Several foods start with the letter Y, and sometimes, it’s helpful to have a large list to draw inspiration from when you’re in a bind.
If you’ve been making lists of foods that start with a specific letter, you probably had some challenges with X and Z. However, when it comes to Y, there are so many great options. Most types of bread use yeast, and who doesn’t love yogurt? Fancy some yams with your holiday dinner? You can serve them up with your Yorkshire pudding.
One thing that’s fun to do is to make lists of foods with kids. It’s a great way to help kids learn their letters, and you may even get them to try some totally new foods, too. That sounds like a win/win.
In this article, I will explore 26 foods that start with Y so you don’t have to spend hours trawling through research.
Keep reading to find out more.
Yeast is a single-cell organism, called Saccharomyces cerevisiae, which needs food, warmth, and moisture to thrive.
Yeast has a variety of purposes and there are two types available. Baker’s yeast is used in baking as a leavening agent to help bread rise and brewer’s yeast plays an important role in brewing alcoholic beverages such as beer and wine.
The most common brands of yeast you may find in your local supermarket are Red Star, Fleischmann’s Yeast, and SAF Perfect Rise Yeast. Yeast is widely available and can be found in a variety of different grocery stores.
Yogurt is a dairy product that is produced by bacterial fermentation of milk.
Not only is yogurt delicious, but it is also packed full of important nutrients, including calcium, B vitamins and trace minerals. While all yogurt contains a decent amount of protein, some types of yogurt contain probiotics, which may boost digestive health.
Yogurt is a highly versatile food that comes in a variety of different flavors and works in a tonne of different recipes. Try it with your favorite berries and granola for a delicious breakfast, or on top of a spicy curry!
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A yam is a starchy, edible root of the Dioscorea genus that originates from Africa and Asia.
Yams are often compared to sweet potatoes. However, they have a unique taste that is less sweet, and have a starchier, drier texture in comparison. They can be prepared by boiling, steaming, roasting or frying.
Yams are commonly imported to the U.S, but it can be tricky to locate true yams as they are rarely stocked in Western supermarkets. Your best chances of finding yams are in international or ethnic food stores.
Yuzu is a hybrid citrus fruit also known as yuja that is popular in East Asian cuisine. It originated in China over 1,000 years ago and now grows in Korea and Japan amongst other parts of the world.
Yuzu is low in calories, but is rich in vitamins A and C as well as fiber. Fresh yuzu has a citrusy, tart flavor that could best be described as a combination of lemon, lime and grapefruit.
The juice, peel, and seeds from Yuzu are often used as gourmet flavorings for sauces, vinegars, and seasonings.
5. Yorkshire Pudding
Yorkshire puddings are made from a batter of eggs, flour, milk, and salt that is cooked in hot vegetable oil. They are the ultimate comfort food!
While Yorkshire puddings are often served as a side, they can also make the main dish. Placing sausages in the mixture is a dish known as Toad in the Hole. Alternatively, you can fill them with mashed potatoes and sausages and top it with gravy!
6. Yellowfin Tuna
Yellowfin tuna is a species of tuna that are found in tropical and subtropical oceans around the world.
Yellowfin tuna are known for their bright yellow fins, and are one of the larger species of tuna. Reaching weights of at least 400 pounds and lengths of nearly 7 feet, the yellowfin tuna is a species that will eat just about anything that it can swallow
The yellowfin tuna is a highly prized food fish, and is absolutely delicious. Yellowfin tuna is often served raw as sushi, but can also be marinated and seared medium-rare as a steak.
A yolk is the center of an egg. When the embryo develops, the yolk is where it gets all its nutrients. Yolks contain vitamins A, D, E and K as well as omega-3 fats.
Aside from being eaten, a yolk can be used for a variety of different purposes. These include enriching dishes, adding nutritional value and color and being used as a thickening agent.
When it comes to eating eggs, how people like their yolk cooked is a personal decision. Whether you like them runny, soft, or hard, there’s no denying that the yolk is the best part of an egg!
Yangmei is the wax fruit of the wax myrtle tree. Yangmei is a fruit that is native to Asia, more specifically China and Taiwan.
China has been harvesting yangemi for thousands of years, and it can also be used for its medicinal properties. It is a delicious fruit that is high in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, including vitamin C.
Yangmei tastes like a strawberry and blackberry combined with a floral essence.
In China, yangmei is traditionally used in teas, in wines to ferment or also can be eaten as fresh fruit.
Yiros, also known as gyros, is a traditional Greek dish. It consists of freshly grilled pita bread filled with juicy lamb, pork or chicken, chopped tomato, red onion, parsley, shredded lettuce, tzatziki sauce and chips.
While you can add a variety of cheeses, such as halloumi or feta, this Greek dish is a classic that you won’t be able to get enough of once you try it!
The youngberry is a variety of blackberry that is botanically classified as Rubus caesius.
Youngberries are packed with vital nutrients and antioxidants. They are a good source of vitamins A, C, and B1, alongside calcium and cellulose. They have a solid core surrounded by fleshy drupes that are extremely fragile and larger than those of other blackberries.
Youngberries can be used similarly to other blackberry varieties, such as in delicious fruit crumbles and in fruit salads, and are especially valued as they tend to contain less seeds.
Yellowtail is a fish that is also referred to as a Japanese amberjack and is mostly found between Japan and Hawaii.
Yellowtail fish is amazingly high in protein and is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids. It’s also a great source of vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin B12, B6, and selenium.
You can prepare yellowtail fish in a variety of ways, but the most popular is yellowtail sushi in sashimi. Add soy sauce, wasabi, or even hot sauce and you have a delicious dish to devour!
A yabby is a small freshwater crayfish found in Australia. The smooth-shelled crayfish can be found in bodies of water such as in lakes, swamps, billabongs, farm dams, irrigation canals and also in slow, muddy rivers and creeks.
A yabby will reside in muddy water as opposed to clear water, and can survive drought for a long period of time through burying into the muddy ground.
The yabby has been listed as a vulnerable species of crayfish, and therefore can’t be fished without a permit. They are boiled and eaten on their own or served with condiments.
13. Yali Pear
Yali pears are a variety of Asian pear. They are absolutely delicious and have a light green-ish yellow skin with a crisp white interior.
Yali pears are ripened after picking, which allows the starches to convert to sugars, making a very sweet and juicy fruit. You can place them in the refrigerator to make them last longer.
The Yali Pear tastes similar to the common Asian pear with a crisp, juicy, sweet flavor. They are great to eat on their own, in desserts, or sprinkled with a touch of cinnamon!
Yōkan is a Japanese sweet treat that has a form of a firm jelly. It is typically made with red bean paste, sugar, and agar-agar.
That being said, there are a number of variations of this sweet including sweet potatoes, chestnuts, and kidney bean paste infused with green tea.
Yōkan is usually eaten as a dessert or a sweet snack, and it is commonly paired with Japanese green tea.
15. Yardlong Beans
Yardlong bean, also called Chinese long bean or asparagus bean, is an annual vegetable grown for its long, edible pods.
Originally from the tropical and subtropical regions of southeastern Asia and China, yardlong beans are cultivated in many areas of the world and are a staple ingredient in a variety of different Oriental dishes. These include stir fries, curries, and soups.
Despite the name, yardlong beans aren’t precisely a yard long. The average size of yardlong beans is around half a yard long.
Yuca or cassava is a starchy tubular root vegetable that is similar to a potato. Yuca grows in tropical and subtropical regions all over the world, including Asia, Africa, Caribbean, and Latin America.
This vegetable works in a variety of dishes, such as yuca fries that are deliciously crisp and crunchy on the outside with a fluffy center that is super more-ish!
You can get your hands on yuca in the produce section of most grocery stores. If you can’t find it at your local grocery store, check your local Latin or Asian grocery store.
Yacon is a tuberous root that has been grown and cultivated in the Andes for decades.
Fresh out of the ground, yacon looks similar to baking potatoes but with the texture of water chestnuts. The flavor tastes similar to pears, but is also a cross between apples, watermelon and very mild celery.
They come in a wide variety of colors such as red, orange, pink, yellow and purple.
18. Yellow Eye Beans
Yellow eye beans are dry legume similar to kidney beans and are a pantry staple for many vegan and vegetarian households.
With their mild flavor and rich, creamy texture, these beans add depth to almost any meal and work with a variety of different ingredients.
Much like kidney beans, they’re a favorite thickener in stews, soups, and chilis and can bulk up any meal to make it go further.
Yellow eye beans are available in a variety of different grocery stores and you can also buy them in specialty stores.
Yassa is a spicy dish that originated in Senegal but is now popular throughout West Africa. It is prepared with onions and usually poultry or fish that has been marinated in an onion, lemon, and vinegar marinade for a minimum of 8 hours.
Yassa can be adapted to your tastes and made with a variety of different spices to make your perfect meal.
Serve it over a bed of fluffy basmati rice, couscous, or vermicelli and you have a delicious meal for the entire family!
Yautia is an edible tuber that’s grown in South America and other tropical regions. Yautia is highly nutritious and is a rich source of fiber and essential vitamins, including vitamin C and vitamin A.
Yautia has a hairy, brown skin. However, despite its strange and somewhat unpleasant appearance, yautia can be super tasty in a wide range of dishes.
It can be steamed, boiled, roasted, fried, or even ground into a flour that’s good for thickening soups and stews.
Yakisoba is a classic Japanese stir fry noodle dish that is a one-pan meal that couldn’t be simpler to throw together when you’re in a rush.
Traditionally, yakisoba is made with thin slices of pork or chicken, carrots, cabbage, onions and a signature sweet and salty sauce.
That being said, yakisoba is incredibly versatile and you can add a variety of different ingredients that you have left over in your refrigerator, though! You can also opt for beef if you’d prefer it over chicken or pork, or eliminate the meat entirely for a vegetarian dish.
22. Yukon Gold Potatoes
Yukon Gold is a potato renowned for its thin, smooth skin and yellow-tinged flesh – hence the name!
These potatoes have a mild and creamy flavor, making them a great choice for pairing with several ingredients. They are super versatile and can be prepared in a variety of different methods, including being mashed, roasted, baked, and more!
They make the best French fries. The great thing about them is that their skin is so thin you don’t have to worry about peeling them beforehand.
You can find this variety of potato at your local grocery store with ease.
23. Yellow Squash
Perfectly ripe in the warmer seasons, yellow squash is more commonly known by its nickname, summer squash. Yellow squash is harvested when they are immature, while the rind is still tender and edible.
Not only is this type of squash super colorful, but it also has a mild flavor that works best when paired with stronger flavors. This makes it great for a number of different recipes. Whether you roast them and use them in a soup, a salad, or a curry, they’re absolutely lovely and complement so many different dishes.
24. Yellow Bell Pepper
Yellow bell pepper is a variety of colored Capsicums. Red and yellow bell peppers are essentially just green peppers that have been allowed to ripen for a longer period of time.
Yellow peppers are sweeter than green peppers, but aren’t quite as sweet as their red counterparts. That being said, they still make an excellent addition to several different dishes, including chili, stews, and soups.
They also make a great raw snack on their own when paired with a generous dollop of hummus for dipping!
A yodel is a frosted, cream-filled cake, made by the confectionery firm, Drakes.
This sweet treat is indulgence at its finest! It features Devil’s food cake, rolled with a layer of vanilla-flavored creme, and then covered with a thick layer of frosting.
Once you try one, you won’t be able to resist the temptation at the grocery store. They are widely available at the majority of grocery stores and are inexpensive for such a yummy taste of goodness.
26. Yorkshire Teacakes
Yorkshire teacakes are a light, sweet, yeasted bun containing dried fruits, most commonly raisins.
The recipe couldn’t be more simple to make, and the result is an unctuous texture you won’t be able to get enough of. The simple dough recipe is often flavored with dried fruit and warming spices like cinnamon and nutmeg, making these a warming choice on a rainy day in England.
Serve these sweet treats toasted and with a portion of butter and allow it to melt before diving in. Don’t forget a cup of Yorkshire tea on the side. Utterly delicious!
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some common snacks that begin with Y?
Yogurt is a popular snack that begins with Y. It can be enjoyed plain or with added fruit, nuts, or granola. Another snack that starts with Y is yucca chips, made from the yucca root and often seasoned with sea salt, garlic, or other spices.
Are there any recipes featuring ingredients starting with Y?
Yes! Yams are a versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of recipes. You can roast or bake yams, or even use them in a yam and black bean chili. Yellow peppers are another delicious option, often stuffed with a mixture of rice, cheese, and spices.
Can you name some food brands that have names beginning with Y?
Yoplait is a well-known yogurt brand, while Yogi Tea offers a variety of herbal and green teas. YumEarth is a company that produces organic and allergy-friendly candy.
What healthy options are there for foods starting with Y?
Yogurt, particularly Greek yogurt, is high in protein and low in sugar, making it a great healthy snack choice. Yams are also a nutritious option, rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
Are there any meats with names that start with Y?
Yak is a type of meat that starts with Y. It is found in Central Asia and is considered a lean and healthy meat, similar to buffalo.
What are some popular yellow-colored foods that begin with Y?
Yellow squash, otherwise known as summer squash, is a bright yellow-colored food that starts with Y. Also, yellow kiwifruit is a sweeter alternative to the traditional green kiwifruit, while yellow lentils are used in various soups and stews.
26 Foods That Start With Y: Why Not
- Yorkshire Pudding
- Yellowfin Tuna
- Yali Pear
- Yardlong Beans
- Yellow Eye Beans
- Yukon Gold Potatoes
- Yellow Squash
- Yellow Bell Pepper
- Yorkshire Teacakes
- Try our kitchen tested foods that start with Y.
Use in or with your favorite recipe.