SCTK: Lentils with Roasted Carrots and Beets

By Alaina Coffey, Senior Dietetics Student – Sargent College

At this week’s test kitchen we served up a nutritious, flavor-packed meal of lentils with roasted carrots and beets. Lentils have numerous health benefits: they are high in protein and fiber, low in fat, and full of minerals such as iron, copper, phosphorus, folate, and manganese. This recipe requires a little extra time and care for peeling beets and chopping vegetables. And we even make use of the greens of beets, which are similar in flavor to collard greens.

We produced one large batch of the mixture of lentils, roasted beets, carrots, and beet greens, and two separate dressings on the side to top the dish. The first dressing was comprised of olive oil, honey, ginger, garlic and salt, following the original recipe; this dressing was slightly dense, and strong in garlic flavor. For the second dressing, we achieved Mediterranean flavor with a mixture of lemon juice and zest, mint leaves, olive oil and salt; this dressing was light, tangy, crisp and refreshing. Suggestions for additions to the Mediterranean dressing included cumin and parsley. The dish was topped with either of the dressings and optional feta cheese.

Overall this recipe was a success! Everyone enjoyed multiple helpings and leftovers were taken home. This crowd-pleaser surprised many as it was something they would not have ordered if given the choice but upon trying immediately liked the flavors and wanted seconds. It was also determined that while both dressing options were delicious, a little can go a long way. Try out this recipe for a great addition to lunch, dinner, or a family meal to share!


Sargent Choice
Lentils with Roasted Carrots and Beets
Recipe from Community Servings

Yield: 4 servings


1 bunch of beets and beet greens1 bunch of carrots
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 teaspoons honey
1-inch ginger root, peeled and grated
2 garlic cloves, minced or grated
¾ teaspoon kosher or sea salt, divided
1 ½ teaspoons cumin powder
1 cup dried green, brown, or French lentils
1 bay leaf
2 cups water
Grated zest and juice of one lemon
½ cup chopped fresh herbs
¼ cup feta cheese

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Remove leafy tops and stems from beets and carrots and set aside. Rinse beets and carrots well and use a vegetable peeler to remove skins. Chop vegetables into 1-inch pieces. Rinse and thinly slice beet greens and set aside. Do not dry; allow water to cling to leaves.
3. In a small bowl, combine 3 tbsp. olive oil, honey, grated ginger, garlic, and ½ teaspoon salt. Stir with a fork or small whisk to combine.
4. Add 1-2 tbsp. of oil mixture to a medium sized bowl with beets and stir to coat. Vegetables should be lightly but completely coated, not dripping, with oil mixture.
5. Place beets in single layer on a foil or parchment paper lined baking sheet. Repeat this process with the carrots.
6. Roast vegetables in oven for 30-40 minutes, until tender and starting to brown on edges.
7. Meanwhile, measure the lentils into a strainer or colander, removing any rocks or debris. Rinse.
8. Transfer lentils to a saucepan and pour in 2 cups water. Add bay leaf. Bring the water to a rapid simmer over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to maintain a very gentle simmer. Cook, uncovered, for 20-30 minutes, adding water as needed to make sure the lentils are just covered. Lentils are cooked as soon as they are tender and no longer crunchy. Strain the lentils and remove bay leaf.
9. Add beet greens to the pan the lentils were in and cover pan. Allow beet greens to steam and wilt for several minutes in covered pan until tender.
10. Stir beet greens into lentils and add 1 tbsp. lemon juice, lemon zest, 1 tbsp. olive oil, and 1/4 tsp salt to lentils and greens.
11. Place lentils in the bottom of a bowl or platter. Top with roasted vegetables and sprinkle with feta. Sprinkle fresh herbs on top. Serve warm or cold.

Nutrition information Per serving
Calories 330
Fat 9 g
Saturated Fat 2 g
Protein 15 g
Carbohydrate 51 g
Fiber 13 g
Sodium 700 mg

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