beets, veggie of the month

February Veggie of the Month: Beets

Live Well Sioux Falls and the Sioux Falls Food Council is proud to present the Eat Well, Live Well campaign! Each month this campaign will highlight a new fruit and vegetable along with a healthy recipe developed by local Sioux Falls chefs and restaurants.

The February Veggie of the Month is Beets!

Did you know…

  • you can eat the whole beet plant! Beet tops (leaves) are cooked or served fresh as greens and are an excellent source of vitamin A. The roots may be pickled for salads or cooked whole, then sliced or diced. They can be eaten raw or cooked and are a good source of vitamin C.
  • young or small beets are best raw while medium and large-sized beets are better when cooked.
  • you should store the leaves and roots separately. Remove leaves, leaving about an inch of the stems. Store roots in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Wash before cooking.
  • red beets can stain your skin! Beets are deep red or white in color. Sugar is produced from one variety (Sugar Beets) and the red color is used in food coloring. When peeling beets wear disposable gloves to avoid staining.
  • Check out these videos for helpful tips on selection, storage and prep.

10 Ways to Enjoy Beets…

  1. Bake ‘em! Cut off the green tops, leaving an inch of the stem to prevent bleeding and flavor loss. Scrub beets, wrap them in foil, and bake at 400°F for 45-90 minutes, depending on size.
  2.  Eat the Leaves! Add beet leaves to salad greens for some additional vitamins and minerals.
  3.  Beet Juice? … Really? Yes! Just add some 100% orange or 100% apple juice as well. Use a juicer and combine the juice of a small beet with 1 cup of  the apple juice and/or orange juice.
  4.  Soup. Add beets and their leaves to homemade vegetable soup or minestrone. Clean and slice the beet into small pieces before adding to the soup.
  5.  Stir-Fry. Add sliced beets and their leaves to your favorite stir-fry veggie combo. If desired, mix in your meat of choice and enjoy.
  6.  Microwave Them! Place 2 to 3 small beets in a small amount of water and microwave for 8-15 minutes or until soft.
  7.  A Quick Snack Shaker. Pour sliced beets from a can (drain about 1/2 of the liquid) into a bowl you can cover. Add red wine vinegar and a little bit of olive oil and oregano. Cover and shake. Serve as a side dish or snack.
  8.  Couscous. It’s always fun to add new things to an old standby.
  9.  Beet Kabob. Add beets along with other vegetables to skewers and heat thoroughly on the grill.
  10.  A Bit O’ Bitter. Top off a salad with these bitter vegetables for a new and interesting twist. Just dice and toss!

The featured Sioux Falls chef and restaurant this month is Chef Kristina Kuehn, the chef and owner of K Restaurant at the 8th and Railroad Centre in Sioux Falls. Her love of beets started while attending culinary school in California. Her secret to turning people onto beets is to roast them, which adds richness and flavor. Learn more about beets and get Chef Kuehn’s Hearty Beet Salad recipe with this Pick It! Try It! Like It! fact sheet.

Don’t stop there! Find ways to promote beets at your work, school, childcare and in your community!

 

Sources: Eat Well, Live Well Campaign, Pick It! Try It! Like It!, Harvest of the Month, & Fruits & Veggies More Matters.