What Does Ube Taste Like?

What Does Ube Taste Like

Ube’s sweet flavor and soft texture make it a favorite in desserts and another Filipino cuisine. The flesh of ube is similar in appearance to that of potatoes and taro but is a much deeper purple than the former. Its mild, nutty flavor makes it an excellent ingredient for desserts. The flesh of ube is a delicate and palatable vegetable, perfect for cooking or serving as a side dish.

Unlike potato, ube is less savory and has an earthy flavor. It is used primarily in sweet dishes, such as ice cream, and it is also a staple in halo-halo, a famous Filipino treat made of shaved ice and evaporated milk. Though it has a unique and subtle flavor, ube can easily be substituted for taro in dessert recipes.

What is Ube?

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Save this

Enter your email below and I'll email this post to you -- no strings and no further emails unless you ask for them.

Ube is native to Asia, and it is grown in the Philippines but is also grown in the Philippines. Classified initially as camote, it was later categorized as a yam. As a tuber, ube is similar to taro, but it has a slightly different flavor. Its sweet, nutty flavor makes it a versatile ingredient and a popular side dish.

Although it comes in many different varieties, ube is a native of the Philippines. Because of its unique color and flavor, ube has become increasingly popular in Filipino cuisine. Its versatility and sweet flavor make it an attractive ingredient for any chef’s pantry. However, it is still unknown to many Americans. It is an excellent addition to a Filipino meal, but it is best enjoyed fresh. When preparing ube, it is essential to select organically grown products.

What does Ube Taste Like?

When cooked, ube’s flavor is similar to that of taro. It is similar in appearance and texture to a purple sweet potato. It is usually white or beige in color, and its interior is whitish with purplish flecks. The taste is nutty and sweet and is reminiscent of sweet potatoes or red yams. While ube has a neutral taste, it does have a robust nutty flavor.

Ube has a mellow, vanilla-like flavor, similar to that of taro. Its skin is brown and features thin root-like extensions. The interior is whitish, with purplish flecks; its taste is sweet and nutty. This type of yam is a popular ingredient in many Filipino dishes.

Ube has a surprisingly neutral taste and texture. It’s best used in savory dishes, while taro is more commonly used in sweet recipes. And the nutty, slightly sweet flavor is very appealing.

Is it Possible to grow Ube?

Certainly! However, you must ensure that you complete each step of the procedure. Growing ube can be difficult because it requires ideal growing conditions and attention.

Growing your own ube, on the other hand, can be extremely rewarding, and the time and effort required to do so will pay off once you see results.

You should try to grow your ube in a controlled indoor environment to keep a close eye on the temperature and track exactly how much and how often it gets water.

After your ube has grown, you can use it in various dishes to get the most out of it. Fruit and vegetables taste so much better when you know you helped grow them!

What’s the Distinction Between Ube and Taro?


Because of its color, usually an intense, saturated purple, the ube can easily be distinguished from a yam. Its color deepens when cooked or processed into baked goods and other desserts. Food photographers, bakers, and café owners love to incorporate this vegetable into recipes to create vibrant, irresistible food.

When taro is pulled from the ground, the flesh is lighter and often white. After being grated, blended, or chopped up, it often turns a light purple color. Although taro lacks the vibrancy of ube, food vendors in the Philippines and other tropical countries see this as a positive, marketing taro as a “healthier flavor” in sweet treats such as slushies and ice cream.


The ube is a Southeast Asian instrument that has been around since ancient times. It is now a staple food in the Philippines, appearing in many dishes. Africa, South America, Australia, and the United States are all home to the ube.

Taro                                                                                                                                                                                       Taros are believed to be one of the first crops to be harvested domestically, originating in Southeast Asia and India. In Hawaii, the Caribbean, the South Pacific, China, Southeast Asia, and Africa, vegetable has become a staple food. The Japanese grow a variety of this crop and use it in various dishes.


An ube has a mild, sweet, and rich flavor; while it has a starchy texture, it isn’t as easily added to savory dishes as taro. The ube has a soft, slightly sticky texture that is moist and easy to eat once cooked.

Taro                                                                                                                                                                                   It is a starchy vegetable with a slightly nutty, earthy flavor. You’ll have a good idea of what a sweet potato tastes like if you’ve ever tried one. Taro has a soft, dry, and slightly grainy texture when cooked.

Other ingredients

The ube is used in many desserts in Filipino cuisine. Its sweet, subtle flavor blends well with more potent, astringent ingredients like cheddar cheese. Ube cheese pandesal is a cheese-filled soft and fluffy bread roll. The sweet and salty flavors complement each other perfectly. Pandan, coconut, cream cheese, and even mung beans pair well with ube.

Taro                                                                                                                                                                                       Taros are sweeter but have a nutty flavor with a vanilla undertone. Although they can be used in desserts, they are more commonly used in savory dishes. Taro is deliciously roasted with meat, chicken, or fish. Before baking, they’re also the perfect size for stuffing with ground meat, pulled pork, spices, and other diced vegetables. Matcha, black sesame, and red beans are all Asian flavors that go well with taro.

What’s the Difference Between Ube and a Purple Sweet Potato from Okinawa?

The only sweet potatoes in the bunch are Okinawan sweet potatoes (also known as purple sweet potatoes, bene-IMO, Hawaiian sweet potato, and uala). They are not technically potatoes but rather members of the morning glory family.

They are thought to have originated with the Aztecs of South America and were transported to the Philippines and China by the Spaniards in the late 15th century. In the 1600s, it finally made its way to Japan.

On the outside, they resemble taro because of their chalky white skin, and on the inside, they resemble Philippine purple yams because of their purple interior.

The sweetness of these purple sweet potatoes is closer to ube than taro, but the texture is dehydrated and starchy, and they have a slightly bitter aftertaste.

They’re frequently baked, boiled, fried, roasted, or steamed, and they’re commonly used in various potato-based dishes.

Like ube and taro, the Okinawan sweet potato is high in nutrients, with Vitamin A and C, fiber, iron, and potassium.

Why is Ube so Popular these Days?

Simply look at current culinary trends in the country, particularly the growing popularity of plant-based diets, to answer this question. Over the last decade, the number of people choosing vegan and vegetarian lifestyles has increased, as have diets that aren’t entirely plant-based but still emphasize healthy eating. As a result, there’s been a surge in interest in a wider variety of produce (because Brussels sprouts and broccoli on repeat can get boring), and chefs and influencers are sharing dishes that reflect current culinary trends on social media. When it comes to social media, the fact that ube is a photogenic beauty helps, especially now that snapping and posting an Insta-worthy picture of your food before picking up your fork has become commonplace.

Is Ube Rich in Antioxidants?

  • Antioxidants such as anthocyanins and vitamin C are abundant in purple yams.
  • Antioxidants help protect your cells from free radicals, which are harmful molecules.
  • Many chronic diseases, such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and neurodegenerative disorders, are linked to free radical damage.
  • Purple yams are high in vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant in the human body.
  • In fact, studies show that increasing your vitamin C intake can boost your antioxidant levels by up to 35 percent, protecting your cells from oxidative damage.
  • Purple yams contain anthocyanins, which are a type of polyphenol antioxidant.
  • Eating polyphenol-rich fruits and vegetables regularly has been linked to a lower risk of several cancers.

According to promising research, two anthocyanins found in purple yams, cyanidin, and peonidin, may slow the progression of certain cancers, including:

Cancer of the Colon- In one study, dietary cyanidin reduced tumors by up to 45 percent in animals, while another test-tube study found that it slowed the growth of human cancer cells.
Cancer of the Lungs- Peonidin slowed the growth of lung cancer cells in a test tube study.
Cancer of the Prostate- Cyanidin was found to reduce the number of human prostate cancer cells in a test tube study.

These studies, however, used high concentrations of cyanidin and peonidin. As a result, eating whole purple yams is unlikely to provide the same benefits.

Is Ube Good for you?

Although ube is commonly found in sweet treats, combined with less-than-healthy ingredients like sugar and sweetened condensed milk, these purple yams have a nutritional profile all their own. Ube is an excellent source of dietary fiber (4 grams per serving) and health-promoting antioxidants, according to Dr. Amy Lee, Nucific’s Head of Nutrition.

Dr. Lee explains that, despite its creamy, potato-like texture, “ube is actually considered a low glycemic load food, so it is not as starchy as one may think…and the starch is a resistant starch, so it feeds our probiotics in the gut.” All of this appears to be good news, right? It will get better. It turns out that the beautiful purple color isn’t just for show. According to Dr. Lee, the pigment comes from anthocyanins, which have anti-inflammatory and pro-health properties. Bottom line: Ube is good for you, but the benefits can be offset by the other ingredients you’re eating (i.e., don’t overdo it on the ube cupcakes, OK?).

What can Ube and Milk do Together?

Its light purple color is sure to draw attention in the real world. Ube can be used to make rich ice cream, but it’s not the only dairy recipe for Instagram. After straining and processing the ube, combine it with warmed milk and honey to make a sweet latte. You can also make a fun surprise by substituting potatoes for ube.

Allow it to inspire you, whether you use an extract, paste, or shredded ube. Serve a completely purple cake, from the batter to the buttercream frosting, or bake thin ube slices for your new favorite homemade chips. Even cheese is paired with the ingredient! After all, it is a potato and one that can be used in various milk recipes.

Ube is Used in What Dishes?

Numerous dishes use ube as an ingredient to create delicious flavors and textures. Some of these may be available in local restaurants or grocery stores, while others can be made at home.

  • If you want to try ube for the first time, we recommend trying ube doughnuts or ube loaf.
  • Ube doughnuts take advantage of the ube’s sweet and creamy flavor in a familiar form.
  • Ube loaf can be made nice and soft, with plenty of purple ube marbled throughout so that every bite brings those fabulous and unique flavors to mind.
  • It can also be used in salads and stews quickly and easily incorporate the ingredient.


Though it’s difficult to find fresh ube in the United States, you can find it in powdered or extract form. While ube is a root vegetable, it is not related to the Okinawan Sweet Potato. The latter has a darker purple flesh, while ube is more closely related to the Okinawan sweet potato. The taro plant has been grown on the islands for thousands of years.

As an alternative to sweet potato, ube is an excellent alternative to this staple of the Philippines. It is not as sweet as taro, but has a unique flavor that will appeal to many. Its texture is similar to pumpkin, and tastes very similar to pumpkin. Its texture and flavor are similar to taro, making it an ideal ingredient in ice cream, cake, and jelly rolls. When prepared properly, ube is not bitter and can be a great addition to savory dishes.