Have you ever wondered how to cook a rutabaga? Rutabagas might look a bit intimidating or even unappetizing at first glance, but these root vegetables are not only delicious when cooked correctly, they are also high in antioxidants, fiber and vitamin C.
Also known as swedes in Australia and the United Kingdom, rutabagas are a versatile low-carb vegetable that can be prepared in a variety of ways. They’re thought to be an ancient hybrid of a turnip and a cabbage, with a brown and yellow exterior, orange-yellow flesh and purplish-brown crowns. They’re larger than turnips, but even the bigger ones are tender and have a sweeter flavor. You choose them based on their size (smaller is good, if unbruised and unscratched) and how heavy they feel.
But if you are new to this veggie, you might be wondering how to cook a rutabaga. They are great boiled, in soups, stews, or in casseroles. Here are some great ways to cook a rutabaga.
1. How To Roast A Rutabaga
One of the simplest ways is to roast it the same way you would roast a potato. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash the rutabaga, then peel off the outer layer of skin. Cube it into uniform, bite-size pieces. Toss it in olive oil and salt and pepper, then spread on a baking sheet and let it roast in the oven for about 40 minutes.
When they are almost finished, you can melt butter and brown sugar in a pan, then spread the caramelized mixture on top of the rutabagas, as blogger Katrina from Kitchen Trials and Holly from Spend With Pennies do.
2. How To Make Rutabaga Fries
Another way to cook rutabagas is by making them into rutabaga fries. Wash and peel the rutabaga like above. Then, slice into them into “fries” which you can either roast in the oven, or make in your deep fryer (as in this recipe from Chef Billy Parisi for Heinen’s) or air fryer. Serve with Plate of Mind’s curry ketchup or Kraft Canada’s chipotle-lime mayo.
3. How To Cook Mashed Rutabaga
Mashed rutabaga is another easy and yummy way to cook rutabaga. To make mashed rutabaga the way Spruce Eats does, wash and peel your rutabagas. Dice them, then throw them in a pot. Cover with a bit of salt and cold water, then let it come to a boil. As with regular mashed potatoes, just let these root veggies boil until they are fork-tender (about 20-30 minutes). Then, drain them and return them to the pot.
Mash them up and add in butter, milk, heavy cream, cream cheese (via The Kitchn) or whatever additions you prefer (even buttermilk, as Martha Stewart does). Top with chopped parsley and voila! This is an elegant, healthy twist on traditional mashed potatoes. You can combine mashed rutabagas with mashed potatoes, too, if you prefer.
4. How To Make Rutabaga ‘Noodles’
You can also spiralize rutabaga to make rutabaga “noodles.” If you have ever enjoyed “zoodles” (spiralized zucchini) or “boodles” (spiralized butternut squash), then rutabaga noodles (or should we say “roodles”?) are going to be a familiar concept. Just wash, peel, then spiralize your rutabagas. Let them drain in a colander for a bit and give them a good squeeze to get rid of any excess water.
Then sautee in a skillet with butter or olive oil for a few minutes until tender. Top with your favorite pasta sauce, or simply sprinkle a bit of parmesan cheese or fresh basil and parsley on top. We also love this genius recipe from It’s A Veg World After All that uses spiralized rutabaga as the base for breakfast bowls. What a hearty but healthy way to start the day!
5. How To Cook A Rutabaga In The Microwave
You can cook rutabaga in the microwave, too. Per Foodland Ontario, pierce the rutabaga’s flesh with a fork in several places, then wrap it in a paper towel and set it on a plate. Microwave it at high heat for about 10-15 minutes, until it is tender. Cut open and top with butter, salt, pepper, or even a dash of apple cider vinegar.
6. How To Cook A Rutabaga In An Instant Pot
Last but not least, use your Instant Pot to cook rutabaga quickly. The blog Flour On My Face recommends that you peel and chop your rutabaga, then place it in your Instant Pot. Put your Instant Pot on the manual setting for 3-5 minutes, and once it is done, allow the steam to naturally release for 10 minutes.
From here you can mash it, toss it with a protein, or add it to another dish. There you have it! Rutabaga in 15 minutes or less.
And now you know exactly how to cook a rutabaga. Enjoy!