Crunchy and Creamy Beet Salad

Beet Salad with goat cheese and peppery arugula is a delicious salad recipe. Silky roasted beets, creamy goat cheese, and crunchy chopped walnuts topped with a flavorful vinaigrette dressing.

This salad recipe can serve as a side dish, or on its own as a light dinner or lunch (add in baked chicken breast or grilled shrimp for some protein).

Dressing being poured over a beet salad with goat cheese.

How to Cook Beets for Salad

To get the most intense flavor and unlock the sweetness in beets, we love to use roasted beets.

  1. Trim the tops and ends.
  2. Wrap in foil and roast until soft (full recipe here).
  3. Cool, peel and cut into cubes or grate.

If the tops are fresh and unspotted, save them for beet greens. They are delicious and can be steamed, sautéed or lightly boiled as you would for Swiss chard or other leafy greens.

A bowl of roasted beet salad with goat cheese and a side of homemade beet salad dressing

Making Beet Salad Dressing

A beet salad pairs well with a vinaigrette dressing. Raw egg yolk and a little elbow grease are the secret ingredients to thicken and bind oil and vinegar to create a creamy vinaigrette.

  1. Whisk egg yolk, mustard, and vinegar together in a mixing bowl, until it thickens and lightens.
  2. While continuing to rapidly whisk, slowly drizzle in the oil, ensuring that it combines before adding more.
  3. Stir in the honey and other seasonings. Drizzle over beet salad and serve.

This recipe uses raw egg (much like my caesar salad dressing). This is the same technique for making homemade mayonnaise, so you might discover your dressing is too thick to your liking.  You can use any vinaigrette you’d like.

Can This Be Made Ahead?

My recipe for arugula beet salad can absolutely be made ahead. In fact, I encourage it! Just don’t dress it until ready to serve.

Combine all the ingredients, cover tightly and chill. It will keep for up to 3-4 days in the fridge. You’ll love the way the flavors deepen and develop.

Other Beet Salad Additions

This is a salad after all, which means lots of room for creativity!

  • Chopped nuts of any kind can be substituted for the walnuts. Slivered almonds would be excellent.
  • Arugula is a strong tasting green and not to everyone’s taste. Alternatives are milder romaine or cabbage, either green or red.
  • Instead of or in addition to the goat cheese, you could feta cheese or a shredded gouda.

Toss in other ingredients as you see fit. Try grated raw carrot or fresh dill. Or, play up the sweetness of earth’s autumn harvest with Roasted Butternut Squash. The flavors of fall come around only once a year!

More Salad Recipes You’ll Love

Beet Salad

Silky roasted beets, creamy goat cheese, and crunchy chopped walnuts come together for a unique taste, texture and color experience.

Salad

  • 4 large beets (cooked and cooled)
  • 8 cups arugula
  • 1/4 cup toasted walnuts (or pecans)
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese (or feta cheese, crumbled)
  • 1/2 red onion (thinly sliced)

Dressing

  • 3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon fresh chives
  1. Place lettuce in large bowl. Top with remaining ingredients.
  2. Whisk together the vinegar, mustard, and egg yolk. Slowly drizzle in olive oil while whisking until the dressing until it is incorporated and slightly thickened. Stir in honey and chives.
  3. Drizzle dressing over salad and serve immediately.

A bowl of roasted beet salad with goat cheese.
A bowl of roasted beet salad with goat cheese.
Top photo - A bowl of roasted beet salad with goat cheese. Bottom photo - Dressing being poured over a beet salad with goat cheese.