One of the truisms we’ve learned about cooking? That things don’t need to be complicated to be delicious.
Take this sweet potato appetizer: it’s essentially crisp sweet potato chips scattered across whipped goat cheese. It may just sound like a healthy plant-based appetizer that’ll check the box for serving your vegetarian friends.
But that is seriously discounting this recipe. The smoky, crisp sweet potato combined with the ethereally light, sweet, peppery, herbed goat cheese is pure appetizer magic. It’s one of those dishes you can serve as a start to Thanksgiving without filling people up or as part of a cocktail party as an unexpectedly indulgent bite.
How To Make This Recipe
The roast sweet potato recipe in and of itself is a keeper. By slicing the sweet potatoes paper-thin, you get crisp oven-baked sweet potato chips that are great on their own and even better with the goat cheese.
Then, the whipped goat cheese is so much better than just standard, right-out-of-the-refrigerator chèvre. It’s like the difference between heavy cream and whipped cream. The time in the food processor makes the goat cheese impossibly light and airy.
And though you must try it as we have it here. It’d be equally fabulous spread on a bagel, layered into a sandwich, paired with lox, or smeared across ripe tomatoes.
Tips To Make This Recipe
- Pull out the mandolin slicer for perfectly thin slices: This is most certainly a time to put your mandolin to use. Putting it on its about a 1/16-inch setting will give you paper-thin sweet potato slices that will crisp up nicely.
- Use store-bought chips in a pinch: Of course, if you’re short on time, you can 100% use some store-bought root vegetable chips instead. Of course, they won’t have the paprika goodness that the homemade ones will have but they’ll work all the same.
- Use fruity olive oil: If you have a few types of olive oil on hand, we’d recommend using a fruity or buttery style here as the greener Tuscan-style olive oils that are higher in phenols may overwhelm the other flavors in the dish.
- Make it all ahead of time: This is the ultimate entertaining recipe because it can be made ahead of time. Make the whipped goat cheese up to 4 days ahead but let it come to room temperature before serving so it’s nice and spreadable.
What To Serve With This Recipe
This recipe can really do double duty. It’s a great option for an appetizer spread before a dinner party. But it’d be equally delicious as part of a tapas or small plates dinner. Say made into California-style mezze with, say, our pumpkin hummus, this Roasted Red Pepper Romesco Dip, and a giant green salad.
Roasted Sweet Potato Chips with Whipped Goat Cheese Recipe
- 2 small sweet potatoes ends trimmed and sliced very thinly
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- Pinch kosher salt
- 10 ounces fresh goat cheese (aka chèvre) at room temperature
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil plus 2 tablespoons for the sweet potatoes and more for garnish
- 1/4 cup heavy cream or milk
- Leaves from 5 fresh thyme sprigs plus more for garnish
- 1 tablespoon honey plus more for garnish
- 1/2 teaspoon Freshly ground black pepper
- Maldon sea salt or other flaky sea salt, for garnish
- Make the sweet potato chips: Heat the oven to 325°F and arrange racks in the upper and lower thirds.Line two rimmed baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper. Toss the sweet potato slices with 2 tablespoons of oil, paprika, and salt and arrange them in a single layer.Bake, flipping halfway, until crisp and golden, 10 to 20 minutes. Remove the chips from the oven and season with an additional pinch of salt before serving.
- Make the whipped goat cheese: Combine the room temperature fresh goat cheese with 1/4 cup of olive oil, the milk or cream, thyme leaves, honey, pepper, and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with an "S" blade.Process on high until the mixture is light, fluffy, and well combined. Taste and add more salt or pepper as desired.
- Serve the Whipped Goat Cheese: Spread a few spoonfuls of the whipped goat cheese on individual plates or one large serving platter. Drizzle with olive oil and honey and a few cranks of black pepper. Scatter the sweet potato chips on top, top with additional thyme leaves, and serve.