Root vegetables were an essential food for human survival during the last millennial. They’re hardy, easy to transport, and can be stored through cold winter months. Many cultures, including the Irish and Spanish, based meals around root vegetables such as parsnips, carrots, and potatoes. They depended on root vegetables so heavily, that these explorers brought root vegetables to the New World during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
The most popular root vegetable on the colonial menu was the potato. Loaded with nutrients and carbohydrates, potatoes kept settlers full, energized, and nourished. In modern times, however, potatoes have a bad reputation for their high starch and carbohydrate content.
Enter the sweet potato.
Believed to have originated in the Andes of South America, sweet potatoes have more grams of natural sugar than white potatoes, but are packed with more overall nutrients and contain fewer calories.
Dubbed a “super food,” sweet potatoes boast 400% of your daily dose of Vitamin A, and are loaded with other essential nutrients such as fiber, potassium, Vitamin C, and beta-carotene. Due to these nutrients, sweet potatoes are beneficial to eyesight, immunity, and satiation- they keep you fuller longer!
Being low on the glycemic index scale and high in fiber, sweet potatoes may reduce episodes of low blood sugar and insulin resistance in people with diabetes.They’re also tastier than white potatoes, and still have the same versatility in preparation.
We believe in finding creative ways to prepare a healthy lunch that are also savory and delicious. Sweet potatoes are an excellent substitute to white potatoes, and can be baked and roasted in the same way. Buy a bag of sweet potatoes and use them throughout the week.
Monday – Wrap or Salad
Top your salad with roasted sweet potatoes or sweet potato hummus. A delicious vegetable and chip dip, we love adding hummus to our salads and wraps for spice and creaminess. Sweet potato hummus is an excellent addition to your healthy lunch, as it adds a touch of savory sweetness and will you keep you full until dinner.
Tuesday – Soup
Soup is quick and easier to make than you think. Perfect for colder months or evenings when you’re low on time, we recommend sweet potato black bean chili or sweet potato coconut soup. Enjoy for dinner and take leftovers to work the next day.
Wednesday - Bowl
Bowls make you feel like you’re eating more than you are, which is excellent if you’re trying to cut calories. Prepare a steak and sweet potato bowl with an avocado-cilantro drizzle for a healthy lunch packed with super foods and flavor. Leftovers can easily be repurposed into a wrap for the next day.
Thursday - Burger
Even typical American lunches can be upgraded with sweet potatoes. Try pairing your favorite burger with sweet potato French fries or chips to upgrade it to a healthy lunch. You’ll notice more flavor with the sweet potato version of these popular potato sides.
Friday – Skillet
Like a bowl, a skillet is an excellent way to incorporate numerous ingredients into a healthy lunch you look forward to. Try a ground turkey sweet potato skillet or Tex-Mex sweet potato skillet. As with a bowl, skillets are easy to repurpose into additional lunches, or even dinner.
Root vegetables may be a popular dinner option during the colder months, but they’re also delicious when added to a healthy lunch. Sweet potatoes are versatile, nutrient dense, and oh so good! Give this root vegetable a try for added health benefits and flavor.
Meg is a dreamer, entrepreneur, and homesteader based in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. She loves her cats, feasting, and road trips in her green VW Bug.