Traditions: Sweet Potato Pudding

As the first installment of our traditions series, we’ll be sharing a special family from the Peguise family of Lumberton, North Carolina. Their matriarch, Hazel Peguise seldom made the usual . Instead, they had potato pudding. Described by the youngest of her descendants as “pie with no crust,” this delicious recipe is sure to be a hit at your holiday dinner!

The first, and arguably most important part of this recipe is to bake the sweet potatoes instead of boiling them. Baking preserves their flavor, nutrients, and sweetness, while softening them just enough to be mixed.  Next, to avoid reheating the potatoes, we suggest that you peel and mash them while still warm. This will allow your mixture to blend more easily, without having to dirty any extra pots or pans.  The spices and flavorings used in this recipe are basically identical to what’s used in sweet potato pie, and should be adjusted to taste. Keep in mind that this recipe is simply a guide. Adjust it based on your preference, and let us know how it goes!


1 tsp cinnamon

¾ tsp allspice

¼ tsp ginger

½ tsp nutmeg

1 tsp lemon flavor

1 tbsp vanilla extract

4 eggs

1.5 – 2 sticks of butter

1c flour

1 can evaporated milk

1.5-2c White sugar

4-6 medium sweet potatoes (about 2 lbs)


  • Preheat oven to 350. Sit your butter out to soften, and your eggs to bring them to room temperature. Place sweet potatoes on a cookie sheet, and bake them for about an hour, or until they’re soft.  
  • Allow time to cool until they can be handled, but are still warm.
  • While your potatoes are cooling, prepare a 9x13x2 inch baking dish with butter or shortening.
  • Peel your sweet potatoes, and put them in a large mixing bowl. Next, combine your butter, eggs, and evaporated milk into the sweet potatoes.
  • Mix well with a large spoon or sturdy spatula. Add the flour and mix until only a few streaks flour remain.
  • Add sugar. Start with one cup and continue adding as necessary.
  • Next, add your spices, and flavoring.  Make sure to taste as you go.
  • Pour the mixture into your baking dish, and place on the middle rack of your oven at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes.
  • When it is finished, it will be stiff, yet soft to the touch.

Note: This recipe can be modified for sweet potato pie filling by removing the flour. It will yield enough filling for 2 pies.




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