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Chesapeake Bay Parsnip Purée

Thanksgiving with Chrissy: Part 3

I LOVE puréed parsnips. They are just about my favorite substitute for mashed potatoes. In fact, even when I have mashed potatoes, I prefer them combined with parsnips. They tend to have a sweeter almost “carrot-y” flavor that you can make into savory OR sweet side dishes. They’re especially good for the upcoming holiday meals when you need a “mashed potatoes fix”, although I serve and eat them all year. This recipe is my savory take on mashed parsnips. I promise that the sweet version will soon follow! And Old Bay seasoning is a much more versatile spice then it gets credit for. Living in DC, so close to the Chesapeake Bay, for so long, gave me a great appreciation for this underused spice blend. Most of us associate it with crabs, seafood, corn on the cob and summertime. But I find it’s wonderful seasoning to work into many unexpected ways in my recipes. As always, enjoy and please post your comments and photos!

Chef’s Notes- if you choose, you can always boil or steam the parsnips before your mash/purée them. But for this recipe, I prefer the “roasted” flavor that they get from being baked in the oven. It really works well with the old bay seasoning.


• 2 1/2 lbs parsnips (peeled and chopped into 2 inch pieces)

• 1 tablespoon olive oil

• 1 tablespoon avocado oil

• 1 tbsp ghee (melted in the microwave)

• 3 cloves minced garlic

• 2 1/2 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning

• 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

• 1/2-1 cup water

• 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley (garnish)


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or spray it with clean cooking oil.

2. In a large bowl, toss the chopped parsnips and garlic with 1 tbsp olive oil, making sure to coat the parsnips.

3. Arrange the coated parsnips on the baking sheet in an even layer. Bake the parsnips for 45-55 minutes or until easily pierced with a fork and golden-brown around the edges. Allow to cool briefly (only for about 5-10 minutes...otherwise you may need to reheat the final product).

4. When the parsnips have cooled slightly, add the parsnips, old bay, sea salt, avocado oil and ghee to a food processor or large blender. Purée the mixture, adding water slowly until you reach the desired consistency.

5. Serve warm with fresh parsley and an additional sprinkle of Old Bay seasoning.

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