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Is there a difference between a Sweet Potato and a Yam? Aren’t they the same? Evidently, they are not the same- they are actually two different vegetables!

A Sweet potato is a tuber- yellow or orange- that is elongated and tapered at the ends. The sweet potato that is light yellow in color, has a pale yellow, non- sweet, yet dry crumbling textured flesh- similar to a white potato. The orangey- reddish colored sweet potato has a thicker skin and has a moist and sweet flesh. This is the one that is commonly, and wrongly, called the yam.

A Yam is actually not even distantly related to a sweet potato! A yam is a tuber that can grow over 7 feet in length, and is a tuber of a vine, grown in tropical climates (South America, Africa, and the Caribbean). The skin is similar to the color of a bark of a tree- a brown or black color- and it’s flesh is the color of an off white, purple, or red. A yam contains more natural sugar and moisture content than a sweet potato, thus they are sweeter than sweet potatoes!

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