Classic Pickled Beets

Pickled Beets

The Spruce / Diana Rattray

  • Total: 80 mins
  • Prep: 35 mins
  • Cook: 45 mins
  • Yield: 16 to 24 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
71 Calories
0g Fat
16g Carbs
1g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 16 to 24 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 71
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 158mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 16g 6%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Protein 1g
Calcium 22mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Pickled beets along with bread-and-butter pickles are a favorite condiment for many people. This basic pickled beets recipe is perfectly spiced with cinnamon sticks, allspice, and optional cloves. And the recipe is easily doubled to make a larger batch.

For step-by-step help with the canning process, make sure you consult preparing jars for canning and boiling water processing.

Ingredients

  • 4 pounds beets (unpeeled)
  • 1 cinnamon stick (broken into pieces)
  • 2 teaspoons whole allspice berries
  • Optional: 1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar (or use all granulated sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon pickling salt
  • 2 cups cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Have four or more pint jars sterilized and in simmering water in the canner. And have the sterilized lids ready in barely simmering water. 

  3. Trim the beets, leaving about 1 to 2 inches of their tops on and rootlets intact.

  4. Put in a large saucepan, cover with water, and bring to a boil over high heat.

  5. Boil just until tender, about 15 to 20 minutes, depending on size.

  6. Drain in a colander, rinse under cold water and slip the beets out of their skins.

  7. Cut the beets into small chunks.

  8. Put cinnamon, allspice, and optional cloves in a spice bag and tie tightly.

  9. In a large enamel or stainless-steel pan, combine the sugars, salt, vinegar, and water.

  10. Add the spice bag.

  11. Bring to a boil, stirring, until sugar is dissolved.

  12. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes.

  13. Meanwhile, pack the beets into the prepared hot sterilized pint jars.

  14. Using a damp clean cloth or paper towel, wipe the jar rims and threads.

  15. Remove the spice bag from the vinegar and sugar mixture; discard the spices.

  16. Using a canning funnel (wide or narrow, depending on your jars), pour the hot liquid over the beets, leaving 1/2 inch of headspace.

  17. Place the two-piece lids on the jars. Tighten gently; do not over-tighten.

  18. Put the filled jars in the canner. The water should be about 1 inch above the jars.

  19. Add extra hot or boiling water, if necessary.

  20. Process in a boiling water bath for 30 minutes or more, depending on your altitude. 

  21. Remove from the canner and set the jars on a clean dish towel on a counter. Let the jars come to room temperature. Re-tighten the screw-on bands and store in a cool, dry place for up to one year.

Processing Times by Altitude

  • 0 to 1,000 feet: 30 minutes
  • 1,001 to 3,000 feet: 35 minutes
  • 3,001 to 6,000 feet: 40 minutes
  • Above 6,000 feet: 45 minutes

More for the Beet Lover

If pickled beets aren't your favorite, but you still love this garnet-colored vegetable, try them boiled and glazed as your new favorite side dish with roasted meat. And if you love bacon, this roasted beet salad can't be beat.