Roasted rutabagas, like turnips, are a delicious alternative to starchy root vegetables and have lots of flavor. You can roast them whole or, in this easy recipe, cut them into cubes and roast them with a little olive oil and seasonings!

This easy root vegetable side dish pairs perfectly with oven-baked chicken breasts or juicy stuffed pork tenderloin!

Roasted rutabaga in a dish with a fork and garnished with thyme

What is Rutabaga?

Rutabagas are also called swedes and they are a cross between a turnip and a cabbage, even the leaves are edible!

This veggie is often confused with a turnip but they’re usually bigger and have a yellow-ish skin. The taste is very similar to a turnip but a little bit stronger and you could replace turnips in almost any recipe with rutabaga. It can be enjoyed either raw (they’re great added to coleslaw) or cooked as in this recipe.

Raw rutabaga on a baking sheet

Can You Roast Rutabaga?

Sure you can! Most root vegetables can be roasted, just be sure to cut all the pieces uniformly so they cook at the same rate.

How to Roast Rutabaga

This roasted rutabaga recipe is so simple to prepare. It is ready to serve in just 3 easy steps!

  1. Prepare: Preheat oven, and cube rutabaga (see recipe below)
  2. Roast: Toss cubed rutabagas with oil and seasonings. Roast rutabagas about an hour until they are tender.
  3. Caramelize: Add brown sugar and butter to the pan and coat the roasted rutabagas. Return to the oven and roast another 5 minutes (or broil if preferred).

Roasted rutabaga on a baking sheet with and without brown sugar sprinkled on

What to Serve with Roasted Rutabagas

Roasted rutabaga makes a great side dish to chicken, pork, and beef.

Just like potatoes, rutabagas can go with nearly anything, especially with this sweetly savory recipe!

Roasted rutabaga in a dish

Can You Freeze Roasted Rutabaga?

Rutabagas can be frozen and thaw well if they are cooked first. They will be a little softer once thawed though.

  • To Reheat: heat in the microwave, draining the liquid as it reheats. Stir and refresh them with a little salt and pepper before serving!

Delicious Roasted Root Vegetables

Roasted rutabaga in a dish with a fork and garnished with thyme
5 from 9 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Brown Sugar Roasted Rutabaga

Of all the root vegetables, roasted rutabagas are a healthy alternative to other starches. You can roast them whole or cut them into cubes and roast them with a little olive oil and seasonings!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 4 servings


  • 3 pounds rutabaga
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon thyme
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar


  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Peel rutabaga and cut into 1" cubes. Toss with olive oil, thyme, salt & pepper.
  • Spread onto a large roasting pan and roast 45-55 pan or until tender and golden.
  • Remove pan from the oven, add butter and brown sugar to the pan, stir until the rutabaga is coated. Return to the oven for 5 minutes.
  • Serve warm.


If you prefer a more savory side, skip the brown sugar.
Broil for 2-3 minutes at the end of cooking if desired.
5 from 9 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 230 | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 15mg | Sodium: 93mg | Potassium: 1038mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 175IU | Vitamin C: 85mg | Calcium: 151mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Roasted rutabaga in a dish with a fork and a title
Roasted rutabaga in a dish with a fork and writing
Rutabaga on a sheet pan and roasted rutabaga in a dish with a fork and spoon with writing



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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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  1. I’m diabetic, so I can’t add the sugar. Are there any other seasonings or herb recommendations that could be used? Maybe a savory option?

    1. You can skip the brown sugar for a more savory option and it will still be delicious Christina! If you try it I would love to hear how it turns out!

  2. I’m always looking for other ways to showcase rutabaga. I cant wait to try this. I’d love to make these for Thanksgiving this year.5 stars