Do Horses Eat Sweet Potatoes?

Women in yellow plaid shirt and green gloves in a small plant in a garden, holding sweet potatoes plat and it offering to horse

A basket of sweet potatoes, with two cut open to reveal their orange flesh, for a horse feed, care, and tips article

Yes, horses can eat sweet potatoes in moderation as a treat, but not as a main food source. Horses enjoy fresh snacks, and if you keep feeding them the same diet, they can get bored 😞. So why not try sweet potatoes?πŸ˜‹ One of the most frequently asked questions is whether horses can eat sweet potatoes. The answer is yes, they can, and horses love to eat them. Sweet potatoes are not only delicious, but they are also full of nutrition, making them very beneficial for all your equines. Sweet potatoes are safe for horses. Let’s discuss the benefits and risks of giving your equine sweet potatoes in detail.

Nutritional Facts

Women in yellow plaid shirt and green gloves in a small plant in a garden, holding sweet potatoes plat and it offering to horse Β Β Sweet potatoes are a healthy and tasty treat for horses. Here are some of the benefits of adding them to your horse’s diet:

  1. Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of fiber, and they are easy to digest. πŸ‘‰πŸ» Cooked sweet potatoes are healthier than raw ones.
  2. They contain vitamins A, C, B5, B6, and E, as well as minerals such as potassium and magnesium. Sweet potatoes also have trace amounts of iron and calcium.
  3. They are a remedial fruit that can heal gastric ulcers in horses. Horses are prone to a variety of issues, with colic and gastric ulcers being the most common. Sweet potatoes are a natural remedy for treating gastric ulcers, and they are often recommended.

Raw vs. Cooked

Chef using blowtorch on dish in kitchen cooking sweet potatoesBoth raw and cooked sweet potatoes are healthy for your equine, and horses can eat both. Cooked sweet potatoes are better for horses with sensitive teeth or dental issues. Raw sweet potatoes are full of nutrition. You can give both to horses as snacks, but sometimes it’s better to give them cooked as they are soft and easy to chew and digest.

Can Horses Eat Sweet Potatoes?

A crate of sweet potatoes for horse feedSweet potatoes, as their name suggests, contain sugar. Although they are very healthy, one of their drawbacks is their sugar content. Sweet potatoes also contain starch and carbohydrates. Giving a small amount of sweet potato to your horse will not be bad for its health. But giving them excess amounts can lead to health issues such as obesity, and insulin resistance, or can exacerbate existing insulin resistance. The amount of potassium in sweet potatoes can also cause health issues for horses with HYPP disease. If not served in little cubes or chopped, it can also cause choking in your horse.

Therefore, the risks of feeding sweet potatoes to your horse include:

  1. Risk of choking.
  2. Can cause obesity.
  3. Can cause insulin resistance or HYPP disease.
  4. Can put your horse at risk of colic or gastrointestinal issues.

Sugar Content

A pile of five sweet potatoes on a white backgroundSweet potatoes have high sugar levels and carbohydrates. If given in moderation, they are not harmful. But if given in excessive amounts, they can cause HYPP disease, insulin resistance, or obesity. A portioned amount of sugar will be healthy, but too much can cause serious health issues.

Sweet Potato Toxic Parts

A sunny field of tall green sweet potatoes plants with white flowers growing in rows, with a dirt path between them and trees in the backgroundSweet potatoes can be given along with their peel and leaves without any harmful effects. However, it is essential to clean them thoroughly before giving them to your horse. Wash them and clean them. If you give your horse cooked sweet potatoes, you can give them with their peel. But if you are giving them raw, it is still not a problem. Some people say that sweet potatoes have toxic compounds that can cause colic and serious intestinal complications. So to avoid this, we can skip giving our horses the leaves and stem parts.

Sweet Potatoes & Colic

They should be consumed only as an occasional treat. Sweet potatoes are a good and healthy treat to give to your horse, but it’s important to take care of how much you are feeding them. The more you feed them, the higher the risk of getting colic.

Can Horses Eat Regular Potatoes?

A pile of sweet potatoes in a white plastic binIn summary, sweet potatoes can be a great addition to your horse’s diet as a healthy and tasty snack. However, it’s important to be mindful of the risks associated with excessive consumption, such as obesity, insulin resistance, and gastrointestinal issues. To mitigate these risks, it’s recommended to feed sweet potatoes in moderation and small quantities. Additionally, it’s important to clean the sweet potatoes thoroughly before serving and to avoid giving horses the leaves and stem parts, as these can be toxic.

If you’re considering introducing sweet potatoes into your horse’s diet, it’s always a good idea to consult with your veterinarian first to ensure it’s appropriate for your horse’s specific dietary needs and health conditions.


In conclusion, horses can safely eat sweet potatoes, but it’s important to do so in moderation and with caution. With the right approach, sweet potatoes can be a nutritious and enjoyable addition to your horse’s diet.


The leaves, vines, and roots or tubers of sweet potato vine are not poisonous to horses, pigs, goats, chickens, and other farm animals.
There is some evidence (not in horses) that beta-carotene, the pigment in sweet potatoes, may protect from or help heal gastric ulcers, but it never does this on its own without help from other nutrients or drugs, and is mostly useful when there is a deficiency state.
Yes, horses can eat sweet potatoes, but not in large quantities. Some horses like sweet potatoes a lot and owners are tempted to feed them sweet potatoes in excessive amounts, but this is not good practice. Typically one average size sweet potato is a good measure for a nice treat for your horse.
On top of protein and dietary fiber sweet potatoes also have a very good selection of vitamins and minerals: Vitamin A – As well as boosting your horse's immune system and strengthening his bones, Vitamin A can also help to reduce the risk of cataracts.

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