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Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls

Make room on your dinner table for these Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls. They are light and fluffy with a hint of warm holiday spices. Bonus, the flesh of this sweet potato roll is purple, you can’t beat that!
Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls in a basketFirst thing first, this is a purple sweet potato recipe, it is not taro or ube, but it is not just purple potato either. You should be able to find purple sweet potato at a regular grocery store. However, if you can’t find them, any other kind of purple potato can be a substitute. Or just check out my regular sweet potato dinner rolls from last year, you just won’t get the awesome purple flesh from these purple sweet potato dinner rolls.

Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls stacked on a plate

How to Make Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls

The potato needs to be cooked. My favorite way to cook sweet potato, of all colors, is to bake them. This caramelizes the sugar and brings out more flavor. However, baking can take up to an hour, so in this recipe, I’ve provided microwave instructions. One thing to beware of is microwaving often zaps the moisture from the food and can make things dry. Be sure to do it in increment and check the doneness as you go so you don’t overcook the potato in the microwave.Purple sweet potato pureed and mixed with milk and butter to prepare for the Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls bread dough

I personally would bake my sweet potato because I always make extra for snacking as well. I do this the day before and refrigerate the left over until I’m ready to prepare my bread dough. You could speed things up a bit by cutting the potato in smaller cubes and bake them in a foil tent to retain moisture, this could take roughly 20 minutes depending on the size of the cubes. I usually set oven temperature for 375°F when baking potato.Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls bread dough shaped into ball and allow to rise in a mixing bowl

Yeast is a picky organism, so make sure your liquid is no hotter than 110°F. I always try to stay around 100-105°F to be sure. Once the purple sweet potato bread dough is formed, it should be pretty easy to handle, use as much flour as you need to so it doesn’t stick everywhere. But keep in mind that you don’t want to add too much which will dry out the final product. Oiling your hands can also help prevent sticking while shaping and forming the ball of dough.Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls dough and after baking

Typically, you bake dinner rolls in a glass baking dish because glass doesn’t conduct heat as well as metal, so the rolls come out soft and fluffy and not too brown on the sides and bottoms. With this sweet potato bread recipe, I want the rolls to form a round shape and stand individually, so I used this Insulated Baking Sheet. When baking bread or scones or anything at high oven temperature, this handy baking sheet keeps the bottoms of the bread, rolls or scones from getting scorched. Try it out, you might be hooked!

A basket of Purple Sweet Potato Dinner RollsSo needless to say, my favorite part about these purple sweet potato dinner rolls is the purple flesh! They’re just so much fun to make and to look at, and also wonderful to eat. Soft, purple bread, with warm holiday spices, they’re are perfect for Thanksgiving dinner and all your holiday gatherings.

More Dinner Rolls Recipe

Purple Sweet Potato Dinner RollsIf you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment, rate it and don’t forget to tag me @wildwildwhisk on Instagram. I’d love to see what’s cooking up in your kitchen. Cheers!

Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls in a basket

Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls

Make room on your dinner table for these Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls. They are light and fluffy with a hint of warm holiday spices. Bonus, the flesh of this sweet potato roll is purple, you can’t beat that!
5 from 1 vote
Print Rate
Course: Bread, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Resting Time: 6 hours
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 18 rolls
Calories: 172kcal
Author: Trang


For the dough

  • 1/4 cup of warm water ~100°F
  • 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of active dry yeast
  • 1 cup purple sweet potato - cooked (1 large potato or 2 medium)
  • 1 cup of whole milk - scalded
  • 4 ounces of unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour - divided
  • 1/4 cup of light brown sugar - packed
  • 1 teaspoon of kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cardamom

For egg wash

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon of water


  • Mix warm water with the granulated sugar in a small bowl, sprinkle the yeast in the bowl and let it bloom for 10 - 15 minutes.
  • Simmer the milk and butter in a small sauce pan until the butter is completely melted. Let cool to around 100°F.
  • Wash the sweet potato and pierce with a pairing knife a few times. Wrap it in plastic and microwave for 5-8 minutes until tender. Check by poking it with a knife or fork, if it goes through easily, your potato is done. Let the potato cool on the counter until you can handle it without burning your hand.
  • Add 3 cups of flour, brown sugar, spices and salt in a medium bowl, mix well with a whisk and set aside. Reserve the remaining 1/2 cup of flour for later.
  • Cut open the potato and scoop out the flesh, smash it in a small bowl with a potato smasher. Or puree it in a food processor.
  • In the bowl of your stand-mixer, add 1 cup of mashed sweet potato and the warm milk/butter mixture, mix with a whisk to combine. Check the temperature of the liquid mixture to make sure it is not more than 110°F to ensure a safe temperature for the yeast.
  • Now add the flour mixture set aside earlier along with the activated yeast to the liquid mixture in the stand-mixer bowl. Knead with the dough hook on medium speed for 1-2 minutes just until the dough starts to come away from the side of the bowl. At this stage, if the dough seems too wet to handle, add a little bit of the reserved flour to it, a tablespoon at a time, just enough so it is not a sticky mess.
  • Scrape the dough out on a lightly floured counter, shape into a ball, put it back into the bowl and allow to rise at room temperature overnight or until double in size, this may take a 2 - 4 hours or longer depending on the ambient temperature.
  • The next day, or when the dough has risen enough, turn it out on a lightly floured counter again. If the dough stick the the side of the bowl, just use a scraper to get it all out. Divide dough into 2 ounce portions and shape them into round balls. This batch will make about 18.
  • Place the dough balls on parchment line baking sheets about 2 inches apart and let them rise for about 2 hours or until at least double in size. You may need 2 or more baking sheets.
  • Preheat oven to 400°F.
  • Prepare egg wash by beating one egg with 1 tablespoon of water. Brush the top of the risen dough with egg wash very lightly, and bake for 15 minutes until golden brown.
  • Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack.
  • Serve rolls warm with butter.


When microwaving the sweet potato, do it in increments of minutes so you don’t dry out the potato. Check by poking it with a fork or tip of a paring knife to see when it is just done. And alternate method is to bake the sweet potato in the oven.


Serving: 70g | Calories: 172kcal
Tried this recipe?Mention @WildWildWhisk or tag #WildWildWhisk!

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Purple Sweet Potato Dinner Rolls made with purple sweet potato and warm holiday spices. These purple flesh dinner rolls are perfect for Thanksgiving and the holiday season. #wildwildwhisk #dinnerrolls #thanksgivingdinnerrolls #purplesweetpotato #purplesweetpotatorecipes

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1 Comment

  1. Kenneth Orloff
    November 16, 2018 /

    5 stars
    Glad you included an option for regular purple potatoes. I find sweet potatoes overwhelming.

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