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How To Fix Runny Sweet Potato Pie (And Avoid It Next Time)

To fix a runny sweet potato pie, add some flour to the filling before baking it. Alternatively, you can bake it for a few more minutes to make it firm. You can avoid a runny sweet potato pie in the future by baking it for enough time, using fresh sweet potatoes, and not boiling your sweet potatoes.

This article will cover how you can fix a runny sweet potato pie filling and avoid having a liquid filling in the future. Once you read this article, you’ll feel more confident about serving this holiday staple!

Sweet potato pie on a counter

Fixing a Runny Sweet Potato Pie

A runny sweet potato pie happens for two reasons:

  • The filling is too liquid.
  • You didn’t bake the pie for long enough.

The Filling Is Too Liquid

If the filling is too liquid, the easiest solution is to add some cornstarch or flour to the filling.

Most sweet potato pie recipes require adding flour or cornstarch as a thickening agent. If, after following the recipe, your filling is still too liquid, carefully add in some more of the thickening agent. 

Use the same thickening agent your recipe recommends. Be especially careful when adding flour, as it’s easier to add too much flour than cornstarch. Add one tablespoon (7.5 g) at a time, mixing it thoroughly until you’re satisfied with the consistency. 

However, this solution only works if you notice the pie filling is runny before you bake it. 

You Didn’t Bake the Pie for Long Enough

If you haven’t baked your pie for long enough—or you only noticed the runny filling after putting it in the oven—you should bake it for a few more minutes. Keep the oven at the temperature recommended in your recipe, place the pie back on the lowermost rack, and bake once more.

Be careful not to overcook your pie. Ideally, the center of the pie should be a little wobbly and not yet fully set. This consistency is what you want from your pie—if you bake it until the center is firm, you will have overcooked your pie. 

Remember that your pie will continue to cook for a bit longer, even after you remove it from the oven. This process is known as carryover cooking and is one of the most common reasons people overcook pies.

If you’re unsure whether your pie is ready, try measuring the temperature of the filling (not the center) using a food thermometer. Your pie is perfect if the filling reads 175°F (or 79.4°C).

You Can Also Try Draining the Sweet Potato Juices

Glass of sweet potato juice next to a cut sweet potato

Another—slightly more complicated—option for fixing a runny sweet potato pie filling is to drain the juice. It is best to do this before you bake the pie, so keep that in mind. 

To drain the juices and make the filling less liquid, you should:

  1. Transfer the filling to a clean bowl.
  2. Add a small squeeze of lemon juice and a pinch of salt—just a little. It shouldn’t be enough to affect the flavor of the filling.
  3. Use a spoon to mash the filling a little more, allowing the sweet potato’s juices to come out from the filling.
  4. Once you’ve mashed out as much juice as possible from the filling, drain the liquid using a strainer or colander. Let it drain naturally—this can take as much as one hour until all the fluid drains out.
  5. Reduce the juice until it turns into syrup.
  6. Mix the syrup in with the filling.
  7. Follow your sweet potato pie recipe to complete your pie.

Avoiding a Runny Sweet Potato Pie

If you’re looking to avoid a runny sweet potato pie in the future, there are a few steps you can take:

  • Bake your pie long enough to cook the edges of the filling properly. However, you should ensure that the center is still jiggly.
  • Use fresh sweet potatoes. It’s easy to accidentally add some canning liquid to the filling when using canned sweet potatoes, making the filling too liquid and runny.
  • Bake and process your sweet potatoes instead of boiling them. Boiling turns the potatoes water-logged and makes your pie filling runny. Instead, bake them with the skin (which concentrates the sweet potato flavor) and then run them through a food processor to get the perfect texture.
  • Give your pie 4-24 hours to rest. If you don’t give it enough time to rest, there’s a risk the filling won’t set correctly and still be liquid. Ideally, 24 hours of resting is essential. However, if you’re in a hurry, it’s possible to get away with setting it aside for about 4 hours.

Final Thoughts

Not only can you avoid a runny sweet potato pie in the future, but you can also fix an existing runny pie. The tips in this article will ensure your pie comes out perfectly and make your sweet potato pie the talk of any party you might attend!

Thanks for stoppin’ by!

For more, don’t miss When Is Sweet Potato Pie Done? (To Avoid Overcooking).