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Paleo Bacon Pecan Smashed Sweet Potatoes

paleo bacon pecan sweet potatoes

BACON!

I think the title pretty much sums it all up.  This is by far my favorite sweet potato recipe, and a staple at my Thanksgiving table.

Sweet potatoes one of my favorite parts of fall.  They’re a great treat paired with some quick protein after a hard workout, they round out pretty much ANY meal from a ribeye to a 20lb turkey, and they are LOADED with nutrients.

They’re full of phytonutrients, including Beta-carotine –a precursor to Vitamin A (note-be sure to eat sweet potatoes with a fat source as beta-carotine is fat-soluble, which means it requires fat to convert to Vitamin A and absorb), Vitamin C, calcium, potassium and Manganese.

Sweet potatoes are also nourishing for many health conditions. 

  • If you can get your hands on some purple sweet potatoes, that sweet purple center has an antioxidant called anthocyanin which may lower the potential damage done by heavy metals and free radicals.  It also reduces inflammation in brain and nerve tissue, increases visual acuity, reduces cancer cell proliferation and inhibits tumor formation. [1]
  • Diabetes: The antioxidants and manganese present in the potato improve blood sugar regulation [2], [3]
  • Bone and Eye health: Vitamin A is crucial to maintenance of healthy bones and eyes.
  • High Blood Pressure: Potassium is responsible for regulating blood pressure.
  •  Immune system: Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant and necessary for the regulation of the immune system, especially during active infections.  This makes is a GREAT medicinal food to keep in the rotation during cold and flu season!

Contraindications:

  • Avoid the skins when possible: Potato skins contain a group of compounds called saponins (similar to gluten) that damage the gut, aggravate inflammatory bowel diseases, and inhibit nerve impulse conduction.
  • Sweet potatoes are high in oxalates (the preceptor for oxalate crystals), so watch out if you have any history or indications of kidney stones.
  • If you have thyroid issues, beware.  Sweet potatoes contain a group of compounds called glycocides which exhibit a goitragenic effect and can aggravate a thyroid problem.    If either of these is a concern, sweet potatoes may not be right for you.  Know your body!

SPECIAL NOTE: Potatoes are important to purchase organic as they easily soak up toxins from their surroundings.  In addition, it’s important to watch out for chlorprophan (aka budnip)-a sprouting inhibitor, which may be sprayed on the potatoes AFTER harvest in preparation for long-term storage.  Budnip is approved by the EPA, but studies have shown it is toxic when ingested, and has been linked to an incredible array of side effect, including eye and skin irritation, listlessness, nose bleeds, protruding eyes, bloody tears, difficulty breathing, prostration, inability to urinate, high fever, death, inflammation of stomach and intestinal lining, congestion of the brain, lungs and other organs, degenerative changes in the kidneys, and liver, retarded growth, reproductive difficulties, tumors and skin cancer. [4]   If your potatoes don’t sprout, throw them out!

So now on to the good stuff!

Paleo Bacon Pecan Smashed Sweet Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 4 strips pastured bacon
  • 3 lb organic sweet potatoes (about 4-5 pots)
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 TB ghee*/grass fed butter
  • 1TB organic grade B maple syrup
  • 1 TB cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp ground allspice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ cup pecans

*Not sure what ghee is?  See HERE to learn more.

** Be sure these are room temperature or warmer when you mix them in. If you add them as cold liquids they will rapidly cool down the potatoes before you can get them to the dinner table!

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Slap the potatoes on a bare rack. Bake for 1:00 – 1:15, until soft and fork tender.
  • Around 45 minutes into baking, put bacon on a tray and place into the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, until crisp (check often to make sure it doesn’t burn).  Once done, set aside and allow to cool.
  • Pull potatoes out when soft, carefully peel and place in a large mixing bowl.  Be careful, they will be STEAMING hot!
  • Add in spices, butter/ghee and coconut milk and blend until creamy, season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Crumble bacon.
  • Gently stir in bacon and pecans pieces, sprinkle a few more pieces on top once you’ve plated them, serve and enjoy!

I served this with pan-seared pork chops.  It also goes GREAT as a side dish for big family dinners like Thanksgiving and Christmas.

What’s your favorite way to cook up some sweet potatoes?  Let us know!

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