Appalachian Food

Got Beets?

The easiest way to cook beets

We love pickled beets, but we also love them roasted in the oven. It’s such an easy way to cook them, and roasted beets is a perfect side dish for busy weeknight suppers.

Cut the top and bottom off of each beet and give it a good scrubbing under running water. Don’t worry about peeling them. Lay the beet on a piece of foil; drizzle a small amount of olive oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper; close the foil up around the beet-kinda like a Hersey’s kiss.

Place foil wrapped beets in a 375 – 400 degree oven and roast till done. Time will vary depending on the size of your beets. Once the beets are done and have cooled slightly you can easily rub the peeling off of each beet before you serve them if you want to.


This post was originally published here on the Blind Pig in June of 2011.



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  • Reply
    Frank Vincent
    May 13, 2019 at 7:22 pm

    …add some hard boiled eggs to the jar containing a mixture of pickled beets and onions and Y — U—-M….what a feast!

  • Reply
    June 12, 2013 at 9:09 am

    This sounds like an excellent way to cook beets, ours are still too small to harvest, but they are coming in! My husband loves pickled beets, I’m looking forward to making those as well:)

  • Reply
    June 12, 2013 at 9:09 am

    This sounds like an excellent way to cook beets, ours are still to small to harvest, but they are coming in! My husband loves pickled beets, I’m looking forward to making those as well:)

  • Reply
    June 11, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    My husband turned me into a beet lover. We’ve got a little crop in our garden, but I didn’t get a chance to thin them when I should have, so I expect they’re all the size of marbles.
    Favorite way to cook is roasting: Oven at 425-450. If you have big beets, peel and cut into chunks (bigger if you’re my husband, smaller if you’re me). Do likewise with potatoes, sweet potatoes, parships, whichever other rooties you like, AND an onion. toss all the veg with olive oil, salt and pepper, AND a final tiny drizzle of maple syrup, spread on a baking pan, and roast for something like 30-40 minutes, tossing the veg every 10-15 minutes. OH MY!

  • Reply
    June 9, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    We both loved beets from little kid on. Taught our kids to like beets to see who could get the reddest tongue from eating beets. Worked every time and now the grandkids do the same thing. Our favorite way of cooking them is to cook in the pressure cooker, slip the skins off and put a little butter on and serve.
    Funny story about an ex-brother-in-law. He had never had beets before but ate quite a few for supper one night some years ago. In the morning he went to the bathroom and came out white as a sheet. He thought he had some sickness, maybe cancer, from all the red in his stool. We have whooped with laughter at that for many years now.

    • Reply
      David Davis
      August 16, 2021 at 7:45 pm

      I always cook mine in the pressure cooker, too! So fast and I think less messy than roasting.

  • Reply
    June 9, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    HI Tipper,
    I love beets! I like them fresh jullienned in salad like people do carrots, I like them boiled or roasted or in mixes with other root veggies. I like them pickeled. I even had them creamed once, which wasn’t my favorite way to have them, but still not bad. We have no beets yet. I have one set of beet leaves that came up in the middle of the grass apparenlty a volunteer from last year as I didn’t have any seets set out yet. I tried starting them inside this year just for the fun of it…as my hubby got me a tiny little indoor greenhouse and a grow light, but everything that was under the grow light got spindly and died…I’m thinking that it was not really a grow light in the fixture but just a florescent tube, so he’s going to get me a full spectrum bulb for it and I’ll try other plants in it as the summer progresses. I thought I was going to be ahead of our cold rainy spring that we were having this year….not. Each year is different. I have some tiny little tomatoes started on my tiny little tomato plants which really haven’t grown much at all since I put them out. It’s been 20 degrees colder than normal for this time of year up until this week though (and one hot week in April). Now we are above normal so will have to watch things to make sure they don’t get dried out. The weeds in my front flower bed are sky high…weeds grow here year round and no matter what the weather is like they flourish. I once read a saying that went something like “give my heart the beauty of a flower and the tenacity of a weed.” Thought that person really had it figured out! Well, I must be off to go weed that bed before the neighbors turn me in to the weed abatement people and I get fined. Hope everyone is enjoying pleasant weather.

  • Reply
    Rev. RB
    June 8, 2013 at 10:46 pm

    Beets are the one thing Bro won’t eat, so we don’t have them nowadays. I sure do remember eating bunches of pickled beets when we were kids though. Maybe that’s why he doesn’t like them, ate too many of them as a kid.
    God bless.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    June 8, 2013 at 7:14 pm

    You can’t beat baby pickled beets in a salad. I’ve never tried baked or boiled beets or beet greens. I bought beet seeds to plant this spring but the weather got too warm before I could get the garden ready. They say you can plant in late summer for a fall crop. If I can get them to grow I might even try to fry some. Or make beet chips.

  • Reply
    b. Ruth
    June 8, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    The beets look so good! I love pickled beets, too. Haven’t canned any in years.
    We planted late beets in our small raised bed, hoping to get a few for eating. Cottontail had a different plan. He/she went down the row and ate the tops off of some of them. I also wanted the close to the chicken yard, as chickens love beet greens.
    I had never eaten beets the way you fix them until last year. They were so good. I love them fixed that way now. Beets do have an earthy taste to them, but one can get used to the flavor since they are good for you. Maybe pickling them was the old way of disquising that taste. After a jar of pickled beets were consumed, my Mother would have boiled eggs ready to drop in the jar and refrigerate for a few days. You had to be quick to beat her to those red pickled deviled type eggs…In fact she did make deviled eggs out of the stained red ones and they were great. Some folks can’t get over the color of the red stained eggs though.
    Thanks Tipper,
    PS…We trapped another raccoon last night. It is on it’s way to his/her new home. We trapped three huge ones last year. I don’t know how the spring went over in the trap, it was so big!
    These two this year are very young, but able to exist without the mother. I think we must have a very frisky male and female still living in on our property.

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    June 8, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    Love them roasted, I do it just like you described.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    June 8, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    I love beets….any way you want to fix them. I even like them raw on a salad.
    When the Deer Hunter was a little boy he loved pickled beets. We grew them and I canned a bunch of them every summer.
    I don’t think of them tasting like dirt, I think of them as tasting of the earth from which we come.

  • Reply
    June 8, 2013 at 11:11 am

    I’ll have to agree with Chitter
    and Chatter…they taste like dirt!
    But when I was little, I loved ’em
    right out of the jar. Guess I got
    foundered on beets. Never heard of
    baking beets in the oven, and I
    don’t even have any in my garden.

  • Reply
    June 8, 2013 at 10:31 am

    I fix “Harvard Beets” for Mom because she loved her Mom’s – says mine are close. The idea of Grandma Frank fixing Harvard Beets has always puzzled me. They were dirt poor. Grandma Frank didn’t start teach her girls to cook until they were getting ready to start out on their own because during the depression they didn’t have anything to waste. Mom later learned more about cooking from her mother-in-law. Mom also of spoke about how Grandma Frank’s cakes and cookies lost their appeal after Mom tasted other folks cooking – apparently the few times Grandma Frank made desserts she would only use half the sugar. Mom continued Grandma Franks thrifty ways – I would probably be better off in lots of ways if I were so thrifty – – guess Grandma Frank thought Harvard Beets weren’t a waste of a little sugar – maybe mine are only “close” because I use too much sugar. . . .

  • Reply
    Gina S
    June 8, 2013 at 10:26 am

    My mouth waters at the thought of pickled beets. When we have them on the table my daughter and I fight over the last one. We don’t normally eat cooked beets, though. Your recipe sounds real tasty. Going to give it a try.

  • Reply
    Bill Burnett
    June 8, 2013 at 10:09 am

    I love pickled beets also but my favorite is what I call educated beets, my beloved bride makes Harvard Beets that will melt in your mouth. They go great as a side for any en’tree.

  • Reply
    Kimberly Burnette
    June 8, 2013 at 10:09 am

    I totally adore pickled beets! When I was growing up, my mom would open up a pint jar of beets that she had pickled and I would eat the whole thing if she didn’t stop me!
    To this day, I will still really put a hurtin’ on a jar of pickled beets!

  • Reply
    Alica @ Happily Married to the Cows
    June 8, 2013 at 9:47 am

    I just pulled the first of my beets a few days ago. I boiled them and served them with a tiny bit of butter. We like the young, tender ones best. I am hoping to have enough to pickle. I use the pickled beets to make red beet (pickled) eggs. Is that something you eat as well…or is it perhaps a local treat?

  • Reply
    June 8, 2013 at 8:57 am

    For a root vegetable, they seem to have a flavor all their own. I like them pickled, but putting them into the oven seems like an interesting new way for flavor. I wonder what might happen if a bit of brown sugar were used – maybe the dirt flavor might go away. I never correlated dirt flavor with beets. Hummm!

  • Reply
    June 8, 2013 at 8:20 am

    That’s our favorite way to eat beets too. Add some spinach leaves and goat cheese to the plate, and it’s a delicious meal.

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