Sweet potatoes represent an excellent choice for a side dish to any of your favorite entrees. These naturally sweet tasting vegetables are high in beta-carotene, vitamin C, potassium, antioxidants and fiber.
According to nutritionists at the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), the sweet potato ranks number one in nutrition among all vegetables. The sweet potato outscored the second place vegetable by 101 points. Yes that’s right, a baked potato ranks second with a score of 83, followed by spinach with a score of 76. (These points are derived according to content of dietary fiber, naturally occurring sugars and complex carbohydrates, protein, vitamins A and C, iron, and calcium.)
Besides being helpful for stomach ulcers and inflamed conditions of the colon, sweet potatoes are also beneficial for diabetics, as they help stabilize blood sugar levels. Sweet potatoes digest slowly, causing a gradual rise in blood sugar so you feel fuller for a longer period of time. Certainly, sweet potatoes deserve recognition all year long — not just around the holidays!
- 4 large sweet potatoes
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 tsp. salt
- ½ to 1 tsp. crushed red pepper, depending on your tastes
- ½ tsp. dried basil
- ½ tsp. onion powder
- ¼ tsp. oregano
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a large roasting pan with non-stick cooking spray. Peel and rinse potatoes. Cut into coins. In a large bowl, add oil and spices and blend well. Place coins into spicy oil mixture, coating pieces well. Pour into roasting pan. Bake for about 45-60 minutes or until desired consistency (ranging from crunchy to fork-tender).