Simple Roasted Parsnips – Healthy Seasonal Recipes


Today I have a super simple recipe for roasted parsnips with oil, herbs and salt. This technique of cooking parsnips is as easy as can be and the perfect healthy side dish to pair with a variety of meals.

A side view closeup of roasted parsnips

This post was originally shared on March 12, 2015. I have updated the photos and some of the text today. 

My Favorite Easy Roasted Parsnips Recipe

Why mess with perfection? Creamy sweet parsnips are so good, as is, straight from the garden! To prepare them, they require little more than a little oil, herbs and seasoning. Then let the oven do all the work.

I just made this and MAN are they delicious. Got the parsnips from a farmer`s market a few days ago and did the recipe as printed. Will do over and over again!

~Jule

For the record, I do love cooking parsnips in a number of ways, but this basic method of roasting parsnips is the one I return to over and over again!

What Are Parsnips?

whole parsnips

Parsnips are a root vegetable similar to carrots, from the Apiaceae family. In appearance, they roughly resemble a white carrot with a fat top and pointy tip. This root veggie is very sweet tasting and has a unique floral and nutty flavor with notes of hazelnut, pear, vanilla, and caramel.

They are in season from fall through the spring and make a great storing crop because they have low water content. Spring-dug parsnips are particularly sweet.

They pair well with roast chicken and pork. (More menu ideas here.) They can also be mashed or added to soups and stews. Here are some more ways to cook with parsnips. Roasting is a terrific way to prepare them because it brings out their natural sweetness and caramelizes their sugars.

FAQs and Expert Tips

Do I need to peel parsnips?

The first time I tried roasting parsnips was when I was in my first year of culinary school. I neglected to peel them before I roasted them, and I learned the hard way (and unfortunately for the folks dining that day) you have to peel them before you cut them. The skin is actually a little pithy and a little bitter.
Peel the carrots before cutting

Do I have to core parsnips?

You should not have to remove the core to your parsnips. If they have been left in the ground too long they may have become pithy, which you’ll notice as you try to cut the tops off. If this is the case, quarter them lengthwise then remove the cores with a sharp chef’s knife.

How to store and reheat leftovers

Keep leftovers in a resealable container in the fridge up to three days. Leftovers can be reheated in the microwave until they’re steaming hot. Or you can heat them in the oven. To do so place them in a glass baking dish and cover them with foil. Bake them at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until they’re steaming hot. 

Make Ahead

You can cut the parsnips up to four days ahead. Just store them in a resealable glass container in the fridge to keep them cold and dry. When you’re ready to make them, toss them with the oil and seasonings just before roasting them.

Purchasing Tips

  • If you’re not familiar with them, I like to say that parsnips look like white carrots. Most of them are relatively wide at the top and skinny/pointy at the bottom. This shape is more tapered than that of a carrot. This is totally normal.
  • You can find them year round, but they are best from fall through the spring. As with all root vegetables, parsnips are a storing crop, so they can be held in a root cellar or the refrigerator for several months. 
  • Look for those that are not growing fine root hairs (that means they are over the hill and will not be as sweet.) You also want to make sure they are free from punky or slimy spots. This means they were stored with too much moisture and are rotting. If they are kept dry this shouldn’t be a problem.
  • Try to pick parsnips that are around 1-inch thick or so at the top and all of about equal size.

Serving Suggestions

  1. Parsnips are wonderful with pork. This Grilled Pork Tenderloin with garlic and lemon zest would be super yummy with the naturally sweet parsnips. 
  2. In colder months this Roasted Pork Loin with Apple Chutney is great with the flavor of parsnips.
  3. You could also serve this side dish with Healthy Baked Chicken Tenders recipe that everyone loves. Your oven will already be set at 400 degrees so that would be super easy! 
  4. If you like fish, this Pan Fried Fish would be nice main course with these. I’d recommend the caper sauce variation with them. 
  5. You can’t go wrong with Garlic Herb Chicken. It is one of my all-time favorite ways to grill chicken. Pair it with a salad with some Apple Cider Vinaigrette and you’ve got a complete meal! 
a sheet pan of roasted parsnips

More Parsnips Recipes

Here are some more recipe ideas for using fresh parsnips.

Thanks so much for reading. If you are new here, you may want to sign up for my free weekly email newsletter where I share weeknight meal plans delivered right to your inbox. Or follow me on Instagram. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review! It is very appreciated. Happy Cooking! ~Katie

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Description

Here is a simple recipe for roasted parsnips. Simply toss them with oil, herbs and salt and let the oven roast them into a perfect sweet and savory side dish.


  • 2 pounds parsnips
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 ½ teaspoon herbs de province, Italian seasoning or other dried herb mix
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • chopped parsley for garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Peel parsnips and cut into 1-inch chunks. Toss with oil, herbs and salt in a large bowl. Spread out on a large rimmed baking sheet in a single layer.
  3. Roast, stirring once or twice, until the parsnips are tender in the center and browned in spots on the outside, 25 to 35 minutes. Transfer to a platter or plates and garnish with parsley.

Notes

  • To tell if the parsnips are done, slide a fork into one or two. It should go in with little to no resistance.
  • You can cut the parsnips up to four days ahead. Just store them in a resealable glass container in the fridge to keep them cold and dry. When you’re ready to make them, toss them with the oil and seasonings just before roasting them.
  • If you have leftover parsnips they can be reheated in the microwave until they’re steaming hot. Or you can heat them in the oven. To do so place them in a glass baking dish and cover them with foil. Bake them at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until they’re steaming hot.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cup
  • Calories: 110
  • Sugar: 5 g
  • Sodium: 550 mg
  • Fat: 4 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 20 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Protein: 1.5 g

Keywords: parsnips recipe,roasted parsnips

About the Author

Katie Webster

Katie Webster studied art and photography at Skidmore College and is a graduate of the New England Culinary Institute. She has been a professional recipe developer since 2001 when she first started working in the test kitchen at EatingWell magazine. Her recipes have been featured in numerous magazines including Shape, Fitness, Parents and several Edible Communities publications among others. Her cookbook, Maple {Quirk Books} was published in 2015. She launched Healthy Seasonal Recipes in 2009. She lives in Vermont with her husband, two teenage daughters and two yellow labs. In her free time, you can find her at the gym, cooking, stacking firewood, making maple syrup, and tending to her overgrown perennial garden.





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