The perfect, crispy diced and roasted Southwestern style sweet potatoes that are spicy, smoky, and dusted with cumin for the perfect breakfast potato or side dish you need to try.
I have always loved Mexican inspired flavors used in a variety of ways and I find this style of recipe works really well for meal prepping as well. These cumin spiced sweet potatoes are no exception!
I’ve been making my way through a balancing act of eating lower carb meal as well as experimenting with cleaner, whole30 style recipes to encourage myself to eat more vegetables. Sweet potato recipes are definitely not something I have made in a long time, but I am so glad I did.
It’s been a great addition to filling me up at breakfast time with this Chorizo Shakshuka recipe or as a side with recipes like my Carne Asada Fire Roasted Stuffed Peppers or this Easy Smoked Mole Sauce with Pork Tenderloin.
While this recipe is very simple, I do have some helpful tips and techniques for browning the sweet potatoes for the perfect bite. I’ll also give some great tips for how to season them accordingly, and tips for meal prep and reheating them as well.
Grab all the details below and let’s dive in!
- Baking Sheet
- Knife and Cutting Board
- Mixing Bowl
Here are some helpful tips and cooking techniques for roasting the perfect Southwestern style sweet potato dish as well as answering some common questions about sweet potatoes along the way.
Sweet Potatoes: For this recipe you can leave the skins on (I prefer this) or have your sweet potatoes peeled if you don’t like the texture. There is a lot of nutrients that come from the skins and they have a great crisp factor when roasted too.
There are a lot of different varieties of sweet potatoes as well. Any color sweet potato (including purple) will work for this recipe.
Jalapeno: I love the addition of sliced jalapenos that are roasted with the sweet potatoes in this side dish. It adds some extra crunch, flavor, and with the seeds in a heck of a lot of spice. If jalapenos aren’t your jam, swap it out with a sweeter green bell pepper to still add to the savory dish without amplifying the heat factor.
Olive Oil: Oil helps the spices stick to the potatoes and jalapenos and also helps promote browning. If you prefer a different oil, just simply swap it out.
Smoked Paprika: This spice is absolutely key to this recipe, and it has to be the smoky kind! The subtle smokiness really makes this recipe taste so much better.
Cayenne Pepper: A great complimentary spice to really amp up the heat.
Cumin: Another one I do not skimp on because it’s really what adds the “Mexican flair” to this dish.
Sea Salt: For enhancing the flavor. Sweet always needs a little salty!
Cilantro: The pop of color at the end makes a great garnish as well as adds a little extra fresh, bright, flavor to the dish. If you don’t like cilantro, swap with green onion or even chives.
Lime Juice/ Zest: Adds a little citrus flavor and acidic bite to round things out.
Optional: If you want a more savory sweet potato you could also opt to add some garlic powder or if you like a spicy sweet combo a little brown sugar
How To Prep and Roast:
Using a cutting board, dice your sweet potatoes into one inch chunks. Sliced your preferred pepper (I like sliced jalapeno rounds with the seeds for extra heat). Coat the sweet potatoes first in oil then toss the sweet potatoes in the combined mixture of spices.
Once everything is tossed together, remove your preheated baking pan from the oven and add the potato mixture and shake it out so the potatoes are not touching and lay flat.
Place the baking sheet back into the oven and roast for roughly 20 to 30 minutes. I like mine tender on the inside but crispy on the outside. You can flip them halfway through as well.
Cooking Tips for Roasted Sweet Potatoes:
Here are my favorite preparation tips for roasting dense vegetables like sweet potatoes –
- Cook at a higher temperature, I prefer 425 F. to help promote browning.
- Do not over crowd you baking sheet. Over crowding leads to steaming and not browning.
- Flip half way for even browning if desired.
- Let them cool on the pan fully before placing them in a storage container to reduce condensation and extra moisture when reheating.
- Reheat your baked sweet potatoes back in the oven or in a frying pan for a breakfast style potato hash that still has some crispy texture to it. Microwave is fine in a quick pinch!
What To Pair The Potatoes With:
While they do have a Mexican inspired flavor, these southwest style sweet potatoes make a great option for so many meals. Pair with Enchiladas, make a buddha bowl with shredded chicken or beef, salsa, black beans, and avocado.
I like to add in more veggies and poach a few eggs to add on top. Mix in some chorizo for a great complimentary flavor too. They’re honesty so versatile for any meal and easy to make ahead of time.
Spicy and Smoky Cumin Roasted Sweet Potatoes
- 4 cups Diced Sweet Potatoes (skin on is my preference)
- 1-2 Jalapenos sliced into 1/4 inch rounds (seeds add more heat, remove if you prefer it less spicy)
- 1 tbsp. Olive Oil or Avocado Oil
- 2 tsp. Sea Salt
- 2 tsp. Cumin
- 1 tbsp. Smoky Paprika
- 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper if you like it spicy
- 1/2 lime Juiced
- Cilantro for Garnish
- Preheat your oven to 425 F. Place an empty baking sheet in the oven to preheat as well.
- Scrub your sweet potatoes and then diced into 1 inch cubes. If you do not like the skin, peel it before dicing. I leave it on for texture and adds extra nutrients to the dish.
- Slice your jalapenos (can swap with diced green pepper for something more mild).
- In a bowl, combine the paprika, cumin, sea salt, and cayenne pepper. Mix and then toss the potatoes in the oil then in the spice blend.
- Remove your preheated baking sheet carefully from the oven and pour the potato mixture onto the pan. Shake and spread out the mixture so they are not touching and lay flat.
- Return to the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or so. The outsides should brown and the insides should be tender. You can also toss them halfway through, but the preheat pan will help promote even browning.
- Remove from the oven and add a little fresh lime juice over the top and some sliced cilantro for garnish.