Chipotle Scalloped Sweet Potatoes

For dinner tonight I got the idea to combine sweet potatoes and baby kale. It seemed very autumnal. I gave the internet a half-hearted search for ideas, but didn’t come up with much. Sweet potatoes and kale are not an unheard-of pairing, but a lot of the recipes I came across were soups or stews and I was worried about overwhelming my delicate baby kale. During the search, I did find an intriguing non-kale recipe, however: Smoked Chile Scalloped Sweet Potatoes.

The only problem? I think heavy cream is gross. It’s not even the vegan thing, although obviously it’s off limits because of that. Maybe it’s because I was raised on skim milk and I don’t recall ever even having cream of any sort, but I just think heavy cream – especially in a savory recipe – is disgusting. (I also tried whole milk once – before I was vegan, of course, – and almost threw up.) I don’t even want to substitute for it; I just think the idea of putting it or anything that is remotely like it in my food is abhorrent. And heavy cream is a pretty big component of that recipe. Fortunately, my vegan sub doesn’t just make the recipe safe for those who prefer not to eat animal products, it also makes it much healthier and a lot less…gross.

I cut this back to serve two as a side dish. If you’re serving more, feel free to double it.

Chipotle Scalloped Sweet Potatoes
Adapted from The Food Network

1 medium to large sweet potato, sliced thinly
1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk (I used hemp, and not only that, I only had 3/4 a cup left so I thinned it out with 1/4 cup water, which was even better for making this dish as little like heavy cream as possible)
1 – 2 tsp chipotle powder, depending on your heat preference
1 tsp vegan vegetarian or “chicken” bouillon
2 Tbsp Dragonfly’s Bulk, Dry Uncheese Mix (you really want to have some of this stuff lying around at all times)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Peel and slice the sweet potato about 1/8″ thick. A mandolin is a huge help here as uniform slices will look best and also cook evenly.

See? Nice and uniform:

Whisk together the rest of the ingredients in a small bowl.

In a small baking dish, layer a row of slightly overlapping sweet potato slices.

Add additional layers until all slices are used up.

Pour the “milk” mixture over the sweet potato slices.

Cover and bake for 45 minutes or until sweet potatoes are soft.

Since I wasn’t putting them together in a single dish, I just simply sauteed the baby kale in a little olive oil with garlic and seasoned with salt and pepper. This was my first time trying baby kale. It’s gorgeous.

Baby kale is every bit as awesome as I expected it to be.

I didn’t cook the sweet potatoes and baby kale together, but you can be sure I ATE them together. I’m one of those people that happily mushes everything on their plate together – I don’t understand people who have “food touching” issues – but the sweet potatoes and kale were particularly awesome together. Also served with barley pilaf from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian.

Mark said the sweet potatoes were great; “surprisingly great”. The surprising part wasn’t that I made something great (I don’t think), it was that the sweet potatoes were spicy. And smoky. Chipotle-y! This was a really good meal.

Halloween was a couple of weeks ago, but my friend Dave just sent me this lovely photograph, which he snapped Saturday night. It’s Renae, The Happiest Zombie Ever.

Creepy? Okay, to make up for it, here’s a nice, non-creepy squirrel on our patio:

And here is a skunk who wants to come in. AND I WANT TO LET HIM IN BECAUSE HE’S AWESOME. But I’m not going to. No, I’m not. I swear. It’s wrong to invite skunks into your home. No matter how awesome they are.

Maybe he could just come in for 5 minutes?


  1. anna Said,

    November 17, 2011 @ 3:53 am

    These animals are fantastic! Truly remarkable…

  2. Azzahar Said,

    November 17, 2011 @ 8:35 am

    Whenever I come across heavy cream in a recipe and it’s not for decoration, but to give some structure, I substitute it with sunflower cream:) halp cup of sunflower seeds blended with a tiny pinch of salt and pepper (if used in a sweet dish, cinnamon instead of pepper), a teaspoon of oil and halp cup of warm water. If it’s supposed to hold ingredients together in a baked dish I add 2 teaspoons ground flax seeds and/or a tablespoon of potato starch (cornstarch will work) mixed with cold water. Works very well:)

  3. renae Said,

    November 17, 2011 @ 2:11 pm

    Azzahar, thanks – that’s a great recipe. I’ll try it out sometime. Sunflower seeds certainly don’t gross me out like cream does!

  4. FoodFeud Said,

    November 17, 2011 @ 9:13 am

    What a friendly skunk! I love them! The scalloped potatoes sound wonderful along side wee baby kale.

  5. Zoa Said,

    November 17, 2011 @ 10:34 am

    You can make a fine scallop dish just with vegetable broth, and I really like the sweet potato-chipotle combination. I had chipotle in an egg-type thing yesterday and always forget how scrumptious it is until I remember to actually use it. Also, I heart your metal mandoline; mine does the job but it is mostly plastic and very ugly.

    And you had a skunk come to your DOOR? Okay, that is the cutest thing ever! But, wow, the horror of inviting in such a guest and then dropping a spoon or something, just enough to startle the little fella…

  6. Stacy Said,

    November 17, 2011 @ 12:23 pm

    The food looks good, but that skunk DONE STOLE THE SHOW!!!!

    Sorry, I got a little excited there.

  7. Josiane Said,

    November 17, 2011 @ 3:19 pm

    You are absolutely right: that baby kale is gorgeous! And that scalloped sweet potato dish sounds awesome. I’ve got to try it soon!

  8. Jes Said,

    November 17, 2011 @ 10:06 pm

    What a friggin’ cute skunk! Dorian (currently sitting on my lap) approves, though I think she doesn’t when they’re at the window (we’ve had a skunk “problem” in the neighborhood this year…so weird). Also, awesome zombie costume! Seriously freaky.

    As for the scalloped sweet potatoes, hot damn yes! I love chipotle and I love sweet potatoes and I love kale and ohmygoodnss what cute wee kale. Perfect dinner!

  9. Jo Said,

    December 10, 2011 @ 12:26 am

    So I have been reading your “blogs”(I hate to use that word because I don’t know what that really means) I have been a vegetarian for 6 years now and always learning more! I have been weirded out by soy for awhile now. I am really into genetics and have learned alot about GMO (ahh) and how soy beans are mainly in the US GMO foods. How do you feel about this? Thanks for your recipes!

  10. renae Said,

    December 10, 2011 @ 3:20 pm

    Hi Jo, you probably know more about genetics and GMO foods than I do. I know that most soy in the US is genetically modified, but the soybeans I buy (for making my own tofu and tempeh) and the soy products I buy (like Gardein, Nature’s Soy, Twin Oaks tofu, Mori-Nu silken tofu, etc.), are not, so it’s not something I worry much about. I’m fortunate to live in an area where non-GMO products are widely available – I think I’d have a harder time finding GMO soy products, honestly. They do cost more, but to me it’s worth the extra price (and these are brands that just taste better anyway). That said, I don’t check that the individual soy components of everything I buy are non-GMO. However, because I tend to make just about everything from scratch, I think the amounts of non-GMO soy I end up digesting are pretty minimal.

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