12 Turnip Substitutes to Save You a Trip to the Store

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turnip substitutes

Imagine going to the grocery store and finding yourself stranded with no turnips to add to your cart. Is your recipe in jeopardy? Well, no, it's not. You can still go on with your preparation and make a delicious meal if you are familiar with the turnip substitutes.

If you are a fan of soups and stews, you are probably familiar with turnip. It's a kind of root vegetable that has been used around the world for adding flavors to particular dishes. Turnip boasts an impactful nutritional profile, making them a common addition to different recipes.

When it comes to looking for similar texture and taste, items like celeriac, rutabagas, carrots, parsnips, and some others can work as ideal replacements. Below we have listed some veggies that can work just like a turnip.

12 Turnip Substitutes

When it comes to root vegetables, turnip is amongst one of the most handpicked options. It is a well-rounded veggie that itself has more than 30 variations. Are you going to find every type in your local grocery?

No, you might not even find turnips if you're unlucky. To better your luck, you need to know about the alternatives below. You can use all of them in the same measurements as the recipe calls for regarding turnips. Just consider how long each may need to cook for and their different flavor profiles and adjust by time and taste preference.


rutabagas are one of the closest you can eat as a turnip substitute

Also considered as swedes, it is the closest you can get when finding a substitute for turnip. Rutabagas are a category within the cabbage family and have a similar texture and taste to turnips. Some people even confuse their appearance, making it an obvious turnip substitute.

In different countries, swedes have varying names. For example, in Scotland, people call it neeps. It is also termed a yellow turnip in various regions. When it comes to taste, swedes have an earthy flavor with sweet and bitter notes. Compared to turnip, swedes are a little notch up in sweetness. You can cook rutabagas in all kinds of ways, especially in a mashed potato style.



Let's talk about the Mexican turnip or Chinese turnip. It is a root veggie that is commonly found in Mexico and, therefore, the name. This item is known for its texture, which is starchy like the turnip. In terms of sweetness, it is quite prominent, but the punch is a little mild.

The Jicama is a good source of water and dietary fiber, mostly used in veggie preparations and fruit salads. It is also fully edible, but the beans are considered unsafe. With potato-like flesh, many believe that it is a hybrid of a pear and a potato.



Every grocery store or kitchen is likely to have potatoes in abundance. It is a common starchy vegetable that appears different from leafy green items. Potatoes are one of the most considerable vegetables that consist of nutrients such as potassium, fiber, and vitamins.

French fries! Does anything ring in your ears? Yes, these are made with potatoes. The good thing is that it isn't limited to one dish. The flavor profile of potatoes, such as the creaminess, earthiness, and sweetness, is what makes them stand out from most veggies, especially as turnip substitutes.

Potatoes replicate the taste of matured turnips and are a viable turnip replacement if you are seeking one. No need to choose a different recipe!

Celery Root

celery root can be the most suitable substitute for turnip

These are underground tubers similar to potatoes but come with greeneries on top. Like most root veggies, the celery root (or celeraic) is a suitable replacement for turnips. The flesh of the celery has earthy notes and a nutty taste to it. The greens are a little spicy and can partake as ingredients in stews and soups.

Packed with adequate nutrients, celery root is pretty versatile. It can be grilled, fried, sauteed, steamed, or boiled, according to your preference. All parts of the celery are edible. You can use its bulbous seeds, greens, and stalks to create scrumptious dishes.



Somewhere down the road, you might have misunderstood parsnips as carrots. They have an elongated appearance and yellowish color on the flesh. We assure you that these are not carrots; they taste very different.

The only thing in common is that both have sweet notes. Parsnips differ due to their spicy flavor profile. Spicy and sweet at the same time? Yes, this is parsnip for you. It can be used in several dishes, such as broths or soups.

Moreover, Parsnips can be steamed, mashed, roasted, sauteed, or baked. A worthy substitute for turnips indeed.



Like potatoes, it's hard to miss out on carrots when you go grocery shopping. All carrots are root veggies that has been a staple in tons of recipes around the world. The good thing is that it not only works as an additional ingredient to dishes but can be savored without anything else.

Rich in minerals and vitamins, carrots are a crowd favorite. When talking about alternatives to turnips, carrots can be a good inclusion. It's sweet and does not have a bitter end. If you like sweetness, then carrots have to be in your dish.



Don't get perplexed when you see kohlrabi. It can somewhat imitate the appearance of cabbage, and most people will fall for its appearance. It is also termed German turnip and has a taste similar to radishes and turnips.

What makes it stand out is its pepperiness. Kohlrabi has a spiciness that can work wonders on certain dishes. As for recommendations, sauteed kohlrabi can be a tasty side to main dishes like steaks. Squirt a bit of lemon and put a dash of salt on it to boost the taste.

Parsley Roots

parsley roots

When it comes to garnishing dishes, parsley roots are edible greens that can enhance the flavor of your food and act as great turnip substitutes. It has been a go-to root veggie in the culinary world, and it is also known as Dutch parsley or turnip-rooted parsley in many regions.

Talking about its flavors, it seems similar to celery and carrot. It can be boiled and used for seasoning purposes. Also, parsley roots make up excellent sides, just sauté them or boil them and add them to your plates. You can add any of the parsley root types to create wonderful items like stews and soups too.



Some people term this root vegetable as an oyster plant because of its end product which kinda tastes like an oyster. Salsify belongs to the dandelion family and has an appearance similar to parsnips. The only difference is that salsify is on the darker side.

What makes it a good replacement for turnip? The flavoring! The earthy and sweet notes resemble turnips. It is also a good substitute for potatoes. You can saute the salsify with butter and serve it on its own or utilize it on soups and stews.

Always soak the roots in lemon water when you don't have any use for them to avoid rotting.



Radish can be substituted for a turnip without any worries. Radishes come in a wide variety of flesh tones and are known for their spicy taste. These root veggies have common use in salads and offer a less sweetened taste compared to turnips.

For best results, you can add sugar to the dish as per your need. Keep in mind that radishes have different varieties, but they all are pretty crunchy. It has a strong, pungent flavor profile, due to which you might not be able to use it directly, but marinating it with olive oil, lemon or vinegar can work magic.

Sweet Potatoes

sweet potatoes can be considered as turnip substitutes

You know the use of potatoes but might not be familiar with sweet potatoes. Well, let us tell you that sweet potatoes are a type of potato that has mild sweet notes to them. The color profile is a little different than orthodox potatoes. It has reddish to orangish hues with whitish flesh in some variants.

The dark-toned ones are a good replacement for turnips, and the good thing is that sweet potatoes don't need excessive cooking as they already come with a softer body. Rich with potassium, vitamins, and fiber, this tuberous root can help you make mouth-watering delicacies.

Mangold Wurzel

mangold wurzel

If you are familiar with animal feed, then you probably know about MangelWurzel. We are not going to talk about animal food today but rather highlight the versatility of this root vegetable. It not only serves the animals but can be used to make dishes for people.

Mangold Wurzel are types of beet roots that are comparatively larger than the orthodox beets. For food preparation, the roots are usually mashed, and the leaves are steamed before use. It can be a good source for making juices and salads in general.

Turnip Substitutes for When You're in a Cooking Pinch

It is believed that most root veggies can be substituted in place of turnips, but we say not everything will give you a delectable outcome. The best is to use rutabagas, carrots, potatoes, celery roots, and such. These veggies have the robustness, much-needed sweetness, and earthy touch that resembles a turnip.

The next time you enter the market, you won't have to overthink about missing out on turnips. Just get a substitute, as we mentioned, and get on with your cooking.

If you are someone who has been looking for turnip substitutes, then this article has probably broadened your perspective. Don't worry if you end up in a store and come short of turnips. Numerous alternatives can give you a similar flavoring and taste.

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