Carrot and swede mash in a bowl on a tea towel

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This carrot and swede mash is simple, delicious and a great accompaniment to a classic Sunday roast or even a juicy pan-seared steak or chicken breast. It’s ridiculously easy to make and ideal for pre-preparing or freezing.

What exactly is swede?

Firstly, you may not know a swede as a swede. If you are scratching your head wondering what this strange vegetable is, then perhaps the name rutabaga (North America) or turnip may sound more familiar? (Although a turnip can refer to a slightly different, closely related, vegetable depending on where you are).

A Swede is a round root vegetable that tastes fairly mild but earthy. They are quite solid and dense but become soft when cooked. They are also a great source of vitamin C.

Can you make it in advance?

The great news is that you can prepare this carrot and swede mash up to 3 days in advance. It reheats well in the microwave, on the hob/stove or in the oven.

You can also freeze leftovers for up to 3 months. Transfer to a freezer-proof container and lay clingfilm across the top of the mash to prevent freezer burn. Defrost thoroughly before reheating.

How do you prepare swede?

Firstly make sure your swede is fresh. It should be very firm all over without any very soft spots. It’s a very tough vegetable so you will need an appropriate knife – ideally a large chefs knife which is very sharp.

First, cut off the top and bottom of the swede. This will make it easier to peel as you can rest it cut side down and it won’t roll around. You can use either a vegetable peeler or run the knife down the sides, just a couple of millimetres in.

Once peeled, cut the swede in half by placing it cut side down and using your hand to help push the knife through – be very careful. Now place the wide-cut side down on the chopping board and cut into 1 cm slices. You can then cut each slice along the length and then across the width, again around 1 cm in width. This will then give you uniform 1cm chunks.

What does it go well with?

The most popular meal to serve this with is a roast dinner. It’s beautifully comforting when drizzled with gravy. But you don’t need to limit this recipe to only your Sunday roast. It also goes well with:

Carrot and swede mash in a bowl with a spoon and parsley

Is it low carb?

Carrot and swede mash is a lot lighter in carbs than standard mashed potatoes, so you can likely work this into your diet if you are following an approach that requires a limited intake of carbs.

The total carbs in this recipe are 16g while net carbs are just over 10g. You could also reduce the portion size for flexibility.

This recipe also has a lot more fibre and nutrients than plain old mashed potatoes as an added bonus! One portion of this recipe counts for 2 portions of your daily fruit and veg.


You just need 4 simple ingredients for this recipe. For a full list with weights and measurements jump to the printable recipe card:

Recipe Ingredients
  • Carrots, sliced
  • Swede, peeled and diced
  • Nutmeg
  • Butter

Substitutions and recipe alternatives

To mix things up a little and add extra flavour you can try:

  • Fresh herbs – thyme, rosemary or sage are all great flavour additions. You can also use dried herbs (but use around half the amount than you would fresh, as dried herbs are more pungent).
  • Mustard – add a spoonful or two of dijon or whole grain mustard for some extra peppery kick.
  • Horseradish – adds a great heat and flavour to the recipe.
  • Cream, creme fraiche or sour cream all add extra creaminess to the texture.
  • Garlic – add either raw, crushed garlic or roast and mash the garlic first.

How to make it

For more detailed instructions and recipe tips jump to the printable recipe card.

Recipe steps
  • Prepare the carrot and swede and add to a pan of salted cold water – enough to cover the veg.
  • Bring the veg to a boil and then cook for around 20 minutes, until very tender.
  • Use a potato masher to mash the vegetables. Stir in the butter and nutmeg until fully incorporated.

Looking for more great vegetable side dishes?

Products that work well for this recipe:

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Carrot and swede mash in a bowl on a tea towel

Carrot and Swede Mash

  • Author: caroline
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Simple, comforting & delicious. This carrot and swede mash is a great accompaniment to a roast. It’s also packed with more nutrients than your usual mash.

The default recipe serves 4.


Units Scale
  • 400g carrot, sliced (no need to peel – see note 1)
  • 400g swede, peeled and diced (see note 2)
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp butter


  1. Add the carrot and swede into a large pan and pour over cold water until fully covered. Salt well. 
  2. Bring the pan to a rapid boil and then time for 20 minutes once the water has reached the boil. 
  3. Test a piece of the swede to make sure it’s soft enough to mash (cook for a little longer if not). Drain the carrot and swede in a colander or large sieve and transfer to a large bowl. 
  4. Use a potato masher to mash together the carrot and swede until you have a rough but even texture. You can also use a potato ricer but make sure the swede is very soft or you’ll need a lot of strength! 
  5. Scatter over the nutmeg and spoon in the butter. Mix together until fully incorporated and season to taste. 


  1. There are actually more nutrients in the peel so don’t be worried about leaving it on – just make sure to wash them well. 
  2. Make sure to cut the carrot and swede into similar sized pieces so that they cook at the same time.
  3. For variation, you can add different flavours to the mash. Garlic, thyme, rosemary, sage, horseradish or mustard are all good options. 
  4. To make a smoother, creamier mash add cream, creme fraiche or sour cream. 
  5. The mash can be cooled and kept in the fridge for up to 3 days. You can reheat on the hob/stove or in the microwave or oven with barely any discernable effect to the texture or taste. 
  6. Leftovers can be frozen for up to 3 months. Transfer to a freezer-proof container and layer the top with clingfilm to prevent freezer burn before placing on the lid.
  7. You can easily make this vegan by omiting the butter or replacing with a dairy-free alternative.  
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Side
  • Method: Hob / Stove
  • Cuisine: British


  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 100
  • Fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 16g
  • Protein: 2g

Keywords: mash, side dish, roast dinner, vegetables, easy, vegetarian, healthy

2 Thoughts on “Carrot and Swede Mash”

  • Hi Caroline, just looking up ways to reheat carrot and turnip mash and found your recipe tips helpful. Not sure about no.7 though. I have asked my vegan brother in law if this is a technique he is familiar with!
    PS. Not a fan of nutmeg, so I tend to add ground black pepper to the mash to give it a little bite.

    • Joe! When I cross-checked your message to see which point you were referring to I laughed a lot! 🙂 Fixed, and I very much meant omiting instead of vomiting!

      Thanks for the comment and good shout on the black pepper!

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