Golden Beets with Beet Greens and Pine Nuts

beetsDo you like foods that taste like dirt? I do, apparently, so here’s a recipe with beets AND beet greens for my fellow earthy-root lovers. It’s midsummer farm-share season, so I had a bag of beet greens to use up and wanted to find a new way to eat them instead of blending them into smoothies or sautéing them and folding them into scrambled eggs. I loved the richness of the caramelized onions, the nutty Parmesan, and of course the beet’s perfect combination of dirty and sweet (isn’t that what we’re all looking for anyway? HAHA).

This recipe calls for golden beets (and pasta . . . forget that), but I bet red or those beautiful striped Chioggia beets would be wonderful in their place. I served it up with roasted skin-on chicken breast marinated in lemon juice and garden herbs.

Golden Beets with Beet Greens and Pine Nuts, adapted from Bon Appetit


  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 large onions, quartered lengthwise through root end, sliced crosswise (about 4 cups)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 bunches 2-inch-diameter golden beets with fresh healthy greens; beets peeled, each cut into 8 wedges, greens cut into 1-inch-wide strips
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)


  1. Heat heavy large skillet over medium heat (cast iron is wonderful to use if you have it). Add pine nuts and stir until lightly toasted, about 3 minutes. Transfer to small bowl.
  2. Add 2 tablespoons oil and onions to same skillet and sauté until beginning to soften and turn golden, about 10 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue to sauté until onions are tender and browned, about 30 minutes longer.
  3. Add garlic and stir 30 seconds or until aromatic. Scatter beet greens over onions. Cover and cook until beet greens are tender, about 5 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, cook beets in large pot of boiling salted water until tender, about 10 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer beets to medium bowl.
  5. Stir beets into onion-greens mixture and beets and season with salt and coarsely ground black pepper. Stir in 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, if using. Sprinkle with pine nuts and serve.

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