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Ask a Foodie: Are Kohlrabi Greens Edible, Like Beet Greens?

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Kohlrabi means "cabbage turnip" and its flavor is a mild version of both.

Q. I went out to a friend’s farm this weekend and we picked kohlrabi and beets. I know that I can wash and cook the beet greens, but how do I cook kohlrabi? And, can I cook the greens and eat them as well?

A. Sounds to me as though you’ve got a feast of fresh veggies to look forward to. Kohlrabi is a cultivar of the cabbage. Its name means “cabbage turnip” and has a mild flavor reminiscent of these two vegetables. You can peel and slice kohlrabi thinly and put it raw in salad. Or, you can cook it just as you would a beet or turnip, covered in water and simmered until tender. Then, cube it and toss with a little olive oil or butter, salt and pepper and it is ready to eat. The greens, too, are edible. Take the smaller, newer leaves, trim them and cook as you would beet greens, until they are tender. Drain well and serve with some crumbled, fried bacon, a little of the bacon fat and a splash of balsamic vinegar.

Photo by Bonnie Walker

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3 Responses to “Ask a Foodie: Are Kohlrabi Greens Edible, Like Beet Greens?”

  1. Pingo says:

    Kohlrabi is also an excellent veggie to put on a crudite plate and eat with a dip. Or try to serve it all by itself – cut in large
    “sticks”, with just dipping it in salt and pepper, just like you would do Radishes.

    • I always thought that kohlrabi had a radish-like taste, nippy. I’ll try this myself soon – Cora Lamar’s farm is producing them now, and they should be at the Pearl market. Thanks for the ideas! BW

  2. Sara Price says:

    Kohlrabi are mild rather than hot like radishes. They have a slightly sweet, light flavor with a snappy crunch when eaten raw. And being in the cabbage genus, they are loaded with good-for-you stuff. We raise them every year, and while we have a battle against some little leaf-eater bugs, we get to use most of our crop. The leaves get treated like any other green….sliced and sauteed in olive oil with garlic, or steamed, or used raw in salads. The “bulb” portion is sauteed, or used in soups and stews, or boiled and served with seasonings. I am going to try them as fritters one day too. It is a fast-grower, so you can get several crops in during a long growing season. Highly recommended!