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Parsnips are one of the sweeter root veggies (like carrots, sweet potatoes and celeriac), so great for kids who enjoy sweeter flavours. They can be prepped and cooked in many ways, but roasted or in soup are possibly the most popular. Parsnips are a perfect cheap British veg for the winter, although you can buy frozen pre-sliced ones year round to just chuck in the oven as a delicious sweet side for many meals.
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The Roman Emperor Tiberius was so fond of parsnips, he imported them all the way from Germany across the Alps to Rome. In fact, he loved them so much he accepted parsnips instead of gold as payment from the Germanic tribes.  Why did he love them so? Cos them parsnips are so sweeeeeeet. The frost turns the starch in the white roots into sugar.



These sweet treats are high in folic acid which contributes towards mental alertness and reduces tiredness. 


Shopping Guide

Try and look out for bags of parsnips where the sizing is small to medium otherwise selecting larger ones may result in a woody or tough texture.



To store, keep in a cool dark cupboard, or better yet, the fridge. They will keep for up to a week in the fridge.


Serving Suggestions

The best way to prepare parsnips is to peel and cook them with a roast just like spuds or cut them into “Pars-chips”. Put the Pars-chip in a roasting tin, coat with a little oil and roast in a preheated oven at 220C/200C fan/Gas 7 for 30 mins.



Buying veg in season is not only great for the planet, it can be good for your wallet, too! Seasonal veg are often cheaper and frequently taste better, so can be a better time to try with a child as the often sweeter, riper taste is more enjoyable.

At Its Best:

September - March



Here are some of our favourite ways to engage kids with parsnips:


Your Food

Find your go-to meals in our family favourites section and see what veggies work best with them.

We’ve gathered together 15 of the nation’s favourite meals and given you step-by-step ways to make small improvements, helping you to make healthier dinners the easy way, and even showing you which veg work best with which recipes.
Find out how to add more veg to your suppers here.



Effort: 1
Complexity: 1
Cost: 1

Family Favourites


Effort: 1
Complexity: 1
Cost: 1

Family Favourite

More Recipes
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If You Like Parsnip…Try

Does your child enjoy parsnips? That’s great! Peppers are usually chewy or soft and sweet, so why not try a similar texture and/or taste…



The moments before food is offered can be a perfect opportunity for engagement that can help make it more likely a child will eat it!

The first thing to do is remove the pressure. If the veg doesn’t get eaten, it’s not the end of the world. There will be other days, other dinners, other chances. Fun is key here – try not to worry about mess, perfect table manners, or playing with food. Instead, focus on making the process of getting the food to the plates, readying the table, and the actual eating relaxed.

The best principles for success here are the Three Rs (role modelling, rewarding, re-offering) which you can read about here.

But there is one more way you can serve for success, and that is giving your child a role. You don’t have to do this every time, just encourage them in their strengths through it when you can.

Here are some of our favourite ideas:

Design a menu

Come up with a silly name or story for a dish

Help with making a meal plan and choosing veg for dinners or snacks

Help to serve up the meal on dishes, lay the table or create a centrepiece to be involved in the physical ‘serving up’ process

The Wonderful World of Veg

Check out our vegepedia. When to buy in-season. How to store them to keep for longer. How to engage children with each veg, and simple ideas of how to prepare and cook them for maximum taste and minimum waste. Select a veg…

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