Plantains are a staple in many tropical and sub-tropical homes. Often mistaken for yams or potatoes, plantains have a much different flavor profile. These starchy tubers have been part of the human diet for thousands of years.

Today, they are most frequently consumed as a side dish or main meal in several South American countries and other tropical areas.

The plantain is an enlarged fruit (not a root vegetable) that grows in clusters directly above the ground on the vine. This makes it much different from its cousins, the banana and the potato.

There are two types of plantains: sweet and bitter. The difference between these varieties is not their taste but how they are used as food. Both varieties can be eaten raw as snacks or cooked as side dishes or main meals with various flavors and spices added to them.