Turnips

turnips on sackcloth

Turnips, a member of the brassica family of vegetables, have enjoyed their fair share of fame in the anticancer spotlight. Like all members of this cruciferous brassica family of veggies, turnips are rich in anti-inflammatory phytonutrients, notably, isothiocyanates, which include sulforaphane and indole-3-carbinol.

Turnips are also a good source of fiber. Adding in more fiber to our diets helps to keep stools regular and well-formed. Diets high in fiber help to maintain normal cholesterol levels and keeps our immune system healthy and robust.

You’ll hear us talk often about filling half your plate with fruit and vegetables. Be sure to include turnips and more brassica vegetables on your plate daily basis to ensure you are consuming these phytonutrients on a regular basis.

Valued for both their roots and their greens, raw turnips have an aggressive flavor that becomes milder through cooking. They add texture and heartiness to soups and stews and become sweeter when roasted in the oven.

Chef Tips

Try smaller turnips over larger ones. The small ones are a bit sweeter. Look for a smooth bulb with no soft spots and fresh, bright-green leaves on top. Store turnip greens and roots separately in plastic bags in the fridge’s crisper drawer for up to one week. The bitterness increases the longer turnips are stored.

Turnips can be eaten raw or cooked. Sweet Japanese turnips are your best bet for raw salads. As a side dish, cook and mash them with potatoes for a Scottish spin on mashed potatoes. Turnips make a great addition to hearty soups and stews. You can even make turnip fries; our Oven Roasted Root Veggie Fries recipe shows you how. For a hearty main course try our Basic Roast Chicken with Turnips & Garlic

Registered Dietitian Approved

Our recipes, articles, videos, and more content are reviewed by our Registered Dietitian Kate Ueland, MS, RD, CSO, a board-certified specialist in oncology nutrition, to ensure that each is backed with scientific evidence and follows the guidelines set by the Oncology Nutrition for Clinical Practice, 2nd Ed., published by the Oncology Nutrition Dietetic Practice Group, a professional interest group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and the American Institute for Cancer Research and the American Cancer Society.

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