Beet salad with gorgonzola and walnuts

This salad is tastiest if you have pickled beets on hand. You can also use canned beets, though. And if you want to boil some beets to use, that’s also a possibility. But I like to use the juice from pickled or canned beets to make a beet-juice reduction for the salad dressing – so good!

I made this salad recently for Valentines Day and served it with preboiled lobster for a red-themed dinner – delicious! My salad recipe serves two, but you can easily double it.

Beet salad with all the trimmings
Serves two

For the salad

  • 3 cups of salad greens, washed and spun dry*
  • 2/3 cup pickled beets, sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 ounces gorgonzola cheese, sliced and cubed**
  • 1/4 cup walnut pieces
  1. Divide the greens equally into two salad bowls.
  2. Divide the beet slices and cheese cubes equally and distribute them on top of the greens
  3. Refrigerate until serving time
  4. Add the walnuts and the dressing (below) when it is time to serve the salad

For the dressing

  • 1/2 cup juice from the pickled beets
  • 2 tablespoons apple juice or apple cider
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar***
  • 3 tablespoons walnut oil****
  • 1 tablespoon cold-pressed olive oil
  1. Put the beet juice, apple juice, and vinegar in a small pan on medium heat. Bring to a slow boil. Don’t stir but allow it to bubble gently (just around the edges) for 10 minutes. When the liquid turns dark and the bubbles get large and sticky, it’s done. You should end up with 3 or 4 tablespoons of syrupy sweet beet reduction. Keep a watch while the juices are boiling down because the liquid becomes a syrup very quickly and you have to take it off the heat immediately at that point.
  2. Let the syrup cool.
  3. Put the syrup into a small bowl with a round bottom.
  4. Combine the oils, then add it drop by drop to the syrup while whisking briskly. The slower you add the oil, the longer it will stay emulsified.
  5. You can make this ahead of time and store it in the fridge in a glass bottle. Take it out to warm up a bit and shake it well before serving.
Pickling beets is a great way to preserve the bounty from your garden.


*You can wash your own spinach, kale, or lettuce and add grated carrot and grated red cabbage. Or you can often buy mixed salad greens already combined for you. Always wash them anyway, even if it says they are prewashed.

** I love the creamy, pungent taste of gorgonzola, but you can use any blue cheese, or even a goats cheese if you like.

*** If you are using the juice from canned beets instead of pickled beets, use 2 tablespoons of vinegar.

****I keep walnut oil in the fridge just for salad dressing because its nutty flavor is so appealing. But you can use just olive oil, or if you want a milder oil flavor, you can use a combination of canola oil and olive oil.

Health benefits

I’ve written often about beets, because it’s one of the healthiest vegetables you can eat. Its rich red color signals a plentiful supply of antioxidants. These nutrients inhibit oxidation of other compounds in the body, a process that keeps your body’s cells from “rusting out” too quickly. The betin in beets is a powerful inhibitor of the proteins that contributes to Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Beets are also a good source of nitrite, which when converted to nitric oxide, increases blood flow. Beets are an excellent fuel for athletes, boosting oxygen to working muscles. Also, more blood flowing into the brain means more oxygen, which increases the brain’s efficiency. You can’t go wrong with beets, especially when they taste so good and are so attractive on the plate.

To say that walnuts are a nutritious food is a bit of an understatement. Walnuts provide healthy fats, fiber, vitamins and minerals — and that’s just the beginning of how they may support your health. Omega-3 fatty acids in walnuts protect your vision and benefit nearly every organ in your body.

Blue cheese (gorgonzola) is rich in calcium, which is essential for healthy teeth and bones. The cheese also contains other nutrients that may help promote immune, cardiovascular, and cognitive functioning.

Eat beets: They help the brain save precious memories 🙂

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