Turnips are a gold mine for eating across the spectrum of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. This recipe transforms the humble turnip into crispy and tasty hash browns that will keep you satisfied until lunch.
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Rumors of unpleasant tastes have many people shying away from turnips, largely due to old-timey, unthoughtful ways of preparing them. This recipe doesn’t just make turnips tolerable, it will make you want to eat turnips all the time!
The Humble Turnip
Turnips are a source of good carbohydrates and fiber, helping to satiate hunger without spiking blood sugar. They also contain a good amount of vitamin C–about half of that found in a serving of citrus fruit. Adding turnips to the menu will ensure you’re getting enough of this all-important vitamin that helps keep the sickies away in the winter.
When we run out of our own turnips this winter (as we inevitably will), we will get them from local farmers at the farmers’ market as a source of low-sugar vitamin C, rather than buying imported fruit shipped from 1,000s of miles away.
Turnips are delicious if done right. They are best paired with–and optimally digested with–salt and fat.
Turnip Hash Browns
adapted from Primal Blueprint Quick and Easy Meals
- 1/2 pound bacon, chopped (preferably local/pastured, no added sugar)
- 4 cups peeled and shredded turnip (2 large, or 4 small)
- 8 scallions OR handful of chives, chopped
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp butter or ghee (preferably from pastured cows)
- 4 eggs, beaten (again, preferably pastured/local)
- sea salt (my rule is one pinch of salt per serving)
- Over medium-high heat, cook bacon bits until crispy in a skillet, periodically pouring out the grease as it builds up. (I truly believe that cooking in my cast iron skillet makes it taste that much better!) If the bacon grease is from pastured animals, retain it for future cooking. When the bacon bits are crispy, drain and set aside on a paper towel-lined plate.
- While the bacon is cooking, shred the turnips if you haven’t already done so (I used my food processor). Place the shredded turnips inside a cheesecloth or thin dishtowel and wring out the excess liquid.
- Reduce heat to medium. Melt the butter/ghee and add the turnip and scallions/chives. Stir the turnips to coat them with butter. Cook, stirring occasionally for 10-15 minutes, until turnips are browned and getting crispy.
- Add the eggs and salt, and stir constantly until the eggs are well scrambled.
Enjoy! We ate this for breakfast by itself (full until lunch!), but it would be a good side dish as well.
Turnip Hash Browns are best eaten right away. We ate half of this recipe and saved the other half to be eaten the next day. While it was still delicious the following day, the crispiness was gone, which I believe is one of the highlights of the dish.
I would make this even if I was missing one of the ingredients. It would still be lovely without one of the following: bacon, scallions, eggs or butter/ghee (bacon grease or coconut oil is a good substitute).
Vegetarians: We used to make a version of turnip hash with tempeh bacon when we were vegan, and it was fantastic. If that interests you, go for it–you won’t be sorry!
If you like this one, then you will also love Turnip Risotto with skirt steak and crispy shallots from the same Primal Blueprint Cookbook.
For more about turnips, see: How to Grow, Harvest, and Eat Root Vegetables
These are just a couple of examples of the creative ways you can make the humble turnip work for you.
Need more homestead kitchen ideas?
- How to Make Garlic Powder
- How to Preserve Tomatoes in Small Batches
- Non-Electric Mason Jar Vacuum Sealer
Are you looking for strategies for your permaculture garden? You’ll find loads of information in my book, The Suburban Micro-Farm.
What creative ways do you use turnips in the kitchen?