Fried Sweet Potato Pie

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These Fried Sweet Potato Pies are inspired by my great-grandfathers. My grandmother would always tell me about how her dad use to sell these amazing sweet potato pies but never called them sweet potato pies. He called them niggas in a blanket. (I’ll pause here to let the shock wear off.)

Fried Sweet Potato Pie

I’m still trying to find out why sweet potato pies had to be called niggas in the blanket. My grandmother said she’s not sure either but that’s what her dad called them, that’s what she calls them and that’s what I’m going to call them.

Now, I know outside of the black community calling these pies by my great-grandfathers name can cause a disturbance in open dialogue so let’s just stick with fried sweet potato pie. Deal?

Sweet potato pie is something that is dominant in the south, it’s just not Thanksgiving if there’s no sweet potato pie, right?

I learned the hard way that if you leave the south you’ll only find pumpkin pie.
I was in Los Angeles looking for some sweet potato pie that a client requested on the fly (immediately) only to go to 4 stores and find only pumpkin pie.

Of course, if I had the time I could have made one but he did not get sweet potato pie that day.

There are many different flavor pairings you can use to make your sweet potato pie stand out from the rest but the go-to spices are cinnamon and nutmeg.

It was not until recently when I was in the kitchen with my grandmother that I heard the two spices cancel out each other.

My response was, ” I ain’t never heard nothing like that.”

My grandmother said, “Well put them both in there, damn it, I don’t give a damn.”

Hence why my nickname for my grandmother is Hurricane.

After we finished adjusting the sweet potato filling she said “That’s it! The flavors work.”

I responded with “so much for cinnamon and nutmeg canceling out each other.”

My grandmother said, “don’t make me hurt you, boy.”

I had a lot of fun baking with my grandmother for the first time.

I hope you enjoy these pies because it wasn’t until last week that I had one for the first time.

Fried Sweet Potato Pie
Cooking Tips:

Do not use butter in your pie crust. The shortening is key to making a flaky and light crust.

Can you make ahead?

Freezer: Store cooled pies in a freezer storage bag. Keep in the freezer for 5 months max. Thaw 48 hours before using.

Fridge: Sweet Potato Filling: Can be made a day in advanced and kept in an airtight container.

Crust: Can be made a day in advance, form into a disc shape, wrap in plastic wrap. Keep in a freezer storage bag.

Reheating: Pop in a 350-degree oven for 10 minutes.

Fried Sweet Potato Pie

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Substitution Options:

You can use 1-29 oz. can drained sweet potatoes for a quick short cut.

You can use a store-bought biscuit as a short cut for the pie crust.

what to serve with Fried Sweet Potato Pie?

black history virtual potluck:

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Fried Sweet Potato Pie

Fried Sweet Potato Pie

Kenneth Temple
This recipe is 100 years old. My great-grandfather would make it for my grandmother and siblings all the time. I heard so much about the pie but never experienced it because my grandmother stopped making it and was the only person with the recipe. I made it a mission to make this recipe with my grandmother and measured everything! I hope you enjoy.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American, Southern
Servings 12 pies
Calories 392 kcal


Sweet Potato Filling:

  • 1 ½ lbs. sweet potato peeled diced
  • ¼ cups sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract

Pie Crust:

  • 1 ¾ cups self-rising flour
  • ¼ cup shortening
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup evaporated milk
  • 4 cups canola oil
  • powder sugar garnish


  • In a pot add sweet potatoes and enough water to cover bring to a boil and cook for 20 minutes or until sweet potatoes are fork tender. Drain and place in a bowl add remaining ingredients and mix until smooth. Sit to the side to cool.
  • In a bowl mix flour and shortening together until crumble texture formed. Add milk and mix until dough is formed. Wrap in film wrap and chill in the freezer for 10 minutes, until chilled.
  • Roll out dough to 1/8 inch on a flour surface and with a 4 ½ inch biscuit cutter cut out 8 circles. Then roll out each circle to 6 x 6 circle.
  • Once filling mixture is cooled add 2 tablespoons of filling to each pie circle. Fold dough over and crimp with a fork sit on a foiled liner baking sheet. Repeat with remaining pie circles.
  • Heat oil to 350°F degrees and fry four pies at time for 45 seconds per side for even browning.
  • Keep warm in a 200°F oven while you fry off the remaining pies and dust with generous amount of powder sugar. Serve hot and enjoy.


Filling can be made a day in advance. You can also bake the pies in a 400°F oven for 20 minutes.


Serving: 0gCalories: 392kcalCarbohydrates: 39gProtein: 4gFat: 25gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 7gMonounsaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 6mgSodium: 140mgPotassium: 245mgFiber: 2gSugar: 16gVitamin A: 8100IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 51mgIron: 1mg
Keyword hand pies, sweet potato pie
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2 thoughts on “Fried Sweet Potato Pie”

  1. This sounds delicious! I’m from New Orleans and was looking for a recipe like my grandmother’s sweet potato hand pies. Thank you!

    You have sugar listed twice in the recipe. I wanted to make sure that was correct. Thank you again!

    Diane Daigle Buckley

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