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Sweet Potato & Kale Gratin

Sweet Potato & Kale Gratin

Sweet Potato & Kale Gratin
I feel like I’ve written about all my failed Thanksgiving sweet potato attempts several times already (or maybe it just feels that way?) and I really don’t want to bore you with yet another story about those sweet potato failures, but I’m going to do it anyway. Because without those failures this Sweet Potato & Kale Gratin would not exist! (And after this, I will have written about each one of my sweet potato failures, so you won’t have to hear about them again. Promise.)

My very first idea for a sweet potato side was a gratin. I had this fabulous idea for a recipe involving fresh rosemary and cheese and I just knew it was going to be delicious. But I was a little too sure of myself and I thought, “I bet I can make this lighter! I’m going to use milk instead of heavy cream!”

Sweet Potato & Kale Gratin Ingredients
You guys? If you’re making a gratin, don’t use milk. Oh sure, it works some of the time. But the other times, you have a curdled gratin. That curdled gratin might taste good, but it is quite literally a hot mess. A greasy hot mess. My husband reassured me that it tasted good, but it looked like something that would be served to prison inmates. When you’re cooking for the holidays, you don’t want to run the risk of a gross looking sweet potato gratin. And it’s the holidays! The time of the year when you can get away with using heavy whipping cream!

Cheese & Cream for Gratin
Sweet Potato & Kale Gratin
So this is my redemption gratin. I used Organic Valley Heavy Whipping Cream to make it. No curdled sweet potato gratin this time! I also decided to replace the rosemary with nutmeg for a more traditional sauce and then because I can never bear to do anything completely traditional, I used fewer sweet potatoes and replaced them with kale. (Yes, kale! I can’t get enough kale and sweet potatoes!) With a rich side dish like this one, the addition of greens helps lighten things up a little bit.

Sweet Potato & Kale Gratin
Organic Valley is a brand that I use often in my cooking, so when I had the chance to develop this recipe for them, I was pretty excited about it. I try to be mindful of what I put in my grocery cart, and when it comes to dairy, things like hormones and antibiotics are a concern for me, which is why I like Organic Valley. And when I buy produce, I buy organic when possible in order to avoid pesticides–well, did you know that dairy can also contain pesticides? Organic Valley products don’t; the pastures that their cows graze on are free of pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers.

Those are the reasons I’ve bought Organic Valley in the past, but in working with them on this post, I learned a new reason to buy from them in the future: Organic Valley is a farmer-owned cooperative, helping small family farmers thrive in an era of agribusiness. Organic Valley’s Pasture Perfect Holidays website highlights recipes from the families that run these farms–the families that, together as a whole, own Organic Valley.

Organic Valley Products
In addition to holiday recipes, the Pasture Perfect Holidays site has a $1 off coupon for Organic Valley butter (it’s the holidays–you know you are going to use a lot of butter!) and a sweepstakes where you could win up to $12,000 for kitchen appliances, one of five $1000 gift certificates for cookware, or a weekly prize for a year of free Organic Valley products.


Sweet Potato & Kale Gratin

Sweet Potato & Kale Gratin Recipe

A rich, creamy gratin made with sweet potatoes and kale. Perfect for the holidays!

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 10-12 servings


  • 1 large bunch (about 1 lb.) kale, tough stems removed and leaves torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 lbs. sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced (mine were between 1/8 and 1/4-inch – you can use a mandoline slicer)
  • 1 c. shredded Organic Valley Parmesan cheese
  • 1 pint Organic Valley heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 2 tbsp. Organic Valley salted butter, cut into small pieces, plus more to grease baking dish


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Steam kale for about 3 minutes, or until wilted, in a large steamer basket set over boiling water. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Squeeze out excess water.
  3. Place half of the potatoes in a greased 9 x 13 baking dish. (You don’t have to do this neatly, but try to make sure each layer is even!) Top potatoes with kale, then top kale with half of the Parmesan cheese. Place remaining potatoes in dish and sprinkle with the rest of the cheese. Whisk together whipping cream, salt, pepper, and nutmeg and pour over potatoes. Dot with butter.
  4. Cover baking dish with aluminum foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake for 20-25 minutes more, or until potatoes are tender and cheese is golden brown. Allow to sit 15 minutes before serving.


To make this more of an everyday side dish, you can use whole milk in place of the heavy whipping cream, but this increases the likelihood of the gratin curdling. If the gratin curdles, don’t panic! It is still perfectly fine to eat, it just doesn’t look very pretty.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post with Brandfluential for Organic Valley. All opinions are my own.

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  • Reply
    Sara @my less serious life
    December 12, 2012 at 6:50 am

    my boyfriend would love this. he is both a kale and sweet potato lover. if i was nice…

  • Reply
    Vespa Woolf
    December 12, 2012 at 6:51 am

    I like the kale to lighten things up and the tips on curdling milk. Whipping cream for special occasion gratin is fine with me if it’s organic! This is a great recipe–thanks.

    • Reply
      December 13, 2012 at 12:51 pm

      Yup, I figure if you’re making this for a crowd, it’s best to just go all out and use heavy cream! It’s the holidays, after all. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    December 12, 2012 at 7:13 am

    I love Organic Valley, it’s a great brand. And this recipe looks delicious too!

  • Reply
    Kare @ Kitchen Treaty
    December 12, 2012 at 7:24 am

    Sweet potatoes in a gratin! Fabulous. So weird but this would have never crossed my mind. And if I’m going to like kale, darn if I’m not going to like it in a creamy cheesy sauce. This one’s on my to-make list.

    PS: Sweet Potato Failures would be an excellent band name.

    • Reply
      December 13, 2012 at 12:49 pm

      I just found a kale gratin recipe that I think I might try soon. It looks almost like creamed spinach, but baked. I am intrigued.

      Yes, let’s make a band called Sweet Potato Failures! I call the tambourine!

  • Reply
    December 12, 2012 at 12:45 pm

    I’ve never tried kale and sweet potato together – what a wonderful combination!

  • Reply
    December 12, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    Sweet potatoes and kale are my two favorite things! I was looking for a lunch recipe that uses the two ingredients together and while this may be too heavy for lunch I think it would be perfect for my Christmas dinner! Thank you!

  • Reply
    Jackie @ Domestic Fits
    December 12, 2012 at 12:56 pm

    A gratin with kale?! I love this so much.

  • Reply
    December 12, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    I love potato gratin! I’ve never tried it with sweet potato, and I like the idea of lightening it with a vegetable. Must try. And yeah, sometimes you just have to go with full-fat cream. ๐Ÿ™‚ I wonder if half-and-half works? One of my quiche recipes calls for both cream and half-and-half, and I just use all half-and-half.

    • Reply
      December 12, 2012 at 1:48 pm

      And is the trowel-looking thing a measuring cup or baking dish? Too cute!

      • Reply
        December 13, 2012 at 12:38 pm

        It’s a measuring cup! They were on clearance at Anthro. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply
      December 13, 2012 at 12:41 pm

      I think that the higher the fat content, the less likely it is that the gratin will curdle. So half-and-half could work, but there’s more of a chance that it will curdle than if you use heavy whipping cream.

      • Reply
        December 13, 2012 at 3:28 pm

        I have this on my list of things to try this month (at least half of which I’ll never get around to), so I’ll report back on the half-and-half.

        • Reply
          December 18, 2012 at 8:11 am

          I hope it works out! Fingers crossed for no curdling…

  • Reply
    Kelly @ A Girl Worth Saving
    December 12, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    Yum! You know anything made with HC is a yes in my book.

  • Reply
    Jennifer The Quirky Momma
    December 12, 2012 at 4:23 pm

    Oh this looks wonderful!

  • Reply
    December 12, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    I just made a squash and potato gratin for my husband’s boss and it was a bit curdled and greasy looking. I was not pleased.

    Still tasted great, though.

    Love your photos!

    • Reply
      December 13, 2012 at 12:36 pm

      Isn’t it weird how that happens?! I was so disappointed that the one I tried to make for my Thanksgiving feature turned out like that too. But I know other times, I had baked things with whole milk and they turned out fine. Well hey, as long as they taste good, right? ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Julia |
    December 12, 2012 at 5:45 pm

    Love the richness of colors! Kale goes so well with potatoes. What a great recipe. Bookmarked!

  • Reply
    Hilesha O'Nan
    December 12, 2012 at 7:58 pm

    I bet this is good!

  • Reply
    December 12, 2012 at 8:23 pm

    Kale and Sweet Potatoes make an amazing combination! I love that you made a gratin with these. I am pinning this one and can’t wait to try it. This is a great giveaway. Thanks so much to you and Organic Valley for the opportunity to win.

    • Reply
      December 13, 2012 at 12:33 pm

      Yeah, when I told my husband I wanted to add kale to the gratin, he was like, “Another sweet potato and kale recipe?” Well, YES. They are delicious together!

  • Reply
    December 13, 2012 at 12:56 pm

    i love sweet potato & I love kale., I have to try out your gratin recipe… looks delicious.. charu

  • Reply
    Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen
    December 14, 2012 at 2:22 am

    This is calling my name! I’ve been on a sweet potato and kale kick lately.

  • Reply
    Courtney Rae Jones
    December 15, 2012 at 1:11 am

    Yum! Looks delicious!

  • Reply
    Heidi @ Food Doodles
    December 16, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    I loooove the idea of this! Yummy ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Kelly @ Texas Type A Mom
    December 16, 2012 at 9:54 pm

    That looks so filling and cheesy! I’ve never had sweet potatoes anyway but as a dessert but everything’s better with cheese!

  • Reply
    Maureen @ Wisconsin Mommy
    December 17, 2012 at 1:17 pm

    I’m always on the lookout for yummy ways to eat kale!

  • Reply
    December 18, 2012 at 11:30 am

    This looks like a fantastic recipe..will try this soon! And I love Organic Valley..I used their milk so many times throughout the summer to experiment with making kefir!

    • Reply
      December 20, 2012 at 7:46 pm

      I have never attempted that, but my husband loves kefir–maybe I should! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    December 22, 2012 at 11:30 am

    how do i slice the sweet potatoes so thin?

    • Reply
      December 22, 2012 at 12:31 pm

      You can use a sharp knife to do it, otherwise a mandoline slicer or food processor work well.

  • Reply
    diane Baum
    December 23, 2012 at 4:29 pm

    I especially love their salad dressing

  • Reply
    Tim Hughes
    December 23, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    That sweet potato and kale looks delicious!

  • Reply
    carol lewis
    December 24, 2012 at 9:55 am

    looks very yummy

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