Do you frequently wear an apron in the kitchen? If not, I encourage you to take out your apron (if you have one) before working on any beet recipes. I didn’t wear my apron when I handled all of our garden grown beets. Now my pure white T-shirt is decorated with random pink polka dots. No big deal. I’ll just use it for a future tie-dye T-shirts project! ?
It was only a few years ago that I bought beets for the first time. I heard people saying they are healthy and tasty. However, I had no idea what I should do with them. So I sliced and sauteed some in oil. Umm…, too sweet and not very tasty.
Things can change, so do tastebuds! Being a food blogger and recipe developer, I have learned so much about beets. I found beets taste best with the addition of some tart flavors, such as lemon or lime juice. The tartness from citrus can tone down some of the sweetness from the beets. I have a few beet recipes on this blog if you’d like to check them out.
I have found 3 ways to make beet puree at home. Really simple. It’s also a fantastic way to preserve your extra beets in the freezer for future recipes. Are you ready to enjoy a flavorful and vibrant colored puree?
- Oven Method
Cut the washed beet roots in quarters. Briefly rub with some oil and then wrap them with aluminum foil. Bake in preheated oven at 375 ℉ for about 1 hour. By the way, you can serve the roasted beets with some salt, lemon juice, and herbs. It’s a delicious side dish.
2. Pressure cooker Method
A Pressure cooker is my time and energy saver. You’ll want to trim off the beet stem as much as you can. I like to keep a little bit on the roots so that the dark red flesh of the root is not exposed to water/steam while cooking. This way less of the natural red dye gets into the water. However, if you’re going to save the water (see below), you can cut the roots in half or quarters. They will cook faster this way. The total cook time for 2-inch diameter size beets is about 15 minutes.
3. Boiling/Steaming Method
This is the most common way to prepare beet puree in a saucepan if you don’t have a pressure cooker. I add enough water so that the beets are only partially immersed in water. The boiling water and steam work together to get the beets soft. It takes about 25 minutes to cook the roots if you cut them in half or quarters.
Once the cooked beets cool slightly, blend them in a food processor to make the puree. If desired, you can remove the skin of the beets before putting them in the food processor.
Now, what do you do with the deep red, nutrient rich beet water if you used either of the the last two methods? I boil down the liquid to make it really concentrated. It’s an amazing natural red dye for your food (stay in tune for my upcoming Chinese mooncake recipe).
Looking for the best way to preserve some extra beets during harvest season? Here are 3 ways to make beet puree that you can freeze for later use. Real simple.
- 4 lbs beet roots
- 1½ cups water
- 2 teaspoons canola oil
- Oven Method: Cut the washed beet roots in quarters. Briefly rub them with some oil and wrap with aluminum foil. Bake in preheated oven at 375 ℉ for about 1 hour until the roots are easily pierced with a fork. Be careful when you open the foil as the hot steam may cause skin burns.
- Pressure cooker Method: Trim off the beet stem as much as you can (see picture in post). Cut the beet roots in half, if they are larger than 2-in diameter . Place all the roots in a pressure cooker. The pressure cooker shouldn’t be filled more than safety line (read your pressure cooker instruction carefully). Add 1 cup of water and cover the pressure cooker with lid. Cook under low steady steam for 15 minutes after the pressure is built up. Remove the pressure cooker from the heat and let the pressure release.
- Boiling/Steaming Method: Trim off the beet stem as much as you can (see picture in post). Cut the beet roots into quarters and transfer them into a large saucepan. Add 1½ cups of water into the pan and bring the water to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 25 minutes until the beet roots are easily pierced with a fork.
- Place the cooked beet roots into a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. The puree can be stored in freezer up to 3 months.