Beets for a Healthy Snack
Beets are such an amazingly healthy food! I love them roasted, juiced, marinated, steamed and raw. They are just a fabulous addition to my weekly meal plan. These aren’t your canned beets.
As I was coming back from Sacramento, I was told all about this great beet hummus the person had tried from a big box grocery store. I love hummus as a healthy snack so I’m always looking for new ways to make healthy recipes like hummus . . . . now add one of my favorite, beets – and I knew this had to be a winner for healthy recipes. I hunted every where to locate the beet hummus, to no avail. So, I decided to see if I could make it myself.
I’ve never tasted the other one but this is beet hummus is not only part of my healthy recipes now . . . this beet hummus is my new favorite hummus!
Health Benefits of Beets
Beets contain special phytonutrient pigments which make them the beautiful colors. These provide powerful antioxidant protection. Beets are high in folate, an important B vitamin great for heart health and tissue growth. I used red beets, full of betacyanin which made a beautiful, luscious color – even prettier than my red pepper hummus.
A quick reminder, beets are a concentrated source of oxalates, so if your doctor has recommended reducing oxalates, be cautious. Otherwise, beets are a great food for detoxification, so enjoy!
Don’t forget to eat the beet greens. My family loves them chopped in salads or a quick saute. This recipe doesn’t use the beet greens but don’t throw them away, they are just as delicious and nutritious. Use them in any healthy recipes that call for spinach or Swiss chard.
I choose not to peel smaller beets as the skin is a simple part of healthy recipes. Plus, it saves a bunch of time when I’m cooking. But, the peels can have an “earthy” taste so if you are new to beets try peeling them the first time. Just remember to use gloves so the beets don’t stain your hands . . . unless you want pink fingers.
I found roasting the beets gave the best overall flavor as the caramelization added an extra bit of sweetness. I made this recipe with raw beets and it worked great too – it just wasn’t as sweet. So, if you’re eating more raw foods, please explore this healthy recipes.
The beets recipe includes 2-3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar. This is an area where the peels make a difference as well. With the peels the beet hummus usually needs a little more balsamic vinegar to round out the earthy taste. I recommend starting with two, tasting after adding the extra virgin olive oil and adding more as desired.
The extra virgin olive oil is similar. I add as much as needed to get the nice smooth hummus texture I like. How soft the beets were after cooking will determine exactly how much oil you’ll need to get a smooth texture.
Beet Hummus Ingredients:
- 7-8 small whole beets
- 1 tsp. coconut oil
- 2 cups soaked, cooked garbanzo beans or 1 15 oz can garbanzo beans
- 2 Tbsp. reserved garbanzo bean liquid
- Zest of ½ lemon
- Juice of one lemon
- 1 ½ Tbsp. tahini
- ¼ tsp. sea salt
- ¼ tsp. white pepper
- 2-3 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- Extra virgin olive oil – approximately ¼ cup
- Preheat oven to 450 F. Wash beets well and chop into cubes (bite size).
- Melt coconut oil and pour over beets. Mix well.
- Cover and roast for about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until nicely carmelized.
- Place beets in food processor with the next 8 ingredients. Blend well.
- Slowly add extra virgin olive oil while blending until desired consistency is reach.
- Taste and add additional seasonings as needed.