Kohlrabi comes in both red and green varieties; each has white flesh that tastes like a turnip. Both the leaves and stem are edible.

Kohlrabi has the same origin as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and brussels sprouts; all were originally bred from the wild cabbage plant.


Other names: German Turnip, Cabbage Turnip
Translations: Kolrābis, Kaliaropės, Gulie, Keleraba, Cải củ, Kalarepa, Koolraap, कोल्हाबी, Couves, Кольраби, Είδος λάχανου, الكرنب السلقي, 알줄기양배추, Kedluben, Kolrabi, Halaman ng kolrabi, 苤, Colinap, Kolerabice, Kaleráb, קולרבי, Kålrabbi, Келераба, コールラビ, Le chou-rave, Kålrabi, Kålrabi, Colinabo, Кольрабі, Kyssäkaali, Алабаш

Physical Description

Nearly-spherical, the kohlrabi grows to about 2.5 inches in diameter. The vegetable can be green or purple depending on variety. The texture is similar to a broccoli stalk.

Colors: Light green or purple with deep green greens; pale green to ivory-colored flesh

Tasting Notes

Flavors: Stems are crisp and juicy and somewhat sweet
Mouthfeel: Crunchy, Crisp
Food complements: Goes well with other vegetables like carrots, Potatoes and leeks. side dish to most meats.
Wine complements: White wine, Red wine
Beverage complements: Beer, Mead
Substitutes: Turnip, Broccoli stems, Celeriac

Selecting and Buying

Seasonality: may, june, july, august
Peak: june, july
Choosing: Look for small to medium-sized bulbs; bulbs that are larger than 3 inches in diameter will have an unpleasant texture. Stay away from bruised or soft bulbs.
Buying: Usually available in most supermarkets and some farmers markets depending on region.
Procuring: Plant seeds in fertile soil in early spring and continue planting every 2 to 3 weeks for continuous harvest. Harvest when plants are still small to avoid tough, woody-fleshed Kohlrabi.

Preparation and Use

May be eaten raw or cooked. Saute with other veggies. Very versatile plant with a mild broccoli-like flavor or cabbage-like flavor. May be used in soups or steamed.

Cleaning: Wash with plenty of cold water. Leaves may be removed and are also edible.

Conserving and Storing

Fresh kohlrabi can be stored up to one month in the refrigerator.


History: The kohlrabi dates to at least the first century AD; Pliny the Elder wrote about a "Corinthian turnip" which is very similar to the kohlrabi. The kohlrabi is also mentioned by Apicius, who wrote an ancient Roman cookbook.



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