Recipes > Salad > Arugula Salad with Beets

Arugula Salad with Beets

This salad is full of healthy ingredients! Colorful beets and arugula, fresh herbs, walnuts, and the vinaigrette are all full of flavor and nutrition.
arugula salad with beets next to three clementines

This is a variation of our side salad base recipe. If you are tired of boring side salads, try this arugula salad with beets! Sweet beets paired with creamy feta, juicy clementines, and crunchy walnuts create a salad full of flavor and texture. This recipe is written as a side salad, but if you are looking for an entree salad, simply add extra toppings for more staying power.

Learn How to Make the Base Recipe

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Culinary Tips for the Best Arugula Salad with Beets

Cook the beets the day or few days before you plan to eat this salad to make assembly quick.

Beets are easier to peel after they are cooked, so don’t remove the skin until then. Be sure to still wash and scrub them before cooking.

Don’t throw the beet greens away! Keep them for another use; they can be cooked just like spinach and chard.

Red beets stain everything they touch, including your hands, so be careful handling them!

Ingredients Substitutions

  • Balsamic Vinegar: substitute aged or infused balsamic vinegar for more complex flavors and a touch of sweetness.
  • Honey: substitute agave or maple syrup. Feel free to omit if using a well aged or thick balsamic vinegar.
  • Dijon Mustard: substitute stone ground, spicy brown, or whole grain mustard. We don’t recommend substituting yellow mustard.
  • Garlic: substitute 1 teaspoon finely chopped shallot, 1 teaspoon pre-minced garlic, ½ teaspoon garlic flakes, ¼ teaspoon granulated garlic, or ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder.
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil: substitute infused extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil. We don’t recommend using vegetable oil, as this is not a heart-healthy oil.
  • Beets: use white, golden, red, or purple. You can also substitute pre-cooked or pickled beets, noting that pickled beets will add another dimension of flavor!
  • Walnuts: substitute sliced, slivered, or chopped almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, macadamias, pecans, or pistachios. If using seeds, choose pumpkin, sunflower, or hemp seeds. If raw, toast before adding for best flavor.
  • Arugula: use any leafy green or a combination of several. Butterhead, baby kale, red or green leaf lettuce, mizuna, romaine, spinach, and watercress are all great options. While iceberg lettuce technically works, it’s not as flavorful as other options. 
  • Clementines: substitute orange segments. Apples and pears also pair nicely with beets.
  • Feta: goat, parmesan, and roquefort cheeses complement beets well. If making a vegan green salad, feel free to leave out or substitute with a sprinkle of nutritional yeast for a similar cheesy flavor.
  • Basil: substitute fresh chives, dill, Italian parsley, or tarragon. If you don’t have fresh herbs available, feel free to leave out. We don’t recommend fresh rosemary, as it is best used in cooking. While dried herbs can offer some nutritional benefits, they taste best after cooking, so we don’t recommend using them in a green salad. If you do use them, add a sprinkle to the dressing.

Arugula and Beet Salad Variations

Change up the nuts, herbs, and dressing or add additional fruits or vegetables to make different variations. The options are endless!

Look for a feta made with goat’s milk to make an arugula and beet salad with goat cheese!

Want some salad flavor inspiration?

Use our side salad base recipe as a guide, or try out this tasty variation!

Equipment Recommendations 

Make sure your kitchen is stocked with these tools for easy preparation!

Is this arugula and beet salad healthy? 

This salad is full of healthy ingredients! Colorful beets and arugula, fresh herbs, walnuts, and the vinaigrette are all full of flavor and nutrition. 

Beets 

Beets are a super nutrient dense food and contain compounds that provide anti-inflammatory, chemoprotective, and antioxidant effects. These compounds and others may reduce blood pressure, improve cardiovascular function, and increase exercise performance and capacity.

Arugula

Arugula is rich in essential vitamins and minerals including calcium and iron. It also contains phytonutrients that promote health and help fight diseases. 

Walnuts

Walnuts contain plant-based protein and healthy fats. Nuts of all varieties contain plant-based protein, fiber, and healthy fats. These nutrients help you feel satisfied until your next meal. Walnuts contain plant-based omega-3 fatty acids that promote brain and heart health.

Vinaigrette

A healthy vinaigrette dressing made from extra virgin olive oil and vinegar adds flavor and nutrition to salads. The fats and oils in vinaigrette help your body absorb certain nutrients in the salad. For optimal nutrition, make the vinaigrette yourself as suggested in the recipe! 

Check out our Food as Medicine article to learn more about health benefits of different foods and ingredients.

Simple Arugula Salad Serving Suggestions

Make a Whole Life Plate by serving arugula salad with beets alongside roasted sweet potatoes and simple turkey meatballs, with a filling salmon burger, or accompanied by Moroccan baked fish and roasted potatoes and carrots.

Salad Storage Tips

If preparing in advance, leave the dressing off until ready to serve. Salad dressing wilts arugula, making the stored salad quite unappetizing. 

If you want to prepare the salad ahead of time but don’t want the arugula to wilt, consider purchasing a salad container that has a separate dressing container.

Want Some Non-Leafy Salad Recipes?

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arugula salad with beets next to three clementines

Arugula Salad with Beets

This is a variation of our side salad base recipe. If you are tired of boring side salads, try this arugula salad with beets! Sweet beets paired with creamy feta, juicy clementines, and crunchy walnuts create a salad full of flavor and texture. This recipe is written as a side salad, but if you are looking for an entree salad, simply add extra toppings for more staying power.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients
  

Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 extra small garlic clove, minced (~¼ teaspoon)
  • ¼ cup + 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Arugula Salad

  • ½ pound beets, cooked and diced ½” (~1 cup)
  • ¼ cup roasted chopped walnuts
  • 2 quarts loosely packed arugula
  • 2 clementines, diced ½” (~½ cup)
  • ¼ cup crumbled feta
  • 4 basil leaves, chiffonade
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Prepare dressing. Combine balsamic vinegar, honey, mustard, and garlic in a small bowl. Slowly add the olive oil, whisking continuously. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Roast beets. Preheat oven to 375ºF. Place unpeeled beets in a baking dish, add water to cover ¼” of the bottom of the beets, then cover with foil. Bake until easily pierced with a fork. Cook time will depend on the size of the beets; plan on ~40 minutes for a large beet. Cool slightly, then peel and dice into ½” pieces.
  • Roast walnuts. Place walnuts in a single layer on a sheet pan. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until fragrant and golden brown. Add them to the oven with the beets during the last 8 minutes to save time!
  • Place all salad ingredients in a medium bowl or on your dinner plate. Have fun composing artistically or toss to combine with the dressing. Enjoy!
Keyword Arugula Salad with Beets

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