This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Mashed rutabaga with parmesan is a simple way to prepare this root vegetable. It’s a great way to ease into trying a new vegetable.
Have you ever had rutabaga?
My grandmother would make it every year for the holidays, even though it seemed like no one ate more than a polite taste.
Now that I am older and exploring all kinds of vegetables, it was time to give rutabaga another go.
We often get rutabaga in our winter CSA, and this mashed rutabaga with parmesan has become my go-to way of preparing it.
What is a rutabaga?
Rutabaga, also called swede, neep, or Swedish turnip, is a root vegetable in the brassica family. It’s similar to turnips in flavor, mildly sweet and bitter.
Here in the United States it is not popular, but in countries like Finland, Sweden, and Norway, it is enjoyed a variety of ways, especially at Christmastime.
Because rutabagas are root vegetables, they are great for storing longer in the winter and enjoyed in cozy stews and casseroles.
How to cook rutabaga
Mashed rutabaga is one of the easiest ways to prepare it, especially when you add cream and cheese!
Peel your rutabaga and trim off any root ends. Cut it into chunks and place into a large pot, then cover with cold water.
You can add a bit of sugar to the water to help reduce the bitterness, but I recommend trying it without first.
Bring the water to a boil, and cook the rutabaga until tender.
Rutabagas are harder than potatoes, so don’t expect them to cook as quickly. Test the rutabaga for doneness after 20 minutes and continue cooking until soft.
Once soft, drain well and mash just as you would potatoes. Warm the butter and cream just slightly, then mix into the rutabaga along with the cheese, continuing to mash and stir.
Rutabaga is lower in starch than potatoes, so when you mash you don’t need to worry about the texture becoming gummy. You can do this by hand, with an immersion blender, or with a hand mixer to get the consistency you prefer.
Add salt and pepper to taste, along with any additional butter or cheese for serving.
What can I add to mashed rutabaga?
While I like to use parmesan for the mild nutty flavor, you can swap in your favorite cheese. Make sure to use freshly grated for the best flavor and texture when blending into your mash.
You can also add carrots, parsnips, or potatoes to mashed rutabaga to help balance any residual bitterness of the rutabaga.
Top it with fresh herbs, like thyme, rosemary, or sage. Or, try a pinch of ground cardamom or nutmeg.
Parmesan Mashed Rutabaga
- 1 rutabaga, about 1 ½ pounds
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/3 cup grated fresh parmesan
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Trim ends and roots from rutabaga, peel, and chop into chunks. Add to a large stockpot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and cook for 20-30 minutes, until easily pierced with a fork.
- Drain, return to pot, and mash. Warm butter and cream, then mix into rutabaga along with parmesan. Continue to mash or use a hand mixer to mix until your desired consistency is achieved (it might not be as smooth as mashed potatoes).
- Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve with additional butter and parmesan on top.