Dinner with Bittman: Raw Beet Salad

Recipe from How to Cook Everything.

Raw Beet Salad

Makes: 4 servings

Time: 20 minutes

Beets, like carrots, can be eaten raw. And they’re delicious that way, crunchy and sweet. So sweet, in fact, that they need a strongly acidic dressing like this one for balance.

1 to 1 1/2 pounds beets, preferably small

2 large shallots

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard, or to taste

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons sherry vinegar or other good strong vinegar

1 sprig fresh tarragon, minced (optional)

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves

1. Peel the beets and the shallot. Combine them in a food processor fitted with the metal blade and pulse carefully until the beets are shredded; do not purée. (Or grate the beets by hand and mince the shallots; combine.) Scrape into a bowl.

2. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then add the mustard, oil, and vinegar and toss. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Toss in the herbs and serve.


Posted in Produce


  1. Laet Oliveira said...

    Here in Brazil, a very common beet salad is also very easy: Peel and slice, cook until "al dente," drain, cool. Place in container, cover with shallot or onion slices, pour vinaigrette, refrigerate (marinate). After a few hours or the following day it’s delicious – salt/pepper only after serving on a bed of lettuce. But I’m making yours the next time, it looks perfect.

  2. FoodNerdSF said...

    Thanks for this recipe! By keeping the beets raw and not cooked you don’t lose the powerful phytonutrients called betalains from the beets- these phytonutrients are antiflammatory among other things. Can’t wait to make this since beets are in season right now.

  3. stam487 said...

    I actually made something extremely similar last night for dinner, but I added some shredded cabbage. Been getting a ton of beets from my CSA and I’m in love–so nutritious and so delicious.

  4. cookingwcaitlin said...

    This is very exciting to me. I actually have all of these ingredients at home. Raw beet salad. Delicious!

  5. Carmin73 said...

    You (and the WF salad bar) keep pushing the raw beets and I keep trying them. But, so far I just love the roasted version so much better and so little work that I can’t do the beets raw! (And the cooked version are much easier for the toddler to chew, too.)

  6. janet helgeson said...

    Just made Mr. Bittman’s raw beet salad. After eating a teaspoon or so of the raw beets my throat is quite dry and sore. Any way to prevent this? Will this go away after the beets marinate in the dressing a while?

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