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Roasted Beet And Arugula Salad Recipe

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Winter salads don’t have to be dull or time-consuming. My Roasted Beet and Arugula Salad Recipe combines the earthy sweetness of beets with the peppery punch of arugula, all tied together with a zesty dressing. It’s a perfect salad that promises to brighten your table and your taste buds, especially when time is of the essence.

Arugula salad with beets in a white and black serving bowl, with cheddar cheese wedge on the side.

The Roasted Beet and Arugula Salad is a vibrant and elegant dish perfect for any occasion, especially during the colder months. It combines the earthy sweetness of beets with the peppery freshness of arugula and the sharpness of shallots or red onions. 

The salad is dressed in a light vinaigrette made from white wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, and extra virgin olive oil, perfectly balancing the flavors. It’s garnished with a wedge of rich cheese, such as aged Irish Cheddar, but you’re welcome to experiment with goat cheese, feta, or your favorite cheese alternative for a personalized touch. This salad is easy and quick to prepare and offers a nutritious boost with its wholesome ingredients.

Why you will love this peppery arugula beet salad

  • Effortlessly Quick: Ready in just 15 minutes if you use pre-cooked beets.
  • Versatile: The beauty of this salad lies in its versatility. Feel free to play around with the cheese options – aged Irish Cheddar, goat cheese, feta, or even Gruyere can elevate this dish to new heights.
  • Nutritious: Not only is this salad a feast for the eyes, but it’s also packed with vitamins, fiber, and healthy fats.

Ingredients needed

Here is a visual list of simple ingredients from the grocery store you need to make this delicious salad:

Ingredients display for Beet Arugula Salad.

For the Beet And Arugula Salad:

  • Cooked Beets: The star of the dish, with their sweet and earthy flavor. They can be used straight from a can for convenience or freshly roasted for a deeper taste.
  • Baby Arugula: Adds a peppery flavor, balancing the sweetness of the beets. However, mature arugula, baby spinach, or mixed leafy greens could serve as a substitute for a milder flavor.

For the dressing:

  • Shallots or Red Onions: Introduce a slight sharpness, enhancing the overall taste profile. Green onions or chives can be used for a subtler bite.
  • White Wine Vinegar: Brings acidity and brightness, tying the flavors together. Apple cider vinegar or fresh lemon juice could be a suitable alternative.
  • Dijon Mustard: Adds depth and a tangy edge to the dressing. Honey mustard can be used for a sweeter note.
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil: The dressing base lends richness and smoothness. Avocado oil is a good alternative for a different fatty acid profile.
  • Cheese: Serve the salad for a plus of elegance with aged Irish Cheddar in wedges for a bold, nutty flavor, or crumbled goat cheese or feta for a creamier texture and tangy contrast. Even Parmesan cheese or Gorgonzola work.

Pro Tip For Beet Purists

Do you prefer to bake your own beets? For those who prefer the earthy depth of freshly roasted beets, the option to bake them from scratch is always there. Wrapped in aluminum foil and roasted until tender, these beets can add a warm, comforting element to the salad. (see the notes in the recipe card)

How To Make Beet Arugula Salad

I made this salad for entertaining and decided to serve it individually, so the instructions reflect it. For a casual meal, if you prefer to toss together the ingredients in a larger serving bowl, please do.

Cube Beets: Start by cubing the pre-cooked beets and place them in a medium bowl.

Prepare Arugula: Place fresh baby arugula in a separate medium bowl, ready for dressing.

Mix Dressing: In a small bowl, combine chopped shallots or red onions, white wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper. Gradually whisk in olive oil until the mixture is well blended.

Collage of two steps for mixing the ingredients for the dressing.
Collage of two images of steps making the dressing for the salad.

Dress Ingredients: Toss the cubed beets in one tablespoon of the dressing. In the arugula bowl, use the remaining dressing and toss until evenly coated.

Mixing the dressing into the beets and arugula.

Assemble Salad: Divide the dressed arugula among four plates, top with the dressed beets, and finish each with a wedge of cheese of your choice.

Beet And Arugula Salad served with cheddar cheese.

Chef Tips

  • Add the dressing right before you serve the salad to avoid the arugula becoming soggy. 
  • If you handle cooked beets, make sure you wear gloves, as the juices are deep red and stain everything around you, including your skin.

How To Serve

  • Serve immediately to ensure the arugula remains crisp.
  • Consider offering additional dressing on the side for guests who prefer a different flavor profile.
  • Pair with crusty bread or crostini for a complete meal.
  • Dinner party? This salad is perfect, accompanied by a light white wine or sparkling water for a refreshing touch.
  • Ideal as a standalone lunch or as a perfect side dish for a hearty dinner.

What To Serve With Beet And Arugula Salad

This vibrant Beet and Arugula Salad pairs beautifully with a variety of dishes, and here are some examples:

  • Grilled or Roasted Meats: Its freshness complements rich flavors, such as baked chicken, steak, or roasted pork.
  • Seafood: Serve alongside seared salmon or grilled shrimp for a light, balanced meal.
  • Vegetarian Entrees: Ideal with quiche or a hearty vegetable tart.
  • Pasta Or Rice Dishes: An excellent side dish for both creamy and tomato-based pasta, but also for a simple risotto or a pilaf.
  • Rustic Bread: Complete a simple meal with artisan bread or focaccia for dipping into the dressing.
Arugula salad with beets and cheddar cheese wedge.

Common questions

Can I use different types of beets?

Absolutely! Feel free to use golden beets, red beets, or a mix of both to add a variety of colors and slight taste differences to your salad. Each type of beet will contribute its unique sweetness and earthiness to the dish.

Can the salad dressing be stored for long periods?

The dressing should ideally be used within 1-2 days, especially if it contains fresh ingredients like shallots or red onions. Storing it longer might affect the taste and safety of the dressing.

Can I prepare the Beet and Arugula Salad in advance?

Beets: Yes, the beets can be prepared ahead of time. If you’re using roasted beets, they can be cooked, cubed, and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Salad Dressing: Given the fresh ingredients like shallots or red onions in the dressing, it’s best to prepare it no more than 1-2 days ahead to ensure its freshness and prevent any potential spoilage.
Arugula: Add fresh arugula and dress the salad just before serving to maintain its crispness and prevent wilting.

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Delicious Beet and Arugula Salad in a black and white bowl, served with cheddar cheese.

Beet And Arugula Salad

This Beet And Arugula Salad is a simple yet elegant recipe for any occasion. The salad is perfect for the cold season and is made with already-cooked beets and fresh baby arugula.
5 from 4 votes
Author:Gabriela
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten Free
Servings 4 servings
Calories 141 kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 can cooked beets cubed (15 oz. drained)
  • 6 cups baby arugula
  • 2 tablespoons shallots or red onions chopped
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil extra virgin
  • 4 wedges aged Irish Cheddar cheese Or White cheddar, Goat cheese, Parmesan, Gruyere, or Feta cheese.

Instructions

  • Cut beets into 1/2 cubes—place in a medium bowl.
  • Place arugula in a separate medium bowl.
  • Combine shallots, vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in oil until well blended.
  • Toss beets with 1 tablespoon of dressing. Toss the arugula with the remaining dressing.
  • Divide the arugula among four plates. Top with beets. Garnish each plate with a wedge of cheese. Serve immediately.

Notes

  • If you bake the whole beets from scratch, do the following: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wrap cleaned beets in aluminum foil and place them in a single layer on a sheet covered with parchment paper. Roast them until fork tender, about 45-60 minutes. Cool, peel, and cut into 1/2 cube size. You can also pre-cook them up to 3 days in advance and keep them covered and refrigerated until ready to use.
  • For extra crunch and texture, nuts could be a great addition. Think walnuts, pecans, slivered almonds, pine nuts, or candied pecans.

Nutrition

Calories: 141kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 232mg | Potassium: 373mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 758IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 1mg
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