Baked Beets With Fresh Herbs & Butter

We got the most lovely bunch of purple beets at our last CSA pick up. I used a few by grating them raw into salads (yum!), then proceeded to ignore them in order to focus on some of the more time-sensitive veggies that needed to be dealt with quickly. Luckily, beets keep for quite a while in the fridge if you remove the greens and this batch seemed perfectly content to cool their heels in the crisper for nearly two weeks while I dealt with more pressing culinary concerns.

Washing beets by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2012

I typically roast beets – they’re DELICIOUS that way – but I was not feeling excited about waiting quite that long for them to cook so I decided to try baking them, instead – something I’d never tried before. With baked beets, the cooking time is sped up by putting a small amount of water in the bottom of the baking dish to steam the beets while they cook. Then you slip the skins off just as you would with roasted or boiled beets. It’s a bloody-looking business but it washes right off.

Beet Blood on my Hands by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2011

I was also attracted to the simple idea of tossing the warm beets with butter, herbs, salt, pepper and a little lemon juice. So I ran out to our little container garden and gathered up oregano, thyme and basil and chopped them up.

Our Thyme Plant by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2011

The results were both quicker and less messy than roasting and also deliciously flavorful and light. The baked beets are a little bit softer than roasted and the fresh herbs complement their natural sweetness while the butter (you could sub in olive or walnut oil if you don’t eat dairy) makes it feel just a wee bit decadent and the salt, pepper and lemon juice give it a little extra brightness and jazz.

Baked beets with herbs and butter by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2012

I served them with a thick cucumber yogurt sauce spiked with fresh mint (have I mentioned how much I LOVE whole milk Greek yogurt for this purpose?) and my own interpretation of one of those Near East boxed couscous mixes. I use this very tasty, fine whole wheat, French couscous that we get in bulk at our local health food store, some sauteed red onion, a whole lotta chopped fresh herbs, olive oil, salt and pepper — it’s much better than the stuff that comes in the box and only marginally more work.

Raitia/Tzatziki - cucumber, yogurt, onion & mint sauce

The beets were at least as tasty the next day as leftovers, too. I will definitely be making these again.

Baked Beets With Herbs & Butter

Serves 4-6


* 1 large bunch of beets (any kind), washed with tops and tails removed

* 2 Tbsps butter (you can also substitute olive oil or walnut oil if you do not eat dairy)

* Sea salt to taste

* Freshly ground pepper to taste

* Big handful of fresh herbs (thyme, basil, parsley, oregano, etc.,), washed, dried and chopped

* 1-2 tsps fresh lemon juice or mild vinegar like champagne or white balsamic


1. Preheat the oven to 350. Place the beets in a shallow baking dish and add half a cup of water to the bottom. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and place in the oven.

2. Bake for 30-45 minutes (cooking time will depend on the size of the beets you’re using), until beets are soft when poked with a fork. Remove from the oven and let sit, uncovered until cool enough to handle. Slip the skins off and remove any roots or tough pieces left over from the tops with a knife, then slice to whatever thickness and shape you desire.

3. Toss with the herbs, butter, salt and pepper then sprinkle a squeeze of fresh lemon juice or vinegar of your choice. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Serve warm or room temperature.

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Lonnie Battistoni
Lonnie Battistoniabout a year ago

I love beets! Haven't made them this way, but look forward to trying them.

Shae Lee
Shae Lee2 years ago


Yulan Lawson
Yulan Lawson2 years ago

Thank you for sharing. I didn't know many ways to cook beets and these are wonderful ideas.

Fred Hoekstra
Fred Hoekstra2 years ago

Thank you Eva, for Sharing this!

Dana W.
Dana W.2 years ago

Wow - I want to try this recipe right away.

Cheryl B.
Cheryl B.3 years ago

sounds yummy

Euroamerican Home

Thanks for the recipe. I wonder if you could make this recipe with other type of roots?

J.L. A.
JL A.3 years ago


Penny B.
.3 years ago

Definitely going to try this, thanks.

Leena K.
Leena K.3 years ago

Sounds tasty and easy, thanks now is the right time for these.