Sweet Spiced Steamed Beets

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This very simple recipe for steamed beets will feel delightfully satisfying on a cool spring or autumn day.

I am thrilled to share it with you because of its elemental simplicity. All you need are beets, ghee, coriander powder, fresh lemon juice, and a sprinkle of salt.

You can use any kind of beet for this recipe. There’s red beets, golden beets, chiogga (striped) beets, etc.

I’ve given you two methods for steaming the beets: in a steamer basket, or right in your saucepan, using a small amount of water.

This second approach is similar to boiling, except that you use much less water, and make use of a lid to steam the beets in place. I use this method a lot.

If you use the right amount of water, and time it just right, you’ll end up with a very small amount of water in the pot, which you can even add to your steamed beets if you like.  

Sweet Spiced Ghee

I am delighted to introduce you to the idea of cooking with ghee and spices.

The process I am about to describe can be replicated with many different kinds of spices. The key is alway to unlock the potential of your spices by sizzling in a healthy fat.

I like ghee, but sometimes I use olive oil, or something else. I talk more about ghee in the next section. If you need to, you can substitute with olive oil for this recipe.

After steaming the beets, you make a little spiced ghee to pour over them.

Beets and Spices

To make the spiced ghee, you heat up a small amount of ghee in a small skillet, then sizzle in coriander powder for 20-30 seconds.

Sizzling spices in ghee releases their flavor, aroma, and medicinal qualities.

Why Ghee?

Ghee is a type of clarified butter that I consider to be the number one healthy fat on the planet.

It is certainly number one for gut health.

Ghee contains a large amount of butyric acid, which is food for your colon cells. So ghee is known to be incredibly supportive for digestion, and for gut health.

Unlike most types of oils and fats, ghee is also incredibly light. It has a penetrating quality that supports circulation and deeply hydrates the internal skin and tissues of the body.

At the same time, ghee is not cholesterol forming.

You can also cook with ghee at high temperatures, since it has a very high smoke point.

3 different Ghees

Ghee is the best fat for working with spices, not to mention it tastes heavenly. Think caramelized butter.

Except that there’s no milk solids, and next to no lactose in ghee, since this is removed in the process of making ghee.

When you make ghee yourself, you see that all the mucus in butter is strained out. What’s left is pure golden butterfat.  


Why Are Sweet Steamed Beets Good for You?  

Beets are sweet, warm, moistening, grounding, and nourishing. They are one of the best vegetables for Vata dosha, and for encouraging these qualities.

Medicinally, beets are helpful to relieve constipation, and supportive to the blood, and female reproductive system.

Fresh lemon juice is warming and stimulating to your metabolism, known as your digestive fire in Ayurveda.

The sweet, sour, and salty tastes are highly supportive to vata dosha.

The coriander spice that you’ll use in this recipe tastes a little earthy and sweet, and it has a mild cooling effect, which helps to balance this recipe for Pitta dosha, which is the dosha associated with fire.

Coriander helps the body digest toxins hidden deep in the bone marrow, as well as promotes a healthy appetite.

Can I Use These Spices for Some Other Vegetable?


Use this technique to flavor butternut squash, carrots, yams, sweet potatoes, celery root, daikon radish, kale. etc.

You could also combine 2-3 vegetables together, such as kale and carrots.

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Sweet Spiced Steamed Beets
Simple Steamed Beets

Recipe for Sweet Spiced Steamed Beets

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Calories: 125kcal
Simple steamed beets spiced with ghee and coriander, and finished with lemon juice. A sweet treat vegetable side dish.
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  • 2 cups beets
  • 1 tablespoon ghee, (sub with olive oil)
  • 1 teaspoon coriander, (see notes for other spice options)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon, freshly squeezed
  • pinch Himalayan pink salt


Prep the Beets

  • Cut the stem and tips off the beets and use a vegetable peeler to peel them. Chop into bite-sized pieces.

Cook the beets: Choose one of the following 2 methods:

  • Steam in the saucepan: Place prepared beets in a saucepan with a fitted lid. Add 1cup water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, add a pinch of salt, and cover. Cook for 20-25 minutes until beets are tender.
  • Steam in a steamer: Place prepared beets in a steamer basket that fits in a pot with a lid. Bring 2 cups water to a boil, and place steamer basket inside. Reduce heat to low, and cover. Cook for 20-25 minutes until beets are tender.

Prepare spiced ghee

  • Add ghee to a small skillet on medium-low heat (big enough to hold the beets).After the ghee is hot, add coriander powder, and sizzle for 20-30 seconds to release the flavor and aroma. Do not burn the coriander. It would happen quickly.
  • Add steamed beets and a sprinkle of salt, and toss well to coat with spiced ghee. Allow a couple of minutes to reheat the beets if necessary.

Finish the dish

  • Transfer to a serving dish. Finish with fresh lemon juice


Make this vegan!

Substitute the ghee for olive oil.

Substitute the coriander with another spice

  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder or cumin seed
  • 1 teaspoon fennel powder
  • pinch of black pepper

Whole seed or powder?

Spices like coriander, fennel, black pepper, and cumin are available for purchase in both seed and powder form.
There are few cases where coriander, black pepper, or fennel seed is used whole in cooking, but cumin seed is often used whole.
For the freshest spices, and the longest shelf life, I purchase the seeds of these spices, and then grind them into powder in smaller quantities.
To grind a seed into a powder, reserve an electric coffee grinder for this use, and don’t use it for coffee.


Calories: 125kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 19mg | Sodium: 106mg | Potassium: 446mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 49IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 1mg

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