When it comes to nailing your little one’s nutritional needs and boosting their immunity, look no further than Australian sweet potatoes. Despite their name, sweet potatoes don’t belong to the potato family, instead they are a tuberous root vegetable, making them the perfect choice to supercharge your family’s meals.
Sweet potatoes have a creamy texture and sweet flavour, which are always a hit at the dinner table, and better still they’re very high in Vitamin A, essential for healthy skin and eyes and helping to promote healthy growth and development in kids. Young children also get 100% of their recommended daily intake of vitamin C from just one serve of sweet potato, making it the perfect addition to meals to boost your children’s immune system and keep pesky cold and flu bugs away as we go into winter. It is also high in fibre to promote a healthy digestive system, keeping yours and your little one’s tummies happy.
The versatility of sweet potato gives it an edge over other veggies. You can put a spin on classic hummus by using sweet potato, or add a twist to your morning toast by creating sweet potato toast and loading them up with your favourite toppings for a nutritious and delicious breakfast. Their sweet flavour also makes sweet potato the perfect healthy treat. Try mashing a peeled and cooked sweet potato with some milk, yoghurt, honey, cinnamon and vanilla essence for a guilt-free dessert even the toughest little critics will love. Even better, add some fun to the kitchen by putting a peeled sweet potato through a spiraliser to create your very own sweet potato noodles. They’re both colourful – making them more exciting for the kids – and they pack a powerful nutritional punch.
To make the most of the benefits of sweet potato, make sure you choose ones with brightly coloured skins. The deeper the colour, the richer it is in the antioxidant beta carotene. Store them loose in a cool dark, well-ventilated place for up to two weeks, allowing you and your family lots of time to make the most of their delicious goodness.
For an easy weeknight meal the whole family will love, try this sweet potato pasta bake with spinach and pine nuts from the Australian sweet potatoes website here.
About Jemma O’Hanlon
Jemma O’Hanlon, Accredited Practising Dietitian and Nutritionist, has more than 13 year’s experience across foodservice, food manufacturing and public health sectors. Jemma is currently the Research & Development Manager at Hort Innovation and manages the Health, Nutrition, Food Safety and Value Chain projects. These align with her values of supporting Australian farmers and encouraging Aussies to eat more fresh fruit and vegetables.