Beet Salad
his Beet Salad recipe will have you head over heels for its layers of bright, tangy, fresh flavors and crunchy, creamy, juicy textures! This Beet Goat Cheese Salad is loaded with tender roasted beets, juicy mandarin oranges, crispy apples, punchy red onions, sweet crunchy caramelized walnuts, salty toasted pepitas, creamy goat cheese, sweet tart pomegranate seeds, fresh spring mix lettuce all drizzled with Orange Pomegranate Vinaigrette. It’s a tango of tangy, sweet, salty, savory perfection that will have everyone going back for seconds and thirds! This Roasted Beet Salad is the perfect addition to your Thanksgiving or Christmas feast and every potluck and company dinner in between.
Servings Prep Time
8-10 25minutes
Cook Time
60minutes
Servings Prep Time
8-10 25minutes
Cook Time
60minutes
Beet Salad with Orange Pomegranate Vinaigrette
Ingredients
SALAD
  • 2lbs. beets (any color combo)scrubbed, roots and stems trimmed (don’t peel)
  • 10 oz. spring salad mix
  • 6 mandarin orangespeeled, segmented
  • 1 sweet apple sliced or chopped
  • 2/3cup pomegranate arils
  • 1/2cup roasted salted pepitas
  • 1/4cup chopped red onion
  • 4 oz. soft goat cheese crumbles
  • 1 Recipe 5 Minute Perfect Caramelized NutsI use walnuts
Orange Pomegranate Vinaigrette
  • 1/4cup pomegranate juice
  • 1/4cup orange juice
  • 1teaspoon orange zest
  • 3tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 garlic clovefinely minced or ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • 1teaspoons ½Dijon mustard
  • 2teaspoons dried minced onions
  • 1/4tsp EACH salt, pepper, dried thyme, all spice
  • 1/2cup olive oil
Instructions
Orange Pomegranate Vinaigrette
  1. Combine all of the Vinaigrette ingredients in a bowls or jar with a tight-fitting lid. Either whisk or shake vigorously until combined. Store in the fridge until ready to serve (up to 5 days). Shake/whisk before serving.
Roasted Beets
  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Spread a large piece of foil on a baking sheet with foil. Add beets and rub all over with l tablespoon olive oil. Fold the foil up around the beets to create a tightly closed package. Roast the beets in the packet on the baking sheet until tender, 60-80 minutes, checking for doneness at 60 minutes. Beets are done when they are fork tender.
  2. As soon as beets are cool enough to handle, use gloves (so you don’t stain your hands), run them under cool water while you slide the skins off with your hands. Place a piece of parchment over a cutting board (to prevent staining) and chop beets into ½” pieces. Beets can be roasted and chopped three day ahead of time and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Caramelized Pecans
  1. Prepare according to recipe directions. Chop once cool. Can be made 1 week ahead of time and stored in an airtight container.
Assemble
  1. When ready to serve, toss all of the salad ingredients together in a large bowl. If serving right away and you don’t expect leftovers then you can drizzle with desired amount of dressing and toss to combine. If you expect leftovers, serve dressing on the side.
Recipe Notes

Tips for Roasted Beet Salad

  • Prep ahead:  Get giddy because you can prepare ALL of the ingredients for this Beet Goat Cheese Salad ahead of time – full instructions to follow.
  • Make beet salad dressing first.  Make the beet salad dressing first so it has time to chill and the flavors develop – no one likes warm salad dressing!  If you are making the Beet Salad and serving immediately, place the dressing in the freezer for 30 minutes then transfer to the refrigerator so it is sufficiently chilled.
  • Beet size.  Choose small to medium size beets because large beets can taste woody and fibrous and have less flavor.
  • Tips for handling beets.   Red beets will stain anything and everything they come in contact with from your hands to your countertop to your cutting board, to your kitchen towels – so be careful!  Use gloves at every stage of handling the beets to prevent staining your hands.  To prevent staining your cutting board, cover it with a large piece of parchment paper.
  • How to remove beet stains from hands. If beet juice does get on your hands, squeeze some fresh lemon juice directly onto the stain over the sink, rub it in, then wash with soapy hot water.
  • How to trim beets.  If you purchase beets with their stems still attached, chop off all but 1-2 inches of the stem and root so the stem doesn’t continue to pull moisture away from the beets.
  • Don’t discard greens.  The stems can be eaten raw in salads, on sandwiches or wraps, added to pastas or risotto like you would spinach, sautéed with garlic and lemon or even added to smoothies. 
  • Don’t peel before you cook.  Once the beets are cooked, the peels slide right off!
  • Cool beets completely.   Chilled beets are best in this Beet Goat Cheese Salad not only for contrasting flavor but if they are still warm when added to the salad, they will wilt the greens.  To prevent this, pop the chopped beets in an airtight container in the refrigerator or if you don’t have time, pop them in the freezer in an airtight container for 15 minutes.
  • Customize dressing.   Some people like tangier dressing, some people prefer sweeter dressing so I recommend starting with the beet salad dressing as writing then adjusting to taste.  For sweeter, add additional maple syrup 1 teaspoon at a time, for tangier, add additional vinegar a teaspoon at a time.
  • Tame Red onion:  I recommend soaking the red onion in water first to remove some of the bite if you tend to find red onions too strong. To do this, place red onion in a fine mesh sieve, submerge the sieve in a large bowl of water for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, remove sieve and thoroughly dry onions with a paper towel.
  • Scale Beet Salad recipe up or down.     This Roasted Beet Salad is easy to double for a crowd or cut it in half for lunches or a small group.
  • How to roast pepitas.  If you can only find raw pepitas, then heat a drizzle of olive oil in a nonstick skillet, add your pepitas along with ¼ teaspoon salt stir until toasted. Turn onto a parchment paper to cool.
  • How to deseed pomegranates.  I won’t go into detail here but don’t be intimidated, there are lots of tutorials online.  I would google “how to remove pomegranate seeds in water” for my favorite method.  If don’t want to purchase a whole pomegranate and seed it yourself, just buy pomegranate seeds in a container.

MAKE AHEAD BEET SALAD

This Roasted Beet Salad can be made 100% ahead of time then just tossed together when ready to serve!

  • Beets.  You can cook and chop the beets up to three days in advance, then store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  • Apples. The apple can be chopped up to 24 hours ahead of time and soaked in a mixture of apple juice and lemon juice. I’ve detailed several options below to prevent oxidation which begins as soon as you slice the apples.
  • Red onions:  You can chop the red onions up to 24 hours ahead of time and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  • Nuts. The caramelized walnuts can be made up to one week ahead of time and stored in a sealed plastic bag or airtight container at room temperature. I often like to double the nuts for future use.
  • Dressing:  You can make the Beet Salad dressing up to 5 days ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. I actually recommend making the dressing ahead of time because it allows time for the flavors to build and meld. Dressing also tastes 1000X better chilled.

HOW tO SERVE Beet Salad

There are three ways to serve this Roasted Beet Salad recipe:

  1. If you don’t expect or want leftovers: add all of the salad ingredients to a large bowl and toss with desired amount of dressing.
  2. If you expect leftovers:  add all of the salad ingredients to a large bowl and dressing.  Let individuals top dress their own servings with dressings.
  3. Create a Salad Bar: line up all of the salad ingredients in separate serving bowls and let guests assemble their own Roasted Beet Salad. This works particularly well if you are making Beet Salad a main dish salad with shrimp, steak, etc. and are including more of the veggie, fruit, grain or cheese variation options.

Storage

The Roasted Beet Salad recipe with ALL the ingredients is best served within an hour because the spring mix lettuce will become soggy.  If you hold the dressing, the salad can last up to two days stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, just be aware the beets will discolor the other ingredients – but they will still taste delicious.