Beets by Cay AKA Pickled Beets

Let’s all take a moment to appreciate the fact that beets are finally having their day. They’re a bold little root vegetable that definitely takes a little getting used to, but once your taste buds snap out of their beet-hating madness; this recipe might become a new fav.

If you’re not yet a beet-liever, this is definitely a good way to introduce yourself to them, because the sugar and vinegar just expand the flavor into something seriously amazing.

A lot of recipes call for canned beets, but I think this is cheating. If you want the best, you need to start fresh!


Don’t let their intimidating look fool you, cutting them down is actually really simple. You just cut off the leaves and then the outer layer.


Eventually, they’re going to look like this.. and your hands are going to be a lovely shade of pink.

I like to keep the pieces on the bigger side, so I just cut it in half and then slice it. You can adjust the size to your liking. As long as they are not huge, it won’t affect the cooking time.

For your liquid, you need equal parts water and apple cider vinegar (one cup each). I make really small batches; since the flavor is so bold, I only eat one or two at a time as a quick little pick me up snack. The more beets you use, the more water and vinegar you need.

Put that together in a sauce pan and add your sugar. You want to mix it up until the sugar is dissolved so it doesn’t stick to the bottom. It usually takes less than a minute, depending how fast your water heats up.

Once the sugar is good and dissolved, we add the beets.


Almost immediately, that perfect color starts to get absorbed by the liquid. You want to bring this to a boil, reduce to medium, and cook about 15-20 minutes. This will get the beets nice and soft. If you start to boil off too much liquid, feel free to add more water and vinegar. Just remember to keep it equal so you don’t kill the intended flavor.

Once they start to soften, remove from heat and let them cool right in the pan. This is really important because you do NOT want to put hot liquid into glass or it will explode… Ask me how I know..

As soon as it’s cool, you can transfer it right into your container of choice and then pop it in the fridge. Today I used a large jelly jar, but old pickle jars work too (save them)!


I usually wait about a day before I dig in because that gives them time to really develop. Some people put them on salads, but I really think they’re best just how they are.


1 cup apple cider vinegar

1 cup water

1 large beet

1/4 cup sugar

Halve and slice your beet(s), set aside. Place water and vinegar in a sauce pan over medium high heat, add sugar. Stir until the sugar is well dissolved, then add your beets. Once it’s boiling, reduce to medium and cook about 15-20 minutes depending on how soft you like them.


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