Given roasted celery’s health benefits — and there are many — it’s a wonder that people still eat it raw. Sure, celery is a great vehicle for ranch or blue cheese dressing at a football game (and as a delicious waist-slimming juice), but you’re doing yourself a disservice if you haven’t roasted it before.
According to Ayurveda, an ancient healing system that originated in India, eating roasted or cooked celery is beneficial depending on your dosha type. There are three types of doshas in Ayurvedic medicine — vata, pitta, and kapha — and they are the unique combinations of five elements: earth, water, fire, air, and ether. Different foods are said to balance the doshas, similar to how some people determine their diet based on blood type.
If you are more airy, aka your dosha is vata, then you benefit the most from cooked celery. “Roasted or stewed celery is excellent during the colder months,” Divya Alter, a chef and author of What to Eat for How You Feel: The New Ayurvedic Kitchen ($27.16, Amazon), told Well + Good. “Cooked celery is definitely easier to digest for people with airy digestion, IBS, or other inflammatory gut problems.”
Of course, you can still enjoy raw celery in juices or slathered in peanut butter, but you’ll want to avoid it during the cooler months, Alter said. “It’s great for balancing pitta [fiery] and kapha [earthy], but it’ll increase and imbalance vata [airy].”
So, what’s the best way to roast celery? This stringy green veggie is tough and tasteless when it’s raw, but it can be transformed into a soft, slightly sweet treat once its natural sugars caramelize in the oven. All you have to do is lightly coat it in oil and season with salt, pepper, and other spices of your choice, and you have a delicious, low-carb, negative-calorie, keto-friendly snack. Now that’s a good reason to celery-brate!