Don’t Overlook the Rutabagas!!
Rutabagas grow with great success in our area, but they are a vegetable that is often overlooked. Rutabagas are a root vegetable that is often mistaken for a turnip but are actually less bitter and really does look and cook very differently. Rutabagas are twice the size of a turnip and tend to be sweeter after the first frost. Rutabagas can be roasted, sautéed, baked, fried, boiled, mashed, and added to soups and stews. They can also be eaten raw as a snack or grated into salads or coleslaw.
Why do you need to get your hands on a rutabaga? The health benefits are abundant, rutabagas are:
- High in Vitamin C, and loaded with antioxidants,
- A great source of plant-based iron. Remember, when you have a food that is high in Vitamin C, it can help enhance its Iron absorption.
- A great low carb alternative,
- Rich in beta-carotene-rich, just like sweet potatoes,
- An excellent source of potassium, magnesium, calcium, and manganese. All super duper important minerals for energy production in the body and your bones, and
- Good source of fiber.
Everything Rutabaga Fries
- 1 large rutabaga, or 2 small
- 1 tablespoon “Everything But the Bagel Seasoning”
- 4-5 tablespoons olive oil
- Preheat the oven to 425°F. Peel rutabaga with vegetable peeler and slice in half. Flat side down, slice the rutabaga into sections and then slice sections into desired French fry stick size (I do mine like steak fries).
- In a bowl toss the rutabaga sticks with olive oil and coat well, careful not to use too much. Sprinkle seasoning over the rutabaga and make sure to distribute well.
- Place rutabaga sticks on a large heavy bottomed baking sheet on lowest rack. Bake for 40-50 minutes turning halfway through. Rutabagas should be browned and have crisp edges.
**I like to heat the baking pan in the oven while preheating, this will make a nice sear on the fries when you first place them in the pan. Serves 4.
Rutabaga Mash with Sour Cream and Dill
- 2 to 3 pounds of rutabagas, peeled and chopped into chunks
- Salt and black pepper
- 2 teaspoons butter
- ¼ cup to ½ cup full-fat sour cream, more or less to taste
- 2 tablespoons fresh dill
- Cover the chopped rutabaga with about 1 inch of cold water in a pot, bring to a boil.
- Add a generous pinch of salt and boil until tender, about 30 to 40 minutes. Drain the rutabagas and return to the pot.
- Reduce the heat to low and let the rutabaga steam for about 2 minutes. Mash with a potato masher.
- Add butter, sour cream, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix in chopped dill just before serving.
Rutabaga Onion Hash
(Modified from a WW recipe)
- 1 cup rutabaga, peeled and diced
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- ½ cup diced onion
- ½ cup vegetable broth, or low sodium chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon ketchup
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- Place rutabaga in a medium saucepan and pour enough water to cover.
- Set pan over high heat and bring to a boil. Boil 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook 5 minutes until golden brown.
- Add reserved rutabaga, broth vinegar, ketchup, and red pepper flakes. Bring to a simmer.
- Simmer 5 to 7 minutes until liquid thickens and reduces and rutabaga is tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Bacon Makes Everything Better Mashed Rutabaga
- 1 large rutabaga, peeled and cut into ½ inch pieces
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 slices thick-cut bacon, minced
- ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley or chives
- Place cut up rutabagas into a medium saucepan. Add ½ teaspoon of salt and enough water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer until soft, about 20 minutes. Drain.
- While the rutabaga cooks, cooked the minced bacon over medium heat until crisp, about 8-10 minutes. Do not discard grease.
- Using a food processor or potato masher, mash the drained rutabaga, remaining ½ teaspoon of salt, pepper, and bacon grease together until smooth. Stir in the cooked bacon and parsley. Serve hot.
Serves 6, each serving contains; Calories 86, Carbohydrates 11g., Protein 2g., Fat 4g., Cholesterol 4 mg., Sodium 418mg., Fiber 3g., Sugar 7g.
Easy Scalloped Rutabagas
- 2 medium rutabagas
- 1 ½ cups milk
- ¼ cup diced onion
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Peel rutabaga and cut into long, thin half strips.
- Butter a 1 ½ quart covered casserole dish. Add a layer of the rutabaga to the dish. Sprinkle with salt, garlic powder, onion, and a few dots of butter.
- Repeat layering until all of the rutabaga is used.
- Pour the milk into the dish. Cover and bake for 1 hour.
- Remove cover and continue baking for 20-30 minutes.
Rutabaga Soup for Life
- 3 large rutabaga, peeled and large diced
- 1 ½ leeks, white only, chopped
- ½ cup garlic, minced
- ½ onion, chopped
- ¼ head fennel, chopped
- ¼ bunch thyme, chopped
- 2 ½ potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 12 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 8 cups fat-free milk
- Bring all ingredients to a boil, except for milk. Simmer for 1 hour. Add milk and puree. Serve hot.
If you are doing keto, you can exchange the milk for 6 cups of half and half and 8 ounces cream cheese.