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Everything You Need to Know About Taro

Taro milk tea has been one of the most popular and delicious bubble tea flavors across the many boba cafes and bubble tea shops. (Learn how to make taro milk tea at home). In fact, this exact flavor might’ve been your first bubble tea flavor you’ve ever tried too, let us know if that’s the case. Amongst the top 3 most popular boba flavors we must say it has to be the traditional black milk tea, Thai milk tea and taro milk tea. (Read those bubble tea recipes if you want to make them at home).

However, despite being so popular (taro milk tea)— many of you bubble tea drinkers might not even know exactly what taro actually is. But that’s okay, it’s still delicious and that’s all that matters! But, if you were curious about what exactly you might be drinking, we’re here to let you know what it is. Be prepared to learn something new today and feel free to get yourself a delicious taro milk tea after reading this too! Find the best boba places near you.

What is Taro?

Taro is a root vegetable (colocasia esculenta) found and grown in places like Africa, China, Hawaii and a few more tropical and humid environments. What does taro look like? On the outside, taro root appears like any other root vegetable brown and fuzzy but on the inside, you’ll find that it’s pale white with specs of purple all around the inner root. This tropical plant has a potato-like structure with a starchy texture popularly prepared for food like taro chips, taro ice cream, taro milk tea, taro buns, taro cakes and more. Read our taro milk tea recipe here. 

Though taro root is used in many dishes and deemed safe to eat, you have to be sure you’re preparing the food correctly. Taro in its raw form is known to be toxic so cooking it properly is a must! When preparing the root itself, be sure to wear gloves to ensure your skin is protected. The outer layer of the taro root may cause skin irritations that can be very uncomfortable. View the image below to get a full glimpse of what does taro looks like.

Fun fact: kalo is taro in Hawaiian. 

Everything You Need to Know About Taro
Taro root

What Does Taro Taste Like?

The taro root when cooked simply tastes very much like a potato but sweeter, you can say it tastes like a sweet potato! Like we mentioned before, the structure and texture is very much like any normal Idaho potato, which is great because the overall flavor profile is quite familiar to most. Just like potatoes, taro root is typically used as the foundation of a dish to add texture whether it’d be crispiness or some other type of texture. The taro taste really depends on what type of dish you’re preparing. 

For example, if you’re creating a soft serve ice cream flavor using taro root, you’ll find that the flavor is very subtle in the ice cream itself and tastes more like vanilla with a hint of something starchy like. Similar to taro milk teas, you’ll find the drink tastes like a creamy vanilla more so than a potato-like food. It’s very hard to describe taro taste into flavor profiles but ideally, it’s as simple as a subtle, more sweet potato— it’s like the middle ground between a potato and a sweet potato. 

It’s great for making snacks like taro chips or fries but also perfect for a stew or soup! And of course bubble tea. If you’re curious about taro taste you’ll just have to give it a try soon!

What are the Health Benefits of Taro Root? 

Just like many foods in the starch or carbohydrate category, the taro root is absolutely rich in fibers. In one cup of taro root, you’ll typically find about 5-7 grams of rich fibers. In general, fiber is great for regulating your body’s sugar levels which ultimately helps to maintain a healthy blood sugar amount. 

Another great benefit from the taro root is that it can help lower the risk of heart disease. Being that it’s super rich in fiber, you’ll find that it will help to regulate your body’s cholesterol as well as blood sugar levels. Thus it may help with reducing heart disease overall. 

And ultimately, being that a starch like this can be used in a variety of dishes, you can use this as a substitute for a lower calorie amount amongst other starches. So if you’re looking for alternatives to traditional potatoes or other major carbohydrates, you may use this as an alternative and start to see some changes to your overall weight. These benefits have been researched from other various notable sources however, be sure to do your own thorough research before making any changes to your diet or health in regards to using taro root. 

Taro vs Ube 

Many people might get taro and ube confused as they both have purple characteristics to them. However, they’re very much different in the way they look, the taste and flavor profile and even the texture. 

Like we mentioned before, taro has more of a starchy texture and in terms of color, it is mainly pale white on the inside with purple specs. Whereas ube, when cut open, has a very rich royal purple color. Also, taro vs ube taste is very much different too. Ube is sweeter than taro root and the texture is very soft and delicate once cooked, similar to how a yam is. 

In terms of bubble tea, you’ll find that taro is very much like a sweet creamy vanilla with subtle flavors of taro. However, when you drink an ube based milk tea, you’ll really experience the flavor of ube as it has a richer flavor profile than taro. Both boba flavors are extremely great tasting though, have a try at both of them if you hadn’t already. 

Are You Familiar with Taro Now?

We hope this helps you better understand what taro actually is. You can now drink taro milk tea knowing a bit more about what it actually is rather than assuming it is something that it is not. Thanks for reading with us here at Talk Boba feel free to read up on more related articles down below. Feel free to join our newsletter down below too, we’ll send you articles before everyone else can read them, exclusive discounts to our shop and some hidden secrets about Talk Boba and what we have in store for the future! 

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