Wellness Recipe #107 Root Vegetable Medley

Although we minimize our consumption of white potatoes and yams, for health reasons, we do eat other root vegetables either raw (such as carrots and radishes) or cooked (such as turnips, rutabagas, beets, sunchokes (or Jerusalem artichokes), parsnips, and sweet potatoes). We especially like those root vegetables that are lower on the glycemic index. Turnips, rutabagas, carrots, and beets all have less than 75 calories per cup after they are steamed, boiled, baked, or stewed.

Since we have a small herb garden which yields a year-round supply of fresh Rosemary, we make a simple baked medley that can serve as a side dish for two or three days.

Ingredients (ideally organic):

Turnips (2 Cups, chopped)
Rutabagas (2 Cups, chopped)
Onion (1 Cup, chopped)
Rosemary (1 Cup, fresh)
Other Fresh Herbs (as desired)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (4 Tbs, or less)
Sea Salt (dash, if desired)


Peel and chop turnips, rutabagas, and onions into medium-sized cubes. Strip washed Rosemary and other fresh herbs (such as oregano) from stems. Place in baking pan and toss with olive oil until lightly coated. Spread out to single layer and sprinkle on sea salt, if desired. Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit until lightly browned (20-40 minutes depending upon oven and quantity). Serve immediately.

Notes & Nutrition Information:

This entire recipe has about 798 calories including 57 grams of fat (8 saturated), 10 grams of protein, 72 grams of carbohydrate including 19 grams of fiber, and 230 milligrams of sodium without any sea salt. Sixty percent of those calories (476) comes from the olive oil, so use as little as possible. Sea salt adds a whopping 2,325 milligrams of sodium per teaspoon, so avoid using more than a sprinkle, if any.

Other root vegetables such as carrots, beets, sunchokes, parsnips, and sweet potatoes can be substituted for the turnips and rutabagas, but they will add calories and raise the glycemic index of the medley. To give you a sense of how that works, here are the energy and carbohydrate values for a one-cup serving of each root vegetable in ascending order (lower is better): turnips (33 calories, 8 grams of carbohydrates), rutabagas (66, 15), carrots (70, 16), beets (74, 17), sunchokes (114, 26) , parsnips (126, 31), and sweet potatoes (206, 49).

We use this recipe as a side dish along with a steamed green vegetable (such as broccoli, spinach, greens, or kale) and 6 ounces of baked, steamed, or grilled animal protein (such as wild salmon, or local, pasture-fed, free-range buffalo, deer, chicken, or turkey). It can easily serve two people for two meals, with a quick reheat for the second meal.

Coaching Inquiries: When was the last time that you ate turnips and rutabagas? Where could you turn to acquire fresh, local herbs such as Rosemary and oregano? Do you have a place where you could grow some yourself, either in a garden or in pots? Who could assist you to develop a green thumb?

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May you be filled with goodness, peace, and joy.

Bob Tschannen-Moran, MCC, BCC
LifeTrek Coaching International
121 Will Scarlet Lane
Williamsburg, VA 23185-5043

Telephone: 757-345-3452
Fax: 772-382-3258

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