Yams and sweet potatoes are two popular root vegetables that are often confused with one another. The most notable difference between them is their color: yams are usually darker, ranging in color from yellow to purple, while sweet potatoes are usually pale yellow or orange. Yams also tend to have a more fibrous texture and are starchier than sweet potatoes, which are typically softer and sweeter. Additionally, yams often have a more cylindrical shape than sweet potatoes, which tend to have a tapered end.
Yams are native to Africa and Asia, and are available in many parts of the world. Sweet potatoes, on the other hand, are native to the Americas and are much more widely available than yams. Although the two vegetables are often used interchangeably in cooking, it is important to note that they are not the same and can have different flavors and textures when cooked.