These roasted beets and sweet potatoes are a paleo and vegan-friendly side dish that goes well with almost anything.
I know–it’s June, and I’m suggesting cranking up the oven to roast some vegetables. It may not be the most summer-friendly cooking method, but to me it’s worth it. Beets just started appearing at local farmers markets and in my CSA box, and my favorite way to enjoy them is roasted alongside the last of fall’s sweet potatoes (or perhaps the first of summer’s crop!).
To make this dish extra colorful, I opted for a mix of orange and purple sweet potatoes and chioggia beets, which are striped inside and won’t stain your hands nearly as much as regular beets. The sweet potatoes end up tender inside and satisfyingly crispy along the edges. The beets don’t crisp up, but their earthy, springy flavor is a great counterpoint to the sweet potatoes. A little thyme adds herbal freshness and savory notes, but can be omitted if you don’t have any on hand.
As for the all-important cooking fat, I like ghee or avocado oil for this recipe. They’re both ideal for roasting because of their high smoke point, while other oils like olive are better reserved for no-cook applications or low-temperature cooking. Ghee, of course, has a wonderfully buttery taste because it’s made from butter, but avocado oil tastes surprisingly buttery as well. If you’re feeling fancy, I bet this would be amazing and extra decadent made with duck fat (EPIC is my favorite!).
These roasted beets and sweet potatoes are great as a dinnertime side with burgers, pork scaloppine, or crispy salmon, but my favorite way to enjoy them is actually with a crispy egg or two on top for breakfast or lunch.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Arrange the vegetables in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle on the ghee and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Toss to coat the vegetables well, then tuck in the thyme sprigs.
- Roast for 35-40 minutes, flipping and stirring once about halfway through, until the beets are tender and the sweet potatoes are a little crispy around the edges. Remove the twigs of thyme. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve hot.
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