I wasn’t always so open to eating any type of vegetable. Growing up in the Army, we we’re usually limited to whatever the commissary’s were stocking, and it typically was a very standard set of vegetables. Additionally, this was long before our family discovered the beautiful art of roasting any vegetable under the sun. I spent the first 25 years of my life thinking I hated beets. I think its mostly because I associated them with their pickled form amongst salad bars or the unappetizing appearance of canned beets. Neither of which I will try, ever. It wasn’t until just in the last 2 years that I daringly tried a fresh roasted beet and instantly wished I had always known just how delicious they could be.
But then, my friends, I tried roasting them myself and realize the true struggle of beets: the vibrant blood red juice that stains everything within a 1 mile radius including yourself. Pardon the dramatics, but if you’ve ever sliced a raw beet, you know exactly what I’m talking about. The work required slightly turned me off from trying again, but when 3 beets arrived on our CSA box, I gather the strength to give it another go. This time, however, I consulted the internet for tips on easier preparation and found a Bobby Flay tip on Genius Kitchen that entailed roasting the beet whole then peeling and cutting. I gave it a try and let me tell you: GENIUS.
If the mess that beets make is the reason you choose not eat them very often, then I suggest you try the whole roasting method. For this recipe, you can even roast and cut the beets hours or a day ahead of time before preparing the salad. By roasting them whole inside of tin foil, all of the juices and the flavor stay contained in the beet. Roasting them whole also allows for very easy peeling, as the peel almost removes itself from the beet while steaming in the oven. Once the beets are cooled, you’ll simply rub the beet to loosen and remove the peels. Easy!
Beets have a rather sweet taste on their own, so acidic and refreshing foods complement them well, hence the reason many pair them with balsamic vinegar. This salad features both acidic and refreshing with freshly squeezed lemon and fresh chopped mint. Aside from the roasting, this salad takes about 3 minutes to put together and is a perfect dish to serve at a dinner party, or to pack and take along to the beach, a picnic, or bbq.
Need another reason to love beets? Well, they are excellent source of Folate, which is super important, especially for women, and a good source of fiber, manganese, potassium, and vitamin C. Additionally beets can help reduce inflammation and blood pressure, and are a potent antioxidant. As if they weren’t just delicious, they are also an excellent source of essential nutrients!
So keep on scrolling to for the simple, tasty, and nutritious how-to!
- 3 whole beets
- ~2 tbsp olive oil
- Juice from 1/2 lemon (or 2 tbsp lemon juice)
- Sea Salt
- Black Pepper
- fresh mint, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Lightly coat the washed beets in olive oil and wrap them individual in foil.
- Place them onto a baking sheet and bake for 50 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes
- Take beets out of tin foil and lightly rub to loosen and peel the skin from the beets.
- Slice the beets and cut slices into quarters.
- Toss the beets with 1 tbsp olive oil, lemon juice, and a few dashes of sea salt.
- Plate the salad and top with black pepper and fresh mint.