If you’re looking for a healthy and delicious side dish that goes with almost any main dish, you’ll love this easy Instant Pot Candied Yams Recipe that is vegan, gluten-free, and paleo.

instant pot candied yams served in a white bowl

Recipe Highlights

First off, let’s get to the question we’re all wondering. What’s the difference between yams and sweet potatoes? They’re both root vegetable tubers, but they are, in fact, different vegetables.

99% of yams labeled as yams in the grocery store are actually just a different variety of sweet potato. A true yam is something you’ve likely never seen before, and are usually only carried at very specialty ethnic markets or abroad. People who have eaten both true yams and sweet potatoes report that sweet potatoes usually taste a lot better.

So, the bottom line is that you can use a sweet potato or a yam that is probably really a sweet potato for this recipe. I used the sweet potatoes labeled as yams, because this variety does tend to be softer and sweeter than the regular sweet potato.

Have I clarified this issue or just made it more confusing?

I’m not sure. 🙂

orangea and sweet potatoes for recipe

Candied yams is a traditional recipe for autumn and Thanksgiving, and it’s one of my absolute favorite dishes. This recipe is really easy to make, too! 

With only four ingredients, this easy Candied Yam recipe is sheer perfection. You can make it in the pressure cooker for the ultimate in easy recipes, or you can cook it on the stovetop. Either way, you are in for a real treat with this recipe. 

It’s sweetened with orange juice and coconut sugar, and it’s naturally vegan, gluten-free, and paleo. 

Recipe Steps

This is one of the easiest side dishes you’ll ever make. Here’s how!

Step One

Peel and slice the yams or sweet potatoes. You can either slice them or cut them into chunks. You’ll also need to juice several oranges to get about 1 cup of freshly-squeezed orange juice.

ingredients for candied yams

Step Two

Add the sliced or cubed yams to the base of a pressure cooker. Add the orange juice, coconut sugar, ground cinnamon, and ground ginger.

ingredients for recipe in the base of an instant pot

Step Three

Lock on the lid and set the time to 6 minutes at high pressure. Once the cooking time is up, let the pressure come down naturally for about 10 minutes. Then, use the quick release and carefully remove the lid. 

cooked yams in an instant pot

Step Four

You can serve this recipe directly out of the pot, or you can let it cook for 10-15 minutes and serve it warm. Leftovers can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

bowl of candied yams with rosemary on top

Recipe Tips

  • Traditional candied yam recipes include marshmallows on top. But, since this recipe is already sweet, it really doesn’t need marshmallows and would take away from the healthy nature of this recipe.
  • You can easily double or triple this recipe.
  • You can also make this recipe up to 3 days before you need to serve it, making it great for meal prep or for planning ahead for the holidays.

Other Easy & Healthy Instant Pot Side Dishes

Or, check out my round-up of the best Instant Pot Side Dishes.

Here’s the printable recipe:

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Instant Pot Candied Yams

bowl of candied yams with two gold spoons

If you’re looking for a healthy and delicious side dish that goes with almost any main dish, you’ll love this easy Instant Pot Candied Yams Recipe that is vegan, gluten-free, and paleo.

  • Author: Carrie Forrest, MPH in Nutrition
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 6 minutes
  • Total Time: 36 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan
Scale

Ingredients

  • 3 medium yams or sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced or chopped
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Place the sliced or chopped yams or sweet potatoes in the base of a 6-quart pressure cooker.
  2. Add the orange juice, coconut sugar, ground, cinnamon, ginger, salt, and pepper.
  3. Lock on the lid and set the time to 6 minutes at high pressure.
  4. When the cooking time is complete, let the pressure come down naturally for about 10 minutes. Then, use the quick-release to get rid of any remaining pressure.
  5. Remove the lid. You can serve this dish right away, or let it cool for up to 10 minutes before serving.

Notes

You can easily double or triple this recipe.

Store any leftovers in a tightly-sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Keywords: instant pot yams, candied yams, thanksgiving yams

 

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