This super easy simple beetroot salad with orange and feta brings together the depth and earthiness of fresh beetroot with the zing of juicy oranges and salty tang of feta. A combination of flavours that fairly dances on the tongue.
Simple beetroot salad with orange and feta
We’ve been growing our own veggies again this year and the beetroot is now ready to harvest. I say harvest as though there is a huge crop and not just a large box of beetroot. But hey, this is homegrown beetroot so even just a few is such a treat. I’m making this simple salad with my beetroot and throwing in some of my favourite flavours to get the perfect summer salad.
Beetroot salad ingredients
This simple salad is all about combining different flavours and textures. The earthiness of beetroot means it can easily overwhelm lesser flavours. So think big and bold here. Oranges are juicy and sweet with that slight mouth pucker of tartness that ramps up the sweetness inherent in the beetroot.
For salad leaves I’ve opted for strong greens. Rocket/arugula and spinach. Red onions have more sweetness than their brown counterpart and the colours just adds another dimension to this super beetroot orange and feta salad.
Creamy and salty feta works so well with these robust flavours. Ain’t nothing going to overwhelm a good feta!
Finished off with toasted crumbled walnuts that add crunch and yet another layer of flavour and depth to this simple beetroot salad.
How to cook beetroot
For this recipe you can use either raw beetroot as I have and cook it yourself. Or you can but the vacuum packed ready cooked beetroot from the supermarket. Just make sure that you buy the plain variety and not one that is packed in vinegar.
To cook beetroot simply wipe it clean and remove the stalks. Don’t cut into the actual veggie itself or the damn thing will bleed out red juice all over the place! Wrap it in foil and bake in the oven at 180C for about 45 minutes till the beetroot is tender.
Allow it to cool before donning plastic gloves (or you will look like a mass murderer!) and peeling off the skin and chopping the beets.
Toasting the nuts makes a big difference to them. It brings out their sweetness and sheer nuttiness. That sounds mad I know, but trust me it works. Simply toast them in a dry pan on medium heat for about a minute or so. Do not answer the phone or nip to the loo or anything at this time as they catch and burn all too easily. When they are just golden in colour and smell all lovely and nutty and aromatic tip them out of the hot pan immediately on to a waiting plate. If you leave them in the pan even off the heat they will continue to cook in residual heat of the pan and burn.
For the best results take the time to remove the segments of orange from the thin inner skin that surrounds it. This makes a big difference to the mouth appeal of this salad. No chewy orange skin in there. It also allows those gorgeous juices to flow freely into the salad.
Looks good enough to eat!
I like my salads to look pretty on the plate, after all, we eat with our eyes before we even lift a fork to our mouths. This simple beetroot orange and feta salad ticks the boxes on looks and taste. And just look at these colours!
You’ve got the deep crimson red of the beetroot. The sunshine brightness of orange pieces. Vibrant green from the salad leaves. That almost neon pink and white of the red onions. Creamy white of the feta and to top it off those golden crunchy walnuts.
This is a super healthy salad. Talk about eating the rainbow, you’re really packing it all in here. For a vegetarian lunch on the Mediterranean diet this simple salad is perfection just as it is. Low carb with the protein of the feta and the walnuts it will fill you up and keep you going.
Want to add some carbs here? Then think about making some sourdough croutons to toss on top of this salad. Or maybe you could add some giant couscous or wholegrain rice. All make good vegetarian options to make this salad into a bigger dish.
Hard boiled eggs make a good addition if you want to up the protein levels for a fuller meal.
Want to add some meat? Then fried pancetta or cubed lardons would be a great addition.
The dressing for this beetroot salad is simplicity itself. I’ve just mixed olive oil, cider vinegar, honey and salt and pepper in a jar and given it a good shake. This beetroot and orange salad doesn’t require anything fancier that that s it has enough flavour itself not to need any more thrown into the mix.
Looking for some more summer salad inspiration? Then check out these tasty recipes;
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Simple beetroot orange and feta salad
- 2 tbsp walnuts
- 300 g 4 small or 2 large cooked beetroot
- 1/2 red onion cut into thin slices
- 1 orange peeled and sliced
- 100 g salad leaves, I used rocket/arugula and spinach leaves
- 100 g feta cubed
- 2 tbsp flat leaf parsley chopped
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp cider vinegar
- 1 tsp runny honey
- salt and pepper to taste
- First toast the walnuts in a dry pan for about a minute till golden and aromatic, tip into a plate immediately
- Slice the orange into segments and carefully remove the skin from each.
- In a large bowl place a base of salad leaves then add the beetroot chopped roughly into pieces about 1-2cm along with the orange pieces, toasted walnuts, onion slices and feta
- Drizzle on the dressing and sprinkle with parsley
Make the dressing
- simply shake up all ingredients in a small jar