They may seem similar, but sweet potatoes and regular potatoes are only distantly related. Both can be roasted, baked, boiled, fried or mashed, but when it comes to dessert, sweet potatoes have the advantage. They’re sweeter and can be used in cakes, quick breads and sweet potato pie. Here’s a rundown of how to shop for, store and prep sweet potatoes.
How to shop for sweet potatoes
- Sweet potatoes should feel heavy for their size. Make sure they’re free of bruises, soft spots or sprouting.
- There are two main kinds of sweet potatoes. One has golden skin and creamy white flesh that cooks up firm and a little crumbly. The other has copper skin and deep orange flesh; these tend to be softer and sweeter. Supermarkets sometimes label—or mislabel—the copper skinned ones as yams, but yams are different and in fact, not that common in the U.S.
How to store sweet potatoes
- Don’t refrigerate sweet potatoes. Instead, place them in a well-ventilated container or bag and store them in a cool, dark place. They should last about a month.
How to prep sweet potatoes
- Sweet potatoes can be peeled with a vegetable peeler, but the skin has a lot of nutrition so you may want to leave it on. If so, scrub it under cold, running water.