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Healthy Cooking Tips for Beets

Cleaning and Peeling

To minimize bleeding, wash beets gently under cool running water, taking care not to tear the skin; the tough outer layer helps keep most of beets' pigments inside the vegetable. If you are going to roast or boil your beets it is best not to peel beets until after cooking. When bruised or pierced, beets bleed and lose some of their vibrant color, turning a dull brownish-red. To prevent bleeding when boiling beets, leave them whole with their root ends attached to one inch of stem. Rinse beet greens under cold running water before cooking.

Other Tips for Preparing Beets

  • Beet juice can stain your skin so wearing kitchen gloves is a good idea when handling beets.
  • If your hands become stained during the cleaning and cooking process, rub them a few times with some lemon juice to remove the stain.
  • Another trick to minimize your handling of the beets is to peel cooked whole beets while holding them on a fork.
  • The color of beets can be modified during cooking. Adding an acidic ingredient such as lemon juice or vinegar will brighten the color while an alkaline substance such as baking soda will often cause them to turn a deeper purple. Salt will blunt beets' color, so add only at the end of cooking if needed.
  • Don’t forget to enjoy the beet greens; cook them like you do spinach or Swiss chard.

  • Send us your favorite recipes using the World's Healthiest Foods, so we can share them with others!

    This page was updated on: 2004-09-23 16:42:16

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