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4 Popular Caribbean Ground Food Side Dishes

Updated: Feb 14, 2022

Farming is an essential skill for tropical islanders before reaping the wholesomeness of Caribbean ground food provisions for side dishes. It is a thrilling experience to harvest and prepare delicious tropical snack foods and various meals that have flourished from the earth. In the West Indies, ground provisions are tubular root plants or vegetables such as yams (yellow or white), sweet potatoes like boniato, taro root, eddos, dasheen root, cassava, and many more.

Caribbean cuisine is a sensory joy, thanks to indigenous and fresh ingredients! It combines distinct spices, fresh herbs, seafood, and a delectable blend of European, African, and Cajun flavors. The cuisine of the West Indies is a successful blend of many diverse cultures.

ground food
Stew meat with boiled dumplings, yellow and white yam

Tubular root plant’s ground provisions are also called Viandas in the Caribbean. They receive their name because they are grown in the ground and pulled out when ready to harvest.

Ground food or provisions are eaten regularly in several ways. They are usually boiled, sliced, and served with roasted or stewed meat, fried fish, fish in a sauce, or sauteed saltfish. Ground food is either served as the primary carbohydrate of the meal or as a side dish when prepared. They’ve long been associated with Caribbean food due to the African Influence.

You’ve undoubtedly noticed an abundance of edible roots, tubers, and corns if you’ve ever browsed through the vegetable department of a Caribbean market, perhaps in your city or town. Here are five Caribbean side dishes that have sprung up from the ground.

taro root
Taro Root

Taro Root

It is a starchy, potato-like tuber with brown, fibrous skin and grayish white (occasionally purple-tinged) core. Taro is a tropical starchy vegetable produced in West Africa, the Caribbean, and the Polynesian island. Taro root is derived from the taro plant, native to Southeast Asia and India, and widely consumed in Africa, China, the Caribbean, and Hawaii. The plant’s enormous green leaves and roots can also be eaten when cooked.

The taro leaves are also edible and produce callaloo, a traditional Caribbean meal. Taro dishes are prepared similarly to potatoes. They may be cooked and turned into mash (but be advised, it will become grey) or served in slices with salt and butter. Ground foods are often roasted whole and eaten with butter in the Caribbean. Consider the baked potato as an example.

Cassava Root (Yuca)

Cassava is a starchy, long tuberous root found in many Latin American and Caribbean cuisines. It is a starch-rich plant with low protein content in this root plant and high protein content in the green leaves. It’s mashed, stewed, then made into bread and chips. Cassava is a tropical plant native to Brazil and America’s tropics. It’s a popular root vegetable in Latin America and the Caribbean and used for centuries. Cassava (Yuca) is still widely enjoyed in Caribbean cuisine today.

The most popular way Caribbean indigenous peoples cooked and ate yuca was in the shape of Casabe, a firm, unleavened flatbread, also known as bammy. Cassava is employed for almost anything that potatoes do. You may make yuca fries as a classic example. The flavor and texture are nearly the same. These cassava (yuca) fries are simple to prepare and taste great as a side dish or snack.

Dasheen Root

Dasheen is also a family of root crops known as “ground provisions” produced on English-speaking Caribbean islands since the early 16th century. A taro root variant, Dasheen is a starchy edible tuber that may also be cooked and eaten like a potato. Given its historical roots, the starchy tuber hasn’t always been linked with fine food. Still, due to more conscientious eating patterns, the popularity of farms to fork dining, and an increase in desire for unique culinary experiences and indigenous foods, Dasheen paved the way for a global resurgence.

Dasheen is said to have analgesic, anti-cancer, and anti-inflammatory qualities and has better nutritional content than most other roots and tubers. Vitamin B6, C, E, Potassium, and Manganese are all found in abundance in the root. In addition, Dasheen has a resistant starch not digestible by humans. As a result, it does not elevate blood sugar levels, making it a suitable diet for diabetes, a common ailment in Jamaica and the Caribbean.

Yellow Yam

Yellow yam ground food is enjoyed in many Jamaican kitchens as one of the main side dishes. It is also known as Jamaican Yam, or Guinea yam, and is considered a tropical root vegetable that originated in Africa. It’s now spread throughout the Caribbean by way of slaves. It is a part of “ground provisions,” usually a pot of various boiled root vegetables with flour dumplings and green plantains or bananas.


Some of these root vegetables are used in many Caribbean cuisines and Jamaican food near me in Hampton Roads, Virginia. Ground food provisions are prepared in many ways. Try for yourself by boiling, frying, braising, or roasting any of the options mentioned in this article. Eat Yam, taro, potatoes, and cassava provisions with ackee and saltfish, callaloo, steamed snapper fish, Grace mackerel in tomato sauce, and other variations of meats and poultry. Learn more about islsnac cassava chips ground provision and other traditional Jamaican snacks in our tropical supermarket Caribbean grocery aisle.

Caribbean food is an inspired compilation of several cuisines worldwide, including African, Indian, Creole, Latin American, Asian, and European. In Caribbean cultures, the concepts of community and sharing are vital, as seen by our cooking and dining together. We hope these Caribbean dish ideas inspire you to cook a feast for your family, friends, and neighbors.

Satisfy your munchies with Goya Cassava ground provision chips. Naturally prepared and lightly salted fresh, and crisp. Yam, Cassava, Banana, Plantains.

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Everything on here is highly attractive, tempting and so mouthwatering! Looking forward to taste it all.

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