Sweet Potato Corn Cakes with Garlic Dipping Sauce

$5.96 recipe / $0.60 serving

I’ve been dying to post this all week because they’re SOOO good and I just know that you’ll love them as much as I do… and if you don’t, I might be forced to ask myself what is wrong with you.

These are “every bite is better than the last one” good. They’re so good that they make you wonder why other food even exists when flavors this bright and vibrant are possible.

…and thats what I was thinking when eating the reheated leftovers a minute ago. So, can you imagine how good they were fresh? Probably not. It’s unimaginable. You have to experience it.

Anyway, enough gushing. Onto the important stuff.

First – This recipe makes a HUGE batch, so feel free to half it. I wouldn’t suggest trying to half a raw egg, instead just add more than half breadcrumbs (probably 3/4 cup) to make up for the extra moisture.

Second – These are fried. You’ll just have to accept that. I tried to bake some and they were horrid. Dry, poor texture, just not good. If you’re brave enough to try baking them yourself and actually have success, please share your technique… because I just couldn’t make it work.

Third – I demand that you to try these.

Sweet Potato Corn Cakes with Garlic Dipping Sauce

Sweet Potato Corn Cakes

4.7 from 26 reviews
Sweet Potato Corn Cakes with Garlic Dipping Sauce
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Total Cost: $5.96
Cost Per Serving: $0.60
Serves: 10
  • 3 lbs. sweet potatoes $3.17
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels $0.30
  • 2 green onions $0.19
  • ¼ bunch cilantro (divided) $0.21
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper $0.02
  • 1 tsp cumin $0.05
  • 1 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1 large egg $0.25
  • ⅓ cup yellow cornmeal $0.19
  • 1 cup plain breadcrumbs $0.50
  • ½ cup vegetable oil (for frying) $0.43
  • 1 cup plain yogurt $0.55
  • 1 clove garlic $0.08
  1. Begin by cooking the sweet potatoes. The fastest way to do this is in the microwave. Prick the skin of each potato with a fork. Wrap one potato in a paper towel, place it on a plate, and microwave on high for 5 minutes. Carefully remove it from the microwave, squeeze it to make sure it’s soft in the center, and the allow it cool as you cook the next one. When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, cut them open and scoop the flesh into a large bowl.
  2. Slice the green onions and roughly chop a handful of cilantro (about ⅛th of a bunch). Add the green onions, cilantro, frozen corn kernels, salt, cumin, and cayenne pepper to the bowl with the cooked sweet potatoes. Stir until well combined. You can taste it at this point and adjust the seasoning as desired.
  3. Add the breadcrumbs, cornmeal, and egg to the bowl. These ingredients will bind the mixture together and keep it from falling apart while cooking. Stir until evenly combined. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 30 minutes to allow the breadcrumbs to absorb moisture.
  4. While the sweet potato mixture is refrigerating, mix up the garlic sauce. In a small bowl combine the yogurt, one clove of well minced garlic, and a handful of cilantro leaves (roughly chopped). Stir until combined and then refrigerate until ready to serve.
  5. After the sweet potato mixture has refrigerated, it’s time to cook. Add enough vegetable oil to fully cover the bottom of a medium skillet. Heat the oil over medium-high heat until the surface appears wavy (if it begins to smoke, remove it from the burner immediately and turn down the heat). Shape the sweet potato mixture into small patties (about 2-3 Tbsp each) and cook about 4 at a time in the hot oil. Cook until golden brown on each side; about 2 minutes per side. After cooking, place on a paper towel covered plate to drain. Add more oil to the skillet as needed.

Serve warm with the garlic yogurt dipping sauce.

Sweet Potato Corn Cakes

Step By Step Photos

prick sweet potatoesStart by pricking the skin of each sweet potato to allow steam to escape as they cook. No one wants to clean exploded sweet potato out of their microwave.

wrap sweet potatoWrap one potato in a paper towel and microwave on high for 5 minutes. Carefully squeeze it to make sure it’s soft in the center and then cook the next one. I used one paper towel for all four sweet potatoes.

cooked potatoThey’ll be super hot when they come out of the microwave, so let them cool just a bit before cutting into them. Slice it open and scoop out the cooked flesh.

ingredientsPlace the cooked sweet potato in a bowl and add the frozen corn kernels (they’ll help cool the sweet potato the rest of the way), sliced green onions, roughly chopped cilantro, salt, cumin, and cayenne pepper. Stir it all together.

add bindersNow it’s time to add the binders. I used one egg, 1/3 cup of cornmeal (it helps bind and gives more texture than just breadcrumbs) and one cup of breadcrumbs. The breadcrumbs are not in the picture (don’t ask). Stir it all together and then refrigerate for 30 minutes.

garlic yogurt sauceWhile the sweet potato mix is refrigerating, make the garlic yogurt sauce. Finely mince a clove of garlic and roughly chop another handful of cilantro. Stir those into a cup of plain yogurt. You can add a pinch of salt if you’d like. Refrigerate the sauce until you’re ready to serve.

shape sweet potato cakesAfter the mixture has chilled, it’s time to cook. Take about 2 Tbsp of sweet potato mix and shape it into a small patty. My mixture was still pretty wet/sticky, but it was shape-able.

fry pattiesHeat some vegetable oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. You want the oil to be quite hot before adding the cakes. It should look wavy on the surface. You can take a pinch of the sweet potato mixture and add it to the skillet to test it. It should sizzle heavily. Add about four patties to the skillet and cook until deep golden brown on one side, then flip.

fry pattiesCook on the other side in the same manner. It should only take about two minutes per side. Try not to make your patties too thick otherwise the inside won’t heat through before the outside browns. About a half inch thick is good.

drain sweet potato cakesPlace the cooked sweet potato cakes on a paper towel lined plate and cook the next batch. Add more oil as needed, always allowing it to heat up before adding more sweet potato cakes.

Sweet Potato Corn CakesSweet Potato Corn Cakes with Garlic Dipping SauceWhy, hello there little warm, delicious sweet potato cake…


  1. Holly says:

    Can these be reheated as leftovers?

    • They can. They won’t be crisp like they are just out of the skillet, but they’re still quite tasty. You can just warm them in a skillet.

  2. Rachel says:

    Can these be baked? If so, what temp and how long.?

    • I tried baking some and they were not good. The skillet gives it a nice crispy exterior that you won’t get if they’re baked.

  3. Bess says:

    Can not wait to try!! Do you know if these freeze well before or after cooking? Could you refrigerate the mixture overnight instead of 30 min?

  4. Annie says:

    I feel silly for asking, but should I use the bulb or the stem of the green onions;-) ?

    • That’s not a silly question at all. Some people use just the greens, some use the bulb. I like to use both. :) I find that both ends have quite a bit of flavor. The greens alone usually look better visually, but I’m more concerned with flavor and reducing waste, so I use both.

  5. Carissa says:

    I just finished making these and I had to comment on how DELICIOUS they are!!!!
    Thanks for this recipe!

  6. Mandi Gormas says:

    Great recipe!!!! I cooked them on a griddle so cooking time was super fast! I used Greek yogurt. This is such a balanced recipe!

  7. Lilly C says:

    Made this for the first time on friday night and wowza! I have a new fave recipe!!! so amazing. I didnt add the cornmeal (none on hand) and they still tasted great and held together well. Making them again tonight and subbed in some oats to bind them as well as breadcrumbs and are still amazing!!! I used greek yogurt instead of plain and it did make the sauce more tangy/sour but it balanced the sweetness and richness of the cakes very well.

    This recipe was so good that I literally went and followed you on pinterest AND THEN went through ALL your boards, pinning recipes along the way!

    Such an amazing recipe and so cheap, its perfect!

  8. Tianna Mashburn says:

    I am gluten free so I use 1 cup of rice flour instead of breadcrumbs. I fried them in coconut oil. They were absolutely amazing!!!!

  9. Kellie says:

    I tried this tonight and it was amazing!! I loved the southern twist on a vegetarian meal. Definitely one of my new favorite recipes . I paired it with parmasan oven roasted asparagus and broccoli. It was a perfect pair. I also recommend using a organic sunflower and/or coconut oil for lightly frying.

  10. Laura says:

    i am not crazy about garlic and onions, do I have suggestion for a replacement for those ingredients?

    • Hmm, unfortunately there’s really nothing similar enough to the garlic and onions that would work well. You can try making them without, but I really think those are two of the main flavors so the recipe might be lacking.

    • shelley says:

      Try a paste called harissa! Its packed with flavour. Google harissa if you like. I want to try this recipe! Looks great! I just pinned it then someone pinned it within seconds!

  11. Gina says:

    OMG! Just made them amazing. Thank you for the recipe. I think I need help in the sauce. To watery may be the yogurt.

    • Patty says:

      Try strained yogurt…or what the marketeers now call “Greek” yogurt (and charge 3 times its worth)

  12. tiffany says:

    Have you tried freezing these? If so is it best to fully cook then freeze or do a partial or raw?

  13. I did not consider myself a sweet potato fan, but these are FANTASTIC. (If you like this, also look for “loaded sweet potato salad.”)
    Oh, and the garlic yogurt sauce MAKES this recipe. The first time I had them, we just used Ranch. I was skeptical when my sister made up this dipping sauce, because I figured – you can’t beat Ranch dressing! But it does!

  14. I just made these for dinner and both my husband and I loved them! I used canned corn kernel instead of the frozen one and dried oregano instead of cilantro (it tastes like soap to my husband). I’ll for sure make this recipe again soon! Thanks for sharing it.

  15. Anna-lisa says:

    I made this for lunch and it was very delicious. I baked it and it came out perfectly. This is what I did: I greased the baking dish; placed my sweet potato corn cakes in the dish and then sprayed olive oil on the cakes. I then covered the baking dish with aluminum foil and placed it in the oven. Just perfect!
    I will be making this again.

  16. Holly says:

    I made these into burger sized patties, served them as burgers with the yogurt sauce and topped with one of your more recent recipes, Cumin Lime Coleslaw. Great success!

  17. Christine says:

    I made this for dinner last night and it was a hit! My husband and 2 year old loved it. We only had 5 patties leftover. Definitely one for the books! :)

  18. These are so delicious and filling. I’ve been eating these and your yellow jasmine rice for dinner since Sunday and I’m not tired of it!

  19. janna says:

    Could you waffle them?

  20. Hope says:

    Love the sound of this recipe- especially since I’ve been on a sweet potato “kick” lately- but do have a question: about how much cilantro is used in this recipe? I can’t always find it in bunches at my grocery, so was wondering about how much I’ll need if I have to buy the little clamshell packages (or if I can find it at a farmer’s market in the spring). Thanks!

    • Hmm, I’m not sure how big those clamshell packages are, but the amount needed for the recipe is very flexible and forgiving. I think you’ll be safe with one big handful. :)

  21. Paige says:

    Absolutely loved this!! My first attempt turned out brilliantly, I can’t believe how much this makes!
    I’m from the UK and couldn’t find cornmeal, so just added more breadcrumbs and it still turned out fine. Absolutely amazingly delicious, and my family loved them (including a fussy younger brother)

    • Jennifer says:

      Paige, look for polenta instead of cornmeal, it will be the same thing and probably easier for you to find. (Uncooked!)

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