Kohlrabi is one of our healthiest vegetables, at the same time it does not inflate as much as other types of cabbage and does not taste strictly due to the mustard oils it contains. It has few calories and is full of vitamins and minerals.
Profile of kohlrabi
- Scientific name: Brassica oleracea var. Gongylodes
- Common names: Turnip cabbage, turnip greens, turnip greens, turnips, turnip greens, turnip greens
- family: Cruciferous vegetables
- distribution: Kohlrabi is a cultivated form of vegetable cabbage; the origin of the cultivation is unknown, the Mediterranean or West Asia are suspected - its current center is in Germany and Austria.
- Parts of plants used: Tuber and leaves
- application areas:
- Supply of vitamins and minerals
- immune system
- Muscles and blood circulation
- Skin and hair
- Calming the stomach
Kohlrabi - an overview
- A considerable amount of potassium, calcium and magnesium ensure stable bones and balance blood pressure.
- Kohlrabi is good to eat raw, the flatulence when eating other types of cabbage is largely absent because turnip cabbage produces fewer gases.
- The turnip is ideal for losing weight. It contains little carbohydrates, almost no fats and only 24 kcal per 100 grams.
- Kohlrabi has a mild sweetness that goes well with delicate flavors. The reason for this are mustard oil glycosides, malic and citric acid.
- The mustard oils not only taste good, they also strengthen the gastrointestinal functions and the immune system.
- Kohlrabi is an important part of a vegan diet because it offers vitamins, minerals and nutrients and at the same time saturates them.
In addition to potassium, calcium and magnesium, this cabbage contains minerals and trace elements as well as phosphorus, iron and the rare selenium. When it comes to potassium, kohlrabi is one of the champions: 320 milligrams per 100 grams of tuber make it rise to the top league of potassium-rich foods, which the German Nutrition Society (DGE) officially confirms and therefore recommends to prevent high blood pressure and a stroke. Potassium is important for building proteins, stabilizing blood pressure and regulating cell growth.
Kohlrabi is also a trustworthy cabbage for the supply of calcium. The body needs calcium to build teeth and bones. Magnesium offers the tuber with at least 45 milligrams per 100 grams, and the leaves have even more. We need magnesium for the energy and protein metabolism. Kohlrabi has the advantage that we can eat it raw - the magnesium content disappears when it is boiled for a long time.
Vitamins are also present to a considerable extent. Two tubers cover our daily requirement of vitamin C, and since we don't only consume vitamin C with kohlrabi, we quickly get the full dose - especially since vitamin donors such as nettle, parsley, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and broccoli harmonize with the turnip.
Incidentally, the content of vitamins and minerals is highest in the kohlrabi leaves, which unfortunately are often thrown away. The leaves offer twice as much vitamin C as the tubers, beta-carotene even a hundred times (!) As much, and the leaves contain ten times more iron.
The tuber also offers vitamins B1, B2, B6 and E, as well as folic acid. Folic acid makes kohlrabi a valuable food for pregnant women; B vitamins strengthen the nerves, muscles and blood circulation, and vitamin E is necessary to build up skin and hair - both cosmetically and medically. It smoothes wrinkles, prevents hair loss and helps against brittle hair, tightens the connective tissue and ensures healthy cholesterol levels.
Mustard oil glycosides and anthocyanins
In the purple kohlrabi, there are a particularly large number of anthocyanins in the shell. Throwing the bowl away would be negligent because these flavonoids have an antioxidant effect, they switch off reactive oxygen species, the excessive occurrence of which otherwise triggers oxidative stress in the body. Oxidative stress causes a number of illnesses and accelerates aging processes.
Anthocyanins probably prevent cancer. Mustard oil glycosides support the functions in the stomach and intestines and help with mild indigestion. They fight pathogenic microbes.
Kohlrabi consists largely of water, but still has many vitamins, minerals and vital substances. With low carbohydrates and almost no fat, it saturates at just 24 kcal per 100 grams, making it ideal for losing weight without causing hunger and nutrient deficiencies.
Intolerance and allergies
The healthy tuber is easy to digest. However, if you suffer from allergies and / or intolerance to cruciferous vegetables, this also applies to beetroot. If you are intolerant to histamine, you must not eat kohlrabi.
To prepare the beet cabbage, remove the leaves from the tuber and wash them. You can eat the leaves raw (after washing them too). Remove the peel with a knife and then cut the tuber into slices, cubes or pens (strips). You should remove woody areas. The pens can be eaten raw, used as a snack in between or as a vegetable.
You can eat kohlrabi in a variety of ways: raw, blanched, cooked or steamed. To preserve the nutrients, you should not cook it for a long time, but cook it in steam. To do this, either use a steam cooker or hang a metal strainer in a closed saucepan with boiling water that does not reach into the water and let the vegetables steep for about 15 minutes. Prick the cabbage with a fork. If it is soft, the kohlrabi is done.
The healthy tuber can be used in many ways in the kitchen, as soup, stew, as a snack, in a salad or as an accompaniment to meat, fish, rice and potatoes. The vegetables harmonize with potatoes, celery and carrots, whether in the gratin, casserole or stew. Kohlrabi and especially kohlrabi leaves are an insider tip for healthy smoothies. Processed raw, the vitamin bomb hits fully here. Parsley, tarragon, nutmeg or dill are suitable for spices and culinary herbs.
Delicious recipes with the turnip include kohlrabi lasagne (kohlrabi slices instead of noodles), kohlrabi fries as a healthy alternative to french fries, kohlrabi schnitzel (fried kohlrabi slices, breaded or unpaneled) or kohlrabi gratin (baked kohlrabi with cream cheese and cream in the oven) . A stew with kohlrabi, potatoes, carrots, parsley root, leek, onions and vegetable broth is also delicious and very healthy.
Kohlrabi vegetables with carrots
Kohlrabi vegetables can be prepared classically - with carrots. For four people you need:
- 400 grams of kohlrabi,
- 250 grams of carrots,
- a heaping tablespoon of butter,
- salt and pepper to taste,
- a teaspoon of sugar,
- the zest of half an organic lemon,
- about 130 milliliters of vegetable broth,
- two stalks of parsley
- and / or a little dill and nutmeg.
You melt the butter in a saucepan, add the carrot and kohlrabi slices, season with salt, pepper, sugar and lemon zest, then throw in the finely chopped kohlrabi leaves, and after eight minutes take everything off the plate. Depending on your taste, you can season with a little nutmeg, dill and parsley.
A kohlrabi soup has the advantage that many children like it, which the smell of cabbage soups would otherwise deter. The basis is kohlrabi pens, come for example
- Jerusalem artichoke,
- Sweet potatoes,
- or pasta.
You cook the ingredients in a vegetable broth. Basil, parsley, chives and dill as well as lovage are suitable as herbal seasonings - if you like it more hearty, use dried celery and dried onions.
The delicious vegetables are particularly suitable for a salad, as the delicate sticks can be eaten raw. So you also keep all the nutrients. The Kohlrabi pens can be combined with, for example
- Lamb's lettuce,
- Romana salad,
- cooked asparagus,
- quartered tomatoes,
- boiled pumpkin
- or boiled potatoes.
You can prepare different dressings - a mustard dressing goes well with the mustard oils of the beetroot, a cream dressing harmonizes with the sweet taste, vinegar and oil give the mild cabbage more piquant nuances. (Dr. Utz Anhalt)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
- German Nutrition Society (DGE): Selected questions and answers about potassium, December 2016 (accessed: March 23, 2020), DGE
- Gerendás, Jóska; Breuning, Stephanie; Stahl, Thorsten et al .: Isothiocyanate concentration in Kohlrabi (Brassica oleracea L. Var. Gongylodes) plants as influenced by sulfur and nitrogen supply, Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 56 (18): 8334-42, September 2008, PubMed
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- Huchaiah, Vimala; Naik, Prakash R .; Chandavarkar, Vidya R .: Effect of Brassica oleracea var. Gongylodes on body weight and biochemical parameters in experimentally-induced diabetes in Wistar rat, in: Biomedicine, 28 (3): 184-189, July 2008, ResearchGate
- Sharma, Indumati; Aaradhya, Mallikarjun et al .: Antihyperglycemic, antihyperlipidemic and antioxidant activity of phenolic rich extract of Brassica oleraceae var gongylodes on streptozotocin induced Wistar rats, in: SpringerPlus 4 (1), May 2015, PMC
- Park, Woo Tae; Kim, Jae Kwang; Park, Suhyoung et al .: Metabolic Profiling of Glucosinolates, Anthocyanins, Carotenoids, and Other Secondary Metabolites in Kohlrabi (Brassica oleracea var. Gongylodes), in: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 60/33: 8111-8116, August 2012, PubMed