It was truly been a summer of beets over here. I introduced this beautiful root vegetable to my daughter Eliana quite early on as she started her solid eating journey. She immediately loved them and to this day, will devour them effortlessly. I love using beets in her meals because they are so versatile and easy to use in both sweet and savory dishes. They taste great in literally every way they can be prepared. Although this household’s personal favorite is a good old roasted beet, we also love pickled beets, boiled beets, sautéed beets, and juiced beets.
Beets are high in Vitamin C, fibre, potassium, manganese, and folate. They’ve also got favorable smart carbs that give us an energy boost like no other (a fresh pressed juice with beets included is major life fuel).
I have never shopped more locally than I have this season and it’s been a game changer. Whenever I unload a market haul, I place all my items on my counter to a) organize them to put them away but also b) to gather inspiration from what I see sitting all together on my countertop. This specific recipe came to me as I singled out some organic apples, beets, and sweet potatoes all hanging out as part of a solid market trip. I immediately pictured the three together all served in a sweet style dish and chose chickpeas as my feature plant-based protein. And if you don’t believe me when I tell you that this meal is absolutely exquisite, ask Eliana. This is legit one of her top three favorite meals.
Apple, Ginger & Beet Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
3 sweet potatoes, baked whole and kept warm, ready to serve
1 Tbsp. coconut oil
3 medium beets, cubed and par-boiled* (equals about 1.5 cups total)
1 large apple, chopped
1 inch piece of fresh ginger root, minced
15 oz. can of garbanzo beans (or 1.5 cups of cooked fresh chickpeas)
1 Tsp. cinnamon
Squirt of fresh lemon juice
Garnish-nut butter mixed with a little bit of water to thin
Heat coconut oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Once melted, add the par-boiled beets, apple, and minced ginger. Sautee until everything has softened and cooked through. Add the chickpeas and cinnamon. Mix all ingredients together and cook for another few minutes.
Squirt lemon juice into the mixture and toss to coat. Dollop the sweet gingery filling into halved & baked sweet potatoes. Garnish with a nut butter drizzle.
*Par-boiled just means to boil slightly to help soften them. We don’t want to fully cook them by boiling since we still need to sauté the beets with the rest of the ingredients. This is where they will then cook through.
If your family eats dairy, fresh goat cheese sprinkled on top would taste incredible.
If you wish to incorporate a touch more of sweetness, consider adding some pure maple syrup or honey to taste. A drop of blackstrap molasses would also be a nice touch especially for babies under a year of age.
You can also use cubed and steamed potatoes which are easier for babies and children to eat. It would also present better if serving for a dinner party or potluck.
CHANTAL URBINA is a registered Massage Therapist and Culinary Nutrition Expert. She is passionate about living a life full of health, love, and happiness and that all three start with our diet. “Nature’s healing properties will never cease to amaze me and it inspires me day after day to create and share recipes made with only real whole foods.”