Ingredient: Sweet Potatoes


» Jump to recipes using Sweet Potatoes as an ingredient

image imageIs there a difference between sweet potatoes and yams?  Why yes, yes there is.  For the purposes of our site, we tag recipes with Sweet Potatoes and Yams and unless otherwise noted in the recipe posts, they can be used interchangeably in the recipes presented.  Since there is a difference, let’s see if we can clear things up.

A true yam is a starchy edible root of the Dioscorea genus, and is generally imported to America from the Caribbean. It is rough and scaly and very low in beta carotene.

Depending on the variety, sweet potato flesh can vary from white to orange and even purple. The orange-fleshed variety was introduced to the United States several decades ago. In order to distinguish it from the white variety everyone was accustomed to, producers and shippers chose the English form of the African word “nyami” and labeled them “yams.”

Even though the USDA requires that orange-colored sweet potatoes always be labeled “sweet potato,” most people still think of sweet potatoes as yams regardless of their true identity.

Here is what we have put together for you from CSA365:


Sweet Potato-

  • Description

These tubers have a rough brown skin with a sweet orange flesh.  Look for sweet potatoes that are firm.

  • Preparation

Scrub the sweet potatoes skin well or peel before using them.  Sweet potatoes can be boiled, bake or even microwave them until tender.  Recent studies have shown that keeping baking temperatures low when cooking sweet potatoes helps to maximize the sweetness.  Keep temperatures between 325 degrees and 340 degrees.

  • Storage

Store your sweet potatoes at room temperature, or better yet, a cool dark cabinet or pantry is ideal.  Sweet potatoes can store 3-6 months.  A tip to help your sweet potatoes last longer is to individually wrap them in newspaper before storing.

  • Nutrition

Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of vitamin A.  They also contain vitamin B6, C, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, potassium, alpha and beta carotene, antioxidants, and fiber

Recipes Using Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potato and Apple Cobbler

This recipe from Southern Living provides a tasty and unique use for apples and sweet potatoes. There are several liberties that can be taken with the ingredients (I used half of the called for refrigerated pie crust, none of the orange juice and much less of the sugar, for example). A dollop of freshly whipped cream really brings this one home!

Asparagus and Potato “Cake”

This was the result of a creative moment, but I have no regrets about the way it turned out! Potatoes and/or sweet potatoes provide the starchy middle that keeps things together, and the asparagus provides the springy gimmick. The rest of the ingredients are pretty flexible, so make it your own and have fun!

Grill it!

Toss sweet potatoes or other veggies with olive oil before grilling, to prevent them from sticking to the grate. Season your veggies with whatever flavors you feel like, experiment!

Sweet Potato Pie

If you’re looking for a way to get uninterested folks to eat sweet potato, look no further! This pie was gone in one sitting, with the young potato-haters coming back for seconds. I followed this basic recipe with a few tweaks, microwaving instead of boiling the sweet potatoes, and cutting the sugar back by about 1/4 cup. The mixture was a tiny bit chunkier than smooth, but i have no regrets, as the flavor of the sweet potato really popped!

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Soup

From fellow food blogger Sherri at “To Simply Inspire”, this recipe has done just that! A healthy and hearty soup for sure! If you need to cut some time, microwaving the sweet potatoes instead of baking them helps, as well as sautéing the pepper and onion directly into your pot before adding the beans and broth. If going olde school, use 4 cups of homemade veggie broth in lieu of the carton. I served with avocado, lime wedges, and a dollop of sour cream.

Easy Winter Holiday Brunch

This is the Anderson family holiday morning brunch. This is a start-to-finish brunch (including timing and a shopping list) that will give you plenty of time to watch the yule log with your family. It makes enough for 12 folks, and if you don’t have that many, it makes great leftovers!

Sweet Potato and Peanut Stew

This peanutty protein packed soup is creamy and hearty in all the right places, and the sweet red peppers pack a lovely punch. The optional winter squash soup tureen is a nice touch if making this for a special occasion.