodies and baking them to perfection. The restaurant was called Hasselbacken, which is where we derive the name of this visually pleasing, abundantly tasty, yet shockingly simple dish.
Why hasselback a sweet potato?
So what’s the benefit of “hasselbacking” (yes I just made it a verb!) a sweet potato? Well, first off, it looks awesome and is a refreshing take on a regular ol’ baked sweet potato. Second, it promotes even cooking so not only is it pretty, but it makes the potato taste better in the end.
Tips for success
This is a relatively simple dish to make, but it can be a pain if you don’t follow a few simple guidelines.
- Do not slice all the way through your potatoes. They won’t be hasselbacked anymore! See my next tip to learn how to avoid this.
- Use a wooden spoon to guide you. Slicing your potatoes free-hand will likely lead to your slicing all the way through. Instead, lay a wooden spoon along one side of the potato as a cutting guide. [Update: A wooden spoon really did no good when I tried it. This is the method many people use, but I found freehand to be much more reliable.]
- No one wants bland food! So make sure to season the exterior of the potatoes, not just between the slices, before baking for extra flavor.
- Be careful trying to bend the potatoes while unbaked. Working on stuffing salt or butter in them could break them. I waited until they had cooked a bit to get seasoning between the slices.
- Make sure not to overcook your hasselback sweet potatoes. They will lose their shape and, thus, some of their aesthetic appeal.
Can hasselback sweet potatoes be made in advance?
Yes and no. It is best to hold off on baking your hasselback sweet potatoes until you are ready to enjoy them, but you can absolutely prepare them in advance.
Go ahead and do all of the slicing up to 2 days in advance and store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
When you are ready to enjoy, just season, add your butter or cooking oil of choice, and bake!
Options for toppings
Just like a baked potato, there are a ton of options for toppings when you are playing with hasselback sweet potatoes. First, you have to decide if you are a sweet or savory person. Check out some of our suggestions below for each:
- Maple syrup
- Brown sugar
- Orange zest
- Green onions
- Sour cream or plain yogurt
How to hasselback sweet potatoes
Step 1: Wash and dry your potatoes. Remove any stringy roots or dirt.
Step 2: Cut slices. Use a very sharp knife to cut 3/4 of the way through the potatoes. I found it easier to make shallow slices and cut through the same spot a couple of times until I reached the right depth.
You can try the two spoons on either side of the potato trick, but all I did was slice mine clean off.
Step 3: Rub the outsides with oil and salt. Don’t force it between the slices or you might break them. Bake 20 minutes until a bit softer, then work some oil and salt between the slices.
Step 4: Bake another 20 minutes then brush on any melted butter, herbs, or garlic if you are using sugar, hold off on that so it doesn’t burn. Bake 10 more minutes until fork tender.
What to do if you cut all the way through
Just run a heat-safe knife (like one that’s all stainless steel) or a toothpick through the potato to hold it together. Once it bakes it will usually stick to itself and you can remove the toothpick before serving.
How to air fry sweet potatoes
You can make these awesome potatoes in the air fryer too! Follow the same steps and choose sweet potatoes that are skinny and all about the same size.
Air fry at 400 degrees, stopping every 20 minutes as instructed. Your potatoes will probably take 35-40 minutes in the air fryer.
If you want to baste the potatoes with herb butter, reduce the heat for the last 10 minutes of air frying to 325 to prevent burning the butter/making a house full of smoke.
Just put on a little and you can baste them with the rest when they come out of the air fryer.
What to serve with hasselback sweet potatoes
Hasselback sweet potatoes can be a wonderful addition to several meals, especially around Thanksgiving and Christmas. Here are some of my favorites:
- Spatchcock Turkey with Gravy – pssst! you can do this with chicken as well!
- Beef Pot Roast
- Chicken Marbella
- Herb Crusted Rack of Lamb
- Apple Cider Pork Chops with Rosemary
Hasselback sweet potatoes also pair well with other sides, such as green bean casserole, creamed spinach, holiday stuffing, and brussels sprouts.
Hasselback Sweet Potatoes
- 5 medium sweet potatoes
- 3 tablespoons avocado oil
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
For savory sweet potatoes
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 tablespoon fresh herbs (like rosemary, thyme, or sliced green onions)
- plain Greek yogurt or sour cream
- salt and pepper to taste
For sweet sweet potatoes
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 4 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- salt to taste
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
- mini marshmallows (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Make the slices: You can use two spoons or chopsticks on either side of the sweet potato to prevent cutting all the way through but this didn’t work for me. Just use a sharp knife and go slow. Make slices ¾ of the way through the potatoes every ⅛ inch.
- Drizzle the potatoes evenly with avocado oil and a sprinkle of sea salt but don’t try to force it between the slices.
- Place potatoes in the oven and reduce heat to 400. Bake 20 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and use a knife or fork to gently spread the slices open on the potatoes.
- Return to the oven and bake 20 minutes more.
- Remove the potatoes one more time and gently pour the butter evenly over each potato, spreading the slices open further. You can add herbs and other flavors at this stage if you prefer, or at the end after baking.
- Bake 10 minutes more or until the potatoes are soft when poked with a knife.
- Top with your favorite sweet or savory toppings and serve warm.
Thank you for sharing this recipe. I grew up eating sweet potato because we grow them. An Asian Pacific Islanders go to food and we develop many ways of eating it. Even NASA has been researching this tuber as Space food and growing them in the space ships in the future of space exploration. Maybe I will cook this recipe in a Space Ship someday. LoL 😆. Again, thank you for the recipe and learn a new swedish word.