Can you eat a sweet potato skin? (3 Facts for you)

In this brief guide, we will answer the question, can you eat a sweet potato skin? We will discuss the nutritional value of eating sweet potato skin with the flesh and some cooking methods that use the skin and flesh. 

Can you eat a sweet potato skin?

You can eat a sweet potato skin. Most nutritionists would recommend you to eat sweet potato skin because of the concentrated amounts of nutrition. Potato skins are not only edible but, the papery, crunchy skin can be delightful when baked, fried, or boiled.

Before you eat the skin, clean and rinse the sweet potatoes thoroughly to get rid of the dirt, debris, and germs. When you cook sweet potato, you expose it to extreme temperatures that would kill any residual microorganisms that might be left behind. 

After you cook the sweet potato, you can eat the peel together with the flesh. If you like, you can remove and eat it separately. Do not peel the skin when you mash the sweet potatoes or make fries and wedges. You can also stuff the sweet potato or the skin with cream, peas, and onions and make stuffed sweet potatoes.

Sweet potatoes: an overview

Sweet potatoes are large and starchy vegetables that are popular for their sweet taste and creamy texture. Sweet potatoes grow underground. Belonging to the category of root tubers, like potatoes and carrots, they too are full of starch or carbohydrates. The sugar in sweet potatoes is called maltose, which is mildly and uniquely sweet. Like potatoes, they are hard and starchy when raw, but on cooking become sweet and tender. 

 The starches break down to carbohydrates as the maltase enzyme changes the starch to maltose and produces a familiar sweet taste. 

Sweet potatoes are a rich source of fiber and antioxidants. Sweet potatoes also come with vitamin c, vitamin A, potassium, pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), niacin (vitamin B3), vitamin B6, manganese, magnesium, and copper.

Sweet potatoes will keep your digestive system, heart, reproductive organs, immune system; healthy. 

Even though sweet potatoes are filled with calories and sugars, they have a very low glycemic index. Despite their sweet taste, they will not make your blood glucose levels spike; hence, they digest at a slow pace. A low glycemic index means sweet potatoes do not increase any risk of developing or worsening diabetes, cholesterol, or cardiovascular diseases. On the contrary, sweet potatoes stabilize blood sugar. 

Why must you eat the sweet potato with the skin intact?

While you cook, it is in your best interest not to peel the skin off the sweet potatoes to retain nutritional value and a pleasing texture.

High Fiber

The peels of sweet potatoes have a high quantity of fiber. If you get rid of the sweet potato’s skin, you will be a deficit of most of the fiber, sweet potatoes contain. 

Antioxidants

The antioxidants in sweet potatoes lie just beneath the skin, so you will get most of the antioxidants by eating whole sweet potato, inclusively the skin. Beta carotene is present in the skin, which converts to vitamin A.

Vitamin A plays a crucial role in maintaining the retina of the eyes and protecting from night blindness, vision impairment, and clears the cornea. Vitamin A is also good for the skin because it shields it from oxidative damage. Like Vitamin C, Vitamin A also strengthens the immune system. The entire sweet potato can provide you with half of the day’s vitamin C. 

Potassium 

The skin of a single sweet potato contains around 11 percent of the day’s quota. The sweet potato has 542 mg of sweet potato. 

Potassium lowers blood pressure, boosts the nervous system, improves the kidneys and heart. 

Iron

The Iron is not restricted to meat and green vegetables only, but sweet potatoes have sufficient amounts too. Iron is necessary to prevent anemia and consequent fatigue, hair fall, and poor concentration. 

Why should you cook the sweet potatoes with the skin intact?

As vitamin C and B are soluble in water, exposing the flesh to boiling water will make them leach out. For optimal nutritional value, leave the skin on while you eat because it has antioxidants and vitamins that the insides are not sufficient to provide you. Frying or cooking at extreme temperatures will also destroy the vitamins from vegetables. 

What is the difference between dehydrated sweet potato skin and fresh sweet potato skin?

If you buy dehydrated sweet potato skins, do not expect to get as much nutrition’s as fresh skin. Dehydrated sweet potato skin also has plenty of calories and sodium, making it an overall unhealthy purchase.

In this brief guide, we answered the question, can you eat a sweet potato skin? We discussed the nutritional value of eating the sweet potato skin with the flesh and some cooking methods that make use of the skin and flesh. 

Citations

https://spoonuniversity.com/lifestyle/my-school-is-changing-the-farm-industry-in-america
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/can-you-eat-sweet-potato-skin#ways-to-eat
https://www.livestrong.com/article/534200-what-nutrients-are-in-the-skins-of-sweet-potatoes/

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.