Ube (pronounced oo-bae) is known in English as purple yam and should not be confused with purple potatoes or with purple sweet potatoes. One distinct difference with purple sweet potatoes is that ube grows on vines above ground, while sweet potatoes grow underground as a tuber.

These potatoes have a rough looking skin but a bright purple flesh. Those who have enjoyed the bright purple treat say its a slightly sweeter version of the familian orange sweet potato. It can be used to liven up the flavor of most mildly sweet treats while offering a lovely lavender color.

Ube belongs in the same starchy vegetables family as sweet potatoes, taro and yucca. But the violet vegetable is slightly less starchy than sweet potato with 37 grams of carbohydrates per one-cup serving versus 41 grams of carbohydrates in one cup of sweet potato. Ube is rich in potassium, and its vibrant purple color is an indication that it’s loaded with anthocyanins.

Ube, unlike sweet potatoes that grow in the ground, grow above ground on a vine!

The Lowdown

  • Season
  • Color
    Rough brown exterior, bright purple flesh
  • Taste
    Slightly sweet potato flavor
  • Select
    Pick those with no soft spots or mold.
  • Store
    Store in a cool cupboard as you would other potatoes.

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