Cheezy Turnip Casserole

As the fall and winter holidays approach and I’m harvesting all kinds of things from my garden, I’m reminded of a particular dish my mom used to make.

It was a turnip and cheese casserole, baked in the oven to ooey gooey bliss. I wondered, how I can make that vegan?

And I also wondered, what can I do with all this kohlrabi in my harvest?

Kohlrabi is a kind of turnip that produces beautiful tender green leaves all summer and then a lovely bulb in the fall.

I tried roasting it and chopping it up to put in stews, but my favourite way to eat it is mashed.

Especially with this beautiful plant-based cheese sauce smothering it.

Comfort food for sure.

I hope you try it, either for your upcoming holiday celebrations or anytime you have a turnip that you need to use up.


  • 2-3 medium turnip or kohlrabi bulbs
  • 400 g block of firm or extra-firm tofu, drained
  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp white miso paste
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup vegetable broth or water
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh garden herbs to taste (rosemary, sage, oregano, etc)


Prep the cashews. Pour hot water over the cashews and let them soak for at least 10 minutes to soften.

Prep the turnip. While the cashews are soaking, chop the turnip or kohlrabi into bite-sized pieces. Boil the turnip pieces in a pot of salted water for about 20 minutes or until tender. Once the pieces have softened, drain the water and mash them roughly – a few chunks are ok.

Make the cheeze sauce. Break up the tofu into chunks and add it to a blender or food processor, along with the nutritional yeast, garlic, olive oil, miso, vinegar, vegetable broth, and cornstarch. Drain the cashews and add the softened cashews to the blender as well. Blend it all together until it is very smooth, occasionally scraping down the sides of the blender. Add salt/pepper to taste.

Assemble and bake. Spread the mashed turnip in a large glass baking dish that can hold all the turnip and sauce. Pour half of the cheeze sauce over the turnip and mix it in well, then pour the other half of the sauce on top. Bake at 425F for 25 minutes until the sauce is bubbling and the top is golden. Cool for 5 minutes and serve warm, on its own, as a side dish to a holiday meal, or over pasta or rice.

Chef Maitri Carmichael brings a creative and peaceful energy to every plate. She grew up in Toronto with a British Grandma and an Italian Nonna who showed their love through food, then she moved to the San Francisco Bay Area for 15 years, spending her free time at community farms and zen kitchens. Originally a scientist and biotech entrepreneur, she graduated from the Vegan Chef School in London (2021) and the Raw Food Culinary Academy in Vancouver (2023), and is now settled in Hawaii.

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