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This roasted beet salad with apples, arugula, and orange za’atar vinaigrette is a show stopping salad and is filled with ingredients that are strong on their own but sing when paired with one another. We’ve got sweet roasted beets tossed with crisp apples, walnuts (for crunch), and salty feta all atop of a bed of peppery arugula and fresh mint. And then! Then the salad is dressed with this addicting orange za’atar vinaigrette. Honestly, the vinaigrette deserves a post all of its own, and one day will get one, but I couldn’t not share this salad recipe as I waited for that to happen.
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This salad has it going on and is filled with ingredients that are strong on their own but sing when paired with one another. We’ve got sweet roasted beets tossed with crisp apples, walnuts (for crunch), and salty feta all atop of a bed of peppery arugula and fresh mint. And then! Then the salad is dressed with this addicting orange za’atar vinaigrette. Honestly, the vinaigrette deserves a post all of its own, and one day will get one, but I couldn’t not share this salad recipe as I waited for that to happen.
About Roasted Beet Salad with Apples, Arugula, & Orange Za’atar Vinaigrette
This salad is inspired by a salad Neal and I had at The Preachers Son restaurant in downtown Bentonville. If you’re in Bentonville, you must check this place out. It’s the one place that we take all of our visitors. The restaurant is set in an old church and if there is a place with better ambiance in Bentonville, we haven’t found it. Additionally, every single thing on the menu is gluten free! EVERY. SINGLE. THING. You can order bread for the table and it is gluten free. All the desserts are gluten free. It is food freedom that I haven’t felt since before I went gluten free.
It’s important to note that their menu is seasonal. You can’t fall in love with a dish and expect to have it the next time you go. But I did. I fell in love with this amazing beet and apple salad we had there once. I mean, head over heels in love. When we went back, the salad was gone. And I wallowed in my despair over not having the chance to bid adieu to the amazing beet and apple salad. And then I realized I could make something similar at home, and I am very excited to share my recipe with you all.
Tips and Tricks for Roasted Beet Salad with Apples, Arugula, & Orange Za’atar Vinaigrette
- Roast beets and then peel for optimal sweetness. I don’t want to say it, but I feel like I have to–beets can be really bad if not prepared properly. They can taste very earthy
- Use a plastic cutting board for the beets. Beets stain everything. Avoid using a wood cutting board as they will stain the board. If you only have wood, use parchment paper to protect the cutting board. If beet juice gets on counters or marble, wipe it away instantly to avoid staining.
- Dress and toss the salad before adding the beets. If you toss the salad with the beets, everything will be stained pink. I did this when I first photographed this and had to reshoot it the following weekend. The taste won’t be affected at all, but it looks a little monotone!
- Peel beets with a spoon. If the beets are properly cooked through, the skin will slide off after roasting. I like to use a spoon to remove the skin (see photo below).
The beet skins will slide right off when they are thoroughly cooked! I was new to cooking beets and was so surprised when the skins came off so easily.
Serving Suggestions for Roasted Beet Salad with Apples, Arugula, & Orange Za’atar Vinaigrette
- Serve this salad as part of your thanksgiving feast! It will look so festive on the table.
- Make it a meal and serve it with a roasted chicken.
- This roasted beet salad would pair well with a glass of Riesling!
Did you try this recipe for roasted beet salad with apples, arugula & orange za’atar vinaigrette
If so, let me know in the comments! I love hearing how recipes turn out for others! And it helps me improve my writing and recipe development!
Roasted Beet Salad with Apples, Arugula, & Orange Za'atar Vinaigrette
- 3-4 beets
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp olive oil
Orange Za'atar Vinaigrette
- Juice from 1 orange about 2 tablespoons
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons za'atar I recommend this za'atar from Amazon
- salt if desired
- pepper if desired
- 8 ounces arugula
- 1/4 cup mint finely shredded/chiffonade
- 1 gala apple cored and thinly sliced
- 6 - 8 ounces feta crumbled
- 1/2 cup walnuts crushed
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Scrub beets clean. If they still have their greens, trim the greens close to the beets, leaving enough of a top to hold.
- Place the beets on a sheet of aluminum foil, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper before wrapping in foil. Place on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for approximately 40 - 50 minutes. Beets are done when a fork can easily pierce the beets. Let the beets rest wrapped in the foil until cool to touch, about 10 minutes.
- While beets are cooking, make the za'atar vinaigrette. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine the orange juice, apple cider vinegar, and honey. While whisking, slowly drizzle in the extra virgin olive oil, constantly whisking until completely emulsified. Add za'atar and season with salt and pepper, if desired.
- Finely shred/chiffonade the mint by stacking the leaves on one another, rolling tightly, and slicing into thin ribbons. Place arugula in a large bowl and top with the mint, tossing to combine. Sprinkle with the thinly sliced apple and crumbled feta. Crumble the walnuts with your hands and sprinkle on top. Drizzle the salad with the za'atar vinaigrette and toss.
- Once beets are cool, use a paper towel to hold the beets and use a spoon to remove the outer skin (see photo above). Thinly slice the beets and place on top of the salad before serving.
Avoid tossing the salad with the beets added as they will stain everything a lovely pink hue.
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