Pasta with beets contains a handful of ingredients and is incredibly easy to put together. Made with roasted beets for more flavour and colour. Ready in under 45 minutes!
Making this pasta with beets involves roasting the beets along with onion and garlic, pureeing into a creamy, delicious sauce and simply combining with the pasta. The beets are not just used as a dye for the pasta!
Beet pasta is not only super easy to make, versatile and delicious, it's also full of goodness! Beets are super nutritious, high in fibre, vitamins and minerals. One serving of this dish (pasta plus sauce) contains approx. 270 calories, while 1 serving of just the sauce contains only 107 calories! Also, unlike most pasta dishes this one is low in fat.
Beets are perfect with pasta
- create a rich sauce, ideal to serve with pasta,
- are a great natural dye turning plain pasta into a striking looking dish,
- make a nutritious vegetarian pasta dinner.
How to prepare the beets
Beets can be prepared using several methods depending on the recipe. For example, in recipes that require shredded beets roasting beets whole works well (see horseradish beets). You can also boil the beets, which I sometimes do for salads (as in this beet salsa).
For this pasta with beets I decided to cut the beets into wedges then roast them. This method ensures the beets cook quickly, evenly and retain all of their fantastic colour and rich flavour. Perfect for turning into a delicious, vibrant sauce and combining with pasta! (I also used this method to make beet risotto).
TIP: I recommend peeling the beets before roasting to ensure your pasta does not taste too earthy.
Beet pasta ingredients and substitutions
- Pasta: Use your favourite pasta. Reserve some of the pasta water to adjust the consistency of the sauce later.
- Beets: Choose firm beets with a smooth skin. Raw beets that feel soft aren't fresh. I do not recommend using ready-cooked vacuum packed beets. They lack flavour.
- Red onion and garlic: Enhance the flavour of the sauce.
- Olive oil: Used to coat the vegetables before roasting.
- Lemon juice: Adds a hint of acidity and helps preserve the vibrant colour of the beets. You can use balsamic vinegar instead if preferred (add 1 teaspoon to start with).
- Parmesan: Adds more depth of flavour. For a vegan option add 1-2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast or omit altogether.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
How to make pasta with beets: step-by-step
1.Prepare beets: Preheat the oven to 400 F/ 200 C/ gas mark 6. Peel the beets and cut into wedges. Arrange in a large shallow pan or on top of a baking sheet along with the red onion and garlic cloves, season and drizzle over about 2 tablespoons of oil. Stir.
2. Roast: Roast in the centre of the oven for 30 minutes or until the beets are tender. Halfway through stir the vegetables, remove the garlic from the oven and set aside (it needs less roasting time than the beets and onion).
3. Boil pasta: In the meantime boil the pasta in salted water according to packet instructions (reserve at least ½ cup of pasta water).
4. Puree beets: Remove the beets and onion from the oven, combine with the garlic, lemon juice and pasta water (start with ⅓ cup and add more if needed later) and puree. Season to taste.
5. Assemble: Combine the cooked pasta with the beet sauce, add 3 tablespoons of finely grated parmesan, season to taste and stir thoroughly. Heat up and add a bit more water if needed and serve immediately.
These can include:
- Cheese: crumbled feta or goats' cheese,
- Nuts/seeds: crushed pistachios, walnuts or pecans,
- Herbs: a drizzle of pesto or chopped basil leaves.
This beet pasta makes a delicious vegetarian dinner. I like to serve it with:
- Salad leaves: such as peppery, slightly nutty tasting arugula (rocket leaves),
- Simple salad: including coleslaw,
- Vegetables: such as grilled zucchini, cooked or steamed broccoli, garden peas or green beans.
- Halfway through roasting the vegetables remove the garlic from the oven (it doesn't need to roast as long as the beetroot).
- The sauce: Add the water gradually to get the consistency you want. You can also add a splash of single cream/half-and-half, or coconut milk for a creamier finish.
- You may have to reheat the sauce before combining with the pasta.
- The pasta: Works with all pasta shapes.
- Best served immediately. Leftover pasta with beet sauce can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. You may have to add a splash of water (and adjust the seasoning) when reheating your beetroot pasta.
Can I freeze this dish
Yes, you can, but I recommend only freezing the sauce and cooking the pasta just before serving. The process of freezing, defrosting and reheating might make the pasta soggy so it's best to boil and combine it with the beet sauce when you are ready to serve it. Freeze the sauce for up to 3 months in an airtight container.
Related beet recipes
Pasta with Roasted Beets
- 3 cups (240 g) uncooked pasta enough for 4, reserve at least ½ cup pasta water.
- 7.05 ounces (200 g) beetroot peeled weight
- 1 red onion peeled, cut into 6 wedges
- 2 garlic cloves whole, peeled
- 1-2 teaspoons lemon juice or 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons parmesan cheese finely grated, ensure it's vegetarian if required
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 400 F/ 200 C/ gas mark 6. Peel the beets, cut into wedges and place on top of a baking sheet. Add the onion and garlic, season and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of oil. Bake for 30 minutes or until the beetroot is tender. Halfway through remove the garlic from the oven and stir the beets and onion. Whilst the vegetables are in the oven boil the pasta in salted water according to packet instructions. Strain and reserve at least ½ cup of the pasta water.
- Remove the vegetables from the oven, puree along with the garlic, lemon juice and ⅓ cup of the pasta water (you can add more later if needed). Season to taste and set aside.
- Combine the beet sauce with the pasta and grated parmesan, stir, adjust the seasoning (and add more water if needed) and serve.
- Half way through roasting the vegetables remove the garlic from the oven (it doesn't need to roast as long as the beetroot).
- The sauce: Add the water gradually to get the consistency you want. You can also add a splash of single cream/half-and-half or coconut milk for a creamier finish.
- You may have to reheat the sauce before combining with the pasta.
- The pasta: Works with any pasta shapes.
- Best served immediately. Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. You may have to add a splash of water (and adjust the seasoning) when reheating the pasta.
- Serve with arugula (rocket leaves), a drizzle of oil, crispy salad, caesar salad, garden peas, green beans or steamed broccoli.
- Freezing: I recommend only freezing the sauce and cooking the pasta just before serving. The process of freezing, defrosting and reheating might make the pasta soggy so it's best to boil and combine it with the beet sauce when you are ready to serve this dish.
*Nutritional information is automatically generated and should be considered as an estimate.
**A note about baking: If using a fan-assisted oven refer to your appliance's instructions and adjust the temperature accordingly.
Keep in touch!
If you make this easy pasta with beats I'd love to know how it turned out for you. Let me know in the comments below, thanks!