What the Heck Is a Rutabaga and How Do You Eat It?

rutabaga chips
Courtesy of A Thought For Food

You've heard of it, sure, because the name is totally hilarious, but chances are you've never actually tasted a rutabaga, and you've certainly never cooked one.

A cross between a cabbage and a turnip -- which translates, basically, to a bitter carrot -- it's often fed to livestock here in America just as much as it's featured in soups and stews. But as eating seasonally becomes more and more desired, so will this lil' up-and-coming root vegetable. Get in on it with these six entry-level recipes!

(And, just so you know, it's in season right now.)

Rutabaga and apple gratin

Lighter and sweeter than your typical potato gratin, it could make a perfect side dish to your typical potato gratin. Recipe here

Baked rutabaga chips

Basically any vegetable can be chipped. Recipe is here!

Oven rutabaga fries with honey mustard

Fun fact: old French and German folks might shy away from the rutabaga because it's associated with food shortages during the World Wars. Can't hate fries, though. Recipe is here

Roasted Brussels sprouts and rutabaga

An easy, Paleo-friendly recipe. Our suggestion: add bacon because that's how this diet works. Recipe here!

Rutabaga beer cheese soup

Between the root vegetables, cheddar, chipotle-adobo, and hoppy brew, it's a veritable symphony of flavors. Click here!

Lamb stew with rutabaga

To be honest, the rutabaga kind of takes a back seat to the slow-braised lamb shank, but the sturdy root holds up to bold flavors. Get the recipe here.

Carrie Dennis is an associate editor for Thrillist and eats a rutabaga a day. Follow her on Twitter: @CarrrieDennnis.

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