Root Vegetable Buyer's Guide

Shopping, cooking and storage tips for six common root vegetables.

Root vegetables can be found pretty easily in large supermarkets and farmers’ markets. Roots keep best when stored in humid environments at near-freezing temperatures. Root vegetables will keep you well-nourished through the winter: they are nutritious carbohydrate choices because they’re rich in fiber and protective antioxidants, such as vitamin C (rutabagas and turnips) and vitamin A (carrots). And they’re all good sources of folate, a water-soluble B vitamin that’s needed to form healthy new cells.


Parsnips look like large, off-white carrots and have a slightly sweet, anise-like flavor with a nutty aftertaste. Look for sturdy, firm parsnips, free of soft spots. Remove the fibrous, woody core before using: quarter parsnip lengthwise and cut out the core with a paring knife. Refrigerate in a plastic bag for up to 3 weeks.
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