What Exactly Can I Do with Kohlrabi?

This versatile veggie should be enjoyed by a wider audience. Here’s why.

Published July 12, 2023.

You’ve seen it in the grocery stores—a bright purple or pale green orb with long, leafy stalks. Did you walk right past, not knowing how you might make a bulb of kohlrabi into a delicious dinner?

Well, no longer. Here’s everything you need to know about this beautiful and delicious vegetable and how you can use it in dinner tonight.

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10 ingredients. 45 minutes. Quick, easy, and fresh weeknight recipes.

What Is Kohlrabi?

Kohlrabi—from the German kohl (“cabbage”) and Rübe (“turnip”)—is a cultivated variety of Brassica oleracea and a close relative of broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, cabbage, and kale (among others). Its defining physical trait is its almost spherical bulb.

What Does Kohlrabi Taste Like?

The leaves, stems, and bulb (the most commonly eaten part) have a mild flavor like a sweeter broccoli or a more vegetal cauliflower, though kohlrabi is a bit less sulfurous than both. The bulb, which can be eaten either raw or cooked, has two distinct layers of fibrous skin that should be thoroughly peeled away before eating. The texture of the bulb is crisp like a radish, although larger, more mature kohlrabi can get a little woody and develop a bitter flavor. Its therefore advisable to look for small- to medium-size kohlrabi; something about the size of a navel orange is ideal.

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How Do I Use Kohlrabi in My Cooking?

When sliced thin, shredded, grated, or julienned, the peeled bulb makes a nice addition to salads and a delicious replacement for cabbage in slaws. When cut into larger pieces, it works great roasted, stir-fried, or in braises, though long cooking can dull the delicate flavor. It can also be pureed into a creamy soup like cauliflower can be.

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