Toaster Oven Roasted Beets! Simple step-by-step directions for cooking up a batch of earthy sweet beets using your toaster oven.
Are you afraid of beets? For years I was.
Last year I had my first taste of a fresh roasted beet that had never been canned or pickled. I couldn’t believe it’s earthy flavor, meaty texture and measured light sweetness. Soooo very different than I had expected.
The next day, full of adventurous spirit I headed to the grocery store for fresh beets. I’ll admit my confidence faltered a bit once I located them. With their giant green leaves, long stems and crusted bits of mud they looked nothing like the beautiful roasted beet I had enjoyed a day earlier.
Pulling myself together, I thought what’s the worst that could happen?
As with most cooking fears, nothing terrible happened.
I did make a small mess in our toaster oven based on bad recipe advice. The first batch was slightly under-cooked and kinda crunchy. But overall they still tasted pretty fantastic.
Wanting to conquer roasting these juicy purple finger staining bundles of earthy yumminess I bought more the next week and the week after that. I worked on simplifying and perfecting my beet making skills and now I bag those bunches of beets with swagger 🙂
How about you, feeling brave?
If you are below is our no-fail-use-all-the-time recipe for making sweet earthy juicy beets in your toaster oven. ← These taste particularly delicious on a Roasted Beet And Cottage Cheese Toast.
6-3-2016 Update: This recipe was originally posted in 2015 when I used to get suuuuuper close to the food and had yet to figure out that if I stood near a window everything would naturally look better 🙂 Some of the photos have been updated but we kept the original step by step ones so don’t be alarmed when things start looking a little different.
How To Make Toaster Oven Roasted Beets
Start with good olive oil (or your favorite cooking oil) and a single bunch of fresh beets. Depending on the size of your toaster oven you might be able to roast more than one bunch at a time but make sure to see the safety tip below ↓ and don’t over-stuff your toaster oven.
Try to pick beetroots that are similarly sized because just like with baking potatoes or roasting cauliflower, carrots, Brussels sprouts and asparagus spears produce that’s the same size cooks more evenly.
Move the rack in your toaster oven to the lowest position and preheat to 400 F. Cut a piece of foil twice the size of your roasting pan and place it in the center of the pan.
You’ll probably find beets sold two ways at your store – with the green attached or just the roots. Both are great but I think when the greens are attached the beets are much juicier.
If your beets still have their greens you’ll want to remove them. Chop off the leaves but keep a small amount of the stem on each beet to use as a handle later. And don’t throw away the greens they are quite tasty in a salad like this Wilted Beet Greens w/ Goat Cheese & Toasted Pine Nuts recipe from I Breath I’m Hungry.
Now wash the beets very thoroughly, scrubbing off the handful of dirt on each one. Cut a tiny bit off the base of each beet so it can stand upright (I think this helps them cook more evenly) or leave them on if you prefer (they’ll just lay on their sides).
Arrange beets on the foil and drizzle with oil. Rub the oil around the outside of each beet.
How to not make a beety red Crime Scene style mess in your toaster oven: Loosely wrap the foil into a tent and pinch the the seams closed.
A lot of recipes will tell you to leave a tiny space open in the foil packet for venting. I did that the first time I ever made roasted beets. After spending time cleaning splattered beet juice off the inside of my toaster oven I pinch my seams closed!
Just be careful and allow the steam to slowly escape when opening the foil packet to check for doneness.
TOASTER OVEN SAFETY: When placing the beets in your toaster oven make sure the foil is not touching the sides or the top heating elements. Placing anything near the heating rods in a toaster oven can cause a fire.
Roast beets at 400 F for 30 to 50 minutes until a sharp knife or fork goes into the center of the beet easily. (The length of time will depend on the size of the beets – the ones pictured are pretty large and took 50 minutes)
Allow beets to cool in the foil for 10 minutes or until they have cooled enough to handle.
Grab a beet by its stem handle and using a paper towel gently rub the skin off.
Slice beets and enjoy plain, with a splash of balsamic vinegar or drizzle of Sriracha Vinaigrette.
If you are planning to eat the beets later in a Golden Beet and Avocado Sandwich, leave the skins on and remove right before slicing. Beets can be stored in the refrigerator wrapped tightly in foil or a covered container for up to 5 days.
*We recently started cooking the sweeter yellow colored Golden Beet variety and noticed that after a day or two some of the beet slices would have black spots. After Googling a bunch we didn’t find a concrete reason but a collective answer that yes they are still okay to eat!
A few of the responses to this question on Food52 suggest waiting to peel and slice golden beets until just before serving, lining your foil with a piece of parchment before roasting (I plan to try this one the next time we make beets) and storing the beets in an acidic liquid (like water with lemon or vinegar).
If you know why this happens or have a better tip for preventing it please share in the comments!
- 1 Bunch of Beets (about 1lb)
- Olive Oil (about 2 teaspoons)
- Move the rack in the toaster oven to the lowest position and preheat to 400 F. Cut a piece of foil twice the size of your roasting pan and place in the center of the pan. Remove greens from beets.
- Chop off stems but leave a small amount to use as a handle to grab the cooked beets with. Wash and scrub beets well. Cut a tiny bit off the base of each beet so it can stand upright or leave them on if you prefer.
- Arrange beets on foil and drizzle with olive oil. Rub the oil around the outside of each beet. Loosely wrap the foil into a tent pinching seams closed.
- Roast beets at 400 F for 30 to 50 minutes until a sharp knife or fork goes into the center of the beet smoothly. (The length of time will depend on beet size - the large beets pictured took 50 mins)
- Allow beets to cool in foil for 10 minutes. Grab the beet by its stem handle and using a paper towel and your thumb rub the skin off the beets. Slice and enjoy.
If you are planning to eat beets later, leave the skins on and remove right before slicing.
Beets can be stored in the refrigerator wrapped tightly in foil or a covered container for up to 5 days.
Nutritional estimate is for 1 of 2 servings of roasted beets.