I have a love / hate relationship with sweet potatoes. For starters, they’re listed as the healthiest vegetable you can eat by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (Yes, that’s a real thing). They’re also absolutely delicious when cooked properly, even without all the butter and sugar. I could honestly just eat a plain, well-cooked sweet potato for dessert and be completely satisfied.
On the other hand though, they can be a pain in the butt to cook. They take forever and when done in the oven, can cause the entire house to heat up since since they have to cook for so long.
Well, I can’t solve all the world’s problems and I can’t make sweet potatoes cook in half the time, but I can and will present to you a super creative way to cook and serve these little oompa loompas: by roasting them, cave man style, directly on hot coals!
Just throw those bad boys right on the coals. No oil, no foil, no fuss, no muss. Ideally, the coals would be mostly ashed over, but don’t be overly concerned if a small flame hits them. The skin on the sweet potato is surprisingly resilient and will save the delicate flesh from becoming charred.
Yes, in just a matter of minutes, they’re going to start looking like they’re ruined on the outside, but trust me; ugliness only runs skin deep in this case. You’re on your way to perfectly soft sweet potato bliss. Just use a set of tongs to rotate them every 12 – 15 minutes and you’ll be golden (pun intended). Cook for a total time of between 40 minutes to an hour depending on the size of the potatoes.
Using a pair of tongs, set the sweet potatoes aside to cool off for a few minutes, and then use a knife to split them length-wise. BAM! What’d I tell you? They look amazing, right? Well, just wait until you taste them. Also, don’t be afraid of the charred skin and little bit of ash that might end up getting on the flesh of the potato – that’s actually what ends up giving these sweet potatoes a unique, “roasted marshmallow-like” flavor.
If you’ve given this recipe a shot, let me know what you think in the comments below!
- 3 sweet potatoes
- Fire up your grill – temperature isn’t really important, but you’ll want to ensure you have a nice, relatively flat bed of ashed-over coals
- Place the sweet potatoes on the coals, avoiding flames if possible
- Rotate every 12 minutes or so for between 40 – 60 minutes. When you can insert a skewer through the potato like butter, they’re ready to come off
- Slice lengthwise, serve, and enjoy!
- Larger potatoes are going to be a little easier to manage and will likely come out tasting better and more moist. Smaller ones tend to overcook easily.