Sweet Potato Latkes {gluten free} {vegetarian} {paleo}

While everyone is buying trees, putting up lights and going gaga on holiday spending, I’m making latkes. Yup. Hanukkah is totally the shafted holiday at this time of year. But I get it: Christmas is kinda awesome. The music, the cheer, the celebration. When I was little, my Grandma alwayssss took me to sit on Santa’s lap. “But Gram, will he even bring me presents? I’m Jewish!” She assured me that I’d get presents. One year, I insisted on decorating a wooden tree and called it our “Hanukkah tree.” Now I drive around jingle bell rocking to Mariah Carey all December. Oy, I’m the worst.

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Maybe not the worst. I did make latkes. And that’s pretty darn festive if I do say so myself! What’s a latke you ask? Well, it’s basically a fried potato pancake. Latkes are a traditional Hanukkah food because we’re supposed to remember the teeny tiny bit of oil that miraculously burned for eight nights in the ancient temple by cooking things in lots of oil… because that makes sense.

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I am sounding wayyyy too Grinchy for the holidays. The holidays are awesome. Hanukkah is awesome. Latkes are awesome. Hello carb fest! These guys are full of starchy, carbohydrate goodness – perfect for me in my marathon week carb loading. And you know my favorite carbs are sweet potatoes. Duh. You can totally make these with white potatoes (check out my other recipe here), but don’t the sweet potatoes look pretty? And they are a little bit more nutritious.

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Latkes don’t require a menorah, dreidel or Jewish Grandma. They are a delicious addition to any meal – a Christmas feast, Kwanzaa celebration or marathon carb-loading. Eat latkes, drink eggnog and be merry. If Seth Cohen combined the holidays, we totally can too.

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Sweet Potato Latkes

Adapted from my Potato Latke recipe

Ingredients (Makes approx. 20 small latkes)

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes – peeled and shredded in a food processor or grater (approx. 3 cups)
  • 1 small white onion – peeled and shredded in a food processor or grater (approx. 1/2 cup)
  • 2 green onions – sliced (approx. 1/4 cup)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • coconut oil (or olive oil), for frying


1. In a medium bowl, combine the sweet potato, white onion and green onion. Mix until combined.

2. Add eggs, flour, baking powder, salt and pepper. Mix until combined.

3. Heat a large skillet coated in approx. 2 tbsp. of coconut oil over medium-high heat – you need to use enough oil in order to prevent the latkes from burning, make sure the entire bottom of the skillet is covered.

4. When the oil is melted and hot, drop heaping tablespoon measures of the latke mixture into the pan – be sure not to crowd the pan.

5. Cook for about 2 minutes per side – until golden brown.

6. Drain well on paper towels and continue the cooking process for the remainder of the mixture – adding more oil as necessary.

7. Enjoy – serve with unsweetened apple sauce, cranberry sauce or my cranberry orange sauce – click for the recipe.

Note: Freezes well. To reheat, place latkes on un-greased tin-foil lined baking sheet. Bake at 450F for 7-8 minutes.

Questions of the day…

Have you ever had a latke?

What are some of your holiday traditions?


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15 thoughts on “Sweet Potato Latkes {gluten free} {vegetarian} {paleo}

  1. I have never had a latke and as soon as I have my hands on a food processor over here that will change! They look so delicious! Holiday traditions for me include a ridiculous nativity set my Mum puts on the mantle piece every year. I added several things throughout my childhood including a load of characters from the Lion King haha xxx

  2. I think I want to spend a year in Israel and eat all the food and celebrate all the holidays. Seriously, I am such a fan – and these look so good! I love that they are so easy to make!
    I finally put my christmas decor up and I have some traditional pre-christmas-get-togethers with friends. Love it!

  3. I’m lucky that my school community celebrates both holidays. We have a great number of the students who are Jewish! I love to ask them questions about their traditions because they they are so different from my mine. Some have actually brought me latkes. (I teach a food course) and they’re awesome! THOUGH.. sweet potato sounds way more up my alley!

    Have a wonderful Monday lovely.

  4. All I hear about is Christmas cookies and fudge, so it’s nice to learn about other traditions. I’ve never tried latkes, but they definitely look amazing.

  5. Tried making these & they tasted so good, but they just fell apart on me! So it was more like sweet potato latke hash whoops haha. Any tips for next time? Yours looked so beautiful!

    1. Oh no! Hm make sure you are not cooking them on high heat and that you aren’t crowding the pan. Also, shaping them a bit with the spoon when you put them in the pan should do the trick. Sorry, but glad it didn’t sacrifice the flavor :) Happy Hanukkah!

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