Sweet Summer Beets

BeetsAt the time of writing this recipe there is something happening in my life, and that thing is beets, a.k.a beetroot.

I get my veg through a home delivery of seasonal items and for a few weeks now the beets have been arriving, and piling up in the vege bin because I’m not sooo into them. The flavour is very strong to my tastebuds, probably had a traumatic childhood experience involving supermarket canned beetroot. So slimy.

I do have fond adult memories, however, of some very nice beetroot salads from cafes and restaurants. Somehow, those experts have cracked the code on taste and texture in a way that makes it good and toned down the (to me) overwhelming beet-iness.

So I headed off to ye old central library and spent a bit of time investigating beet salad recipes. What I came up with is heavily inspired by ‘Odessa Beets’ from the classic that is The Moosewood Cookbook and is both tasty and aesthetic.

I’ve still got lots of beets left, but with this up my sleeve at least beet season won’t have me scratching my head over what to do with them!

Sweet Summer Beets

A beet salad that can be served warm or cold. The dressing is sweet and tangy, it may even win over your die-hard beet doubters.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time45 minutes
Course: Salad, Side Dish
Keyword: beet salad, beetroot, beets, low fat, Vegan
Servings: 4 people
Author: Sara Lake


  • 6 medium to large beets

The Dressing

  • 200 grams crushed pineapple in juice
  • 6 prunes pitted
  • 2 lemons juice of
  • 1 tsp lemon rind (optional)
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

To Garnish

  • 1 cup nuts or seeds we used NZ hazelnuts and sprouted, roasted sunflower seeds
  • salt to sprinkle if you want it
  • 1/4 red onion finely sliced


  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celcius

Cooking your beets

  • Wrap beets individually in baking foil and pop them into the oven for 45-60 minutes. At 45 minutes don your oven mitt and check one for tenderness by sticking it with a fork. The fork should require very little pressure to pierce the beet but there should be still some basic firmness.
  • Once done, unwrap the beets, then one by one, hold them under cold running water and rub the skins off.
  • Cut beets into your desired size cubes.

The Dressing

  • The dressing can be prepared while the beets are cooking.
  • If your prunes are hard, soak for 10 minutes in hot water
  • Finely cut the prunes and mix all ingredients in a bowl
  • Add the red onion and nuts to the beets, then stir the dressing through.


This recipe is great warm or cold, and also keeps for up to five days in the fridge. It works as a side dish or you can add some protein and make a real meal of it.
I have also made this salad with a bit more lemon juice and using 2 tsp sugar instead of the pineapple and it was also very nice. 

As ever, let me know in the comments below if you have any awesome ideas for beets, or try this recipe and came up with an interesting variation. 

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