If you tend to walk quickly past the freezer section in the grocery store because either you A) aren’t wearing a parka or B) tend to stick to the fresh aisles, I beg you for the love of all things pink, go back and check for beets.
I don’t know if it’s a new thing or what, but I swear I’ve never seen frozen beets until this past year.
Let me tell you in no uncertain terms that frozen beets are LIFE CHANGING. I love beets — they’re a superfood full of fiber, folate, potassium, magnesium, vitamins AB&C. They are also INCREDIBLY messy to deal with. I dread the preparing beets process: red hands, stained cutting boards, hours in the slow cooker or oven. I have a mental thing against canned beets and find the “cooked/peeled” vacuum packed beets are quick to cook, sure, but still a liquid-y mess. So, I’ve been experimenting with frozen beets and am obsessed. They have a long shelf life, are already diced into perfect bite sized pieces and because they are frozen, don’t have any bright red liquids waiting to stain your shirt.
Here’s my top five ways to use them up:
Put frozen beets in smoothies. Just sprinkle a small amount directly out of the bag into your blender for a bright purple or pink smoothie.
Beet risotto. Do you standard risotto recipe, but sub some goat cheese in lieu of the parmesan for crazy good and sprinkle some walnuts on top before serving.
Roast them (frozen) with olive oil, maldon sea salt & few grinds of black pepper. You can keep it as simple as that or toss with balsalmic vinegar at the end for something special.
Thaw & drain, then store in an airtight container up to 5 days. You can use them to scoop onto salads (think spinach, blue cheese and walnuts) or pop a few into a blender with hummus to make a bright purple beet hummus. Try apple slices to dip with that!
Make soup. You can go all out and make real borscht, or you can make a faster version (I dare not call it borscht) in which you simply sautee a small chopped onion and a small bag of shredded coleslaw mix (cabbage/carrot), stirring until wilted and cooked down substantially. Stir in a tablespoon of tomato paste and small can of diced tomatoes. Then add 6 cups heated chicken stock (or water) and a couple of bay leaves, add in the bag of frozen beets and two peeled whole russet potatoes, boiling until potatoes are able to be pierced with a fork. Reduce heat to simmer, pull out potatoes, cool and dice them, then add them back in. Salt & pepper to taste. Serve with chopped dill and a squeeze of lemon (and sour cream or greek yogurt if you wish).