Step aside mashed potatoes, there is a new Mash in town and it is going to knock your socks off! This Mashed Rutabaga with cream cheese recipe outshines other mashed vegetables with its earthy, turnip/cabbage flavorings. Best of all, it only uses four ingredients.
We love to mix it up for Thanksgiving every year! My husband and I each pick one new recipe that is “ours” to try and serve and then we keep the rest of the meal traditional. Over the years, we have made seafood stuffing, bacon brussel sprouts and a cranberry sauce made with Tropico. It’s a fun tradition and we are excited to share one of this year’s picks. Mashed Rutabaga is making it to the Thanksgiving table.
Don’t think of this as only a holiday recipe, though. We loved this one so much that it is a favorite year around now.
🥄 What is a Rutabaga?
Have you ever been at the grocery store and the poor check-out clerk asks you “what is this?” With a scowl? I’ve been there many times and I just have to laugh. That is what happens with rutabagas almost all the time because so few people have ventured into “that part” of the produce section. Come on, branch out! Wake up your taste buds!!
Rutabagas are a cross between turnip and cabbage. You’ll see it in the stores coated with a thin paraffin wax to keep it from drying out. It is right next to the other root vegetables.
🥣 How to Peel?
Rutabagas have a thin wax coating that needs to be peeled off. This is not like a carrot where you can either peel or not-peel the veggie. You’ll feel the wax coating and it is pretty obvious that it needs to be removed.
Start off by cutting off the bottom where the roots were connected to give me an exposed and raw section. Once that is exposed you can easily remove the thin skin with a vegetable peeler. It isn’t a tough job. Be patient and get it all, though.
Alternatively, use a knife like our moms used to peel an apple – all in one sweep! Knives are sharp and I’m a klutz so I don’t offer up that option too much.
All you need is four ingredients and a little dash of salt to complete this amazing mashed rutabaga recipe. Let’s take a peek at the ingredients:
Rutabaga: Of course, the most important ingredient is the rutabaga itself. It yields a creamy and delicious mash that goes with all sorts of meals.
Cream Cheese: The cream cheese is optional, but it does make the dish even creamier and more flavorful. If you don’t want to add cream cheese, substitute it for Greek yogurt or sour cream. Or, completely skip it!
Butter: This is no different than mashed potatoes – some good old-fashioned butter is the way to go. It’s heavenly and makes them taste even more like potatoes.
Step One: Peel the vegetable using the instructions above. Cut them into one inch cubes.
Step Two: Fill a 3-4 quart saucepan with water and add the cubed rutabagas with a teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil and let it cook until it is fork tender. This is exactly the same process you would use to boil potatoes.
Step Three: Once the rutabaga is fork tender, drain the water. Combine a little bit of cream cheese and butter. Mash them with a potato masher. Alternatively, use a hand mixer to make them more whipped and creamy. I love the rustic texture so I stuck with the hand masher.
Service with a dollop of butter and chives. Don’t skip the chives as they offer so much flavor. I tried them both ways and won’t go without. They are delish!
So, I was shocked at the calories and carbs of mashed rutabagas vs mashed potatoes. One cup of rutabaga has 51 calories and 9 grams of net carbs. Compare that to one cup of potatoes with 136 calories and 28 grams of net carbs. This is a great option for a low carb or keto diet, but even if you aren’t tracking your carbs, the nutty flavor beats potatoes hands-down!
Yes! I did it last week and put the leftovers in my husband’s lunch and they reheated wonderful. No special instructions here. They defrosted and reheated in the microwave perfectly.
📌 Meal Prep
- One option is to peel and cut the rutabaga and place them in a pot full of water in the morning and cook later in the day, just like you would if you are trying to remove the excess starch from potatoes.
- Another option is to fully make these and reheat when you are ready to serve. They reheat beautifully! If you are going for this option and serving guests, I would zap them in the microwave and then whip them with a bit of extra butter or milk with my hand mixer.
‼️ Other Options
I’m always on the lookout for options to put a spin on my recipes. Let’s put a spin on these as well.
- Top with herbs such as rosemary and thyme
- You can never go wrong with roasted garlic
- Include sour cream, chives and chopped bacon
- Mix in sour cream and cheese. Mash together and spread in a casserole dish and cook in the oven to get a toasty golden topping.
- If your rutabaga is tasting a little bitter, sprinkle a ½ – 1 teaspoon of sugar and mash again. The bitterness should disappear.
- Feel free to “mash” with a potato masher so that the recipe is a little chunky or pull out your hand mixer to make it smooth. Both work great here and it’s all personal preference.
- Add in 1-2 carrots to the mix for extra veggies that are hidden and will give a little bit of sweetness.
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- 1 large Rutabaga peeled and cubed
- 2 oz Cream Cheese optional
- 2 tbsp Butter optional
- 4 tbsp Chives chopped
- dash Salt (optional)
- Peel and cube the rutabaga.
- Heat up a two quart pan of water and add the cubed rutabaga.
- Bring to boil. Cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes or until fork tender.
- Drain the water and add cream cheese and butter. Mash until it is the consistency you like. Add chopped up chives over the top and serve.