If you are looking for the easiest way to prepare beets, this Roasted Beets recipe is just what you have been searching for. It is as simple as it gets, and works every time! The beets come out perfectly tender and the balsamic and thyme added in at the end takes the flavor to the next level.

A close-up of a white bowl with colorful roasted beets

Every summer, I make my mom’s recipe for Pickled Beets over and over, and I never get sick of it. But come wintertime, I want a beet recipe that will warm my soul. This Roasted Beets recipe is just what I want.

Last month, we talked a lot about Storing Crops. Storing crops are hearty fruits and veggies that can be harvest stored for long periods of time. Beets are yet another example of a great storing crop. While they are grown and harvested in the warmer months, once you remove the beet greens, you can store the roots all winter long!

That means if you are trying to buy locally grown produce in an effort to reduce your carbon footprint, while supporting your local farmers, then eating storing crops like beets in the winter is a great way to go!

Ingredients For This Recipe

ingredients for the recipe on a wooden board
  • 2 pounds beets, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks (I used Chioggia, golden and red beets)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

Do you peel the beets before or after roasting?

Beets are unique in that they can easily be cooked in their skins, then peeled. This phenomenon is true when you boil them or roast them. The skin acts like a jacket and holds the moisture in and almost steams them!

Once they are tender, you can rub the skin and it just slides right off the beets. This seems like the best most hands-off method, but in reality, it has a few problems:

The problems with roasting with the skin on

  1. You have to wait for them to cook through (which takes a really long time when they are whole. It can take an hour or two depending on the size of the beets.)
  2. If you have beets that are different sizes, you will have to remove some from the oven and leave others to continue roasting. This whole babysitting thing kind of goes against the spirit of this being a hands-off method.
  3. You also have to wait until they are cool enough to handle to get the skins off and cut them. That’s no big deal if you have to wait for them to cool anyway like for use in a salad. But if you are intending to serve them hot, it is a waste of time since you will then have to heat them back up again.
  4. You can’t add flavor to them until after they are peeled.

The Way I Recommend: Peel First

I prefer to peel them while they are raw (with a vegetable peeler.)

  • I cut them into bite sized pieces so they will cook more quickly.
  • They can be done in literally half the time this way!
  • You can season them before you cook them so the seasoning and additional flavors (like the balsamic and thyme in this recipe) cooks into the beets and makes them more flavorful!

What Kind Of Pan To Roast Them In

The key to getting the beets to cook properly once they have been cut is that you have to keep them covered while they roast. Otherwise they can get tough! Covering them will trap the steam (just like their skin would have done) and yields perfectly tender beets every time!

Normally I like to roast veggies like butternut squash or roasted turnips on a rimmed baking sheet. In the case of beets, I roast them in a 9 by 13-inch pyrex or ceramic baking dish and cover it with aluminum foil because I want to trap that steam in to help soften them.

Add Balsamic and Thyme

You can make this recipe without the addition of balsamic vinegar and thyme, but I really like the way the vinegar balances the sweet beet taste. The fresh thyme also makes it more delicious!

Feel free to use another type of herb, citrus zest or another vinegar. You can also try orange juice instead of balsamic vinegar. It is fun to experiment with flavors. This one just happens to be my favorite!

Add in the thyme and balsamic, toss them and then let them roast again uncovered so that the balsamic creates a glaze of sorts! In 10 more minutes the beets will be glazed and tender and utterly delicious!

Step By Step Photos How To Make This Recipe

More Beet Recipes

The roasted beets with whole uncut beets and the mis en place

More Simple Roasted Veggie Recipes

a bowl of beets chunks from the side with a bottle of balsamic vinegar behind it

Thank you for reading! If you make this recipe, please come back and let me know by leaving a star rating and review. I really appreciate it!

Happy Cooking!

~Katie

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a bowl of chunks of roasted beets from overhead

Roasted Beets

  • Author: Katie
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 3 cups 1x
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Roasting
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Here is a recipe for basic roasted beets. Peel them, toss them with oil and seasoning. Roast them in a baking dish covered with foil to help them soften. Then season with balsamic vinegar and thyme at the end for added flavor! 


Scale

Ingredients

2 pounds beets, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper to taste

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme


Instructions

1.     Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

2.     Toss beets, oil, salt and pepper in a 9 by 13-inch baking dish. Cover with foil.

3.     Roast, lifting off the foil to stir once or twice, until the beets are tender when pierced with a fork, about 40 minutes.

4.     Add balsamic vinegar and thyme and toss to coat. Return to the oven, and roast uncovered for 10 minutes.

5.     Serve warm or at room temperature.


Notes

You can use any color beets for this recipe. Note that the red beets will stain the other colors a bit as they cook. To prevent your hands from turning red when you handle the beets, wear disposable gloves. 


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2/3 cup
  • Calories: 161
  • Sugar: 15 g
  • Fat: 7 g
  • Carbohydrates: 20 g
  • Fiber: 5 g
  • Protein: 5 g
Roasted Beets