Harissa Roasted Turnips – Airfryer | Oven

March 11, 2020 By Aneesha |

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This simple Harissa Roasted Turnips recipe is made with fresh diced turnips tossed with a sweet and smoky red chili paste made with paprika, garlic, cumin and coriander . Make this easy side dish while learning all about the white-fleshed root vegetable in under 30 minutes in the Oven or Air Fryer!

harissa roasted turnips in black bowl with fork and spoon on black kitchen towel

Harissa-Roasted Turnips is adapted from Easy Keto in 30 Minutes: More than 100 Ketogenic Recipes from Around the World © 2019 by Urvashi Pitre. Photography © 2019 by Ghazalle Badiozamani. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

Photography © 2019 by Ghazalle Badiozamani

Turnips- The Underrated Root Vegetable

My girls and I took a trip to one of our local farmer’s markets over the weekend and while perusing the different vegetable stalls, I came across a large pile of turnips.

I feel like turnips are such an underrated root vegetable. A bit more bitter and nuanced than their more popular cousin ‘radish’, turnips are just as satisfying and simply delicious!

My favorite turnip recipe is the one I grew up eating – my mom’s version. She makes a delicious stir-fry by sautéing them with Indian pickling spices. So, when I came across this Moroccan spiced Harissa roasted turnips recipe in Urvashi Pitre’s cookbook, it sounded pretty close, and I just knew I had to make it.

This Easy Keto in 30 Minutes cookbook by Urvashi Pitre is a must-have for those following low-carb diets! Packed full of innovative recipes and techniques, you don’t have to be following a Keto diet to love this book!

It’s got a variety of 100+ Ketogenic recipes from around the world, including Creamy Tuscan Chicken, Big Mac Salad, Green Curry Mussels, Almond cookies, just to name a few. Check it out on Amazon.

Easy Keto Cookbook

Simply Delicious Roasted Turnips

Roasted, caramelized turnips are the ultimate side dish, both frugal and satisfying, but healthy, too! If this is your first time cooking turnips, this quick and easy recipe will not disappoint!

I like to toss the cubed turnips in Harissa, a Moroccan pepper paste, to highlight the flavor of this bitter root vegetable. Once you learn to make the harissa paste from scratch, all you need are a few ingredients to make these homemade roasted turnips in the Oven or Air Fryer!

What Is Harissa

Before we get into the nitty-gritty of turnips, let’s first discuss Harissa.

Harissa is a North African hot chili pepper paste that is traditionally served alongside bread, stews and couscous dishes. Recipes vary widely, but it is typically made with either roasted red peppers, baklouti peppers or serrano peppers, along with a blend of spices including caraway seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, garlic paste and olive oil.

I love this seasoning because of its versatility. Most of us can thank the incredible chef, Yotam Ottolenghi, for the popularization of Harissa, but it is truly a condiment you can put on anything – including this simple roasted turnip.

Harissa Paste- Homemade or Storebought

Simply combine olive oil, minced garlic, smoked paprika and regular paprika, coriander and cumin, salt and a pinch of cayenne pepper to make this quick spice-paste.

Note: You can easily double this quantity to make extra for later use. Use the amount called for in the recipe and store the remainder in an airtight container for up to 1 month.

If you don’t have the time, buying a store-ready alternative is another great option. Look for Harissa in the global section of most supermarkets or purchase online from Amazon.

How To Cook Turnips

Now, let’s dive deep into the world of turnips! Turnips are one of those root vegetables that look a bit strange in their raw state and can be a bit intimidating. Here are a few helpful cooking tips when it comes to preparing turnips.

harissa roasted turnips in black bowl

How To Select A Turnip

When shopping for turnips in the market or grocery store:

  • Look for turnips with smooth skin. Turnips are white at the bottom with a light, purple blush on the top.
  • They should feel firm and heavy for their size, with a sweet aroma and crisp, green tops (if attached).
  • Smaller turnips have a sweeter, tender flavor. Larger turnips have a woody, crisp flavor.
  • Don’t confuse turnips with rutabagas, which are sometimes bunched together. Rutabagas have a much stronger, bitter flavor. They are typically larger in size with flesh that is yellow in the center, with a dirty white bottom and deep purple top.
  • If the crisp, tender greens are attached, these can easily be eaten in salads or added to stews.

Do You Have To Peel Turnips Before Roasting

Yes, it is best to peel turnips prior to roasting. This rids of excess dirt and the bitter outer skin.

To peel turnips, simply snip off the green tops (and save for salads!), scrub clean with a vegetable brush, cut off each end and peel with a vegetable peeler. Chop and dice into 1/2 inch pieces.

What Do Roasted Turnips Taste Like

Turnips are like a cross between cabbage and radish – slightly sweet and peppery with a crisp, white texture. Raw turnips are very bitter, but once roasted, they are sweet and satisfying.

Health Benefits of Turnips

Believe it or not, turnips are actually a cruciferous vegetable. In other words, they are in the same family as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and kale. According to Medical News Today, turnips are:

  • Low in calories
  • High in fiber, relieving intestinal problems
  • A good source of potassium, which helps to reduce blood pressure
  • Contain the helpful compound sulforaphane, which can help reduce cancer risk

Ingredients For Roasted Turnips

You will only need a few staple ingredients for this delicious and nutritious side dish!

  • Harissa Paste: Already prepped and ready, portion out the amount you need and store the remainder in your fridge to use as a flavor enhancer for all your roasted root veggies!
  • Turnips: Purchase one bunch or 4 medium turnips that are heavy for their size with no signs of bruising. One medium turnip will amount to 1 cup diced. If your turnips still have their leafy greens intact, save them to add to soups and salads throughout the week!
  • Lemon/Lime Juice: Either lemon or lime juice will work, just make sure it is fresh! This burst of acidity at the very end makes all the flavors pop!
  • Parsley: For color and flavor, toss in at the end to lock in its beautiful green color!
harissa roasted turnips in black bowl with fork and spoon on black kitchen towel

How To Make Roasted Turnips

A quick and easy roasted turnips recipe can be prepared in the Oven or Air Fryer! The prep and finish are the same for each method, but the time and temperatures will vary. Simply follow the steps below for either method.

Step 1: Make Harissa Paste

Combine olive oil, garlic, smoked and regular paprika, coriander, cumin, salt and cayenne pepper in a small bowl. Using a fork, mix well. Skip this step if using store-ready paste.

Step 2: Season Turnips

Combine harissa paste, turnips and olive oil in a large bowl and toss well to coat. (Pic 1-3)

spices pouring onto diced turnips, oil pouring on diced turnips, tossing seasoned turnips, turnips on baking sheet and in air fryer, harissa roasted turnips in black bowl

Step 3: Roast in Airfryer or Oven

Oven Roasted Method: Arrange the turnips on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil for 10 minutes, stirring once in between (Pic 4).

Air Fryer Method: Spread the turnips in the fryer basket in a single layer. Air Fry at 400°F for 8 minutes (Pic 5).

Garnish

Garnish with lemon or lime juice and parsley. Enjoy as a snack or along with your favorite entree.

Serving Suggestion

This turnip recipe makes a wonderful side dish for meat, fish or chicken any night of the week!

My hubby and I even like to enjoy them as a healthy snack between lunch and dinner. These really satisfy those 4 pm munchies 🙂

forkful of harissa roasted turnips with black bowl in background

Recipe Tips

  • Purchase turnips during their peak season (October – March) for optimal flavor. If purchasing turnips a few days in advance, store in a cool, dark place (the same area where you keep your potatoes) until ready to use.
  • You can easily double the quantity of Harissa to make extra for later use. It is great for seasoning meats and vegetables. Use the amount called for in the recipe and store the remainder in an airtight container for up to 1 month.
  • Spread the out turnips into one even layer for even browning and crispness.

More Vegetable Side Dish Recipes From My Kitchen

Another Moroccan Favorite: Moroccan Chickpea Soup

★ Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating below! For more quick & easy recipes, FOLLOW ME on Facebook, Instagram,  Pinterest and Youtube.

harissa roasted turnips in black bowl with fork and spoon on black kitchen towel

Harissa Roasted Turnips – Air Fryer | Oven

A simple Harissa Roasted Turnips recipe made with a sweet and smokey red chili paste and tender-crisp turnips is ready in under 30 minutes!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate Recipe
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 104kcal
Author: Aneesha

Ingredients

Harissa Paste

Roasted Turnips

  • 1 tbsp olive oil (optional- for crispy exterior)
  • 4 cups turnips 4 medium turnips diced in ½-inch pieces

Garnish

  • 1 tbsp lemon/lime juice fresh
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley

Equipment

Instructions

Harissa Paste

  • Combine olive oil, garlic, smoked and regular paprika, coriander, cumin, salt and cayenne pepper in a small bowl. Using a fork, mix well.

Roasted Turnips

  • Combine harissa paste, turnips and olive oil in a large bowl and toss well to coat.
  • Oven: Arrange the turnips on a lined baking sheet and broil for 10 minutes, stirring once in between.
    AirFryer: Spread the turnips in the fryer basket in a single layer. Fry at 400°F for 8 mins.

Garnish

  • Garnish with lemon/lime juice and parsley and enjoy as a snack or your favorite entree.

Notes

Recipe Tips:

  • Purchase turnips during their peak season (October – March) for optimal flavor. If purchasing turnips a few days in advance, store in a cool, dark place (the same area where you keep your potatoes) until ready to use.
  • You can easily double the quantity of Harissa to make extra for later use. It is great for seasoning meats and vegetables. Use the amount called for in the recipe and store the remainder in an airtight container for up to 1 month.
  • Spread the out turnips into one even layer for even browning and crispness.
Note: The nutrition facts below are my estimates.  If you are following any diet plan, I recommend cross-checking with your preferred nutrition calculator.

Nutrition

Calories: 104kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Sodium: 236mg | Potassium: 293mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 724IU | Vitamin C: 33mg | Calcium: 49mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Moroccan
Keyword: airfryer roasted turnips, Harissa roasted turnips, oven roasted turnips, Roasted Turnips
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HEY! NICE TO MEET YOU!

Aneesha holding a glass of white wine Hi, I'm Aneesha, a foodie by birth and the mind, body and soul behind Spice Cravings. Here I share quick, easy & healthy Indian & global recipes that are low in effort and big on taste! A recipe doesn't make it on the blog unless it is tested multiple times and gets a thumbs-up from my taster-in-chief, my husband, and my teen-chefs, my twin girls!

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