Sweet potatoes are a staple of fall -- they're rich in flavor and nutrients, and their bright orange color evokes the allure of the season. It's no wonder that sweet potatoes are popping up all over the net in some of the tastiest-looking recipes! We've selected our favorite sweet potato recipes to share for this week's Meatless Monday.
Sweet potatoes are often boxed in; you often see them baked with marshmallows or sugar or whipped into a purée. But the light sweetness of this vegetable is just as comfortable in savory dishes as in sweet. Highlight the best of the vegetable for some tasty sweet potato recipes that diverge from tradition.
Let's start things off at the beginning: with dessert! Even given its sweet flavor, it's uncommon to see sweet potato in a dessert in the West. And yet in Japan, sweet potato pastry is a common snack or after-dinner treat! In this case, Japanese purple sweet potatoes add a special color and unique appeal to the dessert. Some recipes call for the sweet potatoes to be mashed, but you can also leave the sweet potatoes whole, in rounds, and place them on top of the pastry so that the color takes an even more central position in the dessert.
Photo Credit: Jules
You've likely tried sweet potato soup before, maybe more times than you can count. But have you ever tried a raw sweet potato soup? In its raw form, sweet potato adds a lighter, more refreshing flavor to soups and, as long as it's blended properly, is just as smooth and creamy as cooked. This recipe adds banana and almond milk to the mix for additional creaminess, while date and pear play backup to the natural sweetness of the potato.
Image: Yuri Long
Poutine is a Canadian classic, but it only gets better when sweet potatoes stand in for standard spuds. A sweet potato poutine offers a touch more nutrition to the rich, heavy dish, but it also makes it more autumnal. You'll want to use a vegetarian gravy for this; a mushroom gravy adds a great richness and even more fall flavor to this version of the dish.
Recipe and photo courtesy of McCormick
If you're set on baking up your sweet potatoes with something sweet -- and that's perfectly fine! -- try something that still lends some variety to your plate, with this roasted sweet potato with cinnamon pecan crunch recipe. Cranberry, orange and fall spices add a seasonal flavor to this dish, which will be just as at home on your Meatless Monday table as on your Thanksgiving table!
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Top image: Laitr Keiows