Kohlrabi may not be one of the things you dash to the grocery for — heck, you may have never heard of this bulbous veg – but it’s time to add it to your shopping list. Like all plants in the brassica family, kohlrabi contains indole-3-carbinol, and sulfur compounds, which have been shown to help protect against some types of cancers.

Kohlrabi is gaining some momentum in American cuisine, but in other parts of the world, it’s appeared in meals for years. Popular in Russia and Germany, it’s commonly used for a twist on traditional stuffed cabbage, and in India where it’s used in salads and rice dishes. Cooked or raw, kohlrabi contains vitamins and minerals such as thiamin, folate, magnesium, fiber, and vitamins C and B6.

If you’ve never tried kohlrabi, you’ll find that it has a slightly sweet but earthy taste similar to a cabbage heart or broccoli stem with the crunchy texture of an apple.

Chef Tips

Kohlrabi should be round and hard to the touch, with no soft or blighted patches. As with cabbage, you can buy kohlrabi in either red or green varieties, though the green variety is more common. No matter the color of its outer skin, once peeled, kohlrabi is always white.  The leaves are edible too, so when you buy kohlrabi, as with beets, you get a nutritious twofer.  Kohlrabi stores well in the winter, and as the season wears on, the stalks and leaves drop off, leaving the bulb striped with creamy white. Red Kohlrabi can look tiger-striped by March.

Our Kohlrabi in Sesame Rémoulade is a lovely side or snack. This versatile cabbage cousin can be eaten raw, steamed, or blanched, and is a great addition to soups, salads, and stir-fries for extra crunch and a boost of nutrition.

Registered Dietitian Approved

There are many misconceptions about nutrition and cancer in widespread media. By using current scientific literature, plus recommendations of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the American Institute for Cancer Research, the National Cancer Institute, and the American Cancer Society, our Registered Dietitian, Kate Ueland, MS, RD, and our team of editors work to help our readers discern truth from myth.

The statements on this blog are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease. Always consult your physician or registered dietitian for specific medical advice.

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