Healthy Snack Options: Sweet Potatoes

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

We've surpassed the mid point in January, are you all keeping up on your resolutions? I didn't make any fitness goals this year (I'm still working on my goals I set last summer), but I have been keeping up with my goals to eat healthy. Eating healthy is not something that comes naturally to me. Growing up I was an extremely picky eater, and I didn't eat broccoli until I was 20! In the last 8 years however, I have learned to broaden my horizons. I still don't like Brussels sprouts (even with bacon), you won't find me eating a bowl of kale or going on a juice cleanse. But, I do my best to eat things that I like and that are also nourishing. I've always loved sweet potato fries, but I have been learning new ways to make them that do not require a deep fryer.

I love salty-sweet combinations, and sweet potatoes are the perfect canvas for such flavors. You can make them savory, or you can make a dessert out of them.There is an on going debate over the difference between a yam and a sweet potato... You can read more here if you like, but for the sake of argument, I'm calling these sweet potatoes.

This snack can be eaten by itself or as a side dish. It's very simple and very nutritious.Sweet potatoes are starchy and have a few carbs, but they have so many other benefits! Sweet potatoes contain iron, B6, Vitamin C and D, and they are a good source of magnesium (a natural stress reducer). The recipe I am sharing today is one that I try to make at least once a week. I make a large batch and then stick it in the fridge and eat it throughout the week. One large sweet potato will garnish a big enough batch to have snacks through the week. I recommend only eating a small portion at at time (size of your palm). While this is a healthy snack, you don't want to over load your body on starches. Also, a little goes on long way, these babies are very filling.



There are a ton of different ways to season sweet potatoes, but I only use the 4 ingredients above. I don't have exact measurements because the size of my sweet potatoes always vary. I keep my seasoning light because you can always add more, but you can't fix this if you put too much! On average, I use a tablespoon of EVOO, a tablespoon of brown sugar, a teaspoon of cinnamon and a teaspoon of salt. You can adjust your measurements for the amount of potato you end up using use.

I combine all the ingredients and the cubed sweet potatoes into a bowl and mix thoroughly. Next, lay them flat on a cookie sheet (I line mine for easy clean up), and put them into the oven at 350. Depending on the amount of potatoes you have the time will vary. I would start with 20 minutes and then check them every 5-10 minutes after that. When they are fork tender, they are done. They will not be crispy, so don't expect that. If you want crispy fries, that's a whole different recipe.

How do you prepare your sweet potatoes?

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