Beets Poriyal. Beets Saute with Toasted Sesame Seeds and Lentils

This recipe is for all your beet fans out there who are looking for a creative way to make a delicious beets dish. This one is flavored with toasted sesame seeds and urad daal which are split skinned black gram lentils. These two transform beets into a phenomenal dish that tastes so good you’ll be having second helpings.

Ah beets!

I don’t know about you, but for me beets are let’s just say I’m not a fan of beets. I know I know, I apologize to all you beet fans 🙏🏻. Its just that to me veggies aren’t supposed to be sweet, you know what I mean? And let’s not forget the mess beets make with their pinky red color all over the counter and cutting board. Yet, every two weeks I get gorgeous big beets in my farm box. I’ve collected them in the fridge not really knowing what to do. Hitesh on the other hand, loves beets. Enter this beet recipe from my Aunty Uma who visited me this July. She saw these big giant beautiful beets and asked what I was planning on making with them. My response “Do you have any suggestions?” This recipe is what she made.

Visit from Uma Aunty and cooking lessons too

My Aunty Uma visited me last week and I have to be honest, as excited I was to see her I was even more excited to cook with her! I wanted to learn some new Indian dishes away from my comfort zone and that’s exactly what I got to do with my Aunt this summer.

I knew Uma Aunty’s cooking style is extremely healthy and delicious – she even wrote a book on this topic titled Herbal Transformatiions. Ancient Wisdom Revealed for Health and Longevity. This awesome book showcases how to use the benefits of herbs and spices to enhance our well being.

I’m happy to say we cooked so many wonderful dishes together that Its going to take me a while to write them up and share them here. But this beets saute on the other hand is a quick and easy recipe.

About the recipe

For a non-beet lover I have to admit I liked this dish. It has fabulous smoky flavor from the toasted sesame seeds and lentils which offset the sweetness of the beets. The recipe is pretty simple. First beets are cooked until tender. Then all you do is toast sesame seeds and urad daal (split black gram lentils) with a dried red chili or two. Toast until golden in color, then grind in a spice mill. Then sprinkle the mixture over the beets and stir. That’s it! Really delicious and different, this will make a beet lover of me yet.

Recipe contributed by Uma Aunty


1-2 beets peeled and cut into small chunks
2 tbsp urad daal
2 bsp white sesame seeds
1 dried red chili (optional)
Cilantro for garnish
Fresh lemon juice from 1 small lemon


Cook beets with salt until tender to your liking. Set aside.

In a pan toast the sesame seeds, urad daal and red chili until the lentils and sesame seeds are pale golden in color and release a smoky aroma – about 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and place them on a plate to cool. Once cool grind in a spice mill to a fine spice powder.

Sprinkle the sesame seed blend over the cooked beets and stir in. Taste for salt and adjust accordingly. Top with fresh cilantro and lemon juice. Beets poriyal is ready!

4 thoughts on “Beets Poriyal. Beets Saute with Toasted Sesame Seeds and Lentils”

  1. Dolly Thank you for featuring this Beetroot Potiyal recipe. In fact , my nutritionist recommended Beetroot Salad to me as this vegetable is Good for the Liver as it has anti inflammatory properties . Beetroot is full of nutrients and anti oxidants. I make a Beetroot Curry with Coconut gratings. But I am certainly going to try Uma’s recipe . I love the use of Sesame seeds in the Masala. Thanks.

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