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Orange Thyme Salad with Glazed Beets and Spiced Walnuts

I am not going to lie, this salad has a lot going on. But in a well paired, delicious way. Orange spiced walnuts, balsamic glazed beets, a wonderful orange- thyme-walnut dressing…it’s tough not to love all these flavors. The best part is they love each other!


Orange Thyme Salad with Glazed Beets


I am a big proponent of keeping things simple. When I see a recipe that has fifteen plus ingredients, first, I pass out. I mean, who wants to spend that amount of time making something? Then, I feel bad because I can guarantee that the beauty of the main ingredients has probably been lost when so many competing flavors are coming at you.


Orange Thyme Salad with Glazed Beets


I like simple. I am going to confuse you and tell you I also like complex. But complex in a way that emphasizes the freshness and taste of the main ingredients. In this recipe, I started with four things that I know go well together. Oranges, beets, walnuts and thyme. They are the main ingredients, the stars you might say. If you want to keep it “simple” but highlight those ingredients, you layer flavor.


Orange Thyme Walnut Beet Salad



I first learned the true beauty of flavor layering from Chef Eric Harcey, an extremely talented chef I had the pleasure to photograph for Sotheby’s “Artful Living”. He also consented to let me shoot and highlight him in my other blog, Shooting The Kitchen. Eric served a beet salad that used beets in at least 3 different ways, fresh, pureed and dehydrated. The flavor was amazing and highlighted the beets in a way I had never tasted before. That is layering. You can see the salad I am talking about here.

In this salad, the walnuts are sweetened and spiced with honey, maple syrup, himalayan salt, pepper and orange zest. I dare you to not eat them all before they go into the salad. The dressing is made from oranges, walnuts, and thyme. The balsamic glazed beets provide a nice accent while the orange segments reinforce the orange that is in the spiced walnuts, and dressing. See how that works?

This salad comes together quite quickly. You just need to plan a little ahead for the walnuts and beets. I did them in the dehydrator but if you are really careful, you can do them in the oven. Just know they won’t be raw.

Equipment needed:

Advanced Preparation:

  • Dehydrate beets
  • Dehydrate walnuts
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  1. Emma wrote on July 11, 2013

    Also, I’m allergic to all nuts. Do you recommend a flavour to put into the marinade that would replace the walnut flavour?

  2. Emma wrote on July 11, 2013

    Hi Susan

    Thanks for your wonderful recipe, I can’t wait to make it!

    Just wondering what you recommend I do if I don’t have a dehydrating sheets/dehydrator etc… (i.e and plan on cooking the beets in the oven). Shoudl I still marinade them as you suggest? Will they bake well? And for how long should I bake them?

    Kind regards

    • Susan wrote on July 11, 2013

      Yes, you still should marinate them but you will have to experiment with cooking times. I focus on the raw side. 🙂

  3. Carol wrote on May 13, 2013

    Hi … I made this salad tonight and it was amazing … will be having it again soon … such a taste sensation! Sometimes I’m so happy that I’m the only person in the house that eats raw (other than my 15 month old having green smoothies) … all the more for me!!

  4. Bettena wrote on May 5, 2013

    The beets r amazing! I am going to have to have these on hand just because….the nuts too! Delish salad, with a great mix of flavors. Retained the marinade from the beets and made a dressing from that. Waste not, what not!

  5. Susan wrote on May 5, 2013

    I occasionally use raw honey from bee keepers that I know personally. I believe that supporting them helps support our bee population. You certainly don’t need to use it.

  6. Penelope vegan wrote on May 5, 2013

    Awww… I thought the site was eco-friendly and vegan… Take care.

    • Susan wrote on May 2, 2013

      Thank you, Marta!

  7. Lisa wrote on May 1, 2013

    I made this salad today and it was awesome!!!! I made the walnuts a couple days ago the dressing last night and the beets this morning. Seemed easy to put together by breaking it up this way. It was the perfect thing for lunch on the patio on this very nice sunny 79 degree day!

  8. alyx b wrote on April 29, 2013

    I have an ancient dehydrator and according to the company, the temperature is 150. . . I realize this isn’t raw, but until I get a new one this is what I’ve got to work with. Since I’ve never dehydrated beets, I don’t know what “over-dehydrate” would look like, do you have a way to calculate how long I should dehydrate them at the higher temp? Sorry if this is confusing. . . .Thanks!

    • Susan wrote on April 29, 2013

      I would just check them every 15 minutes. You don’t want them to get hard.


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