Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnip Recipe

4.52 from 329 votes
1 hour 45 minutes
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Here’s one of the best turnip recipes! If you’re a turnip skeptic, this easy recipe with only a few ingredients will change your mind! Parmesan Crusted Crushed (Smashed) Turnips are a sophisticated, delicious, low-carb alternative to smashed potatoes!

“Delicious!!! Followed the recipe exactly as written. Normally I tweak every recipe I follow but not this one!”

Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnips on stainless steel tray garnished with chives.

Why This Recipe Is a Keeper!

Crushed (smashed) potatoes have been around for a while and now crushed Brussels sprouts are all the rage.  So why not turnips?

Let’s admit right off the bat that turnips are neither beautiful nor trendy.  The saying “I didn’t just fall off the turnip truck,” associates turnips with stupidity and naiveté.  However, turnips are a cruciferous vegetable packed with fiber and vitamin C.  Healthline has more information on turnip nutrition that makes them a whole lot sexier.

Always one to push the envelope with vegetables, I created this technique with turnips. Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnips take a little time but the overall technique is super easy. I think this recipe will change your mind about turnips! It:

  • Uses minimal, simple ingredients
  • Is healthy and low-carb!
  • Can be prepped ahead of time.
Stacked Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnips on stainless steel tray.

How to Make Parmesan-Crusted Crushed Turnips:

Recipe Ingredients:

Here’s all you need to make this sophisticated turnip recipe! See the recipe card below for the exact quantities.

Ingredients for Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnips

Ingredient Notes:

  • Turnips: Use small to medium turnips if possible. Like potatoes, turnips keep for a while. If I can’t find enough of the right size all at once, I’ll grab the smaller ones from the turnip bin each time I’m in the store and refrigerate them whether it’s only two or three at a time when I’m planning to make this recipe. You could use baby turnips but they tend to be rather expensive for a small bunch.
  • Parmesan Cheese: I prefer to use pre-shredded Parmesan cheese in this recipe because it’s drier than freshly shredded so the cheese gets “crustier.” My favorite brand is Sartori from Wisconsin.
  • Optional Ingredients: Bacon, chives, parsley, rosemary.

Step-By-Step Instructions:

  • Gather and prep all the ingredients.
  • Peel the turnips and boil as you would potatoes.  Boil the turnips until you can easily pierce them with a paring knife and they’ll hold together nicely.  You can also do them in your Instant Pot but you’ll have less control over the doneness (See instructions below.)
  • Drain well, then place on a clean kitchen towel or several layers of paper towels.
  • Gently crush them with a potato masher.  They hold a fair amount of water and it can squirt up at you so do it slowly.
Cooked turnips on paper towels being smashed with potato masher.
  • Let the turnips drain and dry on the towels until cool.
Eight smashed turnips on paper towels.
  • Combine the olive oil, garlic and salt and pepper in a small bowl.
  • Then, lightly brush the smashed turnips with the seasoned garlic and olive oil combination….
Smashed turnips on parchment paper being brushed with olive oil.
  • Coat with Parmesan cheese…..
Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnips on parchment paper before being baked.
  • Bake and you have golden, crusty Parmesan turnip deliciousness!
Finished turnips on parchment paper.
Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnips on parchment paper.
Stacked Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnips on stainless steel tray garnished with chopped fresh chives.

I’ve been itching to use the chives from my herb garden so I sprinkled them over the crusty turnips.  Crumbled bacon over these Parmesan Crusted Crushed (Smashed) Turnips would also be delicious!

Parmesan Crusted Crushed (Smashed) Turnips! I think you’ll agree this turnip recipe is a lovely and sophisticated low-carb alternative to crushed (smashed) potatoes!

How to Cook Turnips in the Instant Pot:

  • Place the rack inside your 6-quart Instant Pot and add 1 1/2 cups water.  If using the 8-quart, use 2 cups.
  • Peel the turnips and place them on the rack.
  • Close and lock the lid.
  • Using the “Steam” setting, steam whole medium turnips for 5-6 minutes with natural release, small turnips for 3-5 minutes with natural release.
  • The turnips are done when you can easily pierce them with a small paring knife but they’re not falling apart.
  • Proceed with the rest of the step-by-step instructions above.
Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnips on stainless steel tray with spoon full of chives spilling over.

Frequently Asked Questions:

When are turnips in season?

Turnips are a fall and winter crop that’s harvested from October into April. However, they’re shipped in and available year-round.

Do you have to peel turnips?

To peel or not to peel turnips is totally up to you. However, it’s recommended you remove the skin of larger turnips to avoid a sharp aftertaste when you eat them. It will also depend on the condition of the exterior. I prefer to peel them to see if there are any flaws I want to remove from the interior. Whether you peel or not, scrub them well.

How do you store turnips?

Keep turnips (the bulb) in the refrigerator for two to three weeks. If the greens are attached, remove those and discard if not in good condition. If they are in good condition, give them a quick saute or braise.

Is it possible to remove the bitterness from turnips?

Keep in mind that turnips have a slight bitterness to them. The smaller the turnip, the less bitter it will taste.

Serve with:

For more delicious turnip recipes, be sure to try:

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Parmesan Crusted Smashed Turnips - Stacked on metal tray and sprinkled with chives

Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnip Recipe

4.52 from 329 votes

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By: Carol | From A Chef’s Kitchen
Parmesan Crusted Crushed Turnips are a delicious, low-carb alternative to crushed potatoes!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Additional Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Course Side Dishes – Vegetables
Cuisine Italian
Servings 6
Calories 109 kcal


  • 12 small to medium turnips - peeled
  • Salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic - minced
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese - or as needed
  • Chopped fresh chives


  • Place peeled turnips in a pot of salted water to cover. Bring to a boil. Cook 20 to 30 minutes or until turnips can be pierced easily with a paring knife. Drain. Let cool slightly.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Place the turnips on a clean kitchen towel or double layer of paper towels. Gently press each one down until it’s approximately 1/2-inch high. Let them drain for 15 minutes then carefully flip them over onto a dry section of the towel or onto fresh paper towels so the other side drains and dries a bit.
  • Combine garlic, olive oil and salt and black pepper, to taste in a small bowl.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or nonstick aluminum foil. Place the flattened turnips on the lined baking sheet. Brush each turnip with a little of the olive oil and garlic combination. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over each turnip, gently pressing it down.
  • Carefully and quickly flip each turnip over. Repeat with the remaining olive oil and garlic combination and cheese.
  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Flip each turnip and bake an additional 15 minutes. Garnish with chopped fresh chives and serve.



  • Place the rack inside your 6-quart Instant Pot and add 1 1/2 cups water.  If using the 8-quart, use 2 cups.
  • Peel the turnips and place them on the rack.
  • Close and lock the lid.
  • Using the "Steam" setting, steam whole medium turnips for 5-6 minutes with natural release, small turnips for 3-5 minutes with natural release. THE COOKING TIME WILL DEPEND UPON THE SIZE OF THE TURNIPS.
MAKE AHEAD:  The turnips can be boiled and crushed up to a day in advance.  Leave on the towel and refrigerate.


Serving: 2 | Calories: 109kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 11mg | Sodium: 269mg | Potassium: 25mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 130IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 201mg | Iron: 1mg

These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

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4.52 from 329 votes (288 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    This is such a great recipe. I’ve made this savory dish at least 3 times. It is perfect as written.

    For a change up tonight, I boiled the turnips in milk with bouillon. The milk was unnecessary.

    I cooked these along side marinated boneless chicken thighs for 35 minutes at. 375* Convection. Great sheet pan meal that is low carb.

    Thank you for your amazing recipe!

    1. Hi, Gary, Thanks so very much and so happy you love this recipe! Love that you turned this into a sheet pan meal! Appreciate your taking the time to come back and comment.

  2. Ok, so i would love to try this, but baking things in the oven to crisp up never seems to work for me. Would these work in an air fryer? Time and temp??

    1. Hi, Shelly, Thanks so much for your question. I haven’t tested these in an air fryer yet. You could do them as directed in the oven, see how they turn out for you and if not as crispy, put them in the air fryer for a couple minutes. Thanks again and I’ll certainly put testing them in an air fryer on my to-do list!

  3. 5 stars
    These were addicting! I was surprised that one turnip smashed down to one patty. My husband liked them as well. Thank you for sharing.

  4. 5 stars
    This is a very delicious and easy recipe for parmesan crusted crushed turnips. The author shows how to cook and smash the turnips, then coat them with garlic, olive oil, and cheese. The turnips are then baked until crispy and golden. The author also gives some tips on how to choose and store turnips, and how to cook them in an Instant Pot. I think this is a great way to enjoy turnips as a low-carb alternative to potatoes. Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe with us.

    1. Hi, Auggie, Thanks for your question. Yes, you absolutely can! Just follow the recipe and substitute the vegan Parmesan cheese. Thanks again and hope you enjoy!

  5. 5 stars
    I made this dish for supper tonight as a side dish and turnips are excellent done this way. Everyone enjoyed the turnips dish for supper.