Skip to main content
  1. Life
  2. Home & Living
  3. Gardening

Is it a turnip or a rutabaga?

See also

Turnips (Brassica napobrassica) and rutabagas (Brassica rapa) can be found in the produce section of the grocery store, but these root veggies can be difficult to tell apart. While they are both from the same family, they are not the same veggie. In fact, the rutabaga is a cross between a turnip and a cabbage, says the Iowa State University Extension. Some refer to rutabagas as "Swedes" or "yellow turnips".

Appearance

Turnips are globe shaped with white skin and flesh. They may have either green or purple shoulders. Turnips have one taproot with no distinct neck at the top. Foliage consists of light, thin leaves that are slightly hairy sprouting directly from the top of the turnip.

Rutabagas are larger and are typically conically shaped with a taproot with and side root. The top tapers to a distinct neck and sports smooth, blue-green foliage similar to cabbage leaves. The skin of a rutabaga is yellow and the flesh is yellow-orange.

Flavor

Turnips have crisp, zesty flesh and are often served in salads or eaten raw with dip. Rutabagas have a milder and creamier flavor. Rutabagas are often boiled or baked and mashed or added to soups and casseroles. Turnips can also be used in stews or casseroles.

Growing

While they both require the same growing conditions, rutabagas require a longer growing season. Rutabagas require 90 days to maturity while some turnips reach maturity in as few as 35 days. Most turnips mature in 55 to 60 days.

You may also like: What’s the difference between yellow zucchini and yellow summer squash?

Advertisement

Life

  • Derek Hough
    Derek Hough brings quadruple threat talent to 'DWTS' and beyond
    Today's Buzz
  • Hookah smoking
    Young adults believe hookah smoking pose no health threat
    Camera
    7 Photos
  • Top outdoor activities
    Don't spend your summer indoors: Top outdoor activities to do with your significant other
    Camera
    10 Photos
  • Baby shower idea for men
    A new twist on baby showers is throwing a Daddy Baby-Q
    Camera
    7 Photos
  • Wedding special
    'Curvy Brides' offers a new look into every bride's pursuit for her picture perfect wedding gown
    Camera
    7 Photos
  • Morbid obesity
    Health: Morbid obesity decreases life span by up to 16 years
    Camera
    7 Photos