Sweet potatoes have a ton of health benefits – way more than their other potato counterparts. According to Health magazine, a single baked, medium-sized sweet potato has 438 percent of your daily value of vitamin A, 37 percent of your vitamin C, plus calcium, potassium and iron. It also has 16 percent of your daily value of dietary fiber, and you get all of this for only 105 calories. Needless to say, if you’re focusing on healthy eating, you should be ditching those white potatoes in favor of this orange variety. Here are four healthy, easy ways to prep this nutritious root veggie.
- Sweet potato ‘fries’
French fries have a bad rep, but baking them in the oven instead of frying them makes them a breeze to incorporate into a healthy meal plan. Subbing sweet potatoes instead of white potatoes adds all the nutrients your body needs. Just cut up 3 sweet potatoes lengthwise to form wedges. Place the wedges in a bowl and toss them with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper. You can use other spices depending on what kind of taste you’re craving, whether it’s sweet or spicy. Arrange the coated wedges in a single layer on a greased baking sheet and bake at 450 degrees for 30 minutes, turning them once in the middle.
- Sweet potato smoothie
Believe it or not, you can totally incorporate sweet potatoes into a smoothie to drink on-the-go. According to Serving Up Soul, to make two smoothies you’ll need:
- 1 1/4 cups vanilla soy milk
- 1/4 cup cooked sweet potato, cold
- 1 6-ounce container fat-free vanilla Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla.
Combine all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. It’ll taste like a sweet potato pie!
- Sweet potato ‘fettuccine’
Pasta is a major comfort food, but many times it’s full of empty carbohydrates that don’t help you much on your fit living journey. If you substitute the noodles for sweet potato ribbons, however, it’s a different story. Use a spiralizer to transform your sweet potatoes into noodles, then saute them in a bit of olive oil for 6 to 8 minutes until they’re al dente like pasta. Southern Living recommended tossing your sweet potato “fettuccine” with parsley, chopped pecans, lemon zest, garlic and salt.
- Sweet potato chips
If you’re craving a crunchy snack that won’t derail you from your healthy eating path, sweet potato chips are the way to go. Use a mandoline slicer to cut your sweet potatoes into thin circles. Toss them into a bowl with pinches of salt, cumin and chili powder, then add a splash of olive oil. Mix until the chips are well coated, then arrange them in a single layer on a greased baking sheet. Bake at 425 for 20 minutes, turning the chips halfway through.