U Is For Ube: Uber Veggies That Start With ‘U’

There are over 7,000 different types of vegetables found all around the world. With so many on offer, we have put together a series of lists looking at vegetables that start with different letters of the alphabet. There are over 7,000 different types of vegetables in the world. Today, we look at the veggies that start with the letter U.

In this blog post, we continue our series. If you’re interested in learning about vegetables that start with the letter U, you’ve come to the right place.

We have compiled a list of all the vegetables we could find that start with the letter U. We will take a look at their unique characteristics, flavor, and any unique uses they may have. 

While there may not be as many vegetables that start with the letter U, there are still plenty of interesting vegetables that will bring something new to your kitchen. It is our hope that by the end of this post you will not only have an improved knowledge of vegetables that start with this letter but also some inspiration to try something new. 

Without further ado, let’s get straight to it!

1. Ube


The most popular vegetable that starts with U has to be the ube. You may know this vegetable by the name purple yam or purple sweet potato.

Easily recognized thanks to its deep purple color, the ube is a tuber that is commonly eaten in Asian countries. Relatively new to the American people, you can also find ube that are white in color. 

Despite having an appearance similar to that of the sweet potato, ube actually has a unique sweet taste. People generally believe the ube tastes quite similar to vanilla and white chocolate.

As a result of this sweet taste, the vegetable is typically used to make sweet desserts like ube ice cream and sweet soup. Some people also make pastries and cakes using this vegetable.

Luckily for us, this vegetable is on the rise in America, so we can expect to start seeing it more and more in our stores in the future. If you’re lucky enough to spot one in the store, be sure to impress your friends and family with some delicious ube ice cream.

2. Ulluco


For the second vegetable on our list picture a small potato but a lot more colorful, elongated, and rounder. Native to South America, the ulluco is one of the most commonly grown crops.

Though the ulluco is primarily a root vegetable, thanks to its spinach-like leaves, the vegetable is also considered to be a leaf vegetable. 

Make no mistake about it, this vegetable is mostly used for its potato-like root, but being able to eat the leaves too is an added bonus. Available in red, purple, orange, and yellow, this vegetable not only looks like a potato but also tastes like one. 

They have a starchy, slightly sweet taste that makes them perfect for a huge array of dishes. Like the potato, you can boil, fry, and bake the ulluco.

The versatility of this vegetable makes it an important food source for millions of people across South America. This would explain why it is second to only the potato in many countries.

Related: Red As A Beetroot: 13 Different Types Of Red Colored Veggies

3. Udupi Mattu Gulla Eggplant

Widely used in South Indian cooking for hundreds of years, the Udupi Mattu Gulla is a quite unique or should we say strange looking green eggplant variety. Originating in the village of Mattu in India, the vegetable is so popular thanks to its interesting, distinctive taste.

Udupi Mattu Gulla Eggplant

In terms of appearance, the Udupi Mattu Gulla looks like a cross between a green apple and watermelon. The round vegetable has a green exterior with light green stripes.

With just a thin skin, it isn’t difficult to get into the vegetable where you will find a fantastic amount of pulp.

It’s rather distinctive, one-of-a-kind taste and aroma is the main ingredient in the famous Indian dish Gulla Bolu Huli.

If you’re keen to try something new and unique for dinner, this is the meal we recommend you try next. Having said that, getting hold of a Udupi Mattu Gulla eggplant could be difficult.

Related: O Is For Onions: Outstanding Veggies That Start With ‘O’

4. Umbrella Squash

Also known as pattypan, the umbrella squash is a summer vegetable famous for its odd shape. As you probably guessed this squash takes the shape of an umbrella, although more people seem to suggest it looks more like a flying saucer. 

Umbrella Squash

This smaller variety of squash is available in three different colors. These are green, yellow, and white. Only growing up to 8 cm in diameter people don’t tend to pick this type of squash out.

Most people prefer a more common type of squash that is larger in size. This is a shame because they are really missing out. 

Tasting best when small and young, the umbrella squash has a similar flavor to the zucchini, only a little sweeter. If you let the vegetable grow for longer it will start to taste more like a potato.

The versatility of this vegetable is something we love. It can be cooked, eaten raw, mashed, and even pickled. 

5. Upland Cress

The next vegetable on our list that starts with the letter U is the upland cress. You might not recognize the name upland cress because in America it has a number of different names. You may instead know this vegetable by the name winter cress, dryland cress, or garden cress.

Upland Cress

The upland cress vegetable grows a lot like a weed, making it very easy to plant and grow. Offering a burst of peppery flavor, the lush green leaves from the upland cress plant can be eaten raw, mixed with a range of herbs, or used in your fresh salad recipe. 

While these are the most common uses for upland cress, you could quite easily use the vegetable in any way you normally eat kale. Some people recommend trying upland cress in a superfood smoothie.

6. Umibudo

Umibudo is arguably the most strange-looking vegetable on our list. Also called grape seaweed, presumably because of their round shape and green color, we can’t help but think this vegetable looks like a frogspawn. 


A type of green algae found in the Indo-Pacific region, this vegetable is much-loved thanks to its soft and very succulent texture. Generally speaking, the best way to eat this vegetable is to first soak it in water to let it desalinate.

Once this has been done, you can add it to a salad with a sauce. The most popular sauce of choice seems to be sesame sauce. Dipping the umibudo in a tasty soy sauce is also a popular option. 

In terms of taste, the umibudo has a quite briny and salty flavor. In fact, you could argue it tastes like ocean water. 

7. Ukrainian Heart Tomato

The Ukrainian heart tomato is exactly what its name suggests. It is a tomato that is shaped like a heart. This large heart-shaped tomato has a beautifully vibrant red color. It happens to be a Ukrainian-bred buffalo tomato, and it is very popular. 

Ukrainian Heart Tomato

Grown from a regular leaf plant with feathery foliage, this tomato provides the perfect balance between sweet and sour tastes. This, along with a delicious firm texture to match, makes the Ukrainian heart tomato the perfect type of tomato to put in your fresh Mediterranean salad or a refreshing, hearty soup. 

Personally, we wish this tomato was more readily available in America so that we could all experience just how good it tastes. 

8. Urad Beans

Despite sharing their appearance with the more common black beans, urad beans are actually from a completely different genus. Part of the Vigna genus, urad beans have been popular in Indian cuisine since ancient times. 

Urad Beans

Also referred to as black gram beans, urid beans, and beluga lentils, these beans are actually seeds from the Vigna mungo plant. Rich in minerals and proteins, this vegetable is most valued for its wonderfully creamy texture and earthy, nutty flavor.

In South Asian countries, urad beans are most commonly used in side dishes that accompany various curries. In Indian cuisine, urad beans are also a common ingredient in a range of desserts. 

Within South Africa, they even powder the beans before mixing them with flour. This is then fried to make a hugely popular breakfast dish.

9. Umatilla Russet Potato

The Umatilla Russet potato was specifically bred to be turned into French fries. The reason for this is the beautiful golden color the potato goes after deep-frying. This appealing color helps to produce the very best fry that we all seek to find.

Umatilla Russet Potato

The skin on this tuber has a reddish-brown color like that of beef. It is relatively tapered and long, with flesh that has a slightly creamy taste.

Another great thing about the Umatilla Russet potato is that it can be stored away for long periods of time without rotting. 

10. Ulster Emblem Potato

To finish off, we would also like to mention the ulster emblem potato. The ulster emblem potato is another versatile potato like the others on this list.

Ulster Emblem Potato

Compared to more regular potatoes, it has a more oval shape and a waxy texture. Their flavor also isn’t as strong as other potatoes.

Suitable for a wide range of dishes, you can fry, boil, and bake these potatoes like you would with any other potato. Originating in Ireland in the 1960s, other names for this variety of potato include fingerling and creamer potato.

Final Thoughts

While there may not be as many vegetables that start with the letter U, we hope we’ve opened your eyes to more interesting and delicious vegetables you never knew existed. 

The vegetables on this list all vary in terms of appearance, taste, and how common they are to find. If you were to head down to your local store you could probably find a selection of these vegetables, however, others will be very hard to find.

Now you know more about vegetables that start with U, we hope we have given you the inspiration you need to make something new.

It is fair to say your friends and family would be very impressed with some new flavors you can now experiment with, so why not give some new recipes a try. We’re sure you won’t be disappointed.