It’s a baseball! It’s a spaceship! It’s KOHLRABI!!

closeup of kohlrabi with greens

AKohlrabi by Barbara Wells: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:AKohlrabi.jpg

Kohlrabi  – it’s one of those weird vegetables that people often find baffling. Its peculiar, Sputnik-like appearance, plus its generally unfamiliar name, often leave shareholders hesitant to give it a try. That’s a shame, because, despite its weird appearance, kohlrabi is pleasant, mild, and crunchy – much like a stem of broccoli (to which it is related) or a little like jicama. Before you do anything else with it, peel the slightly tough outer skin and try it raw – you’ll see! It also cooks up well, and makes a good addition to stir fries or mixed with other roasted root vegetables. Below are some ideas for various ways to use it.


How to Use and Cook Kohlrabi

by Arabel Elliott

  • Roast it– If you’ve never worked with this interesting vegetable, I think this roasted kohlrabi recipe is the place to start. The result of this super-easy recipe is a very naturally sweet treat.
  • Purée it– It’s delicious in soups and sauces.
  • Sauté it– This will have a similar result to roasting, as it will caramelize nicely, bringing all of the natural sugars to the surface.
  • Eat it raw– It’s wonderful in slaws, salads, or as a vehicle for delicious dips!
  • The leaves are  fantastic in a stir-fry, and you can use the stems in stocks and broths. (Note: the farm usually removes the leaves before setting them out, but you may find them elsewhere.)

stack of fried kohlrabi slices

Roasted Kohlrabi  (vegan, gluten-free)

Prep time: 5 min

Cook time: 12-15 min

Serves 4-6

  • 4 whole kohlrabi (about 3/4-pound each)
  • Olive oil for the pan
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F, and adjust a rack to the middle.
  2. If present, cut off the stems and greens (saving them for another use, like stock and/or a stir-fry).
  3. Peel the roots. Cut about 1/2-inch off each end, and then cut the roots into approximately 1/2-inch slices, horizontally. It’s important that they’re not too thin!
  4. Generously drizzle olive oil on a sheet pan and then dredge each kohlrabi slice in the oil to coat both sides. (They should not be “swimming” in the oil — just well coated.) Season both sides with salt and pepper, arranging them on the pan with about an inch between them.
  5. Place the sheet pan in the preheated 450 degree F oven and roast until golden brown on the surface and tender on the inside, about 8 to 10 minutes on the first side, and about 4 to 6 on the second. You can test them with a fork — it should slid out easily when they’re done.
  6. Serve!


* Anything you don’t eat right away can be stored in the fridge for up to about 3 days.  Put slices in a broth with noodles and other veggies or add it to a salad, scrambled eggs, or even a burrito.

Reeve Gutsell is the Food, Farm, and Sustainability Program Coordinator at Hampshire College. She has a Master's degree in Resource Management and Conservation, as well as a long-term interest in the intersection of agriculture, environmental issues, social justice, and food systems. She enjoys the walking around the farm in all types of weather, and almost always finds something beautiful or interesting to explore.

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