Simple roasted beets are a meal prep must, and you’re sure to want to add these beautiful gems to your weekly lineup!
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.
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…
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?
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.Print
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.
- 6 small or 3–4 medium whole beets (about 3 pounds)
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Slice into cubes, rounds, or half-moons. Allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 60 minutes
- Category: Vegetable
- Method: Roasting
- Cuisine: Vegetarian
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.
Wash and scrub each beet under cold running water.
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.
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.
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.
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!
Here are some of my favorite ways to serve them:
- Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and salt and pepper for an easy side.
- Mix them with handfuls of gently torn fresh herbs and a shallot mustard vinaigrette for a fresh and simple salad.
- Marinate them in vinegar and serve in an arugula salad with nuts and goat cheese.
- Mix diced beets with diced apples and mashed avocado to make our playfully unique rainbow guacamole.
- Make a filling vegetarian farro bowl with coconut-ginger roasted kale and crumbled goat cheese
- Puree them with milk and your favorite vegetable, chicken, or beef stock for a creamy soup.
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.