MTT: Mackerel, Beetroot and Sweet Potato Salad

Sometimes Will works away during the week, and whilst I miss him when he’s not at home I use the opportunity to indulge in my favourite faux-single gal activities. Because I am cool and hip these often include cleaning until the whole house smells bleachy, watching crap TV like The Real Housewives of The OC/NYC and eating food for dinner that Will doesn’t like. Sometimes I even take a bath or wax some body parts; it can get wild.

Two foods that I don’t get to eat much are beetroot and mackerel. Will dislikes them both, though in the early days of our relationship he ate my kedgeree on more than one occasion because he is a polite boy who didn’t want to hurt my feelings. One of my favourite spring/summer recipes is a salad that contains both mackerel and beetroot and I eat it often when he is away and I am alone for lunch or dinner.

I love salads but sometimes they aren’t substantial enough for dinner – the addition of sweet potato to this one means it fills me up til morning, plus you have the added bonus of both mackerel and beetroot being so-called ‘superfoods’. Should you be on a low-carb diet the sweet potato can also be substituted for roast butternut squash.

As if the mackerel and beetroot wasn’t enough brilliance on its own, this salad is also served with a side of horseradish cream. I love horseradish. I love cream. I love mackerel. I love beetroot. This is basically heaven on a plate.

Lest you think that all mackerel is created equal (it isn’t), think carefully before purchasing your fillets. I always  make a special effort to buy Tesco’s Sweetcure Mackerel fillets which are cured with sugar and then smoked over hickory logs. It gives the mackerel a delicious sweet taste that I think is better than plain old smoked mackerel.

Mackerel, Beetroot and Sweet Potato salad
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 1
  • 2 mackerel fillets
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 4 small cooked beetroots
  • A few sprigs of thyme
  • 2 tbsp creme fraiche (I have also used sour cream in this recipe which worked fine)
  • 1 teaspoon horseradish
  • A quarter of a bag of rocket salad
  1. Peel and chop the sweet potato into cubes; place in a baking tray with the fresh thyme and a slug of olive oil. Cook in the oven at 180 degrees for around 40 minutes, or until soft.
  2. Meanwhile shred the mackerel fillets and discard the skins. Cube the beetroot and wash your hands right afterwards!
  3. Throw the mackerel, beetroot and salad leaves into a large bowl. Add the sweet potato as soon as it's cooked with the oil it was cooked in. Mix well.
  4. In a small dish mix the creme fraiche with the horseradish and serve.

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  1. Safsma wrote:

    Hi Alice,
    This salad looks and sounds awesome, I must add some mackerel fillets to my online shop this week :)
    Although I love reading your blog I have never commented before, but I just wanted to wish you the best of luck with your on/off labour! I follow you on twitter, so have been twitstalking (not real stalking, I’m not a weirdo!) you this last while! And you CAN DO IT… I have had three natural labours and can’t even being to imagine waxing myself, so I think you’ll be just fine!
    Good luck and I can’t wait to read all about the birth of your little man on twitter & here.
    Em x

    Posted 5.14.12 Reply
    • alice wrote:

      Thank you Em! Lovely to hear from you and thank you for reading x

      Posted 5.23.12 Reply
  2. Josie wrote:

    Oh my god yes this is literally the salad of my dreams. Going to make this tomorrow. Yum!

    Posted 5.14.12 Reply
    • alice wrote:

      Would love to know if you liked it! I need to get me some more mackerel x

      Posted 5.23.12 Reply
  3. Aimee wrote:

    Seriously Alice, just come and be my live-in chef please.

    Posted 5.15.12 Reply
    • alice wrote:

      I would’ve totally said yes if I hadn’t just given birth ;)

      Posted 5.23.12 Reply
  4. Zoelee wrote:

    All over this one… Once I’ve done my 3 day smoothie detox that is!

    Posted 5.15.12 Reply
    • alice wrote:

      I’ve been so impressed by your detox! i’m on that as soon as breastfeeding’s done xx

      Posted 5.23.12 Reply
  5. Amanda B wrote:

    Loving the look of this recipe. I often have to cook recipes not favoured by my *Yorkshire man* (meatn2veg please) husband. Beetroot – what’s not to like?

    Posted 5.16.12 Reply
    • alice wrote:

      Beetroot, ahh it’s the vegetable of gods!

      Posted 5.23.12 Reply
  6. Tristan Entinger wrote:

    Cooks use the terms “horseradish” or “prepared horseradish” to refer to the grated root of the horseradish plant mixed with vinegar. Prepared horseradish is white to creamy-beige in colour. It will keep for months refrigerated but eventually will darken, indicating it is losing flavour and should be replaced. The leaves of the plant, while edible, are not commonly eaten, and are referred to as “horseradish greens”.,

    Have a nice day

    Posted 4.27.13 Reply
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