What is the nutritional value of sweet potatoes? (2023)

The sweet potato is an underground tuber that grows on the roots of a plant known scientifically asSweet potatoes.Sweet potatoes are very rich in beta-carotene, which is important for increasing vitamin A levels in the blood. Sweet potatoes are a nutritious, fiber-rich food with a delicious, sweet taste. You can consume them raw, baked, boiled, fried or steamed.

Sweet Potato Nutritional Information

Below are some sweet potato nutrition facts:

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  • One raw sweet potato contains about 20.1 g of carbohydrates.
  • A sweet potato is 77% water, 1.6% protein, 3% fiber and little to no fat.
  • Sweet potato calories are higher in a baked potato compared to a baked one.
  • Sweet potatoes are a rich source of beta-carotene, potassium and vitamin C.
  • Starch is the most abundant nutrient in sweet potatoes.
  • Sweet potatoes are an important source of vitamin A. One large potato contains more than 100% of the daily recommended vitamin A.
  • Vitamin A is considered an antioxidant powerhouse that helps prevent aging and also helps maintain vision.
  • Sweet potato is relatively low in protein, despite being used as the main source of protein in many countries.

What is the nutritional value of sweet potatoes?

Carbohydrates in a Sweet Potato

One medium cooked sweet potato contains 27 g of carbohydrates. The main components include complex carbohydrates known as starch, which make up to 53% of the total carbohydrate content. Simple sugars like maltose, sucrose, fructose and glucose make up to 32% of total carbohydrates. The glycemic index of sweet potatoes ranges from 44 to 96. Baked sweet potatoes appear to have a high glycemic index compared to cooked ones.

Starch-Starches are grouped into three categories based on their properties during digestion. They include:

  • Resistant starch - 12% of the total starch in sweet potatoes. They escape digestion and act like fiber. Chilling sweet potatoes after cooking increases the level of resistant starch.
  • Fast digesting starch - These are the most abundant starches and constitute 80% of the total starch. They are broken down and absorbed very quickly, increasing the glycemic index value.
  • Slow digesting starch - They are 9% of the total starch. They break down easily, which lowers the glycemic index value.

Fiber-There is a lot of fiber in cooked sweet potatoes. Soluble fiber pectin is around 15-23% of the total fiber while insoluble fiber like cellulose, lignin and hemicellulose is around 77-85%. Soluble fiber increases satiety by slowing the digestion of starches and sugars, which helps maintain blood sugar levels. Insoluble fiber helps improve intestinal health and reducesdiabetesrisk.

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Minerals and Vitamins in a Sweet Potato

Sweet potatoes are very rich in minerals and vitamins, making them an excellent source of vitamin C, potassium and beta-carotene. Below is a list of minerals and vitamins in a sweet potato:

  • Vitamin C- Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps improve skin health and lessen the onset of common colds.
  • Vitamin A – Sweet potatoes contain beta-carotene, which is converted to vitamin A while in the body. You can reach the vitamin RDA by eating 100g of sweet potatoes a day.
  • Manganese: Manganese is an important micronutrient in body development, metabolism and growth.
  • Potassium: This is an important mineral or electrolyte that controls blood pressure, lowering the risk of amyocardial infarction.
  • Vitamin B5- Also known as pantothenic acid. It is usually found in almost all foods.
  • Vitamin B6 – Vitamin B6 is an important nutrient when it comes to converting food into energy.
  • Vitamin E – is a fat-soluble antioxidant that helps rid your body of free radicals such as ROS that can damage healthy cells and tissue.

Protein in Sweet Potato

You'll likely get 2g of protein in a medium-sized sweet potato. This amount of protein is relatively low. Sweet potatoes also contain some unique proteins, such as sporamines, which make up over 80% of the total sweet potato protein. Despite being low in protein, sweet potato is used as an important source of protein in many countries around the world.

How to cook a sweet potato

If you don't know how to cook sweet potatoes, you're not alone. A recent survey showed that over 20% of young people find sweet potatoes difficult for them to cook. Although baking is the main way to cook sweet potatoes, different countries use different ways to cook sweet potatoes and get their heavenly sweetness.

Below are different ways to cook sweet potatoes:

baked sweet potatoes

Just as the name suggests, a sweet potato is sweeter than its white, golden, or red cousins. They are rich in vitamin C, vitamin A and fiber, which makes them very nutritious. Do you know how to bake sweet potatoes? One of the ways to cook and enjoy sweet potatoes is to bake them. Roasting sweet potatoes is a popular, healthy and easy way to prepare the vegetable in about 400F. Below are the steps you can follow when roasting sweet potatoes:

Step 1: When preparing the sweet potatoes for baking, preheat the oven to about 400F.

Step 2: Scrub the sweet potatoes with a vegetable brush and cold water to keep them clean. Remove any sticky eyes that may protrude from the potato. After that, pat the sweet potatoes dry with paper towels.

Step 3: Prick each sweet potato several times with a fork. The small ventilation holes you make will keep the potatoes from exploding when they are in the hot oven.

Step 4: Wrap each potato in aluminum foil if you prefer a softer skin. If you want to enjoy your food with a crispier skin, keep the potatoes unwrapped.

Step 5: Place a baking sheet on the bottom rack of the oven. If you happen to bake your potatoes naked at 400In the oven, natural sugars can run off during the process. You can use a baking sheet to catch any drips.

Step 6 – Place the sweet potatoes on the middle rack of the oven and set the kitchen timer to 40 minutes. By that time, your potatoes will be soft and ready.

Step 7: Make holes in the skin of the potatoes with a fork to check if they are fully cooked. The flesh of the potatoes should allow the utensil to slide in and out without resistance.

Stage 8:Finally, slice the roasted sweet potatoes and season them with any seasoning like salt, cinnamon or margarine..

boiled sweet potato

Sweet potatoes are boiled simply by adding 1-inch-thick slices to a pot of boiling water and cooking for about 15 minutes.

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sautéed potato

Sweet potato stir-fry is cooked by first slicing or dicing the potato and then tossing it in oil. Let the potato slices or cubes cook for about 10 minutes before serving.

grilled sweet potato

First, cut the sweet potato into two halves lengthwise, then grill for about 25 minutes. Make sure they are soft before serving.

steamed sweet potato

You can prepare steamed sweet potatoes by placing them over boiling water. Let it cook for about 25 minutes.

baked sweet potato

You can cook it in the microwave for about 5 minutes. Then bake them at 450F for about 10 minutes.

microwave sweet potato

It is prepared by heating a whole potato in the microwave for about 5-8 minutes.

Healthy Sweet Potato Recipes

If there's one complex carbohydrate you must have in your diet and include in your fitness plan, it's sweet potatoes. Depending on how they're prepared, sweet potatoes can satisfy your sweet tooth without derailing your diet plan.

Sweet potatoes offer an excellent slow-digesting fuel for your fitness goal and even improve your overall health. Sweet potato is very rich in vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, manganese, pantothenic acid and copper.

So you can reap the health benefits of sweet potatoes by resisting the temptation to microwave them, which is not a healthy way to cook them. Here are six easy and healthy sweet potato recipes.

1.sweet potato soup

Ingredients
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ clove of minced garlic
  • 1 cup of chicken broth
  • 1 peeled and sliced ​​sweet potato
  • 4 large carrots, peeled and cut into rounds
  • 1 red bell pepper, peeled and chopped
  • ¼ cup full-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • cilantro (optional)
cooking instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the garlic and onion and cook for about 2-3 minutes until the onion softens.
  2. Add the low-sodium chicken broth and 2 cups of water. Let it boil.
  3. Add the carrot, red pepper, ginger and sweet potato and reduce the heat. Let them cook for about 15 minutes.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and let it cool in the refrigerator for about 25 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove any vegetable pieces and whisk the soup until thick.
  5. Put the vegetables back in the soup and heat them up again. Cook for 15 minutes until the soup thickens.
  6. Add the yogurt and then stir. You can top with cilantro if you like. Serve the soup when it's hot.

This recipe makes 4 servings and each serving has 237 calories, 3.6g protein, 18g fat and 16g carbs.

2.French fries with cilantro and lemon

Ingredients
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 4 large sweet potatoes, cleaned and sliced
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • Pepper and salt to taste
  • 2 tablespoons of lemon zest
cooking instructions
  1. Preheat a pan first of all.
  2. Puree the garlic and half of the cilantro in a food processor until well blended. Pour the mixture into a Ziploc bag along with the olive oil and add the sweet potato. Shake the mixture to completely coat the potatoes.
  3. When all the potatoes are covered, place the slices in the pan and cook for about 3 minutes to achieve the desired softness.
  4. Remove from heat and serve while still hot.

This recipe yields 4 servings and each serving contains 270 calories, 18g of fat, 2g of protein and 26g of total carbs.

3.french fries with cinnamon

Ingredients
  • ½ tablespoon of cinnamon
  • ½ tablespoon brown sugar
  • sliced ​​sweet potato
  • Butter flavored cooking spray
cooking instructions
  1. Preheat an oven to 375F.
  2. Drizzle the flavored butter into a skillet and place the sliced ​​sweet potatoes on top. Pulverize the fries lightly.
  3. Bake the fries for about 7 minutes until golden brown. Turn and bake for another 10 minutes.
  4. Remove the fries from the oven and sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon.
  5. Transfer the fries to a bowl and serve immediately.

Each serving contains 135 calories, 0g fat, 2g protein and 32g total carbs.

4.Banana Bread Sweet Potato Muffins

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Ingredients
  • 3 tablespoons coconut flavoring
  • ½ cup egg white
  • ½ cup banana-flavored protein powder
  • ½ cup mashed banana
  • ½ cup sweet potato puree
  • 1 cup almond milk
cooking instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Spray a skillet with nonstick spray.
  3. Combine banana and sweet potato puree until fully blended.
  4. Add remaining ingredients.
  5. Bake the mixture for about 40 minutes until fully cooked.

The recipe makes 10 servings, and each serving contains 6.6g of protein, 61 calories, 1.1g of total fat, and 6.2g of total carbs.

5.Sweet Potato Cookies with Chocolate Chips

Ingredients
  • ½ tablespoon of salt
  • Boiled and mashed sweet potato
  • 2 spoons of vanilla extract
  • 2 spoons of cinnamon
  • ½ cup coconut flakes
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 spoons of coconut oil
  • ¼ cup peanut
  • 1 spoon of chocolate powder
  • ¼ cup almond milk
cooking instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. Mash the sweet potato and add the coconut oil until smooth. Combine remaining ingredients in another bowl.
  3. Add the sweet potatoes to the mixture and stir until a biscuit dough forms. Place the dough on a baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes. Make sure it turns brown.
  4. Serve immediately.

For this recipe, you will have 12 servings. Each serving contains 4.4g of protein, 108 calories, 6.8g of total carbs and 7.8g of total fat.

6.Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Rosemary and Parmesan

Ingredients
  • 1 clove of minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • Pepper and salt to taste
  • 1/8 low-fat parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 large potatoes
cooking instructions
  1. Preheat oven to approximately 400F.
  2. Cut the sweet potatoes into cubes while waiting for the oven to preheat.
  3. Combine the garlic, rosemary, cheese, olive oil and Parmesan in a Ziploc bag and add the sweet potato. Mix to coat the potatoes.
  4. Place the mold or dish in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes. Flip the sweet potatoes and continue baking for another 25 minutes.
  5. Remove the potatoes from the oven and serve them when they are hot.

This recipe yields 2 servings where each serving contains 281 calories, 9g protein, 27g total carbs and 16g total fat.

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FAQs

What is the nutritional value of a baked sweet potato? ›

A medium-sized baked sweet potato has 100 calories, 23 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of protein, and no fat or cholesterol. It's also rich in the antioxidant beta-carotene and vitamin C. Sweet potatoes are also loaded with potassium and vitamin B6.

What is a healthy serving of sweet potato? ›

A half cup of sweet potatoes is about one cupped handful. A half cup of sweet potatoes is an excellent source* of Vitamin A and Vitamin C. It is also a good source** of fiber, Vitamin B6, and potassium.

What is the most nutritious way to eat a sweet potato? ›

Boiling sweet potatoes retains more beta-carotene and makes the nutrient more absorbable than other cooking methods such as baking or frying. Up to 92% of the nutrient can be retained by limiting the cook time, such as boiling in a pot with a tightly covered lid for 20 minutes.

Is sweet potato the healthiest vegetable? ›

Sweet potatoes as the #1 most nutritional vegetable,with more nutrients than even spinach or broccoli! Benefits of the sweet potato include high levels of Vitamins A and C, iron, potassium, and dietary fiber. Especially important is the high percentage of beta-carotene found in sweet potatoes.

Is sweet potato healthier than regular potato? ›

Sweet potatoes are often touted as being healthier than white potatoes, but in reality, both types can be highly nutritious. While regular and sweet potatoes are comparable in their calorie, protein, and carb content, white potatoes provide more potassium, whereas sweet potatoes are incredibly high in vitamin A.

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