Raw Rutabaga Noodles with Pumpkin Seed Pesto

Strange thing, rutabaga. It is a root vegetable that is the result of natural cross between turnip and  cabbage. In the 17th century rutabaga grew wild in Sweden, but later spread to other parts of Europe where it was cultivated.


Rutabaga, also known as swede or the Swedish turnip, is an autumn vegetable. It ripens well in cold weather. Like many other root vegetable rutabaga is rich in minerals, especially calcium, magnesium and phosphorus; as well as fiber. Rutabaga is also an excellent source vitamin C. This is something to consider during the cold season. Rutabaga also contains beta-carotene and and vitamin B6.

Like other cruciferous vegetable rutabaga contains phytochemicals called isothiocyanates.  Isothiocyanates are sulfur-containing compounds that give the cabbage family its characteristic sharp taste. These compounds may help detox carcinogens from the body and thus, prevent some types of cancer. Isothiocyanates are best obtained from raw cruciferous vegetables.

This recipe combines the nutty sweet taste of the pumpkin seeds with a slightly bitter taste of the rutabaga. To make the pasta you will need a spiralizer. If you are already familiar with this kitchen utensil and used it to make a zucchini pasta, you will be surprised. Rutabaga is rather tough and you will have to work a bit harder. But be careful not to break your tool.

 ~ Raw Rutabaga Noodles with Pumpkin Seed Pesto ~


For the noodles:
  • 1 medium large rutabaga
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice 
  • 1/2 tsp Celtic salt

for the pesto:
  • 1 cup raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds
  • 2 Tbsp virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp cold pressed pumpkin seed oil
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/3 cup parsley leaves
  • Celtic salt and freshly grind black pepper to taste
for the garnish:
  • 1/3 cup raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds
  • freshly grind black pepper

 Making of: Rutabaga noodles

  • Wash and peel the rutabaga. Cut off the ends and affix it to the spiralizer. Turn the handle until the entire root is turned into long noodles.
  • Add lemon juice and salt and mix gently. Use your clean hands, but be careful not to break the noodles. You want to have nice and long spaghetti. Lemon and salt will tenderize the rutabaga noodles just a bit and make them more palatable.
  • To make the pesto place all the pesto ingredients in a food processor and process until your pesto is creamy, but still has some crunch to it. 
  • In a large bowl mix pesto with the rutabaga pasta. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge for 15 to 20 minutes. Allow flavors to penetrate. 
  • Take the bowl out of the fridge. Portion out the pasta on individual pasta plates and garnish with raw pumpkin seeds. Add freshly grind pepper and enjoy in good company.

In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

Raw rutabaga noodles with pumpkin seed pesto

Dominique Allmon©2013

P.S. Rutabaga is not the easiest vegetable to digest. This may be the reason why many people prefer to it it cooked. If someone in your family does not like this raw creation you can sauté the raw "noodles" for a minute or so in is a small amount of virgin olive oil. Then add pumpkin seed pesto and pumpkin seeds and let them enjoy if they want their rutabaga cooked.