Why beets on Valentine's day? When most of us think of Valentine's day we think of pink sprinkles, red heart candies or even red velvet cake but why not mix it up a bit with some healthy pink?
Beets can add a touch of pink or red to any treat naturally without all the negative effects of red dye which according to the CPSI (Center for Science in Public Interest) "commonly used food dyes, such as Yellow 5, Red 40, and six others, are made from petroleum and pose a rainbow of risks. Those risks include hyperactivity in children, cancer (in animal studies), and allergic reactions".
Beets, on the other hand, are high in vitamin C boosting our immune system; fiber and potassium; for healthy nerve and muscle function, manganese; for healthy bones, liver, kidneys and pancreas. Beets have phytonutrients shown to ward off cancer. Don't forget about those beet greens which have zinc, fiber, vitamin B6, potassium, magnesium, copper and significant amounts of vitamins A and C as well as calcium and iron. In other words, beets are a powerhouse of healthy food!
Our favorite ways to eat beets are chopped raw, roasted or even shredded and beet greens we love to simply sauté with a little garlic, olive oil and lemon juice.
So this Valentine's Day I challenge you to add a touch of healthy pink to your menu. Below is one of our favorite treats to share with family and friends.
Happy Hearts Day.
Chocolate Beet Mini-Cakes
Prep time: 30-60 minutes
Makes 12 servings
Adapted from Anahad O’Connor and David Liberman
1 cup spelt flour or gluten-free flour of choice
2/3 cup raw cacao powder
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder non-aluminum
½ teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3 large cage-free eggs
2/3 to 1 cup maple syrup grade b
1 cup coconut oil, melted
½ pound red beets, roasted, peeled, and finely grated (2-3 beets)
½ cup organic whole plain yogurt
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line an 18-inch muffin tin with paper cups. Whisk the flour, raw cacao, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt together in one bowl and the remaining ingredients in another. Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the egg mixture and fill each muffin cup half full with the mixture. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool before serving. Muffins will keep for 2 days in an airtight container at room temperature.
For more ideas on how to prepare and cook beets and their greens check out our Super Food Cards.