Let me introduce you to my new besties -- beets. They have a lot going for them. They increase stamina, lower your blood pressure, fight inflammation and cancer, are high in nutrients and fibre and the red pigment (not Red Dye #5!) in beets help to detoxify your body. Plus they're sweet and can be eaten cold or warm. Granted, they're a pain to peel without looking like you just participated in a blood bath.
This is where our new discovery (thanks to my parents) comes in. Costco (here in Canada anyway) sells beets that are already partially cooked and peeled. Say wha!? Yes, they do the messy work for you and all you have to do is pull a pouch of 3-4 beets out of the fridge, pop them in a pot of boiling water for 15 minutes (or in the microwave for 20 second intervals) and voila! You have an instant side dish or accompaniment to a lovely salad. My life just got a little bit sweeter.
We've had these beets several times as a side dish and recently decided to whip up a salad with some goat cheese that we needed to use up. The sweetness of the beets paired with the tang of the goat cheese and sunflower seeds (or nuts if you're using them) made for a very tasty, yet simple, salad that you could serve as a side dish or as a main salad.
Beet and Goat Cheese Spinach Salad
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
3 tsp honey
3 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 tbsp grapeseed or olive oil
5 cups of baby spinach, stems removed
3 medium beets - cooked, cooled and cut into 1-inch chunks
2 oz goat cheese, crumbled
1/2 cup sunflower seeds (or walnuts, toasted and chopped) (optional)
Bring a medium-sized saucepan to a boil. Add beet pouch and boil for 15 minutes. Carefully remove from water. Cut open pouch and slice into 1/2-inch pieces. Set aside to cool.
** If using fresh beets the best way to cook them would be to roast them. Gently clean the beets under cool water being careful not to break the skin. Wrap each beet in foil, place on a baking sheet and roast them at 375F for about 45-50 minutes or until tender. You can also boil or microwave fresh beets. For more cooking info click HERE.
In a medium bowl, combine balsamic vinegar, honey, Dijon, salt, pepper and oil. Mix well and set aside.
Meanwhile, place baby spinach into a large salad bowl. Top with cooled, diced beets, goat cheese and sunflower seeds/walnuts, if using. Drizzle dressing onto salad just before serving and lightly toss. Serve immediately.
Note: I have not received any compensation from Love Beets. All opinions in this post are based on my own experience using their products.
Inspired by: Tasteofhome.com's Spinach Salad with Goat Cheese and Beets