Holiday Appetizer: Beet and Goat Cheese Pizzas

The Holidays are here! Many of us stress about eating healthy during this time of year or just throw away healthy eating all together.  Well here is a recipe that won’t ruin healthy eating for you, and it has many delicious seasonal flavors.  This Beet-za is something you could have as an appetizer at any holiday party and it will certainly impress your guests!
Beets and goat cheese are a classic combination.  On this Beet-za, I used whole wheat naan as the crust, or you could use pitas or flat bread.  I paired the beets with quick-pickled onions, beet greens, and rosemary cayenne  roasted walnuts.  I also used a pepper jelly for a tangy and spicy surprise!  I know these ingredients sound kind of crazy, but they were totally awesome all combined together!

Here is the recipe!


1 Large beet, boiled, peeled and sliced 1/16th of and inch thick

1/4 red onion, thin sliced

1/2 cup vinegar

sea salt

1 tsp sugar

2 beet green leaves, sliced in thin strips

1/2 cup walnuts

olive oil

1 tsp Rosemary, chopped

1/2 tsp cayenne

2 Naan whole wheat

2 T pepper jelly

1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese


  1.  boil beet for about 30 minutes until soft. This will make it much easier to peel and slice.
  2. While the beet is boiling, prepare quick-pickle liquid by combining vinegar, 1/ 2 cup water, a dash of salt and sugar over heat.
  3. Slice onion and pour the pickle liquid over the onion.  Allow to soak for at least 25 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 425 and combine oil, walnuts, rosemary, salt and cayenne in a small oven safe pan.  Roast for 10 minutes and set aside.
  5. Once the beet is soft, peel and slice on mandolin slicer.
  6. Place naan on sheet pan and spread 1 tablespoon of pepper jelly on each, then arrange the beet slices on each naan.  Sprinkle salt on top.
  7. Place the Naans in the oven for 12 minutes.
  8. After the 12 minutes, top each Beet-za with pickled onion, goat cheese, beet greens and walnuts.
  9. Cut the beet-zas into 4-6 slices and serve!





Spicy Chickpea Lettuce Wraps

I have been OBSESSED with chickpeas lately! I think it’s because they are so versatile, healthy, hearty and delicious.  Chickpeas are great because they pack in a lot of fiber and protein and can be prepared so many different ways.  The way I chose to prepare them is from the Thug Kitchen cook book.  The recipe in the book is for Spiced Chickpea Wraps with Tahini Dressing.  Sounds great, doesn’t it? Well I chose to use the same recipe just for the chickpeas in the wraps I made.  The rest I tweaked to make it my own.

These wraps were absolutely delicious and would make for a great lunch or appetizer!  The spicy chickpeas with the roasted carrots and onions made for such a hearty and comforting flavor.  I also used fresh cut pepper and cucumber for a crunchy, cool addition to the wraps.  Unlike the Thug Kitchen recipe, I decided to use butter lettuce instead of tortillas, although this would be great on tortillas or pita if you prefer.

So, here is my tweaked recipe… be sure to check out the link to the Thug Kitchen website!! So many great things to try and to make your own!

INGREDIENTS:(Serves four, two lettuce wraps each)

1 Head of butter lettuce, leaves separated

1 red bell pepper, cut into strips

1 cucumber, cut into strips

1 red onion, julienned

2 large carrots, peeled and cut into match sticks

4 cups cooked chickpeas (I used a bag of frozen)

1/2 cup lemon juice

1 T maple syrup

1 T soy sauce

1 T paprika

1 T cumin

2 t garlic powder

1 t cayenne pepper

Olive oil



  1. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. Prepare the lettuce, bell pepper and cucumber, set aside.
  3. Cut the carrots into match sticks and place on a sheet tray with olive oil and S&P coating.
  4. Roast 20 minutes and then add the julienned onion, also coated with oil, S&P.
  5. Roast another ten minutes.
  6. While the vegetables are roasting, combine the spices in one bowl and the lemon juice, syrup, and soy sauce in another.
  7. With 5 minutes left on the roasting veg, heat chickpeas in a saute pan with olive oil for about 3 minutes.
  8. Stir in the lemon juice mixture and allow to cook about another minute before stirring in the spices.
  9. Now the vegetables should be done roasting and the chickpeas are seasoned and cooked!
  10. Serve the chickpeas in butter lettuce wraps with the roasted vegetables and the pepper and cucumber!
  11. Enjoy!!