What Are the Best Tips for Roasting Rutabaga?

The thick skin of a rutabaga must be removed before roasting the vegetable.
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  • Written By: Amber Eberle
  • Edited By: Michelle Arevalo
  • Last Modified Date: 08 November 2014
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A rutabaga is a root vegetable related to a turnip. There are many recipes for side dishes, soups, and stews that include the rutabaga as an ingredient. Roasting rutabaga is one of the most popular ways to prepare the vegetable. A rutabaga has a very thick skin that must be removed before roasting. A sharp paring knife, a roasting pan or baking sheet, and oil are required items when roasting rutabaga. This vegetable can be made as either a sweet or savory dish, depending on how it is seasoned and what ingredients are used.

The skin of a rutabaga is very thick and tough, which can make it difficult to work with. A very sharp paring knife is the best tool to use to cut off the inedible skin. After the skin is removed, the vegetable can be prepared for roasting. It may be cut into cubes or strips, as long as the pieces are close to the same size in order to promote even cooking.

A roasting pan or a baking sheet should be used when roasting rutabaga. It can be covered in foil or rubbed with oil to prevent the rutabaga from sticking. While the pan is being prepared it is a good idea to pre-heat the oven, so it is at the proper temperature when the rutabaga is ready to begin cooking.


Roasting rutabaga is one of the best ways to bring out all of the natural flavors of the vegetable. It can be drizzled with oil and seasoned with salt and pepper for a simple side dish. The rutabaga is versatile, and it also turns out well when it is seasoned with a mixture of herbs. Many people enjoy roasting rutabaga with a mix of basil, thyme, and oregano for a dish with Italian flavors. To bring out the sweetness of rutabaga, honey and butter can be used to coat it while it is cooking.

Cooking times will vary depending on the oven and the recipe being used, but rutabaga is finished roasting when it is fork tender. If it is overcooked, it may become mushy. A light layer of sugar may be sprinkled over the top of rutabaga while it is roasting. A small amount of sugar generally does not affect the taste, but it helps the vegetable brown in the oven. Rutabaga can also be roasted with other vegetables such as carrots, sweet potatoes, and parsnips.


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