Superfood and High Protein Cuisine – Beets!

Welcome to Superfood and High Protein Cuisine !

I’ve been trying to think up another section to add to the my lifestyle section of my blog and I couldn’t beat the urge to Pinterest recipes. Hence Superfood and High Protein Cuisine.

On a previous entry on the Challengers, Andy and I had a smoothie challenge. In mine I decided to use beets. I wanted to introduce an underdog type of character. The purplish, red neglected younger sibling. For this new lifestyle section of my blog I would like to revisit this veggie and show you a few recipes you can hide this devilish taste in!

To bring down to a more personal level, I am not a parent. However, I have had to cook for picky people and believe me it is hard to trick people. For example, the other night I made a rice salad with apples, cranberries, kidney beans, Italian dressing and honey mustard – yummy right? Wrong, my brother tried it and wanted to scrape his rice back in the bowl because, “It didn’t taste like anything”. To please this guy you need to pump food with sodium or else the dish will not be consumed… Sound familiar? Well let’s use the power of the BEET to satisfy different tastes.

The Beet’s Beat (hype)

5ad71f7cd82dbfa034e1e798e9b4cb89Beta vulgaris
any of various biennial plants belonging to the genus Beta, of the amaranth family, especially B. vulgaris, having a fleshy red or white root.

Also known as the garden beet or the beetroot, this vegetable comes in different sizes, colours and contains a root list of nutrients.  “…like carotenoids, lutein/zeaxanthin, glycine, betaine, dietary fiber, vitamin C, magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus, while also being a source of beneficial flavonoids called anthocyanins. They are very low in calories, with no cholesterol, but they do have the highest sugar content of all vegetables” (Organic Facts). Although when pulled from the earth, beets are not aesthetically pleasing, their deep red/purple colour actually provides numerous health benefits such as, reduces cholesterol and triglycerides (result: increases good cholesterol) which benefits the heart, provides vitamin B which reduces birth defects, reduces risk of cancer through the pigment betacyaninis (reddish to violet betalain pigments) and antioxidants that work against the the growth of cancerous cells – these betaine pigments also promote a health liver, contains vitamin C which aides the respiratory system, beets are fully fueled with carohydrates that boost energy, beets are high in fiber and so much more! For those of you who have never cut up beets, don’t wear white. It doubles as a dye, lol.

Parts of the Beet
image

How to eat them?

Boil em, mash em, put em in a stew? Close! Beets can be prepared hot or cold. They are easier to cut once they have been boiled because they are a type of root their exterior and interior can be a bit tough. However, this manner or preparation depletes the nutritional value of the beet. The leaves can be thrown into a salad – just cut the stems and mix them in with your favourite greens!
Beets can be cut up, grated, mashed into salads, soups, desserts, burgers – pretty well anything you can think of as long as you have some tastes that complement the evidence. I chose three recipes to make for this blog and they all turned out fantastic and fit the needs of my beet eaters and my meat eaters.

1. Dark Chocolate Beet Brownies via The Way to My Families Heart

photo 5I would like to revamp this recipe next time I make it to make it a un petit peu moins sucré. It was rather sweet and tasted like a regular brownie – probably why my brother ate half the pan! You can get the recipe here.

2. Beet Berry Muffins via Women’s Health Magazine

photo 3-1I really enjoyed this one! Although it can be eaten solo, it tastes so much better with some yogurt on the side. I only had coconut, but it was awesome!
Side note: The batter will turn out purple pre-baking, don’t worry they will adopt a brownish hue once baked. You can get the recipe here.

3. Smoky Beet Burgers via Sprouted Kitchen

beet_burger_03This recipe I did not get to try… but I plan on taking a whirl at it this week! How delicious does that look? You can get the recipe here and if you end up making it before me, leave a comment below!

Benefits for runners

For runners we all need some extra energy and beets provides just this. The consumption of beets enhances endurance due to the mix of the veggie and mouth bacteria; converts nitrate to nitric oxide.
“Nitric oxide can substantially lower blood pressure, and somehow extend endurance” (Runner’s World).
“It’s the nitric oxide that offers the performance benefits which include a decrease in blood pressure and reduced oxygen consumption which translates into a longer time to exhaustion. Put simply, you can go further and faster using less energy” (Montreal Gazette).
Beets are also a high source of fiber, so runner’s beware. This is a great organic source for boosting endurance, however like everything consume in moderation!

Thanks for reading!

J

MapMyRun: jasminleigh
Twitter: @jasminleigh
Instagram: jasminleigh
Tumblr: runit24
(Please note a few of these social media tools are set to private, just send me a request and we can be friends!)

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About jasminglaw

Half Marathoner trying to put a few more races under her belt before taking on a full marathon. I avidly research different running products/gear and articles pertaining to the joy of running. I also enjoy traveling, reading, languages, and good food!
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