Tender roasted golden beets, peppery arugula, creamy goat cheese, crunchy pistachios and a tangy shallot vinaigrette make this salad full of flavor and texture. A wonderful vegetable side dish or a great salad course for a dinner party!
Nothing stops me dead in my tracks at the farmer’s market more than golden beets! Red beets’ milder, sweeter cousin is just perfect for a light, fresh and delicious salad. Even if you’re not a fan of beets, these sweet yellow beets, just bursting with beautiful golden color, have been known to convert even the most adamant of haters.
Not only are beets delicious, but they’re packed with nutrients including calcium, iron, potassium and protein, offering a range of health benefits. I could go on and on about one of my favorite vegetables!
I love making this salad for a dinner party. The beets and the dressing can be prepared ahead of time and then thrown together right before serving. It’s colorful, elegant and full of exciting flavors and textures.
Ingredients and Variations
Just a few simple ingredients are all you need for this easy recipe.
- Golden Beets – I love the flavor of golden beets in this salad, but you can definitely substitute red beets or use both for a delightfully colorful beet salad.
- Arugula – this peppery green is the perfect complement to the earthy flavor of beets.
- Pistachios – roasted and salted pistachios add great texture. Crunchy walnuts, toasted sliced almonds or pepitas could also be substituted.
- Goat Cheese – crumbled goat cheese adds creaminess and tang. You can also substitute feta cheese or even a ball of burrata if you prefer.
- White wine vinegar – you can substitute red wine vinegar, champagne vinegar, white balsamic vinegar or even lemon juice.
- Dijon mustard
- Honey – adds a touch of sweetness. Maple syrup is also a great option.
- Olive Oil – use the good stuff! My go to extra-virgin olive oil for making my own dressings is always The Furies.
- Variations – this doesn’t have to be just a side salad. To bulk up a roasted beet salad up for a more filling, full meal, add some grains like quinoa, barley or farro. To add even more flavor, try soft fresh herbs like mint, tarragon, chives, chervil, parsley or thinly sliced basil leaves.
Roast the beets
Start by roasting the beets. You can do this ahead of time and have them ready to go in the refrigerator for whenever the beet salad craving hits.
Remove the beet greens by cutting off the tops. Thoroughly scrub the beets clean, they can be really dirty! Place a large piece of foil on a baking sheet or in a roasting pan and place beets on one half of the foil sheet. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and season with salt and black pepper. Fold the other half of the foil over and fold in the edges to create a foil packet.
Roast at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes depending on the size of your beets. They are ready when a sharp knife slides easily into the middle of each beet.
Once the beets are fork tender, allow them to cool to room temperature before peeling off the skins. They should just slip right off! Use a paring knife to remove any remaining tough spots. You can also peel the beets under cold water if you have any stubborn parts.
Foil packets are the perfect way to get get perfectly roasted beets as it creates steam inside the package, helping to concentrate their flavor and prevent them from drying out.
Make the vinaigrette
Whisk together minced shallot, vinegar, dijon mustard, honey, olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.
Assemble the salad
Toss arugula with a small amount of dressing until just moistened. Top with beets, chopped pistachios and crumbled goat cheese. Drizzle with more vinaigrette or serve with extra on the side.
Make ahead tips and storing leftovers
- Roast and prep the beets in advance. The beets can be roasted, peeled, sliced and kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in advance.
- Make the vinaigrette ahead of time. The vinaigrette can also be made a few days in advance and stored in the refrigerator. The dressing may separate and the oil may solidify in the fridge but don’t worry. Simply let it sit out at room temperature or run the jar under warm water until everything is liquefied then shake well before serving.
- If you’re not serving it all at once and want to add this to your meal prep plan, store the components separately and assemble and dress individual portions right before serving. Salads that are dressed will become soggy when stored in the refrigerator.
What to serve with golden beet salad
- Grilled Mediterranean Chicken
- Garlic Herb Crusted Eye of Round Roast Beef
- Mushroom Pappardelle
- Farmer’s Market Green Pasta
- Caribbean Carrot Ginger Soup
- Red Kuri Squash Soup with Roasted Fennel
Golden Beet and Arugula Salad
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Thoroughly wash beets and remove beet greens. Place beets on a sheet of foil on a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Fold foil over beets and fold together edges, creating a sealed packet.
- Roast for 40-50 minutes until fork tender. Let cool to room temperature, then remove skins and cut into wedges.
- While the beets are roasting, make the vinaigrette. Shake in a small mason jar or whisk together minced shallot, vinegar, dijon mustard, honey and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Add arugula and sliced beets to a large bowl and toss with a small amount of dressing just to moisten.
- Transfer to a serving dish and top with crumbled goat cheese and chopped pistachios. Drizzle with more dressing or serve on the side. Enjoy immediately.