Thanksgiving is just a few days away and I'm officially in food mode. Still finishing up my food spread ideas but these beautiful beets will definitely be making an appearance on me and Matt's Thanksgiving table. They are incredible!
If you want a Thanksgiving side dish that will be a crowd pleaser with not much work, this recipe will be a perfect option for you. It's beautiful, flavorful, and extremely nutritious!
You can even roast the beets in the oven the night before to minimize your work load on Thanksgiving day. It saves a lot of time (they take about an hour or so to roast) as well as space in your oven.
Health Benefits of Beets
Beets aren't just a show stopper in respect to their eye catching red color, they also contribute to good health in so many ways!
1. Beets contain important phytonutrients (special and unique substances found only in plants that fight disease) which help to decrease inflammation all throughout the body. Beets also aid in healthy digestion.
2. They are high in vitamins and minerals such as potassium, iron, magnesium, calcium, Vitamin's A, B, & C, as well as fiber. They are also high in plant protein!
3. Beets are high in powerful antioxidants! The dark red color found in beets is caused by beta-cyanine which is an important antioxidant that aids in fighting diseases especially of the colon. It also contains the antioxidant beta-carotene.
4. Beets are also known to lower and maintain healthy blood pressure because they contain phyto-nitrates which help to open up the blood vessels, improving blood flow thus lowering the blood pressure.
The addition of the toasted hazelnuts (also called Filberts) and the balsamic reduction sauce bring ordinary beets to an entirely new level.
Once you try this flavorful recipe, it will probably become your favorite way to eat them.
The crunchy nuts with the tangy and sweet balsamic glaze pair perfectly with the earthy and nutty beets. Absolutely delicious and very nutritious! All whole foods and plant based. Healthy food from the Earth!
I hope you try and enjoy this holiday recipe!
Oven Roasted Beets with Toasted Hazelnuts in a Simple Balsamic Reduction Sauce - A Thanksgiving and Christmas Side Recipe
5-6 medium beets
1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts
3-4 Tbsp homemade balsamic reduction sauce (see the easy recipe below)
Fresh thyme sprigs
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash beets and wrap each beet individually in foil. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 60 minutes - 90 minutes. The beets are done when the biggest beet is easily pierced with a fork. Let them cool for 30 minutes.
2. Reduce the oven to 300 degrees and toast hazelnuts for 15 minutes. Some of the skins should be falling off. Remove from oven and rub vigorously in a damp towel to get the remaining skins off. Roughly chop the nuts in half and set aside.
3. To make the balsamic reduction sauce: All you need is 1 cup of balsamic vinegar. In a medium saucepan bring the balsamic vinegar to a low boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 20-30 minutes. *Stir often and check frequently to make sure it isn't burning!* When it's finished it should be reduced by 2/3 making exactly 1/3 cup of sauce. Set aside to let cool.
4. Cut beets into little circles removing the skins as you go and place neatly on a large serving plate. Top with the toasted hazelnuts and drizzle 3-4 tbsp of the balsamic reduction sauce all over. Sprinkle with thyme leaves and add a few extra sprigs on top for garnish!