Ecosalon Recipes: Seasonal Eating: Roasted Beets (Plus Seven Tasty Suggestions)


Since beets do well in warm and cool weather, they are one of the few produce items that are in season year round in many climates. I like to roast a couple of bunches of beets every week or so and keep them in the refrigerator to use for quick salads and side dishes. Roasting is easy and brings out the beet’s natural sweetness.

Beets are versatile and very good for you. They’re full of fiber, vitamin C, iron, magnesium, potassium, and folate – and if you eat the tops you’ll get a good dose of beta-carotene.

Easy Roasting Method:

Cut the stalks and leaves off of the beets and save them for another use. Wash the beets and trim the bottoms.

Make little foil packets of 4 or 5 beets each, wrapping like-sized beets for even cooking. Place the foil packets on a baking sheet and put them in a preheated 400-degree oven.

Roast the beets for 40 minutes to an hour until tender. Cooking time depends on their size. You will need to check them occasionally. To check, unwrap them and poke the tip of a sharp knife into the beets. When the knife enters without resistance, they are done.

Remove the beets from the oven and let them cool until you can handle them. They will steam inside their foil packets so their skins will slip off easily, cut them into wedges and they’re ready to use.

Uses for roasted beets:

Beet Salads:

– Beets, red leaf lettuce, apples, walnuts, and crumbled blue cheese

– Beets, butter lettuce, and orange segments

– Beets, spinach, and avocado

– Beets, arugula, roasted pistachios, and goat cheese

Other ideas:

– Toss roasted beets with a splash of rice wine vinegar and toasted sesame seeds and serve as a side dish.

– Toss with grains like brown rice, quinoa, or farro along with greens and other seasonal vegetables for a light, healthy meal.

Don’t forget the beet greens! Wash them well, cut them into ribbons and sauté them in a little olive oil with garlic and salt & pepper and serve as a side dish, or add to soups or pasta dishes.

Image: jslander

Vanessa Barrington

Vanessa Barrington is a San Francisco based writer and communications consultant specializing in environmental, social, and political issues in the food system.