The Differences Between Ube and Taro

Ube and taro are both tubers, but they have some key differences. Ube is a purple yam that’s often used in pastries and desserts. Taro is a starchy root vegetable that can be eaten raw or cooked. Both ubes and taros have been used in traditional medicine for centuries; however, there are many misconceptions about these plants’ nutritional value–and whether or not they’re safe to eat at all!

In this article we’ll explore the similarities between these two foods as well as their differences so you can decide which one suits your needs best!

Ube and taro – what’s the difference?


Ube has a purple skin and white flesh. It’s usually sold as a whole tuber, with the skin on. The flesh can be eaten raw or cooked, but it’s often used in desserts because of its sweet flavor and color.

Taro has a brownish-gray skin and white flesh that ranges from firm to soft depending on how you cook it (more on this later). Like ube, taro is also sold as whole tubers; however, unlike ube they are not usually eaten raw–they’re more commonly boiled or steamed until tender before being mashed into puddings or used in other recipes like soups and stews.


Ube and taro are both native to Southeast Asia, but they have very different origins. Ube is a purple yam that originated in the Philippines, while taro is a tropical plant grown in Asia and Africa.

Taro has been cultivated for thousands of years and was first domesticated by Austronesian people who migrated from mainland Asia to Hawaii around 1,000 CE. It’s thought that ube came about when Filipinos brought taro plants with them when they migrated to the Philippines during the Spanish colonization period (1521-1898).

See also  Do Pickles Need To Be Refrigerated?


The flavor of ube is sweet and earthy, while taro has a milder, starchy flavor. This can affect how you use them in cooking; for example, if you want to make a pie crust with taro flour instead of regular all-purpose flour (which is what most people do), you’ll need to add more sugar than usual because it won’t have quite as much sweetness on its own.

On the other hand, if you’re using ube extract or paste instead of vanilla extract in your recipe–and we recommend that you do!–you’ll want to cut back on any added sugar since they already contain plenty themselves!

Culinary Uses

Ube and taro are both used in a variety of dishes, but they have distinct flavors that make them suitable for different uses. Ube is often used in desserts, while taro is more commonly used in savory dishes such as stews and soups.

Ube can be prepared by boiling or steaming the tuberous root until it becomes soft enough to eat raw or cooked. It has a purple skin and white flesh that tastes like sweet potato when cooked, but with a hint of chocolate flavor from its natural pigments

Ingredient Pairing

If you’re looking for a sweet, purple treat, the combination of ube and taro is sure to please. Both ingredients are traditionally used in desserts–taro in custard and ice cream; ube in cakes and puddings–but they can also be added to savory dishes like stews or curries.

The following are some examples of how these two ingredients might pair together:

  • Ube-flavored ice cream with taro chips (or any other kind of chip) on top
  • A sweet potato pie topped with whipped cream made from boiled taro root
See also  Bluegill vs Sunfish: A Comprehensive Comparison


Ube is a root vegetable that has been used for centuries in the Philippines, where it’s known as “ube” or “ubi”. It’s also commonly known as purple yam and ampalaya. Ube has a sweet flavor and can be eaten raw or cooked.

Taro is another root vegetable with a similar taste to ube, though it’s less sweet and has more fiber than its counterpart. Taro can be found throughout Southeast Asia and Australia; it’s also called cocoyam (in West Africa), dasheen (in Jamaica), eddo (in Ghana), poi (in Hawaii) and kalo (on the Hawaiian island of Molokai).


The storage of ube and taro is very similar. Both can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks, but they should be kept away from other foods that emit strong odors or have a high moisture content (like onions).

  • Ube: The purple color will fade if it’s left out for too long, so keep this in mind when storing your ube! For best results, wrap each piece individually with plastic wrap before putting them into an airtight container.
  • Taro: Like ube, taro will lose its bright coloring over time if left exposed to light or heat–so make sure you keep it tightly covered when storing your tubers!

Uses in Desserts

Ube and taro are both used in desserts, but they have different roles. Ube is often used as a substitute for vanilla or chocolate because of its sweet flavor. Taro has a much more subtle taste and can be used to add texture to baked goods like cakes or muffins.

See also  Pad See Ew vs Pad Kee Mao: Understanding the Differences

Taro is also sometimes used as an ingredient in ice cream, custard or pudding recipes that call for tapioca pearls (aka boba). It’s also popular in Asian-inspired desserts such as mochi ice cream sandwiches!


So, what’s the verdict? Are you ready to make a decision?

In this article, we’ve looked at the similarities between ube and taro. Both are starchy tubers that can be used in a variety of sweet and savory dishes. They’re both native to Southeast Asia and have been cultivated for thousands of years by different cultures around the world. But when it comes down to it, these two root vegetables are quite different from each other–and so is their culinary use!

So which one should you choose? Well…that depends on what kind of dish you’re making! If you want something sweet with a rich purple color (like us), then go with ube–it’ll give your dessert or baked good an extra boost of flavor without adding any fat or calories!

On the other hand if there’s no room left in your diet after dinner tonight but still want something savory like fries or chips then maybe try some taro instead since they tend not have as much sugar content compared against other root vegetables such as potatoes which makes them great alternatives when trying out new recipes without sacrificing taste too much either way…

Leave a Comment