Super Simple Roasted Beets

Simple roasted beets are a meal prep must, and you’re sure to want to add these beautiful gems to your weekly lineup!

Vertical image of quartered purple root vegetables on a stack of white plates, with text on the top and bottom of the image.

When I had a few bunches of these veggies in my Saturday CSA box, I knew exactly how I would prepare them so I could use them throughout the week in my salads, grain bowls, and side dishes.

Roasting them whole is an easy cooking technique that yields tender and very versatile results.

After a quick scrub and trim, wrap all of them in one large sheet of aluminum foil, place the packet on a rimmed baking sheet, and roast them in the oven for a little under an hour.

Vertical image of quartered cooked purple vegetables on a plate next to a white towel.

While they’re still slightly warm, the skin comes off so easily with this method. It surrenders immediately with just a few wipes of the hand – no vegetable peeler required!

Underneath that gnarly skin, you’ll be rewarded with shiny, glistening, jewel-toned roots that are flawlessly perfect to eat, even without any seasonings.

They are hearty, soft, and slightly sweet. While I wouldn’t say it was love at first bite when I first started regularly introducing them into my diet (I hated beets as a kid!), I do think we’re onto something, these ruby-red root veggies and I…

Vertical image of a single cooked beet on a white plate.

We have a lifetime of fun recipes to try together to utilize all of my meal prep ideas – be sure to read my suggestions at the end of this article!

And do you know about their stellar nutritional value?

They are a rich source of vitamins K and B9 (aka folic acid). A half-cup serving has over 100 percent of the recommended daily value for vitamin K, and 32 percent of the recommended daily value for vitamin B9.

Doesn’t that just make you want to want beets?

Vertical image of quartered purple vegetables on a stack of white plates.

Our sister site Gardener’s Path has all the info you need to discover more about the history, nutritional data, health benefits, and recommended cultivars of this magnificent root.

I never thought I could see myself becoming one of those parents who tried to talk her kids into eating their vegetables, but I see that as a genuine danger now, increasingly so with every veggie I roast.

Those poor children.

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Horizontal image of a stack of white plates with quartered cooked purple root vegetables, in front of a bowl and white towel.

Super Simple Roasted Beets


  • Author: Shanna Mallon
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
  • Yield: About 2 1/2 pounds roasted beets 1x

Description

Learn an easy way to roast and peel beets. With our method, you can prep a bunch for use in salads, grain bowls, and more.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 6 small or 34 medium whole beets (about 3 pounds)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Wash and scrub the beets clean under cool running water. Slice off both ends of the beets, reserving the stems and leaves for another use if they were attached.
  2. Wrap all of the beets in a single layer in one large piece of aluminum foil, tightly gathering the extra foil on top to close it tightly. Place on a rimmed baking sheet.
  3. Roast for 50 to 60 minutes, depending on the size of the beets, until a fork can be easily inserted into the center of the largest beet with no resistance when you open the package to check for doneness.
  4. Remove from the oven and partially unwrap the aluminum foil from the top to release any steam. When cool enough to handle, peel the skins off by rubbing each beet firmly with your hands.
  5. Slice into cubes, rounds, or half-moons. Allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  • Category: Vegetable
  • Method: Roasting
  • Cuisine: Vegetarian

Keywords: beets

Cooking by the Numbers…

Step 1 – Prep

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Set out a large piece of aluminum foil and a rimmed baking sheet.

Horizontal image of trimmed purple root vegetables on a cutting board.

Wash and scrub each beet under cold running water.

If the stems and leaves are still attached, remove them by cutting off the tops of each one with a sharp knife on a sturdy cutting board. Reserve the stems and leaves for another use.

Cut off the bottom tip of each one and discard it. It is best to remove the roots in order to promote even cooking, and peeling them will also be much easier without a pesky, skinny tip in the way!

Step 2 – Roast

Place the prepared vegetables in one layer in the middle of a large piece of aluminum foil. Wrap the foil over them, tightly gathering the excess at the top to create a sealed parcel. Transfer to the baking sheet.

Horizontal image of whole cooked purple root vegetables in an aluminum foil package on a baking sheet.

Roast for 50 to 60 minutes, depending on the size of the beets, until a fork can easily be inserted into the center of the largest one with no resistance.

I recommend unwrapping the aluminum foil and checking on them halfway through the cooking process. If the bottoms are starting to look very dry and they’re sticking to the aluminum foil, carefully use tongs to flip each one over, cover them back up with the aluminum foil, and continue cooking.

Step 3 – Remove Skins

Remove the baking sheet from the oven. Carefully open the top of the aluminum foil to release any steam. Allow them to cool slightly.

Horizontal image of a hand peeling off skin of a purple root vegetable over aluminum foil.

When they are cool enough to handle, but still warm, work with one beet at a time to remove the skin.

Using your hands, and working over a large plate or cutting board, rub the skin off by firmly pressing on it with your fingers. I actually like to save the aluminum foil from the previous step to work over as I’m peeing, since it doubles as a convenient vessel to throw away any scraps!

The peels will rub right off, falling into your hands like you’re wiping smudges away – truly amazing!

You can choose to wear disposable gloves to prevent staining. You can also use two pieces of paper towel held in each hand to help remove any pieces of skin that may need some extra traction.

Step 4 – Cut, Serve, and Store

How you plan to serve them will dictate the way in which you slice them. You can slice them into cubes, rounds, or half-moons. Small beets can also be used whole.

Horizontal image of completely peeled whole purple root vegetables on a white cutting board.

For storage, allow them to cool completely before placing them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Give Beets a Chance

My simple recipe is just a starting point for many tasty meal ideas, so there are no excuses to neglect this unfairly but commonly disliked vegetable!

Horizontal image of a stack of white plates with quartered cooked purple root vegetables, in front of a bowl and white towel.

Here are some of my favorite ways to serve them:

See? Endless possibilities! I bet you a million beets that you have a favorite way to incorporate them in a fun meal. Maybe in a salad or in a wrap? Comment below, and let’s share some ideas.

And don’t forget to save the greens when you’re prepping! They can be treated like kale or spinach, and are a delight when lightly sauteed!

For more recipes where beets are featured front and center, you’ll have fun making some of our favorites:

Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on August 19, 2009. Last updated on October 22, 2021. With additional writing and editing by Nikki Cervone and Allison Sidhu.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

About Shanna Mallon

Shanna Mallon is a freelance writer who holds an MA in writing from DePaul University. Her work has been featured in a variety of media outlets, including The Kitchn, Better Homes & Gardens, Taste of Home, Houzz.com, Foodista, Entrepreneur, and Ragan PR. In 2014, she co-authored The Einkorn Cookbook with her husband, Tim. Today, you can find her digging into food topics and celebrating the everyday grace of eating on her blog, Go Eat Your Bread with Joy. Shanna lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with Tim and their two small kids.

17 thoughts on “Super Simple Roasted Beets”

  1. This almost makes me curious to try beets again, though I haven’t had great success with them before. Not even the cute little golden ones. I think I got it in my head ages ago that they were gross. My Grandma, about whom we have talked before, used to make these ENORMOUS jars of pickled beets and hard boiled eggs. While I LOVED the color the beets and the brine turned the eggs (like Easter eggs!), the taste made me gag every time. That kind of revulsion is hard to shake. Well done, you, though, for trying them out!

    Reply
  2. I have never liked beets and aside from the Bugs Bunny cartoon with the machine that takes the burps out of beets… I have avoided them like plague. BUUUT, I might have to try this. After I find that burp-removing machine from Looney Tunes

    Reply
  3. Great post!! I love beets, prepared any way… and am the only one in my family that does!!! Looking forward to trying them like this and to sending this post on to my non-beet eating family members!!! Thanks, Shanna.

    Reply
  4. I am so glad you have brought beets into your life. Commenter Laura is right – goat cheese all the way! Beet and goat cheese salad is one of my favorite things ever (basically, make a salad and add beets and goat cheese. Yep, it’s totally a recipe. Sure it is. Mhmmm).

    I hardly ever (read: I’ve done it twice in my life) buy raw beets, because the time and mess involved in heating and cleaning them before you can actually use them is annoying to me. BUT OH JOY OF JOYS, some grocery stores now sell pre-cooked and cleaned beets. You can eat them hot or cold. I usually cut them up and add them (cold) to salads, but you could easily use them in recipes, or slice them thin and heat them up or something. They are awesome. Even if they only come in red, and not in the glorious golden/orange colors that some beets come in when you buy them raw. Golden beets = beautiful.

    Three cheers for beets!

    Reply
  5. To all of you beet lovers out there… I discovered that wrapping the washed, unpeeled and trimmed beets in aluminum foil and setting them in a baking pan lets them bake/steam perfectly and makes clean up a snap. I haven’t found adding water to be necessary since the beets stay very moist in their miniature foil ovens. Kim is right, the precooked ones are very convenient, but that earthy flavor is so much better when they are freshly prepared!

    Shanna, I love your writing and receive so much joy from your recipes and your insights. Thank you for sharing yourself with all of us lucky enough to have found this blog…

    Reply
  6. (cowering in shame) Ok Shannabanana, I am feeling the embarrassment of my full beet-making-laziness rearing its ugly head. Can I blame my lack of counter space? No? Ok, maybe I’m just lame and I need to try this again. Properly this time.

    Gooooat cheese. Love it. Live it. Have I mentioned that I usually have about 8 kinds of cheese in my fridge? Yeah, I love cheese. But goat cheese. Mm. On its own, in salads, paired with a nice fig jam and eaten with crackers…can’t go wrong!

    Reply
  7. i LOVE beets. always have. put a little butter on them – oh so very yummy. now here’s the deal with the greens – you can sautee them with a little onion and garlic, and then mix it with feta inside some phyllo, or on top of a pizza – they are WONDERFUL!

    i am so glad you’ve discovered them! and our 7yo ASKS for beets. yep. isn’t it great?

    Reply
  8. i roast mine in foil too! If it’s one less pan to clean, I’m all for it 🙂 Also makes sense for me, as I only have a toaster oven, so I can bundled them up in a foil pouch and roast away.

    Reply
  9. Sounds delicious. I want to go roast beets now! I always put a few beets from the salad bar on my salad and like them well enough. I’d love to play with the vegetable itself. Like you, I like to be the one doing it and seeing what goes into the process.

    Reply
  10. i tried beets for the first time last night. i wanted to hold off of commenting until i had at least tried it before saying one way or the other.

    i liked it. alot. not like how i knew right off the bat that rhubarb and fennel are awesome but still, it was enjoyable enough that the next grocery shopping adventure i’ll be grabbing some more. i roasted it with onions, served over lettuce, drizzled with simple vinegar/olive oil dressing and topped with some crumbled goat cheese. it was lovely.

    for now i will stick to the roasting. something about just popping it in the oven for an hour, rubbing the skin off and then chopping it up is so appealing.

    Reply
  11. Beets…..been wanting to try them for a while…this post and the comments have given me a lot of great ideas.

    So much inspiration from the food bloggers….and so little time esp with a one of my 3 girls a busy toddler! You’ve hooked me and I’m subscribing now. Thanks for the smile today!

    Reply
  12. Oh my! I recently started eating beets because I am anemic. It has become my new favoritest vegetable! I kept imagining them to be as gross as cranberry sauce. GROSS! Sorry you cranberry sauce lovers lol! I even love the earthiness about them ????????

    Reply

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