Beets seem to be one of those foods that adults either love or hate. My family falls on the love side of the equation, so we almost always plant a row or two in our garden. But L has gone back and forth on them, so I occasionally like to serve them in new ways. We love them simply roasted or boiled, but this bright pink spread is also a fun option for beets.
As you all probably know, toddles love bread, crackers, and all carbs. In part, this love is because these foods are familiar and easy to eat, but also because those little bodies need a large volume of complex carbs to run. (I love this post on kids and carbs from MaryAnn Jacobsen.) I like to use this to my benefit and introduce new flavors alongside a favorite one—which in this case means toast (or sliced veggies) with the Beet Yogurt Spread. It took L two times of seeing this recipe to try it, and she wasn't as enthusiastic about it as her baby sister, but slow and steady is fine with me.
You can make this with store-bought cooked beets—like the kind they sell in the produce section in plastic vacuum sealed packages at Trader Joe's or from Melissa's—or you can easily boil your own. (And if they are leftovers, try using this dip as a salad dressing. It's particularly delicious over crunchy romaine lettuce with crumbled goat cheese, sliced chicken, and avocado.)
Nutritionally, this recipe has protein and calcium from the yogurt, healthy fats from the tahini and yogurt, and some Vitamin C from the beets.
Beet Yogurt Dip/Spread
You can omit the tahini if needed for an allergy and the maple syrup if you'd prefer not to add sweetener.
Makes about 1 cup
- 1/2 cup boiled beets*
- 1/2 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Place all ingredients into a blender and puree until very smooth. Spread onto toast, bread, or crackers. Or serve as a dip with soft veggies like sliced cucumber, snap peas, or bell peppers.
*To boil beets: Scrub and quarter beets. Place into a medium pot and cover with 1-inch of water. Bring to a simmer and cook for 30-45 minutes or until soft when poked with a fork. Drain and let cool. Slip off skins and half or dice.