These beet and goat cheese bites don't just look beautiful, they are the easiest and most delicious party appetizers ever! Finger foods tend to be brown and dull, but not these babies. They are bright, festive, and have just FOUR ingredients.
The recipe can be sized up or down making these beet bites perfect for your next holiday gathering
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I am not kidding about scaling this appetizer recipe up and down. As written, it makes about 30 beet bites. But I have made as few as 12 for a small dinner party and as many as 60 for a neighborhood get together.
They really are just so simple to make. But I can't take all the credit.
This recipe was originally based on a recipe I found on a random pickled beet brand's website. No longer around I believe, I can't find the recipe. Over the years I have changed it, simplified and made into a finger food perfect any party.
Just for quick ingredients. But there are many easy substitutions
Beets- I always use jarred beets for this recipe. Not just because it is faster, but because the precooked beets are more consistent in size and color. But most importantly, the texture is firm enough to hold the toppings but perfectly cooked for eating. I always use red beets because they contrast so nicely with the orange. But golden beets work too. And yes, you can use pickled beets for more zing!
Herbed Goat Cheese- Another modification from the original recipe. I prefer to buy goat cheese with the herbs already added I stay away from the versions that are heavy on the garlic. If you only have plain goat cheese available, soften the cheese by leaving on the counter for 20 minutes and mix in 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh herbs. Any combination of parsley, basil and chives works.
Candied Orange Slices- These can be a little hard to find, especially outside the holiday season. The recipe includes instructions for making from scratch, you just need one orange, sugar, and water. You can use any small fresh orange you like. I don't recommend using candied orange peel, the texture is too tough.
Chives- Just for a garnish. To be honest any fresh green herb works. But again, I typically stick to chives or basil chiffonade for the garnish.
Assuming you are going to make the candied orange slices from scratch, I suggest getting the oranges started first. While those are warming you can drain the beets and assemble the bites. When the oranges are done simply garnish.
I promise these are way easier than you might think! I prefer to cut the oranges before placing them in the water-sugar mixture. If you want to cut after, try use kitchen shears rather than a knife.
Heat the water and sugar until the sugar is dissolved. Add the oranges and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes until the rind is soft. Lay the oranges on parchment or wax paper to drain and cool off.
Assemble the Beet and Goat Cheese Bites
Drain the beets in a colander and layout on paper towels. Allow to dry for 5 to 10 minutes. Flip halfway through to dry both sides. You can use a small cookie cutter to cut the beets out, or leave as is for a more rustic look.
You can spoon or pipe the goat cheese onto the beet rounds. Personally, I find piping to be significantly faster. It doesn't have to be perfect, they will be topped with the orange slices.
Cap the bites with a small slice of candied orange and your herb of choice.
- Make the candied oranges up to a week in advance and store in the syrup. The orange rind will get softer with time.
- The appetizers can be assembled 2 to 4 hours in advance. Any longer than that and the beet will stain the goat cheese.
- Soften the goat cheese for at least 20 minutes on the counter to make it easier to pipe onto the beet rounds.
- To make this recipe vegan, substitute vegan cream cheese or vegan ricotta with your own herbs. I have had the best results with our own cashew cream cheese (minus the garlic) and Kite Hill plain cream cheese.
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Beet and Goat Cheese Bites
- 15 oz jar of sliced beets
- 4 oz herbed goat cheese*
- chives, for garnish
Candied Orange Slices
- 1 orange
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
Candied Orange Slices
- Slice your orange into rounds, they need to be thin. About ⅛ inch thick at most. Discard ends and seeds. Cut each slice into triangles, either 4 or 6 per ring depending on the size of your orange.
- In a small, heavy-bottomed pan add the sugar and water. Heat until the sugar dissolves and then add your orange slices Bring to a boil over medium-high heat then reduce heat to a slow simmer and cook, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes.
- Allow the orange slices to cool for a few minutes then transfer to a sheet of parchment so they can finish draining.
- While the oranges are cooking, drain all the liquid from the jar of beets. Line a baking sheet with paper towels and lay out the beets to dry. Flip after 5 minutes to ensure that the majority of the liquid has been absorbed by the towels.
- Using a 1-inch cookie cutter cut the beets into small rounds. This step is optional.
- Place the softened cheese in a piping bag. Pipe onto the beet rounds. OR, use two spoons to top each round with about 1 teaspoon of goat cheese.
- Top each beet and goat cheese bite with a wedge of candied orange and garnish with chopped chives.
- *To make your own herbed goat cheese mix 4 oz of softened goat cheese with 2 tablespoons of chopped herbs (parsley, basil, and/ or chives).
- For a vegan alternative, substitute vegan cream cheese for the goat cheese.
- Oranges can be made 2 days ahead of time. Store in a single layer, cover, and keep in the fridge.
- The bites can be assembled 2 to 4 hours before serving.