Turnip Pasta with Creamy Brazil Nut Sauce



Hey friends. I’m here for a quick and sleepy post: three nights of working late and the World Series have left me a wee bit sleep deprived.

Not too sleep-deprived, though, to present you with a winning recipe. The following is my idea of “takeout” during a busy week. No, it’s not sushi (though I love me some raw nori), nor Indian, nor Chinese. Much to people’s surprise, and perhaps to my own detriment, I’m not such a fan of many popular global cuisines, try though I might (I attribute this in part to my inherent shyness around garlic, onions, and spice, which often appear in the beloved foods of other cultures). I’m also not a fan of dirty takeout boxes, the smell of lo mein noodles (serious childhood aversion), or, well, cooked food, so I’m one New Yorker who doesn’t hop on the takeout train.

So what do I do when it’s 8:45 p.m., and I’ve come home exhausted from the office with nothing in mind but a peaceful meal with the Yankees? I use up what I have as quickly and creatively as possible.

A few nights ago I had, among other odds and ends:

•    Turnips
•    Spinach
•    Carrots
•    Cabbage

A quick peek in my pantry revealed that, along with the usual suspects (seaweed, spices, Larabars, dried fruits, almond butter, coconut oil, raw carob powder) I had a container of Futter’s all-raw Brazil nut butter that Mizz VeggieGirl had kindly bestowed on me.  Brazil nuts don’t make their way into my diet very often, but when they do, I’m always pleasantly reminded of how buttery and sweet they taste. That they’re also a great source of protein, magnesium, and an exceptional source of selenium, is an added bonus. This little jar had been languishing in the pantry for a while, and I figured that there’d be no better way to use it up than in a sauce for some spiralized turnip noodles. With that, turnip pasta with creamy Brazil nut sauce was born.

The recipe:

For the pasta:

2 extra large turnips, spiralized
Shredded carrots (eyeball this to serve you adequately)
Shredded cabbage (ditto)
A handful of spinach

Brazil Nut Sauce

6 Tbsps Brazil nut butter (1/2 cup brazil nuts can also be substituted)
6 tbsps water
2 tbsps apple cider vinegar
2 tbsps nama shoyu
½ tsp sesame oil

Blend all of the ingredients in a blender, magic bullet, or VitaMix on high. Pour about ¼ cup sauce over veggies, adding more if you need it to evenly coat them. Enjoy!

This sauce would work nicely with other nut butters: tahini, almond butter, cashew butter. The brazil nut butter makes for an especially delicate and light flavor.

See that? With nearly no time and very few things on hand, it’s possible to whip up a simple and innovative raw meal. Without a spiralizer, the turnips can easily be sliced on a mandolin or even a box grater. From start to finish, this dinner took me about fifteen minutes.


Yup. My kind of TV dinner.

Hope you’re all getting geared up for Raw Wednesday! Consider this my early contribution. Can’t wait to hear about yours 🙂


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Categories: Main Dishes
Dietary Preferences: Gluten Free, Raw

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  1. I just got the Padermo Spiralizer and I totally love it! I was browsing around on the web for recipes involving spiralized veggies and found your amazing site. This recipe is at the TOP of my list. I love brazil nuts even more than I love my new spiralizer. I think 1 + 1 is going to equal LOVE on this recipe!!! 🙂

  2. Okay, I know I am late to dinner, but how does one “spiralize” a turnip?

    Long time vegetarian leaning more and more toward vegan, I am just starting to get seriously into the whole raw thing.

    LOVE raw turnip – it is great dipped in hummous and brazil nuts rock!

    Great blog!

  3. I had to go to a raw potluck and was running low on some of my favorite items. I ended up with a very delish entree. I think creativity goes into overdrive when you feel it is more of a challenge.

  4. I made this for dinner tonight only with tahini since it was all I have right now. I really liked it. I love turnips but have never eaten them raw before. Very good and very simple!

  5. I need to make your creamy brazil nut sauce. Seriously girl, amazing. And it seems like something you could use on a bunch of different things. Dipping sauce, marinade, dressing, drizzle, etc.

  6. Gena, that sounds awesome, I’m definitely going to have to try that sauce/dressing. I’m having your raw cauli salad for lunch today… Except I got a bit excited and added celery… and cucumber… and lettuce… and mint!! My fridge is too full for my own good. I had to restrain myself from the capsicum because the bowl was already too full!!

  7. oh my that looks AMAZING. can you believe i’ve never had a turnip?? i’m pretty sure i’d be all over that if it was spiralized and covered in brazil nut sauce like so 😀 i can’t wait to try it!
    i was thinking about you the other night when i took my last birth control pill ever. here’s hoping my body doesn’t freak out! i read through your post again and all of the comments and am pretty excited about it
    have a great day!

  8. Looks AWESOME!!!! And, Brazil nuts… rock on! Get that selenium girl 🙂 Whoo hoo!!!

    I have been eating 1-2 Brazil nuts a day for the past couple of days when I wake up.

    Love you!

  9. Yum, that looks so good! I think I need to get some turnips, I’ve never thought of spiralizing those 🙂

  10. Is that recipe for one serving? Or was it enough to save extra sauce? Just wondering since it used quite a bit of the nut butter

    • Sorry, I tend to be lazy with portion sizes, since I never really portion anything out. The veggies serve one, the sauce should have about three servings or so!

  11. sometimes, it makes me so happy that i read “turnip pasta” and “brazil nut sauce” and immediately think, “omg! yum!” bookmarked, most definitely. i agree that once it becomes habit, creating a quick, tasty, and healthy meal is nearly effortless, even with low supplies on hand.

    ps: go yanks tonight! 🙂

  12. Love this quick, colorful, satisfying meal!! And I’m so glad that you like the Futter’s brazil nut butter – it’s the best brand for that type of nut butter, in my opinion.

    Hope you are able to adequately rest up, dear Gena!!

  13. Hey Gena! I’m still reading your blog regularly, and I am always inspired by your use of seasonal produce. There really isn’t anything better than a farm market fresh meal is there?!
    Your “Root Vegetable Mash” idea inspired me to give turnips a try, for some reason I had never tried them. I have made so many vegetable mashes before but never with turnips, and it was so delicious! I especially enjoyed the dijon mustard tip!
    Thanks again Gena:)

  14. Yay I was so looking forward to a veggie pasta recipe! I think I shall be “ordering in” some brazilian take out soon 🙂 I’ve been using a peeler to slice my veggies, but I think it’s about time I got a spiralizer.

  15. I love it when the things on hand in the pantry come together so wonderfully with the fresh things in the fridge (that need to get used up, too!). Necessity is the mother in invention, no doubt! I am a creative girl with my recipes (well, I try:)) and love your creations, Gena! So awesome!

    Do you ever find that the Paderno spiralizer has a hard time getting thru sweet potatoes? I had never tried to spiralize one and there was a “curly fry” rampage last week and I really had to work hard at it. Did it give you any trouble with the turnips? I think you are also using the “medium” blade rather than the super skinny (which is what I do for zuke pasta).

    Regardless, great recipe and I too avoid garlic/onions/salt/overcooked gluten noodles/etc 🙂 Thank you for admitting to not liking traditional take out….ahhh, now I am not the only b/c you’re officially on record 🙂

  16. I definitely am a fan of brazil nuts (my college roommate always gave me hers from her mixed nuts bag since she loathed them), so I will definitely be making this sauce pronto. And to boot I’ve got 2 more turnips hanging out in my veggie crisper from my recent FM haul. Thanks for planning tomorrow night’s dinner for me- especially since I’ll be needing a fast one (very prego aunt is going into labor any time now and I’m on duty to babysit her 2 year old).

    Only I won’t be cheering on the Yanks as I eat this meal. Lifetime Angel fan here. Oh well, for your sake I hope the games don’t go too far into the night.

  17. What perfect timing! I was just discussing the impressive selenium content of Brazil nuts with my professor today and trying to think of a good way to use them. Gena to the rescue!