Stuffed with a vegan taco-seasoned lentil filling and piled high with toppings, these loaded sweet potatoes are perfect for meal prep or dinner!
I've been leaning heavily on easy dinner recipes lately. You know, the kind of recipes that are versatile and easy to customize using whatever you have on hand (because who wants to run to the store for just one ingredient?).
Last week I shared my recipe for lentil tacos that use a super easy lentil filling. It turns out that the leftover taco filling went really well with sweet potatoes, leading us to these stuffed sweet potatoes!
- Dietary-features: vegetarian, vegan, soy-free, nut-free, gluten-free
- Topped with taco-seasoned lentils, homemade guacamole, and salsa
- Nutritious: Baked sweet potatoes are filled with Vitamin A and the skins are rich in potassium and fiber.
- Meal-prep friendly: Easy to prep in advance and makes great leftovers
- Customizable: These stuffed sweet potatoes feature taco-seasoned lentils, but any kind of bean can be used and the sweet potato topping options are endless.
I like to roast a few sweet potatoes at the beginning of the week so that I can quickly throw together stuffed sweet potatoes throughout the week. You can also cook a sweet potato in the microwave for 5-6 minutes for an even quicker meal!
What you'll need
- Sweet potatoes come in a few varieties. For this recipe, I recommend using orange-flesh sweet potatoes. You might also see purple or Japanese sweet potatoes, which would probably work but are not what I recommend using for this recipe. Choose medium-sized sweet potatoes that weigh around 8-10 ounces each.
- Lentils: Choose brown or green lentils. Red and orange lentils don't work well here because they are softer after cooking. If you don't like lentils you can use an equal amout of any kind of bean like black beans or pinto beans.
- Tomato sauce: Choose a can of plain tomato sauce.
- Seasonings: I use a blend of cumin, chili powder, oregano, onion and garlic powder for a taco seasoning-style spice blend. You can also use my taco seasoning recipe or a taco seasoning packet from the store.
- Toppings: Guacamole, salsa, pumpkin seeds, and a dash of nutritional yeast are my go-to's. See below for more ideas.
How to bake sweet potatoes
Start by scrubbing sweet potatoes with a vegetable brush (or your hands) to remove any dirt. Dry with a towel to remove excess water.
Pierce all over, about 4-5 times, with a fork or knife. This allows air to escape while the potatoes cook.
Drizzle each potato with olive oil (about 1 teaspoon per potato). Use your hands to coat each potato in oil. You can also use canola or peanut oil in place of olive oil.
Line sweet potatoes on a pan or foil. Roast at 400 degrees for 45-60 minutes. Cooking time will vary depending on sweet potato size. They are usually ready when juices start coming out of the top.
To be sure the potato is ready, test the inside with a fork or knife. If it gives easily and is very soft that means the sweet potato is baked enough.
Expert tips and customization ideas
- The key to making really good loaded sweet potatoes is to mix the lentils into the sweet potato instead of just placing them on top.
- Using regular potatoes: You can also using these fillings to make loaded baked potatoes instead of loaded sweet potatoes. I recommend using russet potatoes.
- Microwave option: You cook roast sweet potatoes in the microwave for a quicker meal. Poke the potatoes with a fork 4-5 times. Place on a microwave-safe plate and microwave for 5 minutes, turning halfway through. If the potato isn't completely soft after 5 minutes, cook for 1 more minute. Repeat as necessary.
- More protein ideas: For more vegetarian protein otpions, try adding vegan chorizo, tempeh taco meat, air fryer chickpeas, or baked tofu.
- More topping ideas include shredded cheddar cheese or vegan queso, pumpkin seeds, sweet corn, fajita veggies, sour cream, and diced onion. Basically anything you would put on nachos goes well on these sweet potatoes.
Looking for similar dishes?
Here are a few of my favorite vegetarian weeknight recipes:
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Vegetarian Loaded Baked Sweet Potatoes
- 4 medium (8-10 ounces each) sweet potatoes
- 4 teaspoons olive oil
- 3 cups cooked brown lentils or bean of choice see note #1
- ¾ cup tomato sauce
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon dry oregano
- ¼ teaspoon salt plus more to taste
- ½ cup guacamole see note #3 for homemade guac
- ½ cup salsa of choice
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- fresh chopped cilantro
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Scrub sweet potatoes with a vegetable brush (or your hands) to remove any dirt. Dry with a towel to remove excess water. Poke 3-4 times with a fork or knife. Drizzle each potato with olive oil (about 1 teaspoon per potato). Use your hands to coat each potato in oil. Roast at 400 degrees for 50-60 minutes. They are done when fork-tender on the inside.
- While sweet potatoes are baking, prepare lentils according to your preferred method, or see note 1 for cooking instructions. When lentils are cooked through, add the tomato sauce and seasonings (chili powder, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, oregano, salt). Simmer uncovered over medium-low for 5 minutes to allow flavors to develop. Add a splash of water if the mixture becomes too thick.
- Add a sprinkle of salt to the inside of each sweet potato. Mash the inside of the potato with a fork to soften.
- Add ¾ cup lentils to each sweet potato. Stir lentils and sweet potato together. Top each sweet potato with 2 tablespoons guacamole, 2 tablespoons salsa, and 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds. Sprinkle with fresh lime juice and cilantro. Enjoy!
- To make lentils on the stovetop: Combine 1 cup rinsed brown lentils with 2 and ¾ cups vegetable broth, ¼ teaspoon salt and 2 bay leaves (optional) in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer over medium-low heat. Cover and simmer until lentils are cooked through, about 15-20 minutes. Drain off excess liquid and remove bay leaves.
- Microwave option: Poke the potatoes with a fork 3-4 times. Place on a microwave-safe plate and microwave for 5 minutes, turning halfway through. If the potato isn't completely soft after 5 minutes, cook for 1 more minute. Repeat as necessary.
- Homemade guacamole: In a small bowl, mash the flesh of two large avocados. Add ½ teaspoon coarse salt, ¼ cup diced onion, ¼ teaspoon garlic powder, 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice. Taste for salt & freshly ground black pepper.
- More topping ideas: Shredded cheddar cheese or vegan queso, sweet corn, fajita veggies, diced onion, vegan chorizo, tempeh taco meat, air fryer chickpeas, or baked tofu.