Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture Yams. Sweet Potato vs Yam. Yams grow from a regular potato size to gigantic proportions of nearly 5 feet long! When you see sweet potato on a menu in the U.S., what likely comes to mind is orange-fleshed sweet potatoes, which are starchy and have a thin outer skin just like red potatoes and russets but taste sweeter. Technically, both sweet potatoes and yams come from flowering plantsâ¦ but they are actually not botanically related! Yam fiber turns into a gel, making you feel fuller longer, potentially contributing to weight loss. Sweet potatoes are often touted as being healthier than white potatoes, but in reality, both types can be highly nutritious. A sweet potato belongs to the morning glory or bindweed family. In spite of all of the confusion, itâs quite easy to tell yams from sweet potatoes: Yams have dark, bark-like skins with a white flesh. You might still find "yam" and "sweet potato" used interchangeably or in tandem. An average-size sweet potato is about 90 calories, 21 grams of carbs, and 3 grams of fiber. Would you be surprised if I told you that all those times you thought you were eating yams, you were likely eating a sweet potato, and that you probably havenât ever actually had a true yam? Both sweet potato and yam are nutrient-dense foods. How to enjoy baked sweet potatoes. The yam and sweet potato are quite different plants, although they may look somewhat alike. It is one of the oldest varieties and goes by an assortment of different names â 'Triumphs', 'Southern Queenâ, âPopular Rootâ, âChokerâ and âWhite Bunchâ. Yams are closely related to lilies and grasses. If it isn't fork-tender after five minutes, continue to microwave in one-minute increments until done. What is a yam?. A large portion of the sweet potato crop is grown right here in the USA with North Carolina being the â¦ The sweet potatoes with the lighter skin and â¦ The characteristics of sweet potatoes and yams are also different. And, unless you shop in a specialty store, itâs likely that youâve only purchased sweet potatoes (even if they were labeled as yams).In the US, sweet potatoes are the sweet, orange potato typically found in supermarkets. One day the little Sweet Potato returned home for a surprise visit. Hereâs the scoop on these tubers, with tips for getting the one you want at the grocery store. The sweet potato is also only distantly related to the true potato (Solanum tuberosum). In most cases, if you are eating a very sweet orange or yellow fleshed potato, you are actually eating a sweet potato and not a yam. Native to Africa and Asia, yams vary in size from that of a small potato to a record 130 pounds (as of 1999). But more on that another timeâ¦ MY THOUGHTS Honestly I love the brevity of the word yam. There are distinct differences between a yam vs. a sweet potato. Place the potato on a microwave-safe plate. Often, the copper skinned sweet potato is referred to as yam, or sweet potato yam, and these are a firmer version of sweet potatoes. Botanically speaking, the yam is the common name of some plants from the family Dioscoreaceae, is native to Africa and Asia, and the sweet potato belongs to the family Convolvulaceae, and is native to the Americas.Dioscoreaceae, is native to Africa and Asia, and the sweet potato belongs to the family Convolvulaceae, and is native to the Americas. D. alata, called "white yam", winged yam, water yam, and purple yam (not to be confused with the Okinawan purple "yam", which is a sweet potato), was first cultivated in Southeast Asia. The term âsweet potatoâ is a misnomer. Here's what to know. The yam is a monocot from the Dioscoreaceae family that is related to lilies and grasses. Add two minutes for each additional potato. The sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) is a dicotyledonous plant that belongs to the bindweed or morning glory family, Convolvulaceae. The yam or sweet potato in the US has orange-colored flesh and is what you would use to make a sweet potato pie during Thanksgiving. Just one strong syllable. The skin of a yam (left) looks kind of like tree bark, while a sweet potato (right) is more reddish-brown. In that case, a substitution would likely suffice. There are many varieties of sweet potatoes and they come in white, yellow, orange flesh. OMG Worthy Reads, Week 107 Yam Confused? Fresh and canned sweet potatoes are often marketed as yams but may also be labeled as sweet potatoes. View this post on Instagram. Its large, starchy, sweet-tasting, tuberous roots are a root vegetable. When searching to find slips or potatoes, gardeners would need to search in catalogs under sweet potatoes to find these varieties. Yams vs. sweet potatoes. Yams are the tuberous roots of the genus Dioscorea. Sweet potato and yam are often used interchangeably, but the popular vegetable often eaten on Thanksgiving is not the same thing. However, sweet potatoes tend to hold more nutrients than yams. The sweet potato, which was marketed as a yam, was grown on a North Carolina farm. Real yams are entirely different root vegetables that are more like yucca in texture and flavor. Sweet potatoes have thin, smooth skin and orange or white flesh. Unlike that of the sweet potato, the skin of the yam is rough, hiding a white, starchy interior. Not sold yet? Actual sweet potatoes have short, smooth skinned roots with tapered ends whereas actual yams are long and cylindrical with rough, scaly skins. 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