Homemade Beet Chips
May 21, 2013


I dare you to eat just one of these amazing homemade beet chips.   They are just downright addictive. This is healthy snack food that you can feel good about eating.  They are super easy to make and only take about an hour in your oven. You don't even have to be a beet lover to love these chips.  I've had a couple of people try them who loved them and were totally surprised to learn they were beets. 


I was slicing beets for a raw beet salad one day on my mandoline and was thinking about how it was like slicing the apples for my homemade apple chips.  I wondered if I could make chips out of these, too.  So I sliced a bunch farily thinly and tossed them with some olive oil, sea salt and pepper and roasted them slowly in the oven.  I did several batches over several days, experimenting with the oven temperature and the cooking time until I was totally happy with them.  



The technique for making these kinds of chips is to slow roast them in the oven on a fairly low setting for a long time, dehydrating them.  You draw out the moisture in the vegetable or fruit, which concentrates the flavor.  You end up with an amazing flavor.  You just have to try it. 

the stems on the beets make a great "handle" to hold as you slice them 

Slicing them on a mandoline really makes the job easy, fast and the slices uniform.  If you don't have a mandoline, get one.  You don't have to buy a really expensive one - they have become very popular and you can even buy a little handheld one.  I have a nice stainless steel one, but I do use mine all the time.  I love slicing things on it.

One thing I learned from cooking several batches is that, unlike the apple chips, the beets cook up faster.  You also do not need to flip them, like the apple chips. I tried flipping them halfway through the cooking time and then not flipping them, and it didn't matter. The cooking time will depend, of course, on the beets you get - how fresh they are, how large they are, how much moisture they have, etc.  A convection oven will draw out the moisture even better and you will be able to make three pans at a time.  If you don't have a convection oven, you will have to rotate the pans. So there are a lot of variables.  Make a batch and see how your oven performs.  Watch the beets - they will start to really darken and even burn a little if you let them go too long. 

Also, I made both red and yellow (or golden) beets.  They are both delicious, but I did prefer the golden beets.  I think the flavor was just a little different and they had less moisture, so they crisped up a little better.  If you've never bought golden beets, try them.  I love them anyway raw on salads.  


Homemade Beet Chips 


for a printable recipe click here

You really can use any sized beet you like and make chips out of them.  They shrink a lot in size, so bigger beets will make a nice size chip. The seasoning is totally up to you - adjust it the way you like.  I like a lot of pepper on mine.

If you have a convection oven, you can make 3 pans of these at one time. 



Preheat the oven to 300° F. (or 275° F for convection oven).  Line two or three baking sheets with parchment paper.

Peel the beets.  Slice them to about 1/16" inch (1.6 mm) thick, at the most. Toss them in a large bowl in the olive oil and salt and pepper. (If you have time, you can wait for 30 minutes or so after this step - especially with the red beets, the salt will draw out some excess moisture). Lay them on the baking sheet, just barely touching. 

Bake for about one hour until the edges are crisped up and most of the beets have dried out.  Because you will have different sized slices from the same beet, you will have some smaller chips and some larger chips.  This will let you have a little bit of variety in the crispiness of the chips and you can decide how you like them for your next batch.

Remove from baking sheet when you think they're done and place them on a serving plate on in a bowl.  They crisp up a little as they cool down.  They are fine over night at room temperature or you can refrigerate them for a little longer storage. To crisp them up again, just put them on a baking sheet and bake them at 400 ° for a few minutes. 

They're so good though, it's rare to have leftovers. 


Article originally appeared on The Italian Dish (http://theitaliandishblog.com/).
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