Beet Chips

2010 has been full of my own personal food discoveries.  Not in the sense that I’ve discovered new food like some culinary Christopher Columbus or Neil Armstrong.  Although the mental image of me walking through the farmers market, claiming the beets and radishes and peas in the name of Bon Appetit Hon, and planting my flag is rather amusing.  I also don’t mean it in the sense of discovering the extreme cuisine of different cultures.  Traveling the world in search of culinary adventures isn’t my dream job. I don’t have the stamina or stomach of Anthony Bourdain.  I’m just a home cook from Baltimore who is trying to overcome some of my prejudices about what is palatable.

Take beets.  Until 2010 I would have said that meaning “please take them away from me, they are dreadful”.  But now, I mean they are a prime example of a food I have embraced this year.  I initially went a little overboard with the roasted beets and had to step away from them for a while.  But then the Universe found a new way to bring us together – beet chips.

As snacks and I go, chips and I are old friends.  There was ALWAYS a bag of chips, usually Utz but sometime Ruffles (Ruffles has ridges!), hiding in my Grandmother’s pantry.  There were also cookies and crackers and all manner of the junkiest junk food.  Honestly, I did not discriminate.  I enjoyed all the junk food equally.  And then junk food and I mostly parted ways.  When I started shopping for myself, I would occasionally throw a box of Snackwells into my cart but they were never really as good as the Oreos or Nutterbutters that had formed my junk food palate.  And chips?  Well, nothing even comes close to the glory of a deep fried slice of potato.  So I didn’t even go there.  I was happy with the memories of our time together.

But then I read the recipe for beet chips and like any explorer, I was called to go forth and conquer.  I don’t mean to imply that beet chips can compete with potato chips.  With me as the referee, potato chips will win every time.  But I know that eating them like I used to is not an option.  Moderation is an option, but not one that I have mastered in this particular area.  So my next best choice is to use my newfound love of beets to trick my brain into thinking that beet chips are a guilty indulgence.  Because with the shortest list of ingredients I’ll ever recommend, a sharp knife (or madoline,) and some time, I was back to snacking…but in a good way.

So if you happen to see me and a bowl of beet chips in the same room, chances are that I’m going to stake my claim on them. You better get yours while you can.

Baked Beet Chips

Adapted from Joelen’s Culinary Adventure

BAH Note:  If you have a mandoline slicer, I recommend you use it to slice the beets.   I sliced mine rather thin but you can slice them as thick or thin as you like.  Thicker slices may need longer in the oven. Also, I found that the chips got soft and soggy the longer they sat around.  But these are so good that there’s really no reason for them to sit around and get soggy.

  • 4 beets, scrubbed
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • Kosher salt

Heat oven to 375 degrees.  Line two sheet pans with aluminum foil.

Slice the beets as thick or thin as you like but avoid slicing them paper thin.  Spread into single layers on the sheet pans.  Spray both sides with cooking spray and sprinkle the top with salt.

Cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until crisp, turning the chips over halfway through.   Remove chips from the pans as they are ready to avoid burning them.

{printable recipe}

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18 Responses to Beet Chips

  1. I think pickled beets are still in my “eeewww gross” category. Because they are, eeeww gross.

    • Wendi says:

      Beth, pickled beets will NEVER get off my list of prohibited foods. Because yes, they are eeeewwww gross.

      Roasted beets and beet chips, however, are completely delightful.

  2. Jennifer A (Bread and Putter) says:

    I’d consider trying these although I have tried to embrace roasted beets and just can’t do it. Maybe the crispiness would win me over.

    Speaking of Utz, have you tried that bag of mixed chips with white, purple and yellow potatoes and even sweet potato chips mixed in? Divine!!! I especially love the sweet potato chips. Might have to try making those myself.

    • Wendi says:

      Jennifer, chips might be a good gateway to beet appreciation. I personally adore roasted beets, but only golden beets. I can not abide red beets for anything.

      I don’t know that I’ve tried the mixed potato chips but I have had Terra Veggie Chips. We could go through an entire bag of those in one sitting. Which really, kind of defeats the health aspect of them being vegetables.

      If you do try and make beet chips, you need to watch the pans like a hawk because they will up and burn on you the second you take your eye off them.

      • Jennifer A (Bread and Putter) says:

        Interesting on your golden beet preference. Do they taste that different, or is it just a color thing for you? I’ve never tried the golden ones, maybe that is the key?

  3. Beets?! My nemesis!! Bleeeaaarrrrgggg. At least you can make a chip out of them (unlike meatloaf, my other nemesis).

    • Wendi says:

      Kitch, is there any chance of a reconciliation between you and meatloaf? Because it truly is one of the small joys of my world. If not, then perhaps you will consider beets as a frenemy with which you can coexist? Save the hatred for truly deserving things like liver (Although I will say that I had the most fantastic foie gras last week in Vegas. It was splendid.)

  4. Jen W. says:

    This is a great idea! I loved beets for a while. I used to order the beet salad with hazelnuts and cheese at one of my favorite restaurants, and I made beet risotto all the time at home. Then I moved away from the restaurant and got sick of the risotto. I haven’t eaten beets since. But these sound awesome!

  5. Lan says:

    so this post hit really close to home for me. this year has also been a year of food growth for me and beets (along with fennel) was something i.had.to.try. and try them i did, and actually i loved them, so much so that i consummed them a bit too enthusiastically. beets & i are on a break right now. but, beet chips? it just might be what brings us back together again.

    • Wendi says:

      Lan, fennel is something I’ve made a grudging peace with. Don’t like it raw but braised in lentil salad I quite like it. I understand the need to take a beet break, but maybe this will bring you back together? Are you in or around B’more?

  6. Do you know…, I’ve never made beet chips – just had the tried bought ones in a pkt…, I’ve gotta get up to speed with these because Beets definatly have been on my *ick* list.

    • Wendi says:

      Anna, to me beets are definitely an acquired taste. Even if you don’t end up loving the beet chips, they are fun to make…it’s an amazing transformation.

  7. liz2024 says:

    man that sounds like a tasty recipe! Oh how I love roasting vegetables and having them in chip form is even better!

    • Wendi says:

      Elizabeth, the downside to this project is you need to have multiple sheet pans in order to accommodate all the beet slices. And it does take a while to get through multiple batches. And then somehow, the chips just disappear.

  8. Debra says:

    I finally tried roasted beets today and LOVE them. I can’t wait to try these beet chips. I think they will be easier to cart to work and snack on than the roasted beets.

    • Wendi says:

      Debra, I could easily get addicted to beet chips. Especially if someone else made them for me. I personally adore roasted golden beets. But they don’t make for easy snacking.

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