Loaded Black Bean Sweet Potato Boats

Jump to Recipe
Plates of Sweet Potato Boats loaded with black beans, avocado sauce and more

My obsession with sweet potatoes is getting real. I’ve made soups, muffins, gratins, chips, desserts. You name it, I’ve tried it. But I think after all that experimenting I’ve come back around to loving them in one of their purest forms: Soft, sweet and baked.

Whole baked sweet potatoes for on a baking sheet
Baking sheet with a batch of our Sweet Potato Black Bean Boats recipe

I was inspired to make these little bites after wanting to make a “nacho-like” dish starring twice-baked sweet potatoes. The idea to add black beans was natural. The two pair together like PB&J. Then I just had to do some elegant dressing: Green onions, salsa, manchego cheese, and avocado crema.

Plate of Loaded Mexican Sweet Potato Boats with a bowl of salsa in the center
Plates of our Loaded Sweet Potato Black Bean Boats recipe

These Mexican-inspired bites are so simple to throw together.

Just bake until soft, split open, scoop out the insides, and then load them up with black beans or a protein of your choice and sprinkle with cheese. Pop them back in the oven to warm through and bam – you have an easy appetizer or vegetarian entree to share with friends…or hog all for yourself. Your call.

To make these vegan, simply use non-dairy substitutions for sour cream and cheese (such as Daiya products), sub just guacamole, or omit altogether.

Close up shot of Loaded Black Bean Sweet Potato Boats with green onion and avocado crema

These loaded “boats” are sweet, savory and so satisfying. I had just a couple for lunch along with some chips and salsa and was full for hours.

They’d make a great take-along dish to barbecues, especially for vegan/gluten-free/vegetarian friends. I just love that they’re healthy, loaded with flavor and super simple. But the fact that they’re portable doesn’t hurt either. Happy munching!

Plate of Loaded Sweet Potato Black Bean Boats drizzled with avocado crema

Loaded Black Bean Sweet Potato Boats

Loaded sweet potato boats with black beans, manchego cheese, salsa, onion, and simple avocado crema.
Author Minimalist Baker
Plate of Sweet Potato Black Bean Boats topped with sliced green onion and avocado crema
5 from 7 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 4 (boats)
Course Appetizer, Entrée
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Mexican-Inspired, Vegetarian
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 1-2 Days


  • 5 small sweet potatoes
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans (drained and rinsed)
  • ~1/4 cup grated Manchego or other Mexican cheese (such as Cotija or Pepperjack)
  • Avocado crema (as original recipe is written, 1/4 cup light sour cream, 1/2 ripe avocado, & lime juice)
  • Fresh salsa, cilantro, and green onion (for topping and dipping)


  • Bake sweet potatoes in a 400-degree F (204 C) oven directly on the baking rack for 40-45 minutes or until tender to the touch.
  • In the meantime, make avocado crema by mixing 1/2 a ripe avocado, 1/4 cup light sour cream and a bit of lime juice until creamy and smooth (amounts as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). Refrigerate until potato boats are ready to serve.
  • Remove from oven to cool to the touch, but leave oven on.
  • Carefully cut sweet potatoes in half and scoop out insides to make “boats.” Leave ~ 1/4 – 1/2 inch of flesh so they don’t become too fragile and difficult to handle.
  • Reserve leftover sweet potato for sweet potato almond butter muffins, or another recipe of your choice.
  • Place sweet potato boats face up on a baking sheet and fill with black beans and top evenly with grated cheese.
  • Pop back in oven to warm through and remove when cheese is melted and bubbly.
  • Remove from oven and arrange on a serving platter. Top with salsa, avocado crema, chopped green onion and fresh cilantro. Additional toppings might include guacamole, hot sauce and lettuce.
  • Will reheat well the next day or two in the microwave or oven.


*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with toppings.

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 boats Calories: 157 Carbohydrates: 23 g Protein: 4.8 g Fat: 5 g Sodium: 44 mg Fiber: 4.6 g Sugar: 0 g

Did You Make This Recipe?

Tag @minimalistbaker on Instagram and hashtag it #minimalistbaker so we can see all the deliciousness!

If you love this recipe...

Get Our Fan Favorites eBook Here!

Reader Interactions

Leave a Comment & Rating!

Have a question? Use ctrl+f or ⌘+f on your computer or the "find on page" function on your phone browser to search existing comments! Need help? Check out this tutorial!

My Rating:

  1. Janet says

    These are so good I am doing like 3 minimalist baker recipes a day. I broke my tailbone in August 2020, I fell cleaning over 4 feet, these recipes and her new cookbook are helping me with my injury and also with my veganism (vegan over 10 years). VEGAN YES

  2. Tiffany says

    This one was truly yummy. I made the salsa using minimalist baker salsa recipe (it was delicious!) And the avocado mix, also followed other commenters about spices on black beans. It felt quite healthy to eat overall and would make again. Two halves was easily a meal, my husband loved it also.

    I would make this one for guests :)

    Thank you for all of your recipe creations!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for your kind words and lovely review, Tiffany! We’re so glad you enjoyed this recipe!

  3. Karen says

    Swooooon!!!! I made this and was weak in the knees! I gave it to my kids for lunch and they said, “Mom! This do so good! You can make this everyday if you want.”
    We are all in love. ;)
    This recipe is probably perfect as is, but kids are kids, so I added a bit more flavor by seasoning the beans and I added a crunch factor (much like the potato chip in your club sandwich…but healthier! Lol!) I warmed my beans on the stove with a 1/2 tsp each of garlic powder, onion powder, and cumin. To the beans I added finely chopped cilantro and diced raw red a green bell pepper. Then I scooped the mixture into the baked sweet potato boats. With the beans being warm, the cheese melted in just two minutes after I replaced them to the oven.
    It was amazing!!!!! And the avocado Crema was fantastic! I don’t buy yogurt, so I used flax milk to thin the avocado.
    We will definitely adopt this recipe as a beloved member of the family. Ha!
    Thanks Dana. A fast, easy, healthy, nutrient-packed meal that my kids love. Nothing makes me happier!

  4. Ann Pierce says

    I could eat potatoes everyday, so so so delicious, especially with toppings like these! I really like your space here, happy to have found it :)

  5. Sarah says

    Holy wow! These things are amazing! Dana, I have been following your blog for about 4 months now and about 2 months ago I have had to become dairy free while nursing my son. Your blog has actually made it so easy! Thank you, thank you, thank you! But back to these sweet potato gems, they really are delicious. I also may have put about 2-3 tablespoons of the avocado crema on each potato…

  6. kate says

    These are delicious, and my boyfriend’s family from the Czech Republic loved them, too. These are actually yams, not sweet potatoes, but I tried both and the sweet potatoes are almost as good, thanks!

  7. Priti says

    Today was the first time I stumbled upon your blog, am very glad I did :) There are a bunch of recipes I want to try this weekend! This one sounds so delicious.
    I have a question about the sweet potatoes – how do u bake them? Wraped in foil?

  8. allyson says

    Made these tonight for my mom and I! They were delicious, only they didn’t look nearly as beautiful!

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  9. mallory says

    longtime reader and baker-along, first time poster. i made 20 taters-worth of these for a brunch at church, and they were a wild hit. the only change i made was to cook the beans in a crockpot along with a mexican spice roux (cumin, chili, garlic, oregano.) this extra step probably disqualifies me from minimalism, but i didn’t mind doing it.

    then this morning the re-baked leftovers made a fabulous birthday breakfast with some lovely shirred eggs.

    thanks for all your fabulous work!

  10. Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious says

    I’m obsessed with sweet potatoes too! And these nacho-like boats are awesome! I sure wish I was having them for dinner!

  11. Jess says

    Love the idea to bring these to a barbecue over the summer, Dana. The pictures alone make me want a plate of these right away, but they’re full of such healthy goodness too! (No sweet potatoes here…but I’ll be home in Kansas City by the end of the weekend and will be plotting ways to sneak sweet potatoes back in my suitcase before I return. ;) )

  12. Eileen says

    Hooray for sweet potatoes! we’ve been making a similar twice-baked potato with refried black beans and broccoli–so good. :)

  13. Alexis @ Hummusapien says

    You have such a knack for making dishes that are so simple yet SUPER DUPER delish! Can’t wait to make these as an appetizer.

  14. dixya| food, pleasure, and health says

    oh yum i made sweet potatoes stuffed with samosa ingredients, black beans and the crema sounds like a perfect pair.

  15. GAY MILLETTE says


  16. Suzanne says

    Looks delicious! The trick for me is finding the right sized sweet potatoes; the ones in my grocery store are always MASSIVE! In retrospect, I guess there’s worse problems to have :P

  17. Joy // For the Love of Leaves says

    These look perfect! I make something similar, but just sorta mash it all together. This looks much more appealing! Haha

  18. Marjory @ Dinner-Mom says

    These look amazing and combine two or my favorite foods – black beans and sweet potatoes! Very creative.

  19. Tieghan says

    I LOVE sweet potato boats! I actually just made some two days ago, so good! These sound incredible! Black beans and sweet potatoes or ment for each other!

  20. Jenny @ BAKE says

    These photos are absolutely gorgeous and this food looks stunning! I could really do with a plate full of these right now!

  21. Averie @ Averie Cooks says

    So creative and so gorgeous, Dana! The camera loves this recipe! And of course, you have mad skills!