An easy roasted beet and goat cheese dip appetizer. Perfect for summer or holiday entertaining!
FOR THE BEETS:
- 3 large beets, peeled and cut into 1" pieces
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
FOR THE DIP:
- 8 ounces goat cheese (reserve 1 ounce to use as a garnish if you like)
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons light cream cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- Basil leaves for garnish (whole or sliced)
- Toasted baguette slices for dipping
ROAST THE BEETS:
- Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Toss beets, olive oil, salt, and pepper together in a medium bowl.
- Transfer beets to a baking sheet and spread them out in an even layer (this will help them roast properly - if they're too close together, they'll steam instead of roast!)
- Roast beets at 400 degrees F for 30-45 minutes until beets are cooked through. Remove from oven and let cool.
- Use the cooled beets immediately to make the dip (instructions below) or store in an airtight container in the fridge until you're ready to assemble the rest of the recipe.
MAKE THE DIP:
- Add cooled roasted beets, goat cheese, honey, lemon juice, light cream cheese, salt and pepper to the bowl of a food processor. Puree until smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice.
- Serve dip immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge until you need it. Garnish with extra goat cheese and fresh basil (optional) and serve with toasted baguette slices.
Make sure your roasted beets are cooked through and relatively soft for best results. Beets can form a relatively tough outer skin as they roast, so to check for doneness, insert a cake tester or knife - once you've pierced the outer skin, the tester should slide right through the beet (just like a baked potato!) You can also flip the roasted beets over to expose a softer spot (usually the piece of the beet that kept contact with the baking sheet won't have a skin) that's more easily pierced with a cake tester.
Additions and Substitutions. Use store-bought, pre-cooked beets in place of roasting your own if you like. You can use canned beets in a pinch if you need to, but make sure to taste and add seasoning as the flavor can vary widely. You may also need to add additional honey or lemon juice when using canned beets - just taste as you go and adjust as necessary! Use feta or ricotta in place of the goat cheese if you like. Swap the cream cheese for Greek yogurt for a smoother, thinner texture.
To make this goat cheese dip ahead of time, roast the beets 2-3 days in advance and store in an airtight container in the fridge until you're ready to make the dip. Once blended, the dip will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. This dip also freezes fairly well - the texture doesn't change much, but the beet flavor can seem more intense. Defrost any frozen dip in the fridge overnight, then taste and blend in additional goat cheese, honey, or lemon juice to bring it back to life.
Serve this beet and goat cheese dip with crackers, crostini, grilled bread, veggies, pita chips or tortilla chips. It's also an excellent addition to a cheese plate or cheese board!
The taste of the dip will vary depending on the exact size of your beets. Just give the dip a taste once it's blended and feel free to make adjustments if it needs it! If I use especially large beets, I like to add a bit of extra goat cheese and lemon juice. If the beets are on the smaller side, you may want to start with less goat cheese or lemon juice and add more as necessary.
Ingredients and Equipment. We love love love LOVE our 14-Cup Cuisinart Food Processor for this and basically every other kitchen task (arugula pesto! whipped feta dip! magic cauliflower cream!) We also love our trusty OXO cake tester. If you're using store-bought beets, we like these cooked beets. And as always, we're using our favorite Vermont Creamery goat cheese in this recipe!
Keywords: appetizer, holiday, spread