Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Beet and Blueberry Salad with Lemon Dill Vinaigrette

When I think about food, I think of flavor pairings. My recipes can start with one or two ingredients that I want to highlight, and then branch out with complementary or contrasting flavors. I first made this Beet and Blueberry Salad for Mother's Day brunch, and wanted to share the recipe with you. My original Mother's Day salad had beets straight from my garden, but I picked up beautiful baby beets from First Generation Farmers on my farmer's market run yesterday.

The dressing was a happy accident based on what I had in my fridge. I knew that dill and lemon would pair well with the beets (think borsht) as well as add a nice brightness and acidity to the salad. I rounded out the dressing with a bit of local honey and coarse grain mustard. If you like a sweeter dressing use more honey and less mustard, but I liked the tanginess of it because of the sweetness of the beets and blueberries.

Roasting the beets is as easy as tossing them with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and roasting at 425 F for 30 to 40 minutes. When they are fork-tender, I place them in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap to steam as they cool. The skins peel right off (I wear gloves when I do this to prevent red fingers) and they are ready to use or store in your refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Originally I placed the beets around the platter and piled my salad in the center, for the few people who aren't "beet-eaters". If you know everyone digs beets, you can scatter them throughout your salad without worry. I topped my salad with blueberries for sweetness and goat cheese for creamy richness.

Beet and Blueberry Salad
I'm not going to give you an exact recipe for the salad, because really it is just an "eyeball it 'til it looks good" dish. You can customize the ingredient amounts and ratios to suit your needs. To serve 12, I used:
  • 1 large clamshell (10 ounces) mixed salad greens
  • 6-8 (depending on size) beets, roasted and peeled 
  • 1/2 pint blueberries
  • 6 ounces crumbled goat cheese
  • Lemon Dill Vinaigrette, recipe below
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Lemon Dill Vinaigrette

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon dill, chopped fine 
  • 1-2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon coarse ground mustard
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  1. Combine lemon juice, dill, honey, and mustard. Whisk in olive oil until emulsified.
  2. Marinate your sliced beets in some of the dressing for 5-10 minutes before assembling the rest of your salad.
  3. Dress your salad greens by pouring the dressing just around the outside of the bowl. Season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. This way, your greens don't get overdressed.
  4. Top with blueberries and goat cheese, and serve.
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  1. I love the idea of the beets and blueberries together. What a chockful of antioxidants!

  2. I love to make salads, especially in summer, and I do have a thing for blueberries; this is going on the must-try list!

  3. Looks delicious and such healthy ingredients. thanks for sharing on Real Food Fridays Blog Hop!

  4. This recipe looks amazing Renee!! Can't wait to try it, I have several beets sitting here that would be lovely in this salad.

  5. What a delicious salad! I LOVE colorful, hearty salads, and the beets & blueberries sound so good paired with the goat cheese!

    1. So good! It might even convert non beet-lovers!

  6. So glad I found this at Treasure Box Tuesday - it looks delightful, and is not a combination I would have otherwise thought up!


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