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Rutabagas look similar to large turnips, and can be used in many of the same ways that you would use a potato. However, because they're often dipped in a wax to protect them from drying out, it can be difficult to peel them. You can get rid of this wax to make using the rutabaga easier.

Put the rutabaga in the refrigerator for at least one hour to make the wax harder. Use the flat side of the knife and your fingers to peel away most of the hardened wax.

When you have removed as much wax as you can with the knife, run the rutabaga under hot water and scrub it to remove as much of the remaining wax or dirt as possible.

Slice the top and the bottom of the rutabaga off so that it has flat surfaces, making it more stable and therefore easier to peel. Use a vegetable peeler or the paring knife to remove the skin; this will remove any remaining wax.


Use a large kitchen knife to cut off the tops and bottoms of the rutabaga and then cut off the sides to remove much of the skin from the rutabaga, which also removes the wax. However, this wastes some of the rutabaga.


Be careful not to cut yourself with the knife. Cut away from yourself, and don't skip the step where you cut off the top and bottom of the rutabaga to stabilize it.

About the Author

Jessica Bruso

Based in Massachusetts, Jessica Bruso has been writing since 2008. She holds a master of science degree in food policy and applied nutrition and a bachelor of arts degree in international relations, both from Tufts University.