Roasted Golden Beets with Lentils, Soft Herbs, and Lemon-Saffron Yogurt

Eeeep, I'm back in LA--as in I just got back into town on a redeye 😳! While it's so nice to be home with Moses and Vienna and my bed (with clean sheets, thanks Mo), I am already missing Alaska, the crew: Molly, Kristan, Nik, and Gerry, and all my friends at Copper River Salmon. It was out of this world awesome--we saw glaciers, moose, and sea otters, we rode in a seaplane, learned to fillet salmon, and even learned a song about all the different types of salmon. More on all of that soon (I can't wait to share everything with you guys everything), I promise. This week, I'm working on book stuff, catching up on all my emails, and baking a cake to take to Maui with me for my goddaughter's first birthday! I'm making Molly's funfetti cake (from her book #mollyontherange) with homemade naturally dyed sprinkles a la Michelle and homemade naturally dyed rainbow chips from Ashley. I cannot wait!!

After almost a week of salmon, I'm thinking it might be a good idea to take a mini seafood break, which works out because I'm kinda missing my lentils. Lentils are actually very new to me and something I'm very excited about, so if you have any recipes you love, please send them my way. Meanwhile, I think I'm gonna have to make another batch of this very recipe because it's just that good!! It comes from Hetty's epic new book Neighbourhood, which is jam packed with some of the prettiest salady mains and veggie friendly recipes. Neighbourhood is loaded with grains, tons of fresh veggies and herbs, and legumes galore. Hetty's voice is insanely charming and warm and I felt like I was pulling up a chair at her super cozy table to share a meal with her as I was reading along. If you're like me and feel like you don't know where to start, 'cuz everything looks so good, start here--you won't be sorry!

Roasted Golden Beets with Lentils, Soft Herbs, and Lemon-Saffron Yogurt

COPYRIGHT © 2017 BY Hetty McKinnon.

MAKES 20 TO 24


  • 8 golden beets (about 3 1/2 lbs) peeled and cut into 1/2-in cubes
  • 3 to 4 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. white balsamic vinegar
  • 2 c. brown lentils, rinsed
  • 2 c. soft herbs (parsley, dill, cilantro, chives, mint, oregano, or tarragon)
  • Sea salt and black pepper


  • Pinch of saffron strands
  • 1 1/2 c. (375 g) Greek yogurt
  • 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • Sea salt and black pepper


  • Baking tray
  • Saucepan
  • Small bowl
  • Spatula


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Place the beets on a large baking tray, drizzle over 2 to 3 tablespoons of olive oil and the white balsamic vinegar. Season well with salt and pepper and roast for 30-35 minutes, or until the beets are tender.
  3. Place the lentils in a saucepan and cover with plenty cold water. Add a big pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 20 to 25 minutes or until just tender. Drain.
  4. To make the lemon-saffron yogurt, place the saffron strands in a small bowl and pour over 2 tablespoons of boiling water. Allow to steep for 10 minutes. When ready, add the yogurt to the saffron and water and stir to combine, Add the olive oil, squeeze in the lemon juice, and season with salt and pepper.
  5. To serve, combine the beets with the lentils and all the herbs. Fold the yogurt through, season with salt and pepper, and finish with a drizzle of olive oil. 

Substitutes: For golden beets, you can use red or target beets.

Note: I only had 1 cup of black lentils on hand, so that's all I used, but it seemed to work out well!