Looking for some tasty meatless meals or to light up your weekly menu? This beet salad with goat cheese fits the bill!
It is also healthy, refreshing, and quite satisfying! Perfect a hot weather!
Moreover, the composition of flavors is simply fantastic. It has that earthy and sweet flavor from the beets combined with the tanginess of the goat cheese and vinaigrette.
But that is not all! You can serve either as a main or side dish and easily add more ingredients to make variations of it.
The thing is in up to 30 minutes you can make a healthy meal to feed your family after a busy day of work.
If you had to customize it, what else would add to this salad?
Also, check out this refreshing and summery Cilantro Lime Pasta Salad!
Reasons to Make this Beet and Goat Cheese Salad:
- Easy and Delish: This salad uses simple ingredients and requires minimal prep time but still tastes so good.
- Customizable: You can swap the goat cheese with feta, queso fresco, or any crumbly cheese. You can add arugula, spinach, or other greens plus nuts for plant-based protein such as toasted almonds, walnuts, or glazed cashew nuts for a more festive touch. As for the vinaigrette, you may replace lemon with orange or blood orange.
- Versatile: This beetroot salad is both light and hearty, so it is perfect for a meatless main course, or to be eaten as a side dish.
- Quick prep: In up to 30 minutes you can have a healthy meal to serve to your family on a busy week.
- Healthy: It is gluten-free, vegetarian, and it contains beneficial carbs. Plus it is low in calories and fat if compared to other salads, a great source of fiber, Vitamins C, potassium, manganese, iron, and folate, among others.
Ingredients and Substitutions
Beets – we used yellow and red beets but you can opt for only one of them. Although cooked in the Instant Pot, you may roast them, pickle, or serve raw. It is up to you! Adding potatoes make a great variation to this salad especially for a barbecue gathering. You can make these pickled beet goat cheese tartlets with this salad leftover or simply use beets to color pasta.
Goat cheese – you may replace it with feta for a beet feta salad, queso fresco, or any crumbly cheese.
Lemon –balsamic vinegar or any other citrus such as lime, orange, grapefruit, or blood orange goes well in this beet goat cheese salad.
Olive oil – extra virgin olive oil works best but you may use walnut, sesame, or even grapeseed oil depending on the profile flavor you want to convey.
Honey – it adds a hint of sweetness to the vinaigrette to balance the acids of the lemons. But you may replace it with maple syrup or even sugar if desired.
Seasonings – salt and pepper are enough but you are welcome to add red pepper flakes to give the salad a kick.
Fresh herbs – Mint and dill are my herbs of choice but you can use whatever you have at home. I think mint adds a refreshing touch to the salad so welcoming in hot days. You may find it in Moroccan beet salad recipes. Nuts are not part of the recipe but you can add them for a crunch and as a source of plant-based protein.
How to Cook Beets
There are 2 ways to roast them:
- Wrap each individually in foil (don’t peel them), place on a baking sheet, and at 425°F for 30 minutes. You peel and cut them after cooking!
- Or you can peel and cut them into small pieces, toss in olive oil, and bake them until cooked through.
The pressure cooker is my fave way to cook them. Find out how a pressure cooker works and get our cooking time charts for beets and other veggies.
How to Make Beet Goat Cheese Salad
- Wash beets, pat dry and cut off the stems. SEE PIC. 1
- Pour water into the pot of your Instant Pot – Use 1 cup of water for a 6-qt and 1 ½ cups for an 8-qt. Instant Pot. Place trivet inside of the Instant Pot.
- Place beets on a trivet in one layer. Make sure to not pile them on top of each other. Do not peel them! SEE PIC. 2
- Using Instant Pot manual mode or the steam button, set time manually for 15 minutes (or less or more depending on the size of your beets)
- Lock the lid and turn the valve to the sealing position, cook beats for 15 minutes. Larger beets will need more time to cook.
- Remove them from the Instant Pot using tongs. SEE PIC. 3 Peel them, remove ends, and cut as desired. SEE PICS. 4 & 5 For a cold salad, chill beets for at least 30 minutes.
- Make the vinaigrette: In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, fresh lemon juice, honey, salt, and pepper until combined and thickened.
- Toss the beets with the vinaigrette, place onto a platter, and top with the crumbled goat cheese and fresh herbs. SEE PIC. 6
Making Beet Salad Dressing
Lemon vinaigrette is the most common type of dressing used in salads especially in summertime because it is refreshing.
Making a vinaigrette is a simple process. Technically, a classic vinaigrette requires 3 parts of olive oil to one part of some type of vinegar or acid ingredient such as citrus fruits.
Modern versions use one part of oil and one part of acid (balsamic or red wine vinegar, or citrus) which I confess I prefer the most. The oil is the emulsifying ingredient and by decreasing its amount it saves some calories while still fulfilling its purpose.
Whisking oil into the acid ingredient until emulsified and thickened is the way to go in order to dress our cold beet salad.
What to Serve with Beet Salad
If you are serving this dish as a side, some meat cuts that would pair well with it are:
- Grilled pork chops
- Ranch chicken thighs
- Baked chicken breast
- Baked chicken thighs
- Air fryer chicken thighs
Keep the components of this beet goat cheese salad separate. Store the cooked beets in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge. Or freeze them in a freezer bag, removing as much air as possible, for up to 2 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight! It is one of those easy freezer meals!
Assemble the salad right before eating to keep it fresh. Keep in mind that if you toss the vinaigrette with the beets ahead of time and chill, the beets will become soggy. Prep all the ingredients ahead and keep them separate to put together just right before eating.
PIN & ENJOY!
Beet Goat Cheese Salad
For the salad:
- 6 beets 3 red and 3 golden/yellow or all 6 red
- 1 cup water
- ¼ cup crumbled goat cheese or feta You may use less cheese if you prefer
- Fresh herbs I used fresh mint leaves and dill to garnish the salad and add a fresh touch but you may use parsley or other herb but keep the mint if possible
For the lemon vinaigrette:
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp honey
- A dash of ground black pepper
- A pinch of salt I used coarse salt
- Scrub beets well to remove excess soil and cut off the stems.
- Pour water into the pot of your Instant Pot (1 cup of water for a 6-qt or 1 ½ cups for an 8-qt. Instant Pot). Place steaming rack or trivet inside of the Instant Pot.
- Place beets on rack/trivet in one single layer. Do not pile them on top of each other!
- Lock the lid and turn the valve to the sealing position. Set the manual mode or press the steam button and set the cooking time manually for 15 minutes (beets with 5-inch circumference), or more depending on the size of your beets.
- When the time comes to an end, wait for 5 minutes and then do a quick release. Remove them from the Instant Pot using tongs.
- Peel them either by sliding a paring knife on the peel or scrubbing them under cold water. Pat them dry, cut off the ends, and cut as desired. For a cold beet salad, chill them for at least 30 minutes.
- Make the vinaigrette: In a small bowl, whisk together fresh lemon juice with olive oil and then honey, salt, and pepper until combined/emulsified and thickened.
- Toss the beets with the vinaigrette, place onto a platter, and top with the crumbled goat cheese and fresh herbs. Serve right away!
Or you can peel and cut them into small pieces, toss in olive oil, and bake them until cooked through. STORAGE Keep the components of this beet goat cheese salad separate. Store the cooked beets in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge. Or freeze them in a freezer bag, removing as much air as possible, for up to 2 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight! It is one of those easy freezer meals! Assemble the salad right before eating to keep it fresh. Keep in mind that if you toss the vinaigrette with the beets ahead of time and chill, the beets will become soggy. Prep all the ingredients ahead and keep them separate to put together just right before eating.
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