Recipe: Japanese Turnips With Greens

This root-to-stem turnip dish serves up a mild, sweet, earthy flavor
A bowl of Japanese turnips with walnuts

Japanese turnips are a common find at farmers’ markets. They’re small, round and white, and look a little bit like radishes. They have a mild, sweet and earthy turnip flavor and are usually sold with the green attached, which we use in this root-to-stem recipe.

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Prep: 15-20 minutes
Cook: 8-10 minutes


  • 1 bunch small Japanese turnips with greens
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, to taste
  • 8 walnuts, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes, to taste


  1. Cut off the turnip tops and cut the leaves at the stem base. Halve or quarter the turnip bulbs so all the pieces are about the same size. Wash and spin-dry the turnip greens
  2. On a cutting board, chop the garlic with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Then, add the walnuts to the garlic mixture and finely chop. Place the turnip greens over the garlic-walnut mixture and finely chop (you’re making a quick turnip top pesto).
  3. In a medium skillet over medium heat, add the olive oil and turnip bulbs, and sauté until light golden brown and crisp-tender, turning halfway through cooking, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the turnip top pesto mixture, stirring to combine, and season to taste with salt, pepper and the red pepper flakes, if desired. Sauté for 1 minute more.

Nutrition information (per serving)

Makes: 4 servings
Serving size = 1/2 cup

Calories: 123
Total fiber: 0.9 g
Soluble fiber: 0.3 g
Protein: 1.5 g
Total fat: 12.3 g
Saturated fat: 1.5 g
Healthy fat: 10.5 g
Carbohydrate: 2.9 g
Sugar: 0.8 g
Added sugar: 0 g
Sodium: 131 mg
Potassium: 75 mg
Magnesium: 15 mg
Calcium: 17 mg

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— From The What to Eat When Cookbook by Michael F. Roizen, MD, Michael Crupain, MD, MPH, and Jim Perko, Sr., CEC, AAC.

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