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Kalyn's Kitchen

Savory Roasted White Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan

Savory Roasted White Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan are a delicious change from the usual sugary sweet potato dishes that show up this time of year! Check out Sweet Potato Recipes for more ideas for sweet potatoes!

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Savory Roasted White Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan found on KalynsKitchen.com

Through the years I’ve added a lot of ideas for roasted vegetables to my collection of healthier Thanksgiving recipes, and this favorite recipe for Savory Roasted White Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan is something that’s a great alternative to the overly-sweet orange sweet potatoes you often see this time of year.  In case you need help with the mental image, think golden roasted white sweet potatoes, crispy carmelized red onions, a hint of rosemary,  and a little Parmesan cheese tossed with the sweet potatoes when they come out of the oven.  This is something many people will enjoy if they aren’t fans of the sweeter orange-fleshed sweet potatoes.

I’m also going to include a little sweet potato information here as a PSA for all those families who talk about the “candied yams” they have at Thanksgiving.  Most people in the U.S. are confused about the differences between sweet potatoes and yams, (although the white-skinned types used in this dish are almost always called sweet potatoes.) Unless you’ve lived in the tropics, the orange-fleshed “yams” you’ve eaten are really sweet potatoes, but the confusion started when they were purposely labeled yams to distinguish them from the white fleshed type.

True yams are grown in Africa and Asia, and are drier and starchier than sweet potatoes.  And you might like to know that Sweet potatoes are only distantly related to potatoes, which is probably why they’re so much lower on the glycemic index. (This recipe was updated with step-by-step photos, better instructions, and a PSA about sweet potatoes in November 2012.)

Savory Roasted White Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan found on KalynsKitchen.com

Shown here are two of the white sweet potatoes used in this recipe, and in the back is an orange-fleshed sweet potato of the type often called “yams” in U.S. grocery stores. Peel sweet potatoes and cut up into pieces slightly over one inch.  Chop the red onions just slightly smaller.  Toss with the oil, 1 tablespoon of the chopped rosemary, salt, and fresh ground black pepper to toast and spread out on a roasting pan.  (Mine are a little crowded; use two pans if you need to.)

Roast at 400F/200C for 35-40 minutes or longer, turning occasionally. While the sweet potatoes are roasting, finely chop the second tablespoon of rosemary and mix with freshly-grated Parmesan. Toss the hot sweet potatoes and onions with the Parmesan-rosemary mixture and serve hot.

More Delicious Ideas for Thanksgiving Sweet Potatoes:

Roasted White Sweet Potatoes in Garlic and Ginger from Weird Combinations
Grilled Sweet Potato Salad with Green Onions, Basil, Thyme, and Feta from Kalyn’s Kitchen
Butternut Squash and White Sweet Potato Mash from Sweet Basil
Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes with Feta and Sumac from Kalyn’s Kitchen
Mirin Sweet Potatoes from Use Real Butter
Ten Favorite Deliciously Healthy Sweet Potato Recipes ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen

Savory Roasted White Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan

Savory Roasted White Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan are a delicious change from the usual sugary sweet potato dishes that show up this time of year!


  • 3-4 medium tan-fleshed sweet potatoes (white skin)
  • 2-3 medium red onions
  • 3 T olive oil (could probably get away with less, but I reduced it a lot from the original recipe)
  • 2 T finely chopped fresh rosemary, divided (I’ve also made this with frozen rosemary, If you only have dried rosemary I would grind it.)
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 400F/200C and spray a large roasting pan with non-stick spray or mist with olive oil.
  2. Peel potatoes and remove skin from onions. (Sweet potatoes could also probably be left unpeeled, but I did peel them.)
  3. Cut sweet potatoes into pieces just over 1 inch and onions into pieces slightly smaller.
  4. Place in plastic bowl and toss with olive oil, 1 T chopped rosemary, sea salt, and fresh ground black pepper.
  5. Arrange in single layer on roasting pan and roast until vegetables are cooked through and slightly browned, about 35-40 minutes or slightly longer.  (I would stir a few times.)
  6. Combine fresh-grated Parmesan and finely chopped rosemary in small bowl.
  7. Remove vegetables from oven and toss with Parmesan-rosemary mixture.
  8. Serve hot.


How to do frozen rosemary

Slightly adapted from Bon Appetit, November 2002.

All images and text ©

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Sweet potatoes are a good vegetable choice for phase two or three of the South Beach Diet, and Savory Roasted White Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan would be a good Thanksgiving recipe as an alternative to sweet potatoes cooked with butter and brown sugar. Sweet potatoes are too high in carbs for a low-carb diet plan.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Diet Type Index to find recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You can also Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Nutritional Information?
If you want nutritional information for a recipe, you can sign up for a free membership with Yummly and use the Yum button on my site to save the recipe and see the nutritional information. Another option is entering the recipe into this Recipe Nutrition Analyzer, which will calculate it for you.

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36 comments on “Savory Roasted White Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan”

  1. Pingback: Spring CSA 2019 Week 3 – Priapi Gardens

  2. Where in Atlanta, Georgia can you find white sweet potatoes? I have searched many markets and have not been able to find them. Any help would be appreciated.

  3. Kalyn, I've been eating lots of sweet potatoes of late, but have not tried this variety. Will look for them in the upscale grocery next time I go. I love the red onions in this recipe. I'm just imagining what a great combo these ingredients make. 🙂


  4. Love it! What is weird is that for many many years I could only find the white sweet potatoes here in France that had a less sweet, chestnutty flavor. All of a sudden, just in the last couple of years, the white have disappeared and now the really sweet orange ones are all over. I love roasting them but now I need to try them your way.

  5. Thanks Joanne. I love the rosemary in this!

  6. White sweet potatoes are my favorite!!! I'm so glad you reposted this because I NEED to make it!

  7. Jenn, very glad you guys enjoyed it!

  8. This was amazing. I forgot to add the Parmesan, but it was still great! My husband said it tasted like heaven!

  9. Thanks Gemma. Recently this recipe has become a big favorite of one of my best friends (Bonnie) and she keeps telling me over and over how much she likes it. Hope you enjoy it that much too.

  10. thank you for a lovely sweet potato recipe Kalyn, just what I was looking for, you are a star!

  11. Nancy, thanks. It's definitely a keeper for me!

  12. I think your recipe for Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Red Onions, Rosemary, and Parmesan sounds absolutely wonderful. Can't wait to try it…

  13. Designhouse9, sounds like we're on the same wavelength! Hope you like it with the Parmesan (I bet you will!)

  14. I just put a pan full of sweet potatoes, red onions and rosemary in the oven and then found your recipe. I happen to have Parmesan cheese in the fridge. I'll be adding that when they come out of the oven. Can't wait to taste it!

  15. I actually made this dish yesterday to go with some skillet BBQ pork chops. Outstanding and easy, easy, easy.

    I added a couple of Granny Smith apples that I had that needed to be used. I also changed the cooking method a tad by dumping everything but the rosemary and Parmesan in a Pyrex dish (which worked really well, btw)and baking for about 45 minutes. Pulled the dish out, stirred it and added the rosemary and cheese and roasted it for another 10 minutes or so.


  16. Hi Kalyn,

    Thanks for the great recipe. I never used to like sweet potatoes but when I went vegetarian my doctor suggested eating more for protein, now I can’t get enough of them. I also noticed the long list of other recipes using sweet potatoes. Thanks for all of them.

  17. We usually use sweet potatoes for dessert. This looks like a must-try.

  18. What a great idea to use red onion, Kalyn! It looks beautiful and I bet it tastes great too. We often oven roast yams but don’t often add onions or herbs. We really should – it looks fantastic.

    I think I’ve only eaten sweet potato once and cannot quite recall the flavour.

    We never peel our yams (or our regular potatoes either). We really like the flavour and texture offered by the skin.


  19. You are quickly filling up my favourites 🙂 I’m going to soon have to create a folder especially for you 🙂

  20. Patricia, yes I think you could use regular potatoes here. I’d definitely leave the skin on with regular potatoes too. I think it would be great with Yukon gold potatoes, but you could use any type I’m sure.

  21. Kalyn, do you think I could make this dish using regular potatoes?? Joao would love it!

  22. Once again, in a fortuitous coincidence, I have red onions and sweet potatoes at home – hurray! This looks fab. I adore sweet potatoes – had them mashed with some pork & chili sausages this week – realyl delicious.

  23. Yams are sweet potatoes? I didn’t know that at all. Thanks!

  24. Thanks for the good information about sweet potatoes and yams — and for this delicious recipe.

  25. Never tried roasted sweet potatoes before, but sounds delicious.

  26. This is a great dish to have with so many meals….love it!

  27. It’s funny, I don’t mind sweet potatoes, but we hardly ever eat them, not sure why. One thing I’ve found is they’re really great in soups, this recipe should get a run though, its got all the flavours I like.

  28. This is a recipe ‘as good as it gets’, Kalyn!

  29. I am a big fan of sweet potatoes! This sounds really great, kalyn! I may add some feta into it instead of parmesan though. (feta and sweet potatoes are my fav combo).

  30. I love roasted sweet potatoes. I usually keep it really simple, this looks like a great way to jazz it up a bit.

  31. I love sweet potatoes! For me they are a very traditional holiday food – not the candied kind, but roasted or baked. The addition of the red onions is wonderful… and the rosemary~

  32. Peter, that’s just what I thought when I saw the recipe.

    Maria, me too. I have to narrow it down, plus I’m going to my sisters where there are little kids who won’t eat anything interesting.

    Tanna, I’d love to come to your house!

  33. Well, WOW! I’m thinking we’re going to invite some extra people if I cook everything I’ve got on the list.

  34. Ok, now I have to make this for Thanksgiving too! My list is long…but oh so good! Thanks for all your recipe ideas!

  35. Wonderful, noted, tagged! Why not, all these ingredients work with regular potato, should be fine here too.

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