Roasted parsnips with hazelnuts and feta brings an unexpected trio of ingredients together in an earthy, sweet, and salty dinner side dish.
*What can I substitute for parsnips?
If you can’t find baby parsnips, larger parsnips cut lengthways into quarters will do the trick. The nuttiness of parsnips of any size and hazelnuts pair exceptionally well together.
Roasted Parsnips with Hazelnuts and Feta
- Quick Glance
- Quick Glance
- 15 M
- 45 M
- Serves 4
Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a roasting pan with parchment paper.
Spread the parsnips and garlic cloves in the roasting pan. Drizzle with the olive oil, season with salt and pepper, toss to coat, then spread out in a single layer.
Bake for 20 minutes, then turn the parsnips over and scatter with the chopped hazelnuts. Return to the oven and roast until the parsnips are tender and browned, 5 to 10 minutes more.
Transfer the parsnips to a serving platter, drizzle with the verjuice or lemon juice and scatter over the feta. Serve immediately.
MAKE IT VEGAN
Use a soft vegan cheese instead of the feta, or add some diced avocado instead.
Recipe Testers' Reviews
Who knew parsnips could be gourmet? I loved this recipe for parsnips with hazelnuts and feta. So incredibly simple, but a wonderful combination of flavors that I just wouldn't think to put together on my own. The hazelnuts and feta really make all the difference. The feta starts to soften and melt as soon as it hits the warm parsnips—just lovely.
A few minor tweaks to note: don't smash the garlic. Leave them whole, in their peel, because some of mine slipped out of the peel and burned. The ones that were still in the paper were perfect. Also, be careful with the hazelnuts—they can burn really quickly, especially if you're using pre-roasted hazelnuts. I'd recommend only adding them for the last 5 minutes (so when your parsnips look nearly done) and dropping the oven temp to 375°F to be safe. I pulled mine out a few minutes earlier than the recipe called for and nearly had a tray of burned nuts. Other than the fact that you need to keep a close eye on this to prevent tears, it is easy and quick, and well worth it.
Frankly, I think parsnips are underused. They’re shaped like a carrot but lack the vibrancy of the carrot and are assumed to not be as sweet. Roasted parsnips are earthy and sweet and the flavor exudes so much character.
I ordered baby parsnips but received giant ones in my grocery delivery. So not to change my roasting times, I sliced my four parsnips into eight lengthwise pieces and proceeded with the recipe as written. Every detail worked. Even my photo looked like the one on the recipe except it looked like I had less hazelnuts. These were scattered but hiding under the parsnips. No harm.
In the end, we enjoyed these magnificent sweet, tender, full-of-personality parsnips with the salty and creamy feta, a spritz of tangy lemon juice, creamy and sweet roasted garlic, and the crispy hazelnuts. Even the garlic was fun to remove from the partial crispy skins. No extra salt was required as the feta provided the finishing sheen and seasoning. Just a couple of twists from the pepper grinder and we had balanced flavors and textures.
These roasted parsnips with hazelnuts and feta could be a meal or a starter for two or four servings. We gluttons devoured the platter amongst three accompanied by LC red wine braised pork and a simple parsley salad. Marvelous match!