Pickled Beets!

You haven’t lived until you’ve eaten a pickled beet.

Unless you’ve kissed someone in front of the Eiffel tower, while cherry blossoms rain out of the sky.  That’d probably win out in the “you haven’t lived until”  contest over the pickled beet thing.

But pickled beets are pretty darn good. I bet they’d taste even better while in Paris. You could clink your fork into the mason jar while wearing a luxurious but casual, all cream, down to the ground dress  designed by your best friend Ralph Lauren, who presented it to you at sunset, on horseback, while vacationing at his ranch. That you’re considering buying.  Once you get back from Paris.

Now that I think of it, pickled beets are kindda shit, compared to all the other great things that could happen in one’s life.

Let’s try this again. Pickled Beets! They’re better than an open wound!

Good. Glad we got that straightened out.

There are a few variations of pickled beetroot and I like the ones with sugar, vinegar and autumn spices. They have a similar taste to my bread and butter pickles. And I mean similar. Not the same.

This year I tried a new pickled beet recipe because … shock of all shocks … I was finding my old recipe a bit too sweet.  I guess my tastes have changed.  Or sugar has become sweeter in recent years.

I assume since you’re here, and you’re still reading, you too have an interest in pickling some of these suckers. Maybe you like them, or maybe you’ve never tried to make them, or maybe you’re going to the Eiffel Tower soon and figure you should bring a jar. Regardless of what the reason is, you’re in the right place.

Because I am right now, at this very moment, going to share my most recent Pickled Beet recipe.





Pickled Beet Recipe




  1. Cook 10-15 pounds of beets.  I normally roast beets but for this many I find boiling them easier.
  2. Mix brine ingredients together.
  3. Peel and chop beets.
  4. Add beets to brine and simmer 10 minutes.
  5. Pour beets and brine into jars and process.

That’s it.

Pickled Beet Recipe

The easiest way to remove the skins is to cut the tip and root off, then rub the skin off with a paper towel.  The skins should just come right off.  Since this is real life, there will be the odd stubborn one.  Those ones are assheads and you can either throw them at someone or use a knife to get the skin off.  Or throw them at someone.


Pickled Beet Recipe

You can either quarter or slice your beets.  I like to quarter them.  If the quarters are too big, cut the quarters in half.

Pickled Beet Recipe

Pickled Beets Recipe

Pickled Beets Recipe

If you don’t have one of these little metal sticks, grab one here.  They’re made for picking up the sealers out of the hot water and they’re great.  If you don’t have any of the handy canning stuff, get this whole kit.  You get the magnetic stick, a can grabber, funnel and a bunch of other stuff.

Pickled Beets Recipe

Pickled Beets
  • 10 lbs beets
  • 3 cups water
  • 7 cups vinegar
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 2½ teaspoons cloves
  • 2½ teaspoons allspice
  • 2½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • 3 Tablespoons Kosher (or pickling) salt
  1. Cook and peel beets.
  2. Cut into quarters.
  3. Mix together remaining ingredients in large pot.
  4. Add quartered beets to brine in pot and simmer 10 minutes.
  5. Fill hot, sterilized jars to ½" from top with beets.
  6. Fill with brine to ½" from top of jar.
  7. Remove any air bubbles in jar.
  8. Wipe rim clean.
  9. Secure with seal and screw band.
  10. Process beets 30 minutes in hot water bath.


Pickled Beets Recipe

There are a lot of different pickled beet recipes out there and there are a LOT of different ways to process them.  Up until a few years ago I always just jarred them in hot jars, covered them with hot liquid and called it a day.  It’s always worked fine for my family.  But now that I have a blog  I have to be responsible and suggest methods that might not kill my readers.  Because I lose enough readers every month simply by offending them.  I can’t start actually killing them off now.

So I decided to give them a 30 minute water bath for your benefit. Do you need to refrigerate pickled beets?  Not if you process them.  Will eating a pickled beet make you think you’re dying when you poop the next day?  Yes.  Pickled beets will make your poop look like its bleeding.  Will pickled beets turn your urine red?  You’d have to eat a lot of them, but yes. It’s possible.

Kissing in front of the Eiffel tower while it rains cherry blossoms?  Technically also possible.  Thankfully.


  1. Nicole says:

    Even though they make me sick, I love beets. Pickled beets were the gateway into my beet eating addiction. Now I like ’em anyway I can get ’em.

    • Karen says:

      Nicole – Well. Maybe they aren’t *actually* making you sick. Maybe you only *think* you’re dying the day after eating beets. When really … you just ate beets. You’ll be O.K. 😉 ~ karen

  2. SK Farm Girl says:

    My Aunt, who was an accomplished canner, cook, seamstress, gardner and many other things, taught me the simplest way to make pickled beets. Yes, I know there are a gazillion ways to pickled beets, but this truly is the easiest. Once you have parboiled, skinned and cut into bit size pieces, pack your beets into pint jars. Add 1/2 cup white sugar, add pickling vinegar to within 1/4″ – 1/2″ of rim. Run a knife through the “juice” to remove bubbles. Have your lids and rings in boiling water, screw on lids. Shake the jars until the sugar disolves; playing some Reggae and using the jars as shooka-shookas cranks the process up to party notch! Tah-dah that’s it! She never processed them, and she’d been making them for 60+ years and none of us ever got sick. I do, however, keep my stash in the spare fridge!!! Hmmmm . . . come to think of it there are some still down there; gotta go for a midnight raid of pickled beets and tomorrow I’ll think I’m dying!

    • Karen says:

      ell, keeping t hem in the fridge is one thing. Leaving them on the shelf is another, LOL. Also you have to be careful when doing things like they did in the “olden days”, like 10 years ago or so. 🙂 Through hybridization and genetics and such, our food has changed. Tomatoes for example are far less acidic than they once were which is why they didn’t need to be processed years ago and now they do. ~ karen!

      • Brie says:

        This is such a good point!!!! I hate when people say, “Well we did it this way for years, and I’m still here!”….. This world is a different place, especially in regards to our food. Great post as usual Karen!

        • SK Farm Girl says:

          Point well-taken! A quick bath never hurt anybody! Next batch I will process so as not to kill the next generation of my family – LOL! Thanks Karen and Brie! You are right, our foods are changing and so must we change with them! Cheers!

          • Karen says:

            SK – Trust me … up until a couple of years ago I was with you. Screw it. I’m alive. Then I started looking into and researching foods and how they’ve changed and … well … then *I* changed. ~ karen!

  3. Bobbi says:

    Pickled beets……..I have noticed them in your menus and have held back but …………yuck !!

    Brussels sprouts to you….pickled beets to me.

  4. sherry says:

    thanks for both the recipe and the chuckles:)

    • Mary says:

      I’ve used your pickled beets recipe for the past few years now and must say it is hands down “the best”!!!
      Also, you have a great sense of humor and I really enjoy your posts!!!

      Thanks so much for sharing!!!


      • Karen says:

        Thanks for coming back and letting me know Mary! I didn’t grow enough beets this year for pickled beets and I only have one jar left. It’s Thanksgiving in Canada tomorrow and I’m really struggling with whether to put them out or or not so I can save the for myself, lol. ~ karen!

  5. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    “I have to be responsible and suggest methods that might not kill my readers. Because I lose enough readers every month simply by offending them.” HA – What wimps..if you offend them they better not turn on their TV’s anymore..Or go out in public..or do pretty much anything that involves other people..these people must live in plastic bubbles cause I see & hear a lot more offensive things around me everyday than anything that comes out of your mouth sweetie..Oh Yeah..Love pickled beets!..Yeah..this is how I get when I stay up late..

  6. Belinda says:

    Yum! I love beetroot (that’s what we call them in lil’ ol’ New Zealand) and if you want to try something that I’m told is pretty unique to my corner of the world, then next time you’re having hamburgers (the ones that are homemade, with salad stuff in em) throw in a couple of slices of pickled beets. Can’t be beaten! Especially if there’s a fried egg going on in there, too 😉

  7. Shannon Clarke Devine says:

    Hi Karen

    As I live in South Africa and have been on a safari or two I must tell you that the beets sound far more scary!!


  8. Moe says:

    Your recipe sounds a lot like mine except I use pickling spice tightly wound in cheesecloth and I simmer my beets in liquid a lot longer. I love beets too every way except with balsamic vinegar sprinkled over them. I don’t know why people think that stuff tastes good. If it ain’t sweet, I ain’t eatin it. :o)

  9. Deborah says:

    um…..you forgot to mention HOW IN THE WORLD WE GET THE PINK STAINS OFF OUR SKIN after peeling and chopping/slicing so many beets…. last time I did them and then had a manicure appt the girl refused to waste her precious time trying to compete with pickled beet juice on my nails…. 😛

    • Katie Schneider says:

      This! I was raising my eyebrows at daringly dumping delicious beets in a jar over your lovely non-vibrant-pink countertops! Do you have any stain-remover secrets?
      I wear gloves when peeling beets…

  10. magali says:

    This seems like an appropriate post to tell you that I finally have a birch wood french rolling pin! My sister got it for me for my birthday. I have yet to try it, but I love to touch the soft wood! I can now make my very first home made pie crust… and I can give a pie to Ralph Lauren as a token of my appreciation.

  11. Denise says:

    Just to clarify my reason for reading is NOT “I assume since you’re here, and you’re still reading you too have an interest in pickled beets.” You are just too funny REGARDLESS of the topic. So, even though I have no affinity for beets except for an awesome beet soup I had once, I still drop by for a chuckle or two every day! Thanks. Kinda like “Karen! Better than Prosac!”

    • Karen says:

      Thank you ma’am. That’s my goal. If you don’t like the topic you better be entertained by something else at least. ~ karen!

      • anne says:

        how many quarts does your recipe make?

        • anne says:

          hi karen how many quarts does your recipe make?

          • Karen says:

            Hi Anne! Sorry! I missed your original comment. I actually just ran down to my original recipe card from years ago and I haven’t marked how many quarts! But from what I remember it doesn’t make a ton. Probably 6 or 7 half quart jars. ~ karen!

  12. Melody Madden says:

    Pickled beets are one of my all time favs …. Can’t wait to try this recipe.

  13. Darlene says:

    Instead of using the spices (by the way I work for McCormick Spice Co) try using red hot cinnamon candies! You will love that flavor!

  14. Arlene says:

    How did you know? I was just about to strangle my friend – for her coveted Pickled Beet recipe… when you post, what I believe to be the same recipe I would have gone to jail to get….
    Thanks — I too have gone over to the dark side –the dark purple side — can’t live without a jar in my fridge.
    thanks a mil 🙂

  15. Mary Werner says:

    No better way to make your poop fashionably pink!

    • Shauna says:

      Ha ha, that sounds like a fashion that would have been written into The Hunger Games (yes, I’m one of the bazillion that read these in a week).

  16. Langela says:

    Just yesterday I read a blogger who roasts her beets with carrots. I am not one for pickled beets. That is the only way I’ve ever had them. I also don’t like sweet pickles. I have been almost convinced to try them unpickled at some point to see if I can handle them that way. Otherwise, Ralph is on speed dial along with my travel agent. I may be taking a trip soon.

  17. Karol says:

    I haven’t eaten a beet since I was 9 when my dad lovingly shoved them down my throat, because, he said “who doesn’t like beets?” That was a hundred years ago, and now I don’t have to eat anything I don’t like. And I don’t like beets. The only thing I eat that is pickled is a pickle. They do however, make a beautiful dye.

  18. Meagan says:

    This might elicite a “My prayers are with you” remark but I wouldn’t object to a detailed post on processing. That’s the part of canning that freaks me out. Otherwise I’d have a pantry full of zucchini salsa, jams and pickles!

  19. Barbie says:

    LUB me some beets! Any kind! I also can beets every year and we usually always have enough to last until the next garden produces more. I also canned golden beets this year….not pickled. Golden are so good in salads! YUM!
    My recipe is much the same as yours.
    I certainly hope you are growing some beets in your garden…can’t remember….sorry. 🙂
    PS: I tried to pressure can them one year! NO NO NO! They turned out completely mushy! I don’t think beets are suppose to be pressure canned. I lost a whole batch and was so mad at myself! 🙁

  20. Beets taste like you are chewing the dirt right out of your garden. Ok – I confess- I have never tried a picked beet.
    My hubs recently started to sneak them into our juicer and make our daily juice with beets too. I’m suddenly in love with them. Still mad at him for tricking me -but beets are YUM. Don’t tell him. Shhhh.

    • Karen says:

      Lynne – Does he cook the beets or raw for the juicer? We did raw but the fella didn’t wash the beet so it really did taste like dirt in the smoothie. Plus it of course was raw. It was quite gross in fact. ~ karen!

      • I had to ask him. Now he knows I like the juice. I usually make a gross face, and don’t confess that I am secretly in love with the beet addition in the juice. I have spent way to many years telling him that beets are the grossest thing on earth.
        He juices them raw, {but peels them first}. It makes the juice such a brilliant color and makes it taste sweet ( hiding the other stuff that he puts in there, and doesn’t want to tell me about either).

      • Debbie says:

        We got this recipe off “The Chew” with raw beets. It is soooo good! I think peeling the beets is the trick to make them good raw. (Wear gloves!)
        Beet Slaw
        1 lg. beet peeled, and grated (use a processor)
        1 Tbs. EVOO
        1 Tbs. dijon mustard
        juice of 1 lemon
        1 Tbs. horseradish
        3 green onion sliced
        salt and pepper
        Whisk together the oil, mustard, and lemon juice. Toss in the remaining ingredients.
        This is so delish! Try it!

  21. Susan says:

    Oh rats, I’m just too much of a realist. My cream-coloured Safari outfit ended up with pickled beet juice splatters on it. I’m one of those people who keep going out and buying white summer tops and wear them once before splattering them with something. Am I the definition of an optimist?
    Since I gave up cooking for Lent one year and forgot to start again, I don’t pickle any more but there is a lady down the street who keeps me supplied with pickled beets and gluten-free mustard pickles. She is a friend indeed because I sure do love those pickles.

  22. CBuffy says:

    Mmmmmmmm. Home canned pickled beets and macaroni and cheese. Food of the GODS!!!

  23. I have to admit I have never tried a beat in any form in my entire life. I don’t think I would go out and buy them to try but if I am ever somewhere they have beats for offer I might just give one a try.

  24. White says:

    My preference with pickled beets (any/all pickles, actually) is the amount of “bite”.

    Two things can adjust that bite:
    1) “Pickling vinegar” = 7% acetic acid, not 5%
    2) Adding a small “hot” pepper to each jar

    Question: do you wear gloves when peeling/handling the cooked beets? If so… wimp 🙂

    • Karen says:

      White – I don’t wear gloves when handing blindingly hot peppers, so no. Definitely not with beets. The stains rub/wash/wear off after less than a day so it doesn’t bother me none. 🙂 Plus if you get hungry you can always suck on your fingers throughout the day. ~ karen

  25. Pat says:

    Beets as a side dish with perogies! MMMM.
    Yes, Karen, you are so right about the processing in the hot water bath. For years my mother and I made her beet “relish” recipe which did not call for the processing and no one ever got sick. Over the past few years we have been adding that part with all the new information on what is in our food now and how the canning process has changed. If you ever take a “Food Safe” course, that’ll make your eyes pop and reconsider how you are dealing with food.

  26. Kelly says:

    I was just thinking longingly about pickled beets when I was planting the little beet seeds this weekend. My recipe is very similar except I just pour the syrup over the beets in the jar and then pop the lids on. Another favorite at our house is pickled carrots. Can’t wait.

  27. Rebecca says:

    Well, what I had to say has already been said, but I feel so strongly about it that I’ll repeat it… ICK! Beets taste like dirt. You will never make me like them (my husband has tried-he eats them by the jarful). They are to me what Brussels sprouts are to you. I hate Brussels sprout too though! Probably more than beets actually. If I had a gun to my head and a plate of each, and forced to eat one, I’d probably pick the beets just because they don’t make me gag.

    • Atticus says:

      Dirt? You need to wash them, you know. 🙂

      As for Brussels sprouts, I never liked them either until a French chef told me to try slicing them very thinly, then saute’ing then in butter (or bacon fat), salt and pepper until tender. I love them that way! Try cooking a few that way and you might change your mind like I did.

  28. Anna says:

    Now here’s a photo op. What does the jar of pickled beets in your fridge look like!?

  29. Paula says:

    Growing up, the only way we ate beets was pickled. I HATED the too vinegar-y taste of them and assumed I just didn’t like beets. Then I grew up and got to eat them just plain roasted with a little salt – YUM! I love beets! Just had ’em in a salad last night, even! But pickled? No, no, no, no, NOOOOO!

  30. Pats says:

    I actually never had a NON-pickled beet until I was an adult. For those who haven’t had them, they don’t really taste anything like a regular beet. It’s a whole different food.

  31. Chrissy says:

    I loved pickled beets, but I’ve never cooked a beet nor eaten a non-pickled variety.

    How long do you boil the beets?

    • Karen says:

      Chrissy – Until they’re done. Heh. Depends on the size of the beet. Around 45 minutes to an hour. Just stick a fork in them like a potato. You want a slight amount of resistance, otherwise they’ll be mush. Especially after you process them for 10 minutes. ~ karen!

  32. Spokangela says:

    We pickled some beets for the first time last year. I thought I hated beets until I grew my own and sliced them up & threw them in a salad. Now I can’t get enough of them!

    I think the deep crimson color of the beet juice/pickling liquid is too beautiful to waste so I am going to dye my stained Ikea dishcloths with it. I’ll let you know how it goes 🙂 Thank you Karen for yet another hysterically funny post.

    • Lynn says:

      If you do the dye that way , a quick word of advice after they get the colour you want let them air dry. Then put them in a pure vinegar bath for at least 30 minutes air dry. Then try washing as normal.
      The vinegar bath (should ) lock in the dye so that they will not run. Like a said it ( should ). It would be better to use the water from the first pot you put the beets in , , , rather than the one that had the spices and vinegar added.
      I use to do needle point and in order to set the colours I would soak after so that the items could be washed.

  33. Maria says:

    1) These look delicious 2) Thank you for being real about the obsessive safety stuff 3) I need these in my mouth right now.

  34. Nicole2 says:

    I love me a good pickled beet. But I hate anything to do with the kitchen. However, you, Karen, make it sound so exciting, easy and doable, that I may run out and buy stuff to try this. You’re slowly making me more domesticated. My husband will be so impressed.

  35. charissa says:

    Love this! I have to confess though… although I’m finally starting to come around on the idea of pickled things (I’m a recovering vinegar hater. I know; I’m working on it.) I am ashamed to state that I really don’t know how I’m supposed to eat pickles! Just, you know, beside the other veggies at dinner? Even though they’re cold? Do you throw ’em into salads, or is that weird? I like the Down South idea of using beets as a burger condiment. But a girl can only eat so many burgers in a day!

  36. Evalyn says:

    The Blue Ball(cough)Canning Book has a receipe they call spicey pickled beets, which contain slices of onion; it’s not as vinegar-y as the Pickled Beet receipe and is my favorite, even over my mother’s recipe.

    Here’s a thought – instead of ground spices, use the same ones, only in whole form. Genius, right?

    Charissa: the correct way to eat pickled beets is with a fork or your fingers out of the jar.

    Removing beet stains from your hands: lemon juice works really well, and even softens your skin.

    • Mary W says:

      I adore onions that are picked with beets! I forgot and since I’m going to try Karen’s recipe, will now remember to add the onions. Great with goat cheese on salads with candied pecans and strawberries.

  37. Jenny Ryan says:

    My mom makes pickled beets ALL THE TIME and half the time she tosses in some jalapenos to kick up the spice. And as much as I love things with jalapenos…oh my god do I hate pickled beets. Partially because two years ago at Thanksgiving I thought the pile of pickled beets was a pile of cranberry sauce from the can. It wasn’t. What a terrible way to find that out…

    Also, my husband still remembers when he was a kid and thought that the pickled beets on his plate were cinnamon apples. Nope. Hello, pickled beets! The old bait and switch got us both. ^_^

  38. Sarah in Illinois says:

    I’m not sure I am brave enough to try a pickled beet yet. Maybe I should just suck it up and try one.

    As someone else said above, I would like some info on the processing part of canning. I would love to can salsa and we planted way too many pickling cucumber this year, but I am scared to death of creating an accidental bomb in my kitchen.

    • Mary W says:

      I used to can lots of pickles very year and always used the hot water bath method for canning them not the pressure cooker. The cans are put into warm water, covering them by about an inch, brought to and boiled (there is a rack in the bottom so they aren’t resting on the actual pot. Once done, they are lifted out and set on a DRY towel to cool. While they cool you will hears the lids pop as they suck down while cooling. That means they are air tight. Any that don’t pop must be kept in refrigerator as the seal didn’t work. (I never had one that didn’t pop.) This method is for sugared or salted with plenty of vinegar recipes only since the sugar or salt in vinegar is enough acid to preserve them. This method is also used for jams and jellies. I got most of my information from the County Agent’s office which in USA is in every county. They help you with soil testing, growing information for local crops, and canning and preserving food and have many free handouts for pickles, jelly, gardens, fertilizer, insects, etc. Good luck!

  39. Jack Ledger says:

    I just take the beets to my local bar, spend two or three hours sharing shots of tequila and voila, “pickled” beets. I know “groooaaannnn”.

  40. Carolyn says:

    I love beets, however I don’t have a cheap supply of them, so won’t be canning them anytime soon. Boo!

    For those looking for a way to remove the beet juice stains from hands & cutting boards…use salt – kosher salt works very well. Once you are done cutting your beets, wet your hands (or cutting board) in warm water to wash them, and sprinkle salt on them & use it to wash your hands. Then add some soap & voila! Ok, this assumes you have no open cuts, as that would hurt a bit to get the salt in there. Lol! The kosher salt also softens up your hands like you exfoliated them.

  41. Laura Bee says:

    Growing up with Mennonite grandparents, there was ALWAYS pickled beets on the supper table. I finally started making made my own a few years ago, but never processed them. Nana never did. Thanks for the weird reminder that our food has changed. So weird. This year I’m going to cook them outside on the big burner so the kitchen doesn’t turn into a sweaty pink sauna.

  42. Carla S. says:

    Oh, yes, pickled beets- MMmmm good !Don’t throw the juice left in the jar away ! Put some hard boiled eggs (shelled) in it for a week or two and you have pretty pink pickled eggs. My hubby’s in heaven ! I’ll eat the beets but he can have the pickled eggs. He’s even happier if I throw in a jalapeno.
    If you don’t grow your own beets,I bought the gal. cans of beets at the store one year and pickled them. Couldn’t tell the difference and saved all the work of cooking, peeling, & pink hands. Just a thought.

  43. AM I the only one the LOATHES pickled beets? Seriously, I gag looking the photos. My mom tried to force feed them to me as a child (something about them being good for me) YUCK! I usually agree with your taste but I must click away today.

  44. Shauna says:

    Do I have to have 10 lbs. of beets? Is there a smaller recipe perhaps? I’m still freaked out (since last year) of a canning project. I’d like to start small until I earn my big girl canning panties. I know (or so I’ve read) that one cannot just reduce a recipe for canning like one can for cooking. Any tips? Besides “grow a pair of ovaries and just do it”. 🙂

    • pumpkin says:

      Yeah Shauna. No harm in reducing this recipe. It will be just fine cut in half or 1/3s. I have only one ovary and am fearless. You will do fine!

      • NinaMargo says:

        Oh Thank Gawd! I love pickled beets, but it’s just me and the hubster and he runs screaming from the house at the sight of beets… so I only eat them when we eat out of when he’s out of town. I’ll make a small batch and put them in the front of the fridge where he can’t find them.

  45. Karen Eggleston says:

    After we had eaten the beets, my mother always threw in shelled hard boiled eggs. . I love the beets but don’t care for the eggs.

  46. pve says:

    Beet it….dadadada da da….sorry I could not resist.
    Your beet recipe looks marvelous dahlink.

    • Karen says:

      LOL! Thank you ma’am. I’ve given away many jars. 3 just today. I’m gonna have to start being less free with the beets! ~ karen!

  47. Jackie B says:

    No matter what you could possibly pay me, I would NEVER eat a beet. I did once when I was on the “Lose Ten Pounds in Ten Minutes” diet and you had to eat every single thing it listed. I ate the beets and gagged. I thought I was eating dirt. Actually, dirt would have tasted better. Yuck. Beets and califlower are two things on an extremely short list that will never go down my throat. Ever. Tripe either. And probably not the bull balls and other private parts that I saw people eating on a exotic restaurant show. Most everything else, I am game!

  48. Arlene P says:

    Does this mean I have to eat the pickled beets my neighbour gave me, oh, a few years ago?

    • Karen says:

      Um. No. I always ask if someone likes pickled beets before I offer them any. And sometimes home preserves just freak people out. So .. yeah .. don’t eat em if you don’t wanna. ~ karen!

  49. Mary Werner says:

    Beet greens are the best of the greens – hope you try them too. I always cook mine with bacon.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Mary – These beets didn’t come with greens, but yes I cook beet greens all the time when I get bunches of beets with greens attached. ~ karen!

  50. Blue says:


    Beets have come into my house for the first time this evening in my CSA share. I have always wanted to try pickled beets! And there’s only enough for me to eat – not enough to worry about canning for later, so I don’t even have to worry about canning, just whether or not I can stomach my first attempt at pickled beets.

    Thank you for your excellent advice (and good timing)!

  51. Alex says:

    I first heard them called ‘pickled beets’ a few months ago, when I was talking about beets, and my man asked how we cook beets down in this neck of the woods – and I didn’t know what he meant. Beets are always in bottles. That’s just what beets are, right? RIGHT?! Pickled beets doesn’t even make sense, since all beets are pickled.

    I guess I shouldn’t have broken up with him over that.

  52. Gayla T says:

    Beets are beautiful! If they are not washed thoroughly before cooking with the peels on they do get a dirty taste….because the dirt cooks in. Also do not cut off the top part of the beet before cooking. Leave a bit of the stem on or they bleed to death. My mother’s words when I cooked the beets and they were very pale pink when done. I hate boiled eggs but in the pickle juice they are yummy. There is still no germ known to man that can survive in all that vinegar and salt. Believe me, our kitchens are much cleaner now than they used to be. We used to do really disgusting things like clean poultry which meant removing the insides. However, you can’t cut the amount of vinegar in a recipe. My great great grandmother died from eating her own home made sourkraut. She ran short of vinegar and went ahead with the process which at that time was not done in sterile jars but in open crocks with a rag tied over the top. She told the family what she had done and that it was ok to eat it after she ate some. She said if it made her sick she would reprocess it but she died before bed time that night and it was a horrible death. This story was told by my grandmother every time we made kraut. My other great great grandma was struck by lightening and killed while looking out her screen door at the storm. We are very careful to never eat kraut while standing at a screen door during a storm and we all live long lives.

  53. Christie says:

    I am growing beets for the first time this spring/summer, and I cannot WAIT to pickle ’em right up. I’m going to have to give your recipe a try! Seriously… pickled beets totally kick African safari’s ass.

  54. mothership says:

    Hi Karen- did not read ALL comments so maybe somebody mentioned… pickled rat tails???
    save the beet tails (scrubbed, but still…. hairy)
    & pickle them… serve at your halloween buffet.
    My pickled beet recipe is not sweet… & done with raw beets… but longer processing time so beets cook in the jar,,, works especially well for the tails!

  55. kay says:

    i think this mayhave something to do with being from north west england, but since moving to Canada i have found that all pickling is done with white vinegar…. soooooooo bland. has anyone done this with malt vinegar? i have just done a batch of red cabbage with malt vinegar and will be doing pickles next…. no not dill pickles, pickled onions. now how about beets in malt. any feed back pl

    • Karen says:

      Hi Kay! I think that Cabbage would be great with a malt vinegar, but I personally wouldn’t do beets with malt. I would do white vinegar or even a balsamic if you want to go nuts. ~ karen!

  56. Joan says:

    I did the beets with pickling vinegar. Should I have used regular vinegar? Best recipe ever.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Joan – As far as I know pickling vinegar and regular distilled vinegar are pretty much the same thing. I use regular distilled, but I’m sure what you used was fine. Apparently it was if it worked out for you! ~ karen

  57. Texas Shay says:

    Thanks for sharing your love of pickled beets. I did not know I even liked beets until I grew some in my garden because my older neighbor said he loved pickled beets. I looked up a recipe, tried it out, and- BAM! I was hooked! I often have roasted beets with my lunch salad 4-5 days a week.
    I wanted to add that when our grandmothers and great grandmothers were canning with vinegar, most of that vinegar was 9% acidity- there is a big difference between that an the 5% most of us use today.

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  59. Joe says:

    Though we have pickled beets before, this is the first time we have made “Processed Spiced Pickled Beets”. How soon after processing am I safe to dive into them and know that I am experiencing the full flavor?
    Thank you.


  60. Karen says:

    Right away! Eat em up! ~ karen!

  61. karin says:

    hooooly cow …. I did it !

    I, Karin, born of Magdalena Renate and Klaus-Peter have made pickled beets… thanks to you… you done it again: inspired the poop outta me.

    your post is just so freaking accessible, it took the fear of canning right outta me. I had 2 ginormous beets hanging around, I figured I give it a whirl and see what’s up. once cooked and peeled I made the mistake of leaving them out of my sight for a moment. the husband came along and snatched a goodish portion of them to snack on. can’t blame him really, beets are delicious in any form.

    so I ended up with only one big jar of em, but that’s aright, I’m so freaking proud of myself and thankful to you.

    I’m really glad you pointed out that they can be eaten right away too cause I can only fend off the husband for so long. I was guarding my jar all night, bonking him on the nose with a wooden spoon whenever he so much as ventured in my direction.

    Oh, hah, and you know what else I was making while I was waiting for them beets to cook?

    I made gnocchi as per your valued instructions. Happened to have 2 lbs of mashed tatters and figured, give that a whirl too. Sadly, they were *harumph* boxed *mumble* ones *cough* so the one to one ratio didn’t quite work, but hey, they came out good, drowned in butter and garlic, how could they have not.


  62. Angie says:

    How long after canning do you recommend waiting to eat them? Made some today and I’m dying to try them!!

  63. Stephanie says:

    Beets.taste.like.dirt. No matter what you do to them or if they are regular or golden or whatever. DIRT

  64. Sandra D says:

    Coop and SuperStore had beets on for less than $4 for 10 pounds last week, but I still have a half dozen left from 2015. Here’s my recipe (pretty similar). I don’t process mine, either. I think the vinegar keeps ’em.

    Mom’s Pickled Beets (that’s MY mom, BTW)

    Boil 3-4 pds of small beets until tender. Cool and peel.

    Mix together:

    2 c sugar
    2 c water
    2 c vinegar
    1 tsp allspice
    1 tsp cloves
    1 T cinnamon

    Pour over prepared beets and simmer 15 minutes. Pack in jars and seal. Makes 2 quarts.

    Did 2 batches at a time (2 pots) – almost 5 pds each from a 10 pd bag.

    Did 1.5 times the sauce for the first batch – had some left over so just made the recipe as is, for the second batch..

    Got almost 13 pints, with 3 cups of juice left.

    • Karen says:

      Ha! What’s funny is that’s the recipe I used to use but the last time I made it, it tasted SO sweet to me that I changed it up. 🙂 ~ karen!

  65. L says:

    Just a curious query. Is there a purpose for the ID tape on your jars other than just that, ID? I’ve just never seen anything like that in all my canning years. Thanks.

  66. Lush says:

    Hi Karen
    Would have loved to have watched the video but it went straight to an ad & stayed there. 🙁
    Your latest video section also just stayed on ads – du fuq happening here?
    Might be cause I am in Blighty & not Canada but thought I would let you know.
    I. LOVE. BEETS! so thanks for the recipe.
    Lush x

    • Karen says:

      Hey Lush. No it shouldn’t have anything to do with you not being in Canada. Different ads just happen to run. The odd time it’s a long ad. If you were to reload the page and watch it again chances are you wouldn’t have an ad, or it would just be a short 10 or 15 second one. ~ karen!

  67. Charlene says:

    Although no fan of the InstantPot for many things it does a great job of cooking beets!

  68. Kim Kelley says:

    Does the car ad at the beginning of your video pay your rent? 🙂
    Inquiring minds and all….

    • Karen says:

      Hey Kim. The ads run through a network. Sometimes they’re long ads, sometimes they’re short ads. So what you see might not be what I or someone else sees. Just kind of the luck (or unluck) of the draw. And if it was long, then yes, I imagine it is paying my rent, lol. ~ karen!

  69. Kelly says:

    It doesn’t really take that many beets to turn your pee red. The first time it happened, I panicked and was debating whether to call my doc or go directly to the ER when it dawned on me that I had eaten beets the night before.

    For me, a typical serving will give my pee a pinkish tinge, and two servings make it magenta.

  70. Andrea says:

    I would end up with beat juice all down the front of my beautiful cream Ralph Lauren outfit

  71. Bunguin says:

    Dwight Schrute would be proud.

  72. Jenny says:

    Alas, I cannot get behind pickled beets (or beets in any form. Blech). My mom makes them all the time and I have had coworkers ask me for her pickled beets “because they’re so good” because I am an ungrateful child and give away the pickled beets that she gives me. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  73. Jane Doe says:

    Ok, for those of us who don’t have any of the canning stuff, and really don’t want to go down that road. Because the last time we did– well– we’re still making mayo and pumpkin pies from scratch– Can this recipe be cut down and you just, you know, end up with a batch or two for dinner?

  74. TrackB says:

    I love, love, love pickled beets. I hide them from my family even though they would rather have an open wound than eat a beet. Better safe than sorry when it comes to beets!

  75. Lynn says:

    All the ‘asshead beets’ would have to go in the trash in my house. Anything that behaves in an ‘asshead’ manner is in danger of destruction. I usually give a warning but if the poor behavior continues, into the trash it goes–no matter what it is. I draw the line, however, at throwing out the hubby & the dogs–they are in a special class–and I love them more than air! But the electric can opener that wouldn’t open cans–to the dump!

  76. Sheila Turchyn says:

    Oh boy…another recipe that brings me back to my childhood and the smell of beets (amongst other things!) getting pickled! Our home was full of those wonderful aromas of fall foods getting ready for winter. A delight for all the senses. Thank you! I guess I’m pickling beets this weekend!

  77. Mary W says:

    My daughter hates beets because they taste like dirt and I’m wondering (after reading all the comments about dirt) if beets aren’t a little like wine – she loves the earthy wines and I hate them, prefer the sweeter. I love beets anyway at all, especially the greens. We’ve been to several wine tastings and always the same results – she is a tannin person, I’m a untannin person.
    Got to try the pickles since I’m going to try the sprouts but my favorite way to eat beets is roasted and sliced, over lettuce with goat cheese, candied pecans, and fresh pears or strawberries. Beets and goat cheese is heavenly.

  78. Renee Ryz says:

    Can that base recipe be used to pickle other things? Like carrots or mushrooms, or the dreaded brussel sprout? Also, I have a couple of Ball canning books that are way over 15 years old. I always double the processing time when I make my apple butter & sauce. Actually I am too afraid to try tomatoes just for that reason.

  79. Jody says:

    Since I have excess beets right now, including white beets, I need to give this a go. The only thing that will be missing with the white beets is the red poop. But…. will I have white poop???

  80. Sabina says:

    I dislike beets, can’t get past the “dirt” taste. I’m still here though because your blog is the highlight of my day 🙂

  81. Lynn says:

    I use almost the identical recipe for my beets an yes it’s sooo good .
    Family loves them except for one son in law he never had beets before an it kind of freaked him out (the after affects ) I mean . So he will not eat any beats again.
    I did Candy Cane Beets and Golden Yellow this year as well also gave seeds for Golden beets to sister in law they were a big hit with her as well.
    No Red hands .
    I agree roasted beets have to be second best way to eat beets. ( roast like a baked potato).
    Third way sliced thinly raw on salads .

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