by Erin Marissa Russell
Grew a lot of turnips this season and looking for ideas on how to use them all? If you’re a gardener who loves the nutty, crisp texture and peppery flavor of turnips, you probably know one of the best ways to enjoy them is straight out of the ground. While many of us have gone out to the garden to “turn up a turnip,” brushed it off, and eaten it right there, we must recommend that you wash your turnips before consuming them. If you have enough in your turnip harvest to serve them as part of a meal instead of eating them all out of hand, we also recommend these 47 ways to cook the turnips you grow. These tasty dishes may even convert those dinner guests who tend to turn up their noses at turnips on the table.
In addition to being tasty (and super affordable, whether you grow them yourself or not), turnips are also super nutritious, so you can feel good about putting them on the menu for yourself and those you cook for. The turnip is a relative of broccoli, arugula, and kale that’s packed full of nutrients like vitamin K, calcium, and vitamin C. The high fiber content will ensure that dishes made with turnips will help you keep feeling full without overloading you with calories. Eating lots of cruciferous veggies (that means turnips, cauliflower, kale, bok choy, arugula, broccoli, watercress, collards, radishes, or cabbage) is even associated with lower risk of cancer.
Pair Turnips With Grains and Veggies for a Wholesome Meal Bowl
The grain bowl is more of a meal template than an exact recipe, though there are plenty of wonderful recipes out there for you to try. Many home chefs, however, make freeform bowls with whatever smattering of ingredients they happen to have on hand, and turnips (prepared however you like them best) are a natural addition to these healthy, filling dishes. From grain bowls to Buddha bowls to rice bowls, turnips make the menu with a broad range of flavors and treatments. Consult the recipes below for inspiration.
- Farro Salad with Turnips and Greens
- Sesame Roasted Turnip Salad With Quinoa
- Roasted Root Vegetable Buddha Bowls
- Grilled Bok Choy & Turnip Rice Bowls With Soy Sesame Sauce
Whip Turnips and Pasta Up Into a Satisfying Meal
Turnips and pasta aren’t the most likely pairing, but the succulent flavor and chewy texture of turnips is a natural next to saucy noodles. And while turnips are a welcome addition to meat-based pasta dishes, they also feature well in veggie editions. Follow one of the recipes below—or read a few to get some ideas, then come up with your own creation to make use of your garden bounty.
- Spicy Pork and Turnip Noodle Bowl
- One-Pot Soba Noodle & Turnip Bowl
- Black Bean and Avocado-Jalapeno Turnip Noodle Bowl
- Roasted Garlic, Turnip & Parmesan Pasta
- Orecchiette With Caramelized Turnips, Tuscan Kale & Cracked Pepper
Roast Turnips in the Oven
Just like potatoes, when turnips roast in the oven, they get crisp, browned edges and a fluffy interior. If you start eating them right off the pan while they’re hot, you may find roasted turnips are so delicious they never make it to the plate. Switch out the seasonings and shapes as you see demonstrated in the recipes below so that roasted turnips never get boring for your family at mealtime.
- Crispy Turnip “Fries”
- Roasted Turnips With Sage Browned Butter
- Roasted Turnips With Parmesan
- Roasted Turnips With Balsamic Vinegar and Thyme
- Roasted Baby Turnips With Parsley Mustard Vinaigrette
Mash Turnips Alone or With a Combo of Veggies
Although the dish pairing mashed turnips with potatoes likely has separate origins in various cultures, it’s probably best known by its Scottish name of clapshot. Most food writers agree that turnips are a better substitute for mashed potatoes than that trendy veggie, cauliflower, as a matter of fact. In addition to pairing your turnips up with potatoes (which is a natural pairing indeed), you can also mash turnips solo or mix and match them with other vegetables you have on hand. The recipes below should give you plenty of inspiration.
- Mashed Root Vegetables With Bacon Vinaigrette
- Amish Turnips
- Mashed Garlic Turnips
- Mashed Turnips and Potatoes With Turnip Greens
- Cauliflower, Turnip, and Parsnip Mash
Tuck Turnips Into Pies of All Kinds
Turnips pair well with other root vegetables in oven pies and also stand up to the spotlight as a solo ingredient. Try them tucked inside flaky crusts, layered into portable hand pies, or whipped as a topping for shepherd’s pie.
- Roasted Root Vegetable Pot Pie
- Turnip Shepherd’s Pie
- Turnip and Bacon Pie
- Eastham Turnip Pie
- Turnip Pie With Caramelized Onions
- Turnip Galette
- Turnip & Leek Pie
Blend Turnips Into a Silky Soup
Yes, of course you can cube turnips with other root veggies to make a perfectly satisfying standard winter vegetable soup, but we have something a little more off the beaten path (and fancier) in mind. The turnip soups in the recipes listed below are luscious, velvety, and as far from rustic as it gets.
- Creamy Turnip Soup
- Turnip, Leek, and Potato Soup
- Turnip Soup With Rosemary and Black Pepper
- Curried Carrot and Turnip Soup
Bake Turnips in Casseroles and Other Oven Dishes
Like oven-roasted turnips, dishes that feature baked turnips are things of beauty. The turnips soften in the oven, absorbing flavors and aromas from the other ingredients to create something entirely new. Check out the recipes below to see what we mean.
- Turnips Au Gratin
- Twice Baked Turnips
- Turnip Bake
- Ombre Potato and Root Vegetable Gratin
- Parmesan-Crusted Crushed Turnips
- 100-Layer Root Vegetable Gratin
Use Crisp Raw Turnips in Salads and More
Raw turnips aren’t just for eating with your bare toes curled into garden soil. Stir them into salads, fold slices into wraps, and more. Every crisp wedge or cube will burst with spicy flavor. The recipes you see here should get you started on the right track.
- Pink Pickled Turnips
- Shaved Turnip Salad With Arugula and Prosciutto
- Turnip Carrot Slaw
- Raw Turnip, Carrot, and Apple Salad With Mixed Herbs
- Shaved Turnip and Radish Salad With Poppyseed Dressing
Partner Turnips With Meats for Filling Cuisine
While turnips are delicious in veggie-centric dishes, they also play well with meats of any sort. Let the recipes below get you started, but allow your imagination to run free, because turnips are an excellent addition to dishes featuring fish, chicken, pork, lamb, and more.
- Chicken in a Pot With Carrots, Turnips, and Barley
- Sesame Sheet Pan Salmon With Turnips and Bok Choy
- Braised Pork With Turnips
- French Beef Stew With Old-Fashioned Vegetables
- Braised Short Ribs Over Turnip Puree
- Herbed Leg of Lamb With Roasted Turnips
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to cook up your crop of turnips aside from the old standards (delicious as those may be). There’s no reason for you and those who dine with you to suffer from turnip burnout. After perusing these recipes, you should be armed with plenty of new ideas and bookmarked links to try once your turnips are ready to harvest.
Want to learn more about ways to use turnips?
Allrecipes covers Turnip Recipes
Bon Appétit covers 23 Turnip Recipes for Main and Side Dishes
Brit + Co covers Turnip Recipes
Cooking Light covers Turnip Recipes
Country Living covers 20 Turnip Recipes Even Your Kids Will Enjoy
Eat Right covers The Beginner’s Guide to Cruciferous Vegetables
Scotsman Food and Drink covers A history of Clapshot, including a recipe for making your own
Medical News Today covers Health Benefits of Turnips
Real Simple covers 4 Quick Turnip Recipes