Cuban Sweet Potato Pudding

This very sweet little dessert is made from the Cuban sweet potato called a BONIATO. There really is no substitution, but if you are feeling brave a white sweet potato might be OK. This is really sweet, and is served in small doses. We like it after a garlicky meal, such as Cuban Roast Pork and Mojo Criollo, served with little cups of strong espresso. This is not a typical America dessert – it’s not chocolate cake, not a hot fudge sundae – so be ready for something new - it is an adventure!


  • 1 ½ pounds boniato (red-skinned white sweet potatoes)
  • 2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1½ cups water
  • 1 cup cream
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Dash of salt
  • Dash of cinnamon


Peel the sweet potatoes and cut them into large chunks. Add them to a large saucepan, add water until the chunks are covered, and add a dash of salt. Boil the sweet potato chunks for 15-20 minutes, or until they are tender. Drain the sweet potato, then use an electric mixer of food processor to mash the potatoes until smooth.

Peel the lemon, and add just the peel to a large saucepan. Add the brown sugar, cinnamon stick and, 1 1/2 cups of water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, and stir constantly until the mixture reaches 240 degrees on a candy thermometer (soft-ball stage, about 15 minutes).

Reduce heat to low, remove the lemon peel and cinnamon stick from the syrup and discard them. Add the mashed sweet potatoes to the syrup, and stir five minutes until the mixture is smooth.

Remove saucepan from heat, and add the egg yolks, cream, and butter. Stir well, then return to heat for five minutes. Remove from heat, then mix in the vanilla. If the mixture is too watery, add corn starch until it thickens. Serve warm in pudding dishes, or refrigerate for several hours and serve cold.

Serves 6-8.