Did you know that you can eat both the root and the greens of a beet? Beet leaves are an excellent source of potassium and a good source of vitamin B9 (folic acid) and the mineral magnesium. Beet roots are an excellent source of vitamin A and the mineral potassium; they are a good source of vitamin C, B2 (riboflavin) and magnesium.
Wild beets are thought to have originated in Northern Africa where only the greens were eaten. Romans were the first to cultivate beets to eat the root as well!
- Choose beets that are firm and free of bruises.
- Select similar-sized roots to ensure even cooking.
- The greens of both roots are edible; if they are still intact and you plan to cook them, make sure they’re not wilted and have a healthy green color. Otherwise, the quality of the greens is not an indication of the quality of the root.