A tuber is a plant that mainly grows underground. Potatoes and yams are tubers — and they’re delicious with a little butter and salt.

The part of a potato plant that can be eaten is its thickened underground stem — and officially, that’s the part of the plant considered a tuber. Potatoes are a stem tuber, while sweet potatoes are root tubers. There are slight differences in the way these different types of tubers grow new plants, but they’re all basically edible roots. In Latin the word tuber means “edible root,” but also “lump, bump, or swelling.”

Definitions of tuber
  1. noun

    a fleshy underground stem or root serving for reproductive and food storage

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    water chestnut

    edible bulbous tuber of a Chinese marsh plant
    groundnut, potato bean, wild bean

    nutlike tuber; important food of Native Americans
    Jerusalem artichoke

    edible tuber of the Jerusalem artichoke

    edible tuber of any of several yams
    type of:

    stalk, stem

    a slender or elongated structure that supports a plant or fungus or a plant part or plant organ

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