List of root vegetables

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Carrot roots in various shades from light to dark

Root vegetables are plant roots used as vegetables. Here "root" means any underground part of a plant.[1]

Root vegetables are generally storage organs, enlarged to store energy in the form of carbohydrates.[citation needed] They differ in the concentration and the balance between sugars, starches, and other types of carbohydrate. Of particular economic importance are those with a high carbohydrate concentration in the form of starch. Starchy root vegetables are important staple foods, particularly in tropical regions, overshadowing cereals throughout much of West Africa, Central Africa,[citation needed] and Oceania, where they are used directly or mashed to make fufu or poi.

Botany distinguishes true roots such as tuberous roots and taproots from non-roots such as tubers, rhizomes, corms, and bulbs, though some contain both taproot and hypocotyl tissue, making it difficult to tell some types apart. In ordinary, agricultural, and culinary use, "root vegetable" can apply to all these types.[2]

The following list classifies root vegetables according to anatomy.

True root[edit]

Further information: root
Cassava tuberous roots

Root-like stem[edit]

Modified plant stem[edit]

Taro corms
Ginger rhizomes
Yam tubers
Further information: plant stem


Shallot bulbs
Further information: bulb


  1. ^ "". Retrieved 2007-05-06. 
  2. ^ López Camelo, Andrés F. (2004). Manual for the Preparation and Sale of Fruits and Vegetables. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. p. 6. ISBN 92-5-104991-2. Retrieved 2009-07-31. However, in the case of potatoes (Figure 10), sweet potatoes, and other root vegetables, readiness for harvest is based on the percentage of tubers of a specific size.  Potatoes are technically tubers, not roots, and sweet potatoes are tuberous roots.

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