This herb roasted sweet potato salad is perfection: crispy sweet potatoes coated in a rich and creamy herb mixture, finished with crunchy red onions. Perfect at a picnic, BBQ, or for an anytime side dish, you’ll love how flavorful this roasted sweet potato salad is. Elegant enough for company but easy enough for a weeknight! Naturally vegan and Whole30 options.
What Makes This Recipe So Good
There are some restaurant dishes so good that you’ll send visitors there just for a taste. For me, one of those life-changing dishes is the potato salad at McEwen’s in downtown Memphis. I fell in love instantly with the rich and heady herb-roasted crusts, the crispy potatoes, and the fresh onions to balance the dried herbs.
I was inspired to swap out white potatoes for sweet potatoes, smothered in a rich blend of dried herbs and spices, then roasted until crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. Then I coated them in a mixture of mayonnaise, fresh cilantro, and minced red onions for a creamy, flavorful side dish.
- Sweet potatoes – Tender, sweet, and so full of flavor, sweet potatoes can easily be used in a savory recipe such as this one.
- Dried basil – Basil has a slightly minty flavor and easily combines with other spices when used in its dried form.
- Dried oregano – With a green, earthy taste and a strong aroma, dried oregano adds a burst of flavor to the sweet potatoes.
- Dried thyme – Subtle and earthy, thyme adds another component of sweet and a little minty.
- Onion powder – Onion powder gives the potatoes a nice punch of onion flavor.
- Garlic powder – Powdered garlic is sweeter and not as strong as fresh garlic, which helps give this dish flavor without overpowering the other seasonings.
- Mayonnaise – Good quality mayo makes this sweet potato salad creamy, but lets the other ingredients shine through.
- Cilantro – The cilantro in this salad tastes herbaceous and not strong, but you can leave out if you aren’t a fan.
- Red onion – Sweet and crunchy, red onions are the perfect addition to this salad to give it more texture.
- Serve this salad warm or room temperature, but not cold!
- Make sure to use a good quality mayo like Hellmann’s or Sprout’s Organic. Some mayonnaises have a really strong or pungent flavor that can completely overwhelm the other ingredients.
- For a vegan salad, use vegan mayo. Again, make sure it doesn’t have that strong taste!
- Use a Whole30 compliant mayo if you’re doing a round of Whole30.
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- Red Potato Salad
- 3 pounds sweet potatoes peeled, cut into bite-sized pieces
- ¼ cup avocado oil or refined coconut oil
- ½ tablespoon dried basil
- ½ tablespoon dried oregano
- ½ tablespoon onion powder
- ½ tablespoon garlic powder
- ½ tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt more or less to taste
- ⅔ cup mayonnaise see Notes
- ⅓ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- ⅓ cup finely chopped red onion
- 2 Large bowls
- Baking sheet
- Small bowl
- Medium bowl
- rubber or silicone spatula
- Preheat oven to 400° Fahrenheit. Add cut sweet potatoes to large bowl and pour avocado oil over. Toss to fully coat sweet potatoes in oil, then spread sweet potatoes out on baking sheet in one even layer.
- In small bowl, whisk together basil, oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, dried thyme, and salt. Sprinkle spice mixture over sweet potatoes in small increments until sweet potatoes are evenly, liberally coated with spices. Note: you may not use entire spice mixture, but sweet potatoes should be very well-coated.
- Place baking sheet in preheated oven. Roast sweet potatoes 25 minutes, then remove baking sheet from oven. Use spatula to carefully flip sweet potatoes over, then return baking sheet to oven. Bake another 10 to 20 minutes or until potatoes are golden-brown and beginning to crisp. Be careful not to burn potatoes.
- Remove baking sheet from oven. Transfer sweet potatoes to large bowl and set aside for 3 to 5 minutes or until potatoes have cooled slightly but are still very warm.
- While potatoes cool, add mayonnaise, chopped cilantro, and chopped red onion to medium bowl. Stir well until ingredients are thoroughly incorporated.
- Once potatoes have cooled slightly, transfer mayo mixture to bowl with sweet potatoes. Gently stir, folding potatoes into mayo mixture until potatoes are thoroughly coated. Serve salad immediately or let cool to room temperature and then serve.
- Serve the salad while it’s warm or once it reaches room temperature, but don’t serve it straight out of the fridge. It’s just not that good cold and I don’t recommend it.
- Mayonnaise: Use good quality mayo that doesn’t have a strong, pungent flavor.
- Make it Vegan: Use vegan mayo.
- Make it Whole30: Use store-bought or homemade Whole30-compliant mayo.
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.