A Rainbow of Sweet Potato Varieties That Everyone Should Try

We've unearthed the top types of this favorite tuber, and we're sharing easy ways to enjoy them.

purple, orange, and white sweet potatoes
Photo: Lennart Weibull

You can find sweet potatoes in colors as diverse as the leaves right now, with burgundy skins, flame-orange centers, or eggplant-purple interiors and exteriors. Each has unique qualities to match, such as earthy flavor or creamy texture. Always go for medium-size ones that feel firm in your hand, and store them in a cool, dry place for up to a month.

You may see orange-fleshed sweet potatoes mislabeled as yams, but yams are a completely different vegetable. They have rough, bumpy skins and far drier, white flesh.


A high concentration of anthocyanins (antioxidants that fight inflammation) gives these dark beauties their inky color. They have rich, buttery taste, so try them in your favorite mashed-potato recipe to add some intrigue to the side spread.

Garnet, Jewel, and Beauregard

The orange-fleshed varieties you usually see piled up at the store are also the most versatile. Enjoy them interchangeably in marshmallow-topped casseroles; roasted with olive oil, salt, and pepper; or sliced into wedges for oven fries.


The mildest of this bunch (but far from bland), they have a firm bite similar to that of russets. Swap them in when you want to branch out from your usual spud game: We love them boiled and tossed in potato salad, or roasted on steak night.


Their dense texture and intense sweetness make these extra-delicious when baked: Roasting them brings out their subtle nuttiness, and bit of butter or sour cream softens them up. (Unlike their purple peers, they're—surprise!—pale yellow inside.)

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