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Dips and spreads

Roasted beetroot dip with cannellini beans

Prep time 15 minutes | Cook time 30 minutes
serves 2 cups

Photography by Tracey Creed
Assisted by Amandine Paniagua
Recipe by Tracey Creed and Amandine Paniagua
Words by Amandine Paniagua

Published August 3 2020


2 tbsp olive oil
450 kg beetroot
1 red onion, roughly chopped
4 garlic cloves
1 can cannellini beans (400 g cooked)
1 tbsp lime juice
sea salt and pepper to taste


Preheat your oven to 180℃ and coat the bottom of a baking tray with olive oil.

Scrub the beetroots if required, then peel and remove the roots. Cut into approximately 2.5 cm or 1-inch pieces—they don’t need to be perfect. Place the beetroot in your oven tray and roast for about 30 minutes, or until tender, easily inserting a knife into the beetroot.

To prepare the dip, place all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and pulse to combine until the mixture is coarsely ground.

With the motor running, add extra oil until you reach your desired consistency. You might need to scrape down the sides of the bowl or jug a few times. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

This roasted beetroot dip will keep up to five days in an airtight container, in the fridge.

This roasted beetroot dip is a sort of hummus, yet made with cannellini beans, refreshing and simple to make, tasting deliciously earthy with a tad of sweetness. The red onion and lime juice provide a well-spiced flavour contrast, balanced with the cannellini beans making this dip incredibly satisfying. With its variety of ingredients, this beetroot dip is adaptable and pairs well with any food really, as soon as the intent is to prepare breakfast or a main. As always, we spread ours over a crispy slice of sourdough, but I will definitely stir through pasta or top potatoes, add spoonfuls to my salads. We topped this roasted beetroot dip with what we had on hand, hemp seeds, sauerkraut, avocado, kalamata salt and a drizzle of flaxseed oil—your call.

Three tips to prepare this roasted beetroot dip

Roasted beetroot. Keep in mind that cutting the beetroot in small pieces will shorten the roasting time. Crack some salt and pepper over the tray, or sprinkle your favourite spices—we used cumin, fennel or thyme to add another layer of flavour while roasting. Either for a cake or potatoes, the inserted knife is the best tool to check if the beetroots are ready.

Loaded with essential nutrients, beetroot makes an exciting addition to a dip. They contain fibre (2 to 3 g per 100 g) and Vitamin B9 that is important for tissue growth and cell function. Beetroot also provides Manganese, a mineral required for healthy brain and nervous system function. Potassium for improved blood flow and heart health. Allow the power of beetroot to help you feel your best; Iron, for circulation, transporting oxygen to red blood cells, and Vitamin C, an antioxidant important for immunity and skin health. And the leaves also bring numerous health benefits, as they are rich in Vitamin K, copper, manganese, iron and calcium, containing zero saturated fat and cholesterol. Better to keep them aside, adding them to your salad or sauté in the pan with garlic and a drizzle of olive oil.

Cannellini beans. We loved using beans for this recipe; they add significant fibre for your daily intake. If you don’t have access to cannellini beans, Great Northern beans or White Navy beans are equivalent substitutes. Preparing this beetroot dip using dried cannellini beans, you will need approximately 200 g of dried beans to make 400 g of these cooked. As usual, soak them in cold water the night prior, or at least for 5 hours. Drain and rinse, then place the beans in a large pan, generously cover with water and bring to a boil. Let boil for another 10 minutes, removing any foam. Simmer gently with the lid half-on for 1 to 2 hours, until beans are tender. Always check the water level, to avoid any burned beans, and add water if necessary.

Creamy dip. This roasted beetroot dip is naturally rich, thanks to the cannellini beans, but if you want to go for something creamier, there are a handful of possible variations. The simplest is adding more beans; a quarter cup is fine for a start. Suppose the mixture turns dry, balance by pouring a bit more oil, or filtered water until reaching the desired consistency. Another option, our favourite, is to add hemp seeds. A good quarter a cup blended with the ingredients will subtly amplify the earthy flavour. Finally, increasing fat is also a way to go. Add a few tablespoons of almond yoghurt or cashew cream, for their neutral taste, and turn this vegan essential into a sweet buttery dip.

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