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Golden Beets with Parsley Pesto and Fregola

Health JANUARY 2014

  • Yield: Serves: 4


  • 4 medium golden beets, trimmed
  • 1 cup uncooked fregola
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for serving
  • Pesto:
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 1/3 cup shelled unsalted pistachios
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil


1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Wrap beets tightly in individual pieces of aluminum foil and place in a pie dish or on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast until tender (you should be able to pierce them easily with a knife), about 1 hour. Unwrap and set aside to cool. When cool enough to handle, rub with a paper towel to remove skins, or peel with a paring knife. Cut into quarters.

2. Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil. Cook fregola in boiling water for 12 minutes or according to package directions; drain. Transfer to a large bowl and stir in oil, salt and pepper until well combined.

3. Make pesto: Using a sharp chef's knife, mince garlic with salt, then slide flat side of knife over mixture a few times to create a paste. Place parsley, nuts and cheese in work bowl of a food processor or a heavy-duty blender (such as a Vitamix). Add garlic paste and pulse to combine. With processor running on low, slowly pour in oil until blended.

4. Stir pesto into fregola. Divide fregola among 4 bowls, then top each with 4 beet quarters. Grind some pepper on top, if desired, and serve.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 315
  • Fat: 20g
  • Saturated fat: 3g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 0.0g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.0g
  • Protein: 8g
  • Carbohydrate: 30g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Cholesterol: 3mg
  • Iron: 4mg
  • Sodium: 341mg
  • Calcium: 136mg

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Golden Beets with Parsley Pesto and Fregola Recipe