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This Roasted Beet Salad with Fennel showcases the best that winter produce has to offer! Colorful roasted beets, refreshing fennel, and walnuts are tossed in a citrus dressing and served on a spiced yogurt sauce. Vegan, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free option.
Beautiful roasted beets, fennel, and an addictive citrus dressing combine to create this mouthwatering Roasted Beet Salad with Fennel. It’s everything you could ever want in a vegan winter salad! Enjoy it as a light, refreshing, and colorful holiday side dish next to your winter favorites.
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All About this Refreshing Winter Side Dish
As much as I love winter comfort foods like Butternut Squash Soup and Vegan Pot Pie, there’s something I find irresistible about a colorful winter salad. If you’re like me, this beet fennel salad is guaranteed to find a spot on your dinner table this season! Imagine a sweet and earthy mix of roasted beets, fennel, orange wedges, and walnuts tossed in a simple citrus dressing and served on top of a spiced yogurt sauce.
This salad has a variety of flavors and textures help to create the perfect bite, in every bite. And can we talk about the presentation? The colors alone are enough to convince a dinner guest to put a generous serving on their plate. It instantly livens up a holiday menu and gives your comfort food classics some balance with its refreshing and zesty flavors.
Ingredients for Roasted Beet and Fennel Salad
The best seasonal winter produce goes into this 11-ingredient salad. Let’s go over the basics of what you need to make it:
- Beets: The more color in this fennel beet salad, the better! That’s why I used a mix of red and golden beets. Check out my guide on How to Roast Beets for a ton of helpful tips and tricks.
- Fennel: If you have tried my Shaved Fennel Salad, then you know salads don’t always need to be made with leafy greens. Crisp fennel, which looks like a bulbous celery-dill combo, is a wonderful substitute in this recipe, lending layers of sweet and black licorice-like flavors to every bite.
- Orange: A winter salad always needs something sweet, and that’s exactly where the orange segments come in. I recommend using a cara or navel orange for their big and juicy segments.
- Walnuts: Toasted or untoasted—it’s up to you! Personally, I love the warmth and soft crunch of toasted walnuts. They’re really easy to toast, too. Find the simple instructions in the recipe card!
- Citrus olive oil dressing: Lemon juice and orange zest add a citrus kick, kosher salt makes the fennel extra crunchy, and buttery olive oil adds a rich mouthfeel.
- Spiced yogurt: I’m not one to say no to extra sauce, and adding a little cumin and kosher salt to creamy yogurt is a perfect way to complement the other flavors of this dish. My favorite brands are Culina, Cocojune, and Cocoyo.
How to Make Roasted Beet Salad with Fennel
- Roast the whole beets on a baking tray until they’re tender.
- Whisk the lemon juice, orange zest, and salt together in a large bowl. Slowly pour in the olive oil to emulsify the dressing.
- Thinly slice the fennel, then marinate the slices in the citrus dressing.
- Whisk the yogurt, cumin, and salt together in a small bowl.
- Slice the roasted and peeled beets, then supreme the orange.
- Spread the yogurt sauce on a serving platter.
- Layer the marinated fennel, sliced beets, and oranges on top of the yogurt.
- Drizzle the beets with the remaining dressing, then garnish with fennel fronds, chopped dill, and toasted walnuts. Enjoy!
Caitlin’s Cooking Tips
- Thoroughly wash the fennel. Just like leeks and celery, fennel has many layers that trap dirt. Remember to rinse the bulb and fronds under running cool water and rub away any visible dirt and debris before slicing.
- How to supreme an orange: This sounds fancy, but is easier than you think! Simply use a paring knife to trim the ends off of an orange, then peel off the outer rind. Using the white pith as a guide, carefully cut out each orange segment, leaving the pith and white membrane behind. This helpful blog post has lots of great tips, too.
The best way to serve an easy roasted beet salad with fennel is alongside your favorite comfort foods and savory holiday recipes. Winter foods tend to be very brown, so this bright and zesty salad adds some much-needed color to the plate as well as refreshing flavors. Try this as a festive appetizer or side dish with cozy meals, like Vegan Shepherd’s Pie and White Bean Stew, and with holiday staples, like my Tofu Turkey Roast.
I love this salad most when it’s served at room temperature. A warm version with hot-from-the-oven roasted beets would be tasty, too! If you prefer it chilled, I recommend preparing some of the components 2 days in advance and keeping them in the fridge until it’s time to assemble—simply roast the beets, whisk the dressing together, and make the yogurt sauce!
If you’re looking for more flavorful salads that are perfect for fall and winter, you’ll love this Kale Apple Salad with Cider Dressing, this Winter Kale Salad with Pomegranate Vinaigrette, and this Shaved Fennel Salad.
How to Store Roasted Beet Salad
This salad is best served as soon as it’s dressed and assembled. If you end up with leftovers, keep them in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Substitutions and Variations
- Lemon Juice Substitutions: Use white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar to give the dressing a similar tangy flavor.
- Nut-Free Option: Simply omit the walnuts or replace them with toasted pumpkin seeds.
- Add Bulk With Greens: Whether you need to serve a crowd or are simply craving fresh greens, some lightly dressed arugula will bulk up this salad.
You bet they do. The crisp fennel next to the tender beets makes every bite fascinating, while their sweet, anise, and earthy flavors play off of each other beautifully. It’s like a match made in heaven!
Yes, you can roast the beets 2 days before assembling the salad. Keep them wrapped in foil and store them in the fridge until it’s time to eat.
Peeling the beets before roasting is not necessary. In fact, the peel is even easier to remove after the beets have been cooked.
Roasting all the way! My method for roasting beets, which involves wrapping them in a layer of parchment paper and aluminum foil, yields sweet and tender beets every time. I don’t recommend boiling the beets because it can turn them into watery, soggy blobs.
Enjoy! If you make this recipe and decide to share it on Facebook or Instagram, don’t forget to tag me @FromMyBowl + #FromMyBowl! I would also love it if you could leave a comment below with a recipe rating! Thank you for the support 😊
Roasted Beet Salad with Fennel
For the Salad:
- 4 medium beets red, golden, or a mix
- 1 bulb fennel including fennel fronds
- 1 cara cara or navel orange
- 1/2 cup toasted* walnuts roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon dill chopped (optional)
For the Citrus Olive Oil Dressing:
- Roast the Beets: (Note: this can be done up to 2 days in advance). Preheat the oven to 400F and set a baking sheet aside. Trim the roots and ends off of each beet, then wrap in aluminum foil. Add 1-2 teaspoons of water to the beet before sealing off the foil (this helps them steam better), then place on the baking tray. Roast in the middle rack of the oven for 40 to 50 minutes, until the beets are tender.
- Make the Olive Oil Dressing: Add the lemon juice, orange zest, and salt to a large bowl and whisk well. Continue to whisk as you slowly pour the olive oil into the mixture, whisking vigorously until emulsified.
- Marinate the Fennel: Cut the bottom root and top thin portions of the fennel off, saving the fine fronds (which look like dill) for garnish. Use a mandoline or sharp knife to thinly slice the fennel. Transfer the fennel to the bowl with the citrus dressing and toss until coated; keep in the fridge until ready to combine in step 6.
- Make the Spiced Yogurt: Whisk the yogurt, cumin, and salt together in a small bowl until combined; keep in the fridge until step 6.
- Cut the Beets & Oranges: Carefully remove the beets from the foil and let cool slightly, then peel; the outer skin should come off easily. Slice into 1/4” slices and set aside. Supreme* the orange and set aside.
- Plate: Use a spoon or spatula to generously spread the spiced yogurt mixture across the bottom of a serving platter. Top the yogurt with layers of the marinated fennel, sliced beets, and oranges until evenly distributed, then drizzle the beets with the remaining citrus dressing. Garnish with the reserved fennel fronds, chopped dill, and toasted walnuts. Serve immediately.
- Lemon Juice: Lemon juice can be swapped with white wine or apple cider vinegar for a similar flavor.
- Coconut Yogurt: I recommend using a very thick and creamy coconut yogurt with no sweeteners added. My favorite brands for this are culina, cocojune, and cocoyo. If you cannot find coconut yogurt or do not want to include it in the recipe, add the cumin to the citrus dressing instead and skip step 4.
- Toasted Walnuts: Spread the walnuts across a baking sheet and bake on the top rack of the oven for 7-10 minutes, until golden and fragrant. Let cool, chop and use in step 6! You can also choose to leave your walnuts untoasted.
- How to Supreme: Use a paring knife to trim the ends off of the orange, then to peel off the outer rind. Using the white pith as a guide, carefully cut out each orange segment, leaving the pith and white membrane behind. You can also refer to this helpful blog post.