‘Gilfeather’ Turnip Soup Recipe

Turn Vermont’s unique state vegetable into a hearty soup — the perfect way to enjoy the ‘Gilfeather’ turnip’s unique and creamy flavor.

Fall 2018

  • soup
    At the 'Gilfeather' Turnip Festival in Wardsboro, the 'Gilfeather' turnip soup is a bestseller.
    Courtesy Friends of the Wardsboro Library
  • soup

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

This simple soup is a bestseller at the annual ‘Gilfeather’ Turnip Festival, which is held in Wardsboro, Vermont, the home of the farmer who first cultivated the variety.


  • 1/4 pound butter
  • 4 large onions, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 8 cups unsalted chicken broth
  • 3 pounds ‘Gilfeather’ turnip, peeled and chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • Fresh spinach, washed and de-stemmed, for garnish


  1. Melt butter in 5-quart pot, and sauté chopped onion and garlic until soft but not browned.
  2. Add broth and chopped turnip and cook until tender. Drain and reserve some of the liquid.
  3. Puree mixture in a food processor until smooth. Put through a food mill or sieve and return to pot.
  4. Add seasonings and half-and-half. Mix well. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  5. Add reserved cooking liquid if soup is too thick. Sauté spinach in a small amount of olive oil until just wilted. Use spinach as a garnish on top of the soup before serving.

For more about the ‘Gilfeather,’ see:

Reprinted with permission from The Gilfeather Turnip Cookbook, third edition, published by the Friends of the Wardsboro Library.


Subscribe today

Heirloom GardenerCultivate your love of historic plant varieties and traditional recipes with a subscription to Heirloom Gardener magazine today!

Don’t miss a single issue of Heirloom Gardener. Published by the editors of MOTHER EARTH NEWS, Heirloom Gardener provides decades of organic gardening experience from the most trusted voices in the field. Subscribe today and save as much as 38% off the newsstand price! Get one year (4 issues) for only $24.95!

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube

click me