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How to Cut and Peel Kohlrabi (plus ways to eat!) 

Learn all about kohlrabi, a unique vegetable that is a part of the cabbage family. Learn how to slice and prepare it and the best ways to eat a kohlrabi! 

The best part about farmers markets or a CSA box is getting fun and unique fresh produce that you likely won’t see at the grocery store! But now that you have a cool-looking vegetable, you need to know how to prepare and eat it! This post will teach you all about a bulbous vegetable known as a kohlrabi. 

What is a Kohlrabi? 

Kohlrabi is a cross between a turnip and a cabbage. The word “kohlrabi” in German literally translates to “cabbage turnip”. It is a member of the Brassica family and has green and purple varieties It grows above the ground like a cabbage and has green leaves that shoot up from the bulb and a root that grows into the ground. 

You may find the kohlrabi greens removed from the bulb when you purchase because they are much easier to pack and transport that way. However, the entire plant is edible, including the leaves! The leaves can be sauteed or steamed, similar to how you would treat the leaves of a beet. 

Kohlrabi growing in the ground

What does kohlrabi taste like?

Kohlrabi is a tasty vegetable with a mild flavor. It has the texture of a turnip or radish or some people describe it as similar to broccoli stems. The flavor itself is more mellow than a turnip and is not bitter. It is thought to have the crunch of a radish with the flavor and sweetness of a cabbage. 

Tools to cut a kohlrabi

To cut a kohlrabi you will just need a few basic kitchen tools! You will need a cutting board and a sharp knife or a sharp vegetable peeler can do the trick as well. 

For a list of recommended kitchen utensils, check out this list! 

How to cut a kohlrabi

The best way to prepare kohlrabi is to cut off the top and the bottom of the bulb to create a flat surface so it doesn’t roll around. Then cut with a sharp knife or paring knife along the outside edge to remove the outer skin. Just like you would peel a pineapple! The skin is edible, so you do not have to peel kohlrabi, but the outside has a tough texture and it’s best to remove any brown spots on the skin anyway. 

Then you can start slicing the kohlrabi. You can now slice the kohlrabi similar to how you would a potato. You can take each layer and slice them into thin strips or larger cubes. 

For fine or small pieces it is really easy to shred with a box grater as well. 

Typically, kohlrabi are eaten raw with some salt. Slice it into stick-shaped pieces or you can dice it into pieces, depending on how you’d like to eat it! 

Video Tutorial on how to cut a kohlrabi

Ideas to eat kohlrabi 

Kohlrabi is a garden favorite because it is simple to store for meal prep! Left whole, we keep the bulb in our crisper drawer for many months before enjoying them. Once peeled and cut, you can store the vegetable in an airtight container to enjoy anytime. It will store very similar to a root vegetable like a carrot stick.

You can eat kohlrabi either raw or cooked. If you are eating it raw, most prefer to eat it with a little bit of salt. Or, cut it into sticks (like you would carrot sticks) and use it for your favorite dip such as ranch or hummus. It is also delicious to add to fresh salads for a crunchy texture. Making a salad is such a great way to use up a variety of fun fresh vegetables from the farmers market to get different flavors and textures. Kohlrabi is usually in season at the same time as fresh lettuce, so they make a perfect pair! 

You can also fry a kohlrabi or add it into a stir-fry. Simply add it to your favorite stir fry recipes and season how you like! Try adding kohlrabi to this Quick Asian Sugar Snap Peas with Chicken recipe!

A simple side dish that is one of our favorite recipes is to add kohlrabi to a sheet pan with broccoli and roast. The kohlrabi adds a different flavor and it is so easy to make! Drizzle with some olive oil and your favorite seasoning for a quick vegetable to go with your favorite meal.   

Identifying good kohlrabi bulbs

Kohlrabi typically takes an average of three months to grow from seed to harvest. They should be harvested when they are 1-3 inches around or about the size of a tennis ball. If they are left in the garden too long, or there are extreme temperatures the kohlrabi will taste bitter and “woody.” 

When you cut into the Kohlrabi, it should be white and uniform in color. See below for an example of a bad kohlrabi. This will taste “woody” and not sweet and crisp like it should.

Inside of a bad kohlrabi

Kohlrabi Recipes

Here is a list of some ideas and recipes to use your kohlrabi!

Kohlrabi Slaw– made with apples, hazelnuts, and a honey mustard dressing. 

Roasted Kohlrabi with garlic, lemon, and pecorino – a simple recipe to try roasted kohlrabi 

Kohlrabi Stir Fry– this recipe includes the greens of the kohlrabi as well! 

Get farm fresh produce from us here at Pleasant Grove Homestead!

During kohlrabi season you can find kohlrabi from our farm store or with us at farmers markets! We also sell our products through local co-ops in surrounding areas. Shop with the link below!

Did you know that you can become a PGH elite member? This is our version of a CSA box or Community Supported Agriculture. You can learn more about joining here! This is a wonderful way to support your local farmer and get fresh produce each week. 

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