Pickled Beets Recipe

[5 Aug 2013 | By | 6 Comments]

pickled beets @talkoftomatoes

Last year I made jam. And jelly. And confiture. I lined my pantry with processed berries and stone fruits, figs and fruit sauces.

Not-so-ironically, this year I discovered that we are not big jam-eaters. Our morning breakfast doesn’t necessarily include the quintessential jam-on-toast. I cook far more than I bake, leaving nary a scone in the house. While a dollop of jam is brilliant on the occasional Greek yogurt – a spoonful once in awhile hardly merits an entire troupe of jars lined up in my pantry. And in fact: I did have enough jam to feed an army.

So I gave a LOT of jam away as gifts. Friends and family—with jam-eating habits—were grateful for their good fortune. And I was happy to share.

beets - 3

This year I am a year smarter, a year more practiced and onto my family’s eating habits. I won’t be making miles of jellies or vats of fruit jams. Though it was fun to experiment with a plethora of jams, this summer is all about putting up what is practical (aka: what my family will eat month over month). I am canning:

1. what we loved from last year and want to eat again (tomato sauce, whole tomatoes, bourbon peaches)

2. what we loved from last year and didn’t have enough of to last the whole year (dill pickles, grandma’s strawberry jam, tomato salsa, peach BBQ sauce), and

3. pickles. And I am not just talking cucumbers. So far I have canned: pickled beets, dill pickles, bread and butter pickles, dilly beans. Next up: carrots.

pickled beets @talkoftomatoes - 05

Lucy Norris from Pickled ~ Preserving a World of Tastes and Traditions.

15-18 small to medium red beets*, whole, unpeeled, scrubbed. (remove greens, leave an inch of stem)2 cups white sugar
2 cups vinegar
2 cups water
Spice bag: 1 piece cinnamon bark, 1 tsp whole cloves, 1 tsp allspice

Immerse beets in water, boil until tender (approx 10-15 min). Under cold water or when cool to touch, peel skins and stems (lovely for your compost!). Quarter beets. In a saucepan combine all ingredients (except beets), bring to boil, then remove spice bag. Add beets to pan ans simmer 15 minutes. Fill hot sterilized jars with beet mixture and process 10-15 in hot water bath.

*beets from my garden! Proud moment.
**I added club soda to the leftover beet brine and drank it – beet soda!

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  • Krista said (5 August 2013 at 8:30 pm):

    I’m chuckling because we aren’t big jam eaters either and learned that by making too much and not eating it. :-) I’m making sauerkraut now because we both love it. :-)

  • Janelle (author) said (6 August 2013 at 9:32 pm):

    Krista: “like”!!

  • Hannah said (7 August 2013 at 12:36 pm):

    Love, love, love pickled beets, Janelle! And beet soda sounds marvelous – I’ll keep that in mind. :)

  • SeaJambon said (9 August 2013 at 2:24 pm):

    Love the “beet soda” idea — actually, looks like you’ve made a beet shrub. Adding soda water is great, but how about some vodka and maybe St Germaine? Hmmm… thinking there may need to be a whole aside column on using pickling juices as cocktail bases! Happy to come over and share the heavy lifting with you… 😉

  • wendy@chezchloe said (10 August 2013 at 3:25 pm):

    We did eat all our pickled beets from last year. But I’ve got a few jars left of Asian plum sauce and peach chutney. It’s sometimes hard to plan what our diets will be- I go through so many phases- loads of homemade sourdough and jam… to gluten free or Paleo …. I’m a sucker for trying them all.
    Now I just do a half dozen jars to see what we eat and either give away the fruit or leave it for the animals.
    Happy pickling:)

  • Mary Brockmeyer said (13 August 2013 at 1:17 pm):

    Please, please tell me about the art on your lids…so pretty! Do you label the jars on the sides with the content?