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Surprise Sweet Potato Cheesecake

This sweet potato cheesecake has a surprise inside: it is purple! It gets its color from purple sweet potatoes. It has a delicious pecan crust and is topped with brown sugar cream and a caramel drip.

Purple Sweet Potato Cheesecake

If you love sweet potatoes, you might want to give this cheesecake a try. Not only does it have a good bit of sweet potato in the recipe, but it contains a few extra surprises. The crust is made from pecans, and the cake is topped with brown sugar cream and caramel. But the biggest surprise occurs when you cut inside this cake. It is purple! The color is all thanks to purple sweet potatoes. The recipe works just as well with orange potatoes, but if you want to delight your guests or yourself, use purple sweet potatoes.

Purple Sweet Potato Cheesecake

Surprise Inside

I love desserts that have a surprise inside! There are no added color enhancers in this purple dessert. The degree of color depends on how purple the potatoes are. The finished cheesecake can have a lavender, lilac, or pink tint. It all depends on the shade of the potatoes. However, you can add a few drops of purple food coloring gel to further enhance the color.

Purple Sweet Potato Cheesecake

Where to Buy Purple Sweet Potatoes

There are different kinds of purple sweet potatoes, such as Okinawan (a Hawaiian variety) and Stokes Purple (developed in Stokes County in North Carolina). They can be found at larger grocery stores that carry a variety of produce. Otherwise, check Asian grocery stores or smaller specialty food stores. You can also order sweet potato powder to add to the batter to give your cheesecake a pretty purple color.

Surprise Sweet Potato Cheesecake

Making the Crust for Purple Sweet Potato Cheesecake

Use finely chopped pecans to make the crust, or substitute graham crackers if you have a nut allergy. However, if making a gluten-free cheesecake, use only a gluten-free substitute. Use a food processor to chop the nuts, or buy pecan flour and use it to make the crust.

Surprise Sweet Potato Cheesecake

Topping for Purple Sweet Potato Cheesecake

The brown sugar cream and caramel toppings are optional; however, they add a special touch to this purple sweet potato cheesecake. Pipe the caramel on the cake first by dripping it along the top edge so it drips down the side of the cake. Prepare the brown sugar cream and use a star piping tip. The cream cheese stabilizes the heavy cream so it will hold its shape. Pipe stars on the top of the cake in a crescent moon shape. If you want to use food-safe flowers and leaves, add them after the cream. Try adding small cinnamon sticks and star anise as the final touch. Then, pipe in with extra brown sugar cream to fill empty spots.

Surprise Sweet Potato Cheesecake

Other Cheesecake Recipes

If you like this recipe, here are some other recipes you might like:

Surprise Sweet Potato Cheesecake

Purple Sweet Potato Cheesecake

Purple cheesecake made from sweet potatoes with caramel sauce and brown sugar cream
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 8 minutes
Cooling time 3 hours
Total Time 1 hour 16 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 10
Calories 387 kcal


  • 1 A flat pan such as a broiler filled with warm water
  • 1 9-inch springform pan
  • 1 piping bag
  • 1 large star tip


Crust Ingredients
  • 1 cup pecans, finely chopped (substitute graham crackers for nuts if desired – but do not use if cake is to be gluten-free)
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 ½ tablespoons sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
Cheesecake Ingredients
  • 1 ½ cups purple or orange cooked sweet potatoes (approximately 2 pounds of uncooked sweet potatoes)
  • (3) 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
Caramel Sauce Ingredients
  • ¾ cup brown sugar, packed
  • ¼ cup butter
  • Pinch of salt
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
Brown Sugar Cream Ingredients
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • cup brown sugar, packed
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • Pinch of salt


Directions for Crust
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Mix the pecans, sugar, and salt together in a mixing bowl until well blended. Pour in the butter and mix well. Press the crust into the bottom of a greased 9-inch springform pan until smooth and evenly distributed.
  • Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until the nuts are lightly brown. Cool completely.
Directions for Cheesecake
  • Scrub the sweet potatoes and cut out any spots. Do not peel. Place in a pan and cover potatoes with water. Boil for 30 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Drain water and let cool.
  • Peel potatoes and puree until smooth. Measure out 1 and 1/2 cups and set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place a large flat ovenproof pan filled with warm water on the lowest oven rack. This water will provide humidity to help keep the cheesecake from cracking as it cooks.
  • In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, granulated sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla. Add the pureed sweet potato and mix well.
  • Add the sour cream and heavy whipping cream and beat until well mixed.
  • Lightly beat the eggs by hand and then add one at a time to the cream cheese mixture, beating with the mixer to blend.
  • Pour the mixture into the prepared crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Turn off the oven and let the cake cool for 2 to 3 hours with the door ajar. Store the cheesecake in the refrigerator.
Directions for Caramel Sauce
  • Melt butter on low heat in a saucepan. Add sugar and stir until it dissolves. Bring to a boil and add cream. Be careful it will spatter. Stir until the cream is well mixed.
  • Immediately pour over cheesecake. Let cool.
Directions for Cream
  • Beat together the cream cheese, sugar, and salt for 2 minutes. Add the heavy cream and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes until thick and creamy.
  • Fill a piping bag that has a star tip with the cream mixture. Pipe large stars on top of the cheesecake around the outside edge to form a large circle or choose your own piping pattern.


The caramel sauce and brown sugar cream steps are optional.  You can serve the cheesecake plain or with just caramel sauce.
Refrigerate this cake before and after serving.   The caramel sauce hardens upon refrigeration.


Calories: 387kcalCarbohydrates: 34gProtein: 6gFat: 26gSaturated Fat: 12gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 107mgSodium: 242mgPotassium: 232mgFiber: 2gSugar: 29gVitamin A: 3533IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 109mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Cheesecake Recipe, Gluten Free, Pecan crust, Sweet potato recipe
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