Fall is my favorite season for fresh produce. I developed a love for root veggies at an early age from my mom’s chicken soup. She made her stock with carrots, celery, parsnip and herbs. I used to ask, “Can I have more white carrots?” They were a sweet, potato-like mystery to me that only appeared in soup. She never served them as a side dish and I never saw them in restaurants.
Fortunately in the last few years, parsnip has been able to distinguish itself and break through as a leading lady in the world of side dishes and snack food.
Parsnip is related to the carrot, but has a sweeter, richer flavor. Although you can eat it raw, really stands out roasted or made into chips. Parsnip is rich in antioxidants vitamins, and minerals, specifically potassium (so move over banana, there’s a new mineral superstar in town!)
One cup of parsnip has 100 calories and 6.5 grams of fiber–that’s twice the fiber of regular potato. Almost all the fiber and nutrients are found in the skin, so don’t peel parsnips when preparing, just scrub them clean.
Next football Sunday, ditch the potato chips and serve these easy and delicious baked parsnip chips–your couch fans (and waistline!) with thank you. I like to make two or three different batches, because its fun, and because I like to hear “oohs and ahhhs” over the different flavors. Feel free to pick just one variation or come up with your own combination!
Baked Parsnip Chips
- Preheat Oven to 350 degrees F.
- Scrub and slice parsnip into thin coins.
- Cover a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper; cover with oil or oil spray.
- Arrange parsnip slices flat on baking sheet (make sure they don’t overlap or they won’t get as crisp).
- Season with emaining sweet, savory or cheesy ingredients.
- Generously cover parsnip slices with oil spray.
- Bake for 20 minutes, flip slices and bake for another 15 minutes or until golden brown. (After 15 minutes, watch chips carefully because they can go from gorgeously crisp to burnt quickly.)
- Remove chips from oven and sprinkle with a little more salt. Enjoy!
(Note: Once cooled , store chips in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Sadly, I have never have any leftovers!)
If you don’t cook, but don’t want to miss out on parsnip chips, try my new snack obsession, Wonderfully Raw Snip Chips. Snip Chips come in three varieties (Cheesy Herb Truffle, Dill Pickle, Cilanto Lime) and each flavor is more delicious than the next. I was skeptical about Dill Pickle, but it’s actually my favorite flavor. A whole bag is around 120 calories, 8 grams of healthy fats and 2-4 grams of heart-healthy fiber. I feel guilt-free eating the whole bag in one sitting!