Citrusy and smoky, these roasted sweet potatoes and broccoli florets are packed with flavor, color, and fun texture taking a vegetable side dish from ordinary to EXTRAORDINARY!
This last week has been a little bonkers. Mark has been working late every night and the girls and I have been busy, too. We’re welcoming our final non-family summer visitors this weekend who thankfully just returned safely from Maui and the fires that are raging there. Mark and I visited Maui for our 10 year wedding anniversary and it’s hard to imagine the fires destroying so much and so quickly on that beautiful island. The news footage has been heart-breaking and my prayers go out to all of those affected, both big and small. In much less important news, I’m holding out hope for a nice weekend weather-wise. We’re drawing near to the end of both pool, beach, and boating season and I feel like we’ve taken less advantage of all three than we have in years past. The past few weekends haven’t been the best weather and some days even warranted a jacket. In August. What the heck!
I did little cooking this week with the EXCEPTION of a whole bunch of veggies. I knew that we’d keep things simple and light, and so that translated to proteins from the freezer paired with one of several veggie sides – this being one of them. The kids enjoyed dipping the bite-sized pieces in a crema and I mean, I endorse that it was delicious. It was also delicious (and a bit healthier) as is. Enjoy!
ROLL CALL FOR THIS RECIPE
- Spud Lovers: Potatoes are pretty universally adored and with good reason. Packed with starchy deliciousness, they also contain fiber, vitamins, minerals, and as the case with sweet potatoes, antioxidants. Potatoes are incredibly versatile and while delicious and worthy as-is, simple ingredients with big flavors take these sweet potatoes to the next level of GOOD!
- Side Dish Inspo: I’m a huge fan of the one pot delights and all-in-one meals, so if I’m going to make a side dish it will accomplish 2 things: 1) swoon-worthiness and 2) leftovers. A little combo of veggies offers up a double dose of good-for-you foods while being visually delightful!
- Tex-Mex Vibes: With rich chili and chipotle flavors, this is a side dish that would pair well with a beef main or another protein-rich, Tex-Mex inspired entrée…or something as simple as chicken breasts with black beans or even easier, a veggie burger!
- Meal Prep: Everything can be chopped ahead of time and the olive oil and lime mixture can be whisked together or even combined with the sweet potatoes in the fridge overnight. The leftovers reheat beautifully in the microwave or quickly in the oven so you can enjoy this wonderful side dish all week long! This would be a fun component to a Buddah bowl type of meal, pairing with cooked grains, protein, and perhaps a sauce drizzled over the top. Yum!
KEY INGREDIENTS AND SUBSTITUTIONS
- Sweet Potatoes: If you can use several substitutes for the sweet potatoes in this recipe, or perhaps a combination of sweet potatoes (Russet potatoes, red potatoes, or Yukon gold potatoes work, as well) and another vegetable, such as carrots, butternut squash, pumpkin, parsnips, turnips, and/or acorn squash. Sweet potatoes and yams are often considered interchangeable and while you can certainly use yams in this recipe, you may want to peel them as the skins of yams can be quite rough and tough.
- Olive Oil: Extra virgin olive oil is my go-to however coconut oil would also be delicious in this recipe and pairs really well with sweet potatoes. However, you can absolutely substitute in another mild-flavored oil of choice, such as sunflower, safflower, or avocado oil.
- Limes: To get a concentrated citrus-lime flavor, both the lime juice and zest are used in this recipe. A good zester is a must to get finely grated zest that provides an even flavor. Use just the outer most green portion of the lime and not the bitter, white pith that is just beneath the green exterior of the lime. A fresh lime concentrate is fine to use – I would recommend using about 3 tablespoons versus 4 tablespoons as called for in the recipe.
- Honey: A bit of sweetener helps cut the ultra-tart lime juice. You can use sugar (white or brown), maple syrup, or agave as substitutes.
- Chili Powders: Chipotle chili powder is made from smoked and dried jalapeno peppers making it a medium heat level. You can reduce by half and swap in traditional chili powder which is more mild, or use chili powder exclusively. There is a savory flavor given off by the chipotle, smoky flavor that is unique and beautifully balanced by the sweetness of the potatoes. Most people will not find chipotle chili powder to be spicy, however it has a bit of kick to it as compared to chili powder. Ancho chili powder or paprika could be substituted in, or simply use all regular chili powder versus a combination.
- Garlic Powder: In lieu of garlic powder, you can use 3-4 cloves of fresh minced garlic (1 heaping tablespoon) or omit altogether.
- Salt: Not ALL recipes “need” salt, but when working with citrus, it is highly recommended. You can use whatever salt you prefer, but I generally go with a fine grain sea salt.
- Broccoli: Fresh broccoli crowns or bags of fresh broccoli florets are perfect here. It’s best to avoid frozen, if possible, when roasting due to the excess moisture that results from thawing. If you do use frozen, thaw first and drain all excess moisture. Increase the potato roasting time to 30-35 minutes and reduce the roasting time to 10 minutes with the broccoli to avoid it getting soggy. Cauliflower is a great option to swap in for fresh broccoli, too!
VARIATIONS, STORAGE, and TIPS
- To give a fun look to this recipe, you can use a wavy vegetable cutter or consider cutting the sweet potato into sweet potato wedges or another fun shape!
- Use a very sharp knife when working with sweet potatoes – a dull knife requires heavier force when chopping and that can lead to an increased risk of cuts. Especially with super firm fresh produce such as sweet potatoes, you want to ensure the hands and knife handle are dry and clean to avoid slipping.
- To add to the fun of this delicious side dish, as well as a way to increase the nutrition, consider adding a fun dip such as an avocado dip like guacamole with added fresh lime juice to thin and keep the lime flavor throughout.
- I LOVE some heat with sweet potatoes and if you’re a fan of spice, consider adding 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes.
- Serve these sweet potatoes and broccoli with fresh lime wedges and fresh cilantro for a beautiful presentation and added flavor.
- I like short cuts like lining my baking sheets with parchment paper and using a gallon-sized Ziplock versus a large bowl. Less dishes is clutch for me!
- Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 6 days in the refrigerator.
How can I get my sweet potatoes to be crispy and not soggy?
There’s several things you can do to ensure your sweet potatoes have great texture and don’t come out of the hot oven soggy. First, do not overcrowd your baking sheets. Air has to circulate around as much surface space of the cut potatoes as possible for best results. This recipe uses 2 baking sheets for that very reason. Ensure that you arrange the potatoes in a single layer and as indicated in this recipe, flip, rotate, or turn on the baking sheet when the broccoli is added. Additionally, you need a bit of fat (in this recipe, that is olive oil) to get a shimmering hot oil coating the veggies as they roast. Place your baking sheets in a preheated oven and not before it has reached temperature.
How much lime juice is in 1 lime?
There’s about 2 tablespoons of lime juice in every fresh lime. Of course, that’s an estimate and there’s quite a bit of variation between fruits. Limes tend to harden and dry out as they age, so use fresh limes and have give when squeezed. You can also gently roll the fruit between your palm and countertop to help pull the juice from the fresh and pulp. Having a good citrus press is helpful, too! If you’re concerned about too much or too little lime juice, simply measure!
Can I use a prepared seasoning, like a Chile Lime Seasoning?
Absolutely! Trader Joe’s has a great one that has much of the same flavors: chili powder and lime topping the list! You’ll want to use about 1.5 tablespoons in place of the salt, black pepper, chili powder, chipotle chili powder, and garlic powder. You should also reduce the limes (lime juice and lime zest) to just one. There’s several spice blends and there’s not one right and one wrong – go with the flavor you enjoy!
- Allergen-Friendly: gluten-free, dairy-free
- Vegan: sub syrup or agave for honey
- High-Fiber: 5 grams of fiber per serving!
- Free of any processed foods!
- Rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants – beta carotene!
- 2 lbs sweet potatoes, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 3 large)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 limes, zested and juiced
- 1 Tbsp honey*
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 tsp black pepper
- 12 oz broccoli florets (about 4 cups)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment and set aside.
- Whisk together the olive oil, lime juice and zest, honey, chili powders, garlic powder, salt, and pepper until well-combined.
- Place cubed sweet potatoes in a gallon-sized Ziplock and pour two-thirds of the olive oil mixture over the top; close the bag and shake to coat the sweet potatoes evenly.
- Distribute half of the sweet potatoes on each baking sheet and arrange in a single layer. Bake for 20-25 minutes.
- Place the broccoli florets and remaining olive oil mixture in the same bag; toss to coat and set aside.
- After 20 minutes of roasting, remove sweet potatoes from oven and add half the broccoli to each baking sheet. Flip the potatoes and re-arrange in a single layer with the broccoli.
- Return the baking sheets to the oven and roast an additional 20 minutes. Remove from oven and serve hot.
*sub maple syrup or agave for vegan option
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1.5 cups
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 188Total Fat: 7.3gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 315mgCarbohydrates: 29.3gFiber: 5.0gSugar: 8.0gProtein: 3.5g
Looking for sweet potato meal inspiration? Yummm!
- Sweet Potato Fajitas
- BBQ Chicken-Stuffed Sweet Potatoes with Bacon
- Slow Cooker Chicken Enchilada Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Kale, Sweet Potato, & Avocado Salad
- Black Bean Salad with Roasted Sweet Potatoes
- Roasted Sweet Potatoes, Brussels Sprouts, and Chicken Sausage
- 3 Bean Sweet Potato Chili
- Mexican Chorizo, Sweet Potato and Black Bean Rice Skillet
- Ginger Sweet Potato and Coconut Milk Stew with Lentils and Kale