Side Dishes/ Vegetables

Rutabaga French Fries with Olive Oil, Garlic and Thyme

rutabaga fries with thyme on gold-rimmed white bowl with red cloth and Santa in background

The poor rutabaga. It’s not pretty, nor does it have a nice-sounding name.  I bypassed this versatile vegetable for years, snubbing its looks and its reputation, a poor relative of the turnip. As usual, my prejudices led me astray.

The rutabaga is a delicious versatile root vegetable that’s a great replacement for white potatoes, which aren’t particularly nutritious. The rutabaga has sweet, nutty flavor. It gets its bad reputation from its slightly bitter aftertaste, no worse than that of Brussels sprouts.  Rutabagas taste great roasted, sautéed, in soups and in stews.

I make French fries out of this humble vegetable. They aren’t fried, nor are they French, but my youngest child, who adores unhealthy fried food, loves them. I peel the rutabagas, slice them into fry shapes, toss them in olive oil, add spices, bake for half an hour, and they emerge golden and delicious.

Rutabaga French Fries with Olive Oil, Garlic and Thyme

By Springhouse Turtle Serves: 1
Prep Time: 12 minutes Cooking Time: 30 minutes Total Time: 42 minutes

Make these fries once, and your respect for the rutabaga will quintuple. They're devoured in my house minutes after emerging from the oven. They're healthier than fries made with white potatoes because they aren't fried at all, which your heart will appreciate. But don't advertise their humble origins. No one has to know.


  • 1 plump rutabaga
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper



Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F


Mix the seasonings together in a small bowl. Set aside.


Peel the rutabaga and cut it into 1/2" slices. Cut each slice into fries.


Put the rutabaga fries into a medium bowl and stir in the seasonings.


Add the olive oil and toss until the fries are evenly coated.


Spread the fries out on a baking sheet.


Bake at 400 degrees F for 30 minutes. Turn them over with a spatula after 15 minutes.


Remove from the oven and serve immediately.

The rutabaga’s homely appearance belies its delicate flavor. raw rutabaga on wood countertop Peeling reveals the rutabaga’s white, potato-like flesh. Cut the rutabaga into 1/2″ slices, and then into fries. Add the spice mixture, and then toss with olive oil. Spread the rutabaga fries out on a baking sheet, and bake at 400 degrees F for 30 minutes, turning halfway through. They won’t last, so eat them before someone else does!

rutabaga French fries on a blue glass plate with a blue and white napkin on a wood background

Springhouse Turtle Eats


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