Culinary Arts

Chef Thomas Keller’s Baked Beets Recipe: How to Bake Beets

Written by MasterClass

Jul 19, 2019 • 2 min read

Rather than boiling beets, which dilutes their flavor and color, Chef Thomas Keller likes to bake them, using the heat to draw out moisture and concentrate flavors. The cooking time will vary depending on the size of the beets, but Chef Keller assures you that it is very hard to overcook a beet. He recommends seasoning and marinating beets while they are still warm, which allows them to better absorb flavor.

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6 Ways to Use Baked Beets

Baked beets are hearty and nutritious, and can be used in so many dishes that Chef Keller encourages you to bake and peel a large batch to use over multiple meals. Try the same baking technique with golden or Chioggia beets. Use different vinegars to complement the flavor and appearance of the beets. For example, use an apple cider vinegar with golden beets and Champagne vinegar with Chioggia beets.

Make a quick pickle by marinating the beets ahead of time for an easy salad topping or stand-alone side dish. Or simply roast and peel, skipping the marinating, to use in dishes that don’t need vinegar, such as beet gnocchi.

  1. Grate or cube baked beets and combine with yogurt, herbs, and spices for Persian mast-o-laboo or Indian beet raita.
  2. Add marinated baked beets to grain salads with quinoa, farro, bulgur, wheatberries, or your favorite whole grain. Add hardy greens such as kale, dress with vinaigrette, and sprinkle with fresh herbs.
  3. For a quick roasted beet salad, pair baked beets with salad greens such as watercress, butter lettuce, or arugula. Top with pomegranate seeds, walnuts, pine nuts, or pistachios.
  4. Marinated beets go well with cheese, from tangy goat cheese and feta to creamy burrata and gruyère. Shaved parmesan and freshly ground black pepper is another classic option.
  5. Add beets to a potato salad, with homemade mayonnaise and plenty of fresh dill.
  6. Combine with other root veggies for chicken suprême with root vegetables.

Chef Thomas Keller’s Baked Beets Recipe

Prep Time
20 min
Total Time
1 hr 5 min
  • 454 grams (1 pound) red beets, leaves and stems removed (save the beet greens for another purpose)
  • Kosher salt
  • 15 grams canola oil
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 15 grams aged balsamic vinegar
  • Maldon sea salt
  • 30 grams extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 bunches chives, minced

Equipment:

  • Cutting board
  • Chef’s knife
  • Paring knife
  • Rectangular baking dish
  • Aluminum foil
  • Mixing bowl
  • Serving bowl
  • Parchment paper
  • Gloves
  1. Wash and dry the trimmed beets. Place beets on the aluminum foil with the shiny side of the foil up. Drizzle with oil. Season with kosher salt and fold the foil to form a pouch.
  2. Place the pouch in the baking dish with the folded side up. Bake at 350°F for about 45 minutes. Test for doneness using a paring knife, looking for no resistance. Beets easily stain cutting boards and hands, so peel while still warm under running water or wear gloves and work over parchment.
  3. Cut beets into wedges, or any shape you like, and take a moment to appreciate their beautiful, deep magenta color. Add beets to your mixing bowl.
  4. Add the minced shallot to the beets, followed by Maldon salt, balsamic, extra-virgin olive oil, and chives, reserving a sprinkle of chives. Spoon dressed beets into a serving bowl and finish with chives.

Learn more about cooking techniques in Chef Thomas Keller's MasterClass.