This beet salad has all the right elements: roasted beets, baby greens, creamy goat cheese and a tangy balsamic beet dressing. Basically, salad perfection!
Ahhh beets. Do you love them? This nutritious, shocking pink root vegetable is now at the top of our veggie list. It’s only been in the last few years that Alex and I started eating beet regularly. Why? Well, the Instant Pot. Cooking beets in the Instant Pot is much quicker than the oven. Don’t worry: you don’t need a pressure cooker for this recipe–only if you’re a little lazy, like us! This beet salad works with roasted beets, too: and man is it good. It has all the right elements: baby greens, creamy goat cheese and a tangy balsamic beet dressing. Basically, it’s salad perfection!
What’s the best beet salad dressing?
If you’re looking for a knock-out beet salad, you’ve come to the right place. What’s the best beet salad dressing? The sweet, earthy flavor of beets pairs perfectly with the tang of a balsamic dressing. Here, we’ve used our favorite Best Balsamic Dressing: which takes just 5 minutes and 5 ingredients. The balance of tangy, sweet and savory in this dressing is mind-blowing. (Really.) We use it on just about everything.
But for this beet salad dressing, we wanted to step it up a notch. Alex thought of a extra touch: he stirred the roasted beets into the dressing itself! His original idea was just to flavor the beets, but it had an unexpected benefit. Stirring in roasted beets turns the dressing a vibrant shade of pink and adds a sweet flavor undertone! Genius. This step is optional: if you’d prefer to keep the balsamic dressing as is, that’s ok too! But the brilliant color is a beautiful addition.
How to cook beets: 2 ways
Now, what’s the best way to cook beets for this roasted beet salad? There two different ways that both result in delicious beets. Here’s what we recommend:
Cook beets in the Instant Pot.
Yep, we’ll admit: we’re a little lazy! The 1 hour required to roast these jewel-toned beauties is usually just too much for our schedules. So, we love that it’s quick and simple with the Instant Pot. To do it, head to Instant Pot Beets. But here are the basic steps:
- Place the beets in the Instant Pot on the trivet with 1 cup water.
- Pressure cook on High for 12 to 20 minutes (12 minutes for small beets and 18 for very large beets.)
- Quick release.
- Because beets all vary in size, the timing varies. Test doneness by sliding in a knife to make sure that the beets are tender. If the knife slides right in, they’re done! If there is resistance, cook 1 to 2 more minutes on High Pressure.
Make roasted beets!
Roasting beets is very simple, and results in fantastic flavor. It just takes slightly longer than the Instant Pot method. To do it, head to Oven Roasted Beets. Here’s what to do:
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Wash and pat dry the beets. Remove the beet greens, leaving about 1 inch of the greens attached. (You can save them: here’s the best recipe for beet greens! And here’s how to store beets for later.)
- Rub the beets with olive oil. Place them in an oven safe pan with a lid. (Or, you can wrap each separately in aluminum foil.)
- Place them in a baking dish and roast for 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hours (likely about 1 hour), until tender when pricked with a fork.
Ways to customize this beet salad
How to accessorize those beautiful roasted beets (or perfectly pressure cooked ones) and that tasty beet salad dressing? Green salads are endlessly customizable. All the elements we chose here can be mixed up depending on your tastes and what you can find:
- Goat cheese: Beets and goat cheese are a classic flavor pair: the tangy, creamy goat cheese with earthy beet is pretty unreal. Change it: Omit the cheese for vegan. Or, use feta or blue cheese.
- Shallot: Shallot is a milder version of red onion and adds a savory flair. Change it: Omit, or use thinly sliced red onion, green onion, or chives.
- Pistachios: The bright green pistachio looks beautiful against the maroon beets and adds a crunch. Change it: Use any chopped nuts: almonds, pecans, or walnuts would be a natural pair.
Add it to a meal!
Alex and I ate this roasted beet salad with balsamic dressing as part of a cozy dinner party menu. It’s a terrific fall salad or winter salad, or a side to pair with pizza or Italian recipes. Here’s our dinner party menu, to help get you thinking about how to incorporate it in a meal:
- Wild Rice Soup
- Beet Salad with Balsamic Dressing
- Fall Sangria
- Bread (try Dutch Oven Bread, Classic Cornbread Muffins or Homemade Cornbread)
This beet salad recipe is…
Vegetarian and gluten-free. For vegan, plant-based and dairy-free, omit the cheese.Print
This beet salad has all the right elements: roasted beets, baby greens, creamy goat cheese and a tangy balsamic beet dressing. It’s salad perfection!
- 4 medium beets
- 1 recipe Best Balsamic Vinaigrette
- 1 shallot
- 5 ounces (8 cups) baby arugula or baby greens
- 2 ounces soft goat cheese
- 1/4 cup roasted salted pistachios, roughly chopped
- Cook the beets: Use our Oven Roasted Beets or Instant Pot Beets method.
- Slice the beets: Slice the beets into wedges. Take proper precautions as beet juice stains easily).
- Make the dressing: In a medium bowl, make the Best Balsamic Vinaigrette.
- Toss the beets with the dressing (optional): Place the beets in the bowl with the dressing and stir. The beets will change the color of the dressing to a bright pink color and infuse a little sweetness. If you’d rather keep the balsamic vinaigrette color, you can skip this step.
- Assemble the salad: Thinly slice the shallot. Place the greens on a plate. Remove the beets from the dressing bowl and place them on top. Add crumbles of goat cheese, shallot, and chopped pistachios. Drizzle with dressing and serve.
- Category: Salad
- Method: Roasted or Pressure Cooker
- Cuisine: Vegetarian
Keywords: Beet Salad, Roasted Beet Salad, Beet Salad with Goat Cheese
About the Authors
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.