No Kidding!

Just say the word parsnip and most kids and adults alike turn up their noses! But the truth is that early spring parsnips are as sweet as carrots and incredibly nutritious! Here in New England the secret of the sweetest parsnip is to clip off all the parsnip greens and leave it in the ground thru the winter. Then in the early spring before the parsnip greens regrow, harvest it.

Parsnips are a member of the same family as parsley, carrots, celery, chervil, dill, fennel, cilantro, coriander, lovage, Queen Anne’s lace and hemlock. Be careful handling parsnip greens - they can cause a rash and even blisters when in contact with wet skin! The common misconception that parsnip root is poisonous may be due to the fact that it is similar in appearance to the Water Hemlock which is notorious for having been given the source of Socrates' death.

A Little History

The parsnip is believed to have originated, like the carrot, in Europe. In the archeological record, parsnips have been consumed for thousands of years. In the written record, parsnips have been mentioned since ancient Roman and Greek times as a staple. So highly valued was the parsnip in ancient times that the Emperor Tiberius accepted them as tribute.

Parsnips were introduced to the New World by both the French coming down from Canada, and early British colonists. They were particularly prized for their high nutritional value and sweet, nutty flavor.

While extremely popular in the US in the 1600’s, they fell from our view when the potato was introduced in the 1700's. However, the parsnip remains very popular in Europe.

Latest Research

Recent research at the University of Newcastle at Tyne demonstrated that the poly-acetylene antioxidants contained in parsnips have strong anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal and anti-cancer properties, and may even reduce the risk for colon cancer and leukemia. Parsnips are very high in potassium and studies by the University of Maryland have shown that foods high in potassium help lower the risk of stroke, high blood pressure, hypokalemia, IBS, and assist in strengthening bones.

Amazingly Benefits

Parsnips are rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidant compounds. Vitamins include a wealth of vitamins C, K and E as well as the B-complex compounds B-6, pantothenic acid, folates and thiamin. The minerals contained in parsnips in high amounts include potassium, iron, calcium, phosphorus and copper. Potassium is particularly important for maintaining healthy levels of sodium in the body, and helping to uphold healthy blood pressure and a healthy heart.

Like carrots, parsnips contain a wide range and high amount of the antioxidants.

The rich content of vitamin K and manganese in this vegetable promotes bone health. Manganese is also essential for the production of sex hormones, while vitamin K is part of the process of blood clotting factors. Vitamin C and E are powerful antioxidants that fight free radicals to prevent disease and delay the aging process.


• 2 Parsnips
• 1 Apple
• 1 stalk Celery
• 1/2 Red Pepper
• 1 thumb of fresh Ginger
• a thin slice of Jalapeno for a little kick!

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Yield: 20 oz.


• This is also a great smoothie recipe, but it will come out very thick so add some coconut water or oat milk!
• Include the skin of the apple and parsnip - it's packed with nutrients!
• Remember: You need a high-quality juicer to juice them. You may have a look on Aicok juicer to find out a better juicer.

Author's Bio: 

This spring, I'm focusing on seasonal nutrients. Pretty soon, the farmers markets' stalls will be loaded with the first little plants of the season ...