Looking for a potato skins recipe that satisfies your craving for a cheesy appetizer? These Best HealthySweet Potato Skins are nutritious little boats of goodness, filled with all kinds of tasty stuff, like chicken, spinach, and Greek yogurt. To top it off, they are easy to make and absolutely delicious!
Back when Dustin and I used to eat ALL types of food and didn't know what terms like "clean eating" or "processed food" even meant, we ate a LOT of potato skins.
Back then, our potato skins were covered in cheese and butter, topped with crispy bacon, and then happily dipped into a likely very processed ranch dressing.
This was also the time I used to struggle with my weight <-- you can read more on that here, if you're interested.
Now, every now and again, we still enjoy a good stuffed potato appetizer on a cheat meal, but the occurrences are far less frequent and the guilt is much, much higher.
It always comes at a cost, doesn't it?
Because we now know terms like "calories" and "macros" and "saturated fat." BTW, I've recently written a post on How to Calculate Your Macros For Weight Loss (awesome to know!). And, I've set a few things straight on saturated fat in my post Is Saturated Fat Bad For You?. UNPUBLISHED You'll learn all about fat and of course, I'll answer the question, too!
There's just something about having potato skins, though, that feels like such a treat -- like the ultimate appetizer. I mean...potato skins are hearty, creamy, savory, filling, and so satisfying, it's really no wonder why they're such a hit.
So I decided to figure out a healthy alternative to our beloved potato skins – one we could enjoy no matter if it was a cheat meal or just any regular ol' day. One that was hearty and creamy and savory and filling, and so satisfying AND healthy.
Because healthy is important.
And because there's no better way to enjoy healthy food than to have it taste as though it's not healthy. Life is weird like that.
These baked sweet potato skins fulfill everything you want in a potato skin recipe and still leave you feeling like you're sticking to your healthy eating goals. In my book: that's a big-time win.
Heck, you could even dip them into this clean ranch dressing, if you'd like.
Come to think of it, how come I haven't done that yet?? BRB.
ARE SWEET POTATO SKINS GOOD FOR YOU?
Yes, sweet potato skins are very healthy! This question almost deserves a post on its own as the reasons for eating sweet potatoes are so many. All the more reason to make these healthy sweet potato skins often! Every time you indulge in a serving of sweet potato skins, you get these awesome nutrients, to name just some of them:
- Vitamins like A, C, E, K
- A bit of protein
- Carbs for energy
- Fiber to aid the digestive tract
HOW TO BAKE SWEET POTATOES
Baking sweet potatoes is super duper easy to do and a great way to enjoy sweet potatoes. Here are the easy steps for how to bake sweet potatoes:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Pierce the sweet potatoes using a fork all over and then lay on a sheet of aluminum foil.
Drizzle with olive oil to coat evenly and then wrap tightly with the aluminum foil.
Place on a rimmed baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and repeat with the remaining sweet potatoes.
Bake in the oven for 45-60 minutes, or until tender.
You can gently squeeze the sweet potatoes to test if they’re tender.
HOW TO MICROWAVE SWEET POTATOES
If you'd rather speed up this process, you can also cook sweet potatoes in the microwave. To do this, just wash the sweet potatoes well and place on a microwave-safe plate. Poke several holes into the sweet potatoes all over with a fork.
Then, microwave on high for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender. You can gently squeeze the sweet potatoes to test if they’re tender and, if not, cook an additional 1-2 minutes.
HOW TO MAKE THE BEST HEALTHY SWEET POTATO SKINS
- The first thing you want to do is wash, pierce, and cook the sweet potatoes. Either bake in the oven at 375 degrees F, or microwave the potatoes and then let them cool for about 5-10 minutes.
- Cook the onion in olive oil until tender. Add the baby spinach and garlic and cook another 2-3 minutes. Set aside.
- Season the chicken breasts with sea salt and pepper. In the same skillet, cook the chicken until both sides are golden and the chicken is cooked through. Remove from the skillet and dice into bite-sized cubes.
- Scrape the sweet potato out of the skin, leaving a thin layer inside the skin. This allows the potato to stand up on its own, and hold the filling that you’ll make next..
- In a mixing bowl, combine the scooped out sweet potato, plain Greek yogurt, chicken, and the spinach mixture. Stir, and season with additional sea salt and black pepper.
- Coat the skins with a drizzle of olive oil and pop them in the oven for 10-15 minutes. The skin will get nice and crispy.
- Fill the crispy skins with the mixture, topping with shredded Monterey Jack cheese, and then bake again for 10-15 minutes. Now, you’ve got the best tasting sweet potatoes ever!
WHAT TO DO WITH THE SCOOPED OUT SWEET POTATO?
This recipe for sweet potato skins uses all of the cooked potato. But if you are in the mood to add extra chicken and not use all of the potato, that works, too! Store the scooped out sweet potato in an airtight container. It will keep fresh for up to 3 days.
HOW TO STORE SWEET POTATO SKINS
I like to enjoy sweet potato skins right out of the oven. They are extra crispy, piping hot, and too good to resist! To store some for the next day, put them in an airtight container once they’ve cooled completely. Enjoy within 3 days.
CAN YOU FREEZE THE SWEET POTATO SKINS?
On the rare occasion that you have leftovers, place the cooled sweet potatoes skins in an airtight container and freeze for up to 3 months. To reheat, thaw in the fridge overnight. Then, heat in the oven for 25 minutes at 325 degrees F.
RECIPE SUBSTITUTIONS FOR SWEET POTATO SKINS
Although I think these healthy sweet potato skins are just right, sometimes you want a little variation. Substitutions that can work are:
- Instead of chicken, try diced nitrate-free bacon
- Leave the onions out of the spinach mixture and top your sweet potatoes with roasted peppers
- Switch the Monterey Jack for half sharp cheddar and half mozzarella
- Make it Mexican and trade the chicken for black beans
HEALTH BENEFITS OF SWEET POTATO SKINS
If you're still wondering if you should or shouldn't eat sweet potato skins, here are some amazing benefits to eating them, along with the nutrients I mentioned before. Sweet potatoes are…
- an excellent source of beta-carotene, which promotes healthy skin, helps our immune system, and improves eye health and vision
- high in Vitamin B6, which is good for heart health
- high in Vitamin C, which helps with bone and tooth formation, digestion, blood cell formation, accelerates healing, and produces collagen which helps maintain skin’s elasticity
- a good source of Vitamin D which promotes healthy bones
- contain iron which promotes a healthy immune system
- great for blood sugar regulation, as they provide a balanced and regular source of energy, despite tasting sweet
- a good source of potassium, which helps to regulate heartbeat and nerve signals
So, yeah…they’re pretty darn healthy for you, in addition to being super tasty. In fact, once you try these sweet potato skins, you should head over to this post for 15 more yummy and healthy sweet potato recipes.
So if you're looking for a great appetizer to share for watching the game this weekend or just want a new, lighter way to enjoy an old favorite, I sure hope you try out these healthy baked sweet potato skins.
They're the perfect solution for those reformed potato skin lovers out there. 🙂
CAN YOU MAKE THE SWEET POTATOES VEGAN AND GLUTEN-FREE?
Yes, these ultra-yummy sweet potato skins can be made vegan and gluten-free:
- Gluten-free: To ensure the recipe is gluten-free, check that the cheese you buy does not have gluten. Although many are gluten-free, sometimes in the manufacturing, gluten is added when alteration is needed to make a recipe “fat-reduced” or “sodium-free”.
- Vegan: For a vegan recipe, leave out the chicken and replace it with chickpeas. Use plant-based yogurt instead of plain Greek yogurt and use vegan cheese.
CAN I USE REGULAR POTATOES?
I won’t tie you down to sweet potato skins when regular potatoes have tons of flavor, too. Try these potatoes on for size:
- Russet potatoes
- Red gold potatoes
- Norland red potatoes
- Yukon gold potatoes
- Kennebec potatoes
- Purple majesty potatoes
MORE HEALTHY APPETIZERS AND SNACKS
What to serve alongside The Best (Healthy) Sweet Potato Skins?
- The Perfect Guacamole
- Garlic Stuffed Mushrooms
- Baked Almond Chicken Strips
- Healthy Meat and Cheese Platter
- Tomato Basil Bruschetta
Healthy Baked Sweet Potato Skins
The Best (Healthy) Sweet Potato Skins
*This post may contain affiliate links for products I use often and highly recommend.
- 4 small sweet potatoes, skin-on
- 2 tablespoon olive oil, divided
- 3 boneless/skinless chicken breasts
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 10 oz fresh baby spinach
- ¼ cup plain greek yogurt
- ¼ cup jack cheese, shredded
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 green onions , sliced (for topping)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Pierce the sweet potatoes using a fork all over and then lay on a sheet of aluminum foil.
- Drizzle with olive oil to coat evenly and then wrap tightly with the aluminum foil.
- Place on a rimmed baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and repeat with the remaining sweet potatoes.
- Bake in the oven for 45-60 minutes, or until tender.
- You can gently squeeze the sweet potatoes to test if they’re tender.
- Carefully unwrap the sweet potatoes from the foil and slice in half with a sharp knife and then let them cool for about 5-10 minutes.
- While the sweet potatoes are cooling, heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a skillet and add the onion. Cook until tender, then add the baby spinach and garlic and toss for 2-3 minutes, until the spinach has cooked down. Set aside.
- To cook the chicken, season both sides of the chicken breast with sea salt, black pepper, and garlic powder, and place into olive oil heating over medium-high heat in the same skillet.
- Cook, flipping occasionally, until both sides are golden and the chicken is cooked through, about 4-6 minutes per side.
- Remove from the pan and dice into bite-size cubes, then set aside.
- Once the sweet potatoes are cool enough to handle, carefully scrape the sweet potato out of the skin, leaving a thin layer inside with the skin so that it can still stand up on its own.
- Add the sweet potato to a large mixing bowl, along with the greek yogurt, chicken, and the spinach mixture. Stir to combine and season with any additional sea salt or black pepper, as needed.
- Coat the potato skins with a drizzle of oil and place back into the oven for 10-15 minutes to get a nice crispy skin.
- Remove from the oven and fill each skin with the sweet potato mixture, topping with shredded jack cheese.
- Bake again for 10-15 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the filling has heated through.
This post contains affiliate links for products I use regularly and highly recommend.