Sweet potatoes are plentiful, inexpensive, versatile and one of our most nutritious foods. Best of all, they taste good. Nutrition and disease-prevention specialists have touted their virtues for years.
Sweet potatoes are high in antioxidant vitamins, which help our bodies fight aging, heart disease and cancer. An average sweet potato has four times the recommended dietary allowance of beta carotene, or vitamin A. They are also a good source of hard-to-get antioxidant vitamin E and they are fat free. Many other foods high in vitamin E, such as nuts and avocados, are high in fat. Two-thirds cup of mashed sweet potatoes supply 100-percent of the RDA for vitamin E.
One medium baked sweet potato, including the skin, contains an impressive 3.4 grams of fiber, according to the USDA Nutrient Database. Eat the skin whenever you can because it provides much of the fiber.
Sweet Potato Recipes
Vegetable Sweet Potato Pancakes
1 medium sweet potato, peeled, grated
1 medium potato, peeled, grated
1 medium onion, peeled, grated
1 small zucchini, washed, ends removed, grated
1-tablespoon fresh chopped basil or 1-teaspoon dried
1 /4 cup egg substitute
3 tablespoons non-bleached flour or whole wheat flour
Black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon peanut oil for frying
In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except peanut oil. Add more flour as necessary if mixture seems too loose. In large non-stick skillet or griddle, heat peanut oil. Working in batches if necessary and adding more peanut oil if needed spoon one-quarter cup of batter for each pancake. Cook until browned on one side, turn and continue cooking until other side is browned. Remove from skillet. Recipe makes six servings.
Nutrition information per serving: Calories: 109; Carbohydrates: 19g; Protein: 3g; Total fat: 3g; Saturated fat: 0; Cholesterol: 0; Sodium: 24mg; Fiber: 2g
Sweet Potato Fries
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled
Seasoned salt to taste
Ground cinnamon to taste
Preheat oven to 350-degrees. Cut sweet potatoes into strips one-quarter-inch thick and one-quarter-inch wide; set aside. Coat large baking sheet with vegetable oil spray. Spread potato strips on baking sheet in one layer. Lightly coat potato strips with spray. Sprinkle with seasoned salt and cinnamon. Bake in preheated oven 30 minutes or until thoroughly cooked. Recipe makes six servings.
Nutrition information per serving: Calories: 85; Carbohydrates: 18g; Protein: 1g; Total fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 0; Sodium: 8mg; Fiber: 2g
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