Healthy Recipe: Beet and Spinach Pasta
April 22, 2011 | Written By: Healthy Schools Campaign
It's no secret that we love beet dishes at HSC. Here is another great way to incorporate the red root vegetable into your recipe repertoire.
By Mark Bishop, Vice President of Policy and Communications
I may have gotten lucky last night. I mean, I pulled together a slightly improbably dinner, and my kid chowed it down.
Five-year-olds can be finicky eaters and from day to day you never know which eater you’re going to get: the spinach-chowing, hummus-loving, kid, or the one who will eat nothing except white pasta. When you put together a healthy meal that your kid loves, you want to enjoy that experience fully.
Two nights ago, I roasted beets — and when I got home last night they were calling my name from the fridge. I didn’t have much else in the fridge so I decided to create a roasted beet pasta. Here it is, Roasted Beet Spinach Pasta, and remember the measurements are approximate:
- 2 cups roasted beets
- 3/4 lbs. whole wheat pasta
- lots o' fresh garlic (8-10 cloves)
- olive oil
- sea salt
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup fresh spinach leaves
- pepper to taste
Julianne 2 large beets. Toss beets with olive oil and sea salt. Bake in oven at 400 degrees for an hour. Cool.
Roasted Beet Spinach Pasta
Prepare whole wheat pasta in boiling water. Drain.
Brown garlic in olive oil in a large pan. When garlic is brown, add the beets and toss. Then add the pasta. Mix well and allow the pasta to cook with the beets and garlic. Add cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste. Finally toss in spinach and allow to wilt for just a minute. Serve quickly while hot and the spinach is still bright green.
The sweetness of the beets, nuttiness of the pasta and garlic, and the creamy cheese was irresistible. Re-cooking the pasta in the pan gave it an added chewiness that I really liked. I was afraid that Henry wasn’t going to go for this meal, but we gave it a shot. I guess there is good precedent: he loves pasta and loves beets. He thought the bright colors were fun and despite what I thought was against all odds, he ended up loving the dish, as did my wife and I. I’m going to be making this again. Give it a try and let me know if it works for you.
Plus! See another beet recipe that Mark's son loves, here!