How to Cook Yucca Root


Yucca root is a staple in many warm and tropical climates around the world. This starchy vegetable, commonly called cassava root, is usually between 9 to 15 inches long and has a shape similar to a sweet potato. Store-bought yucca roots are coated with wax, which prolongs their shelf life. If you are harvesting your own, harvest only as needed, because this vegetable is difficult to store for more then a few weeks. Cooking yucca roots requires only some cutting, peeling and boiling.

Step 1

Place the yucca root on a cutting board and grasp it in the middle. Using a sharp knife, cut off each end of the root and then cut it in half.

Step 2

Stand each half up on the cutting board, and use your knife to strip the skin off of the root by taking off the outer eighth of an inch in a downward motion.

Step 3

Cut each peeled half into slices or cubes, depending on how you are planning to use it. If you are not immediately ready to cook the root, submerge the cut pieces in a bowl of cold water and place the bowl in the fridge until you are ready to cook. This will prevent oxidization.

Step 4

Boil the pieces of yucca root in a pot until they turn from translucent to opaque and white. This should take about 20 to 30 minutes. Slip a knife into a piece to make sure it is cooked all the way through.

Step 5

Use a strainer to remove the water from the boiled yucca root. You can eat it as is or add it to soups, deep-fry it in oil or smother it in sautéed onions and garlic.

Tips and Warnings

  • Always cook yucca root thoroughly. Uncooked, this root can have low levels of cyanide.

Things You'll Need

  • Cutting board
  • Knife
  • Bowl
  • Pot
  • Strainer


  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Tubers
  • Science Daily: Yucca for Developing World
Keywords: yucca root, cook yucca root, potato alternative

About this Author

Olivia Parker has been a freelance writer with Demand Studios for the past year, writing for Garden Guides and eHow. She has studied herbal and alternative medicine and worked as a landscape artist and gardener. Parker is currently pursuing a Bachelors of Arts from Boston University Online.