Perfect Pickled Beets

We love this quick pickled beets recipe! It’s super simple and results in amazingly delicious, tangy, and slightly sweet beets. Plus, you can enjoy these easy pickled beets as early as tomorrow!

Quick Pickled Beets

I love pickled beets, and I love them even more when I make them at home. Our pickled beets recipe is super easy to follow. They have a tangy, slightly sweet flavor with a subtle hint of spice.

Like our pickled red onions and these bread and butter pickles, they soak in a vinegar brine with some spices and the right amount of sugar to balance the vinegar. I love them so much that I have a hard time not going back for seconds.

Homemade Pickled Beets

Key Ingredients

  • Beets: Look for firm beets with smooth, unblemished skin. Red or yellow beets work well. Before pickling the beets, you’ll first roast them with a bit of olive oil.
  • Onion: I love the addition of onion in this pickle. Richard Hattaway shared this recipe for pickled beets with us. He adds a few slices of onion to the top of the jar so they pickle with the beets. The flavor is amazing!
  • Vinegar: I use apple cider vinegar for this recipe and love the added flavor compared to distilled vinegar.
  • Sugar: This balances the acidity of the vinegar. You can reduce the sugar in our recipe below. When making the brine on the stovetop, add sugar to taste. We enjoy the balance of 4 tablespoons (full recipe below), but you can cut back if needed. You can also substitute the sugar for honey or maple syrup.
  • Spices: I use salt, a clove, and an allspice berry in this pickle brine. Since I don’t use allspice berries very often, I steal one from a jar of pickling spice, which I use to make these bread and butter pickles.

How to Make Pickled Beets

These pickles fall into the refrigerator pickle category, requiring no complicated canning process. They are quick and easy to make, and you can enjoy them in as little as a day. For another easy refrigerator pickle, try these quick dill pickles.

Here’s our simple two-part process to make these pickled beets: First, cook your beets until they are fork-tender. Roasting them tends to bring out more flavor, but boiling works too.

Once the beets have cooled down, peel and slice them. Then, combine them with sliced onions in a jar and prepare a simple vinegar brine using cider vinegar, sugar, cloves, and allspice berries. As the brine works its magic, you’ll end up with a jar full of delightful pickled beets and a bonus of pickled onions.

Pouring the hot brine over the beets and onions

Once you have a jar of these pickled beets in your fridge, you’ll discover endless possibilities for enjoying them. They’re a fantastic addition to sandwiches, wraps, and salads, and they stand alone as a hearty and delightful side dish. I especially love them with sharp cheddar cheese and this cucumber salad for a snack or light lunch.

We’re sharing this recipe for pickled beets in collaboration with our friend and chef, Richard Hattaway. If you enjoy these beets, take a look at some of his other recipes like quick sauerkraut or this homemade kimchi.

Perfect Pickled Beets

  • PREP
  • COOK
  • TOTAL

Pickling beets is simple, and our recipe results in amazingly delicious, tangy, and slightly sweet beets. These work wonders in sandwiches, salads, or as a stand-alone side dish. Use any variety or color of beet for this recipe.

Makes 1 quart

You Will Need

4 medium beets

1 ½ tablespoons olive oil, for roasting

A quarter of an onion, sliced 1/4-inch thick

4 tablespoons (50g) sugar

1 ¼ cups (295ml) cider vinegar

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

1 whole clove

1 allspice berry, see notes

Directions

  • Roast Beets
  • 1Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Set aside a large baking sheet.

    2Prepare the beets by removing the tops and roots, and then place them on a large sheet of aluminum foil or parchment paper.

    3Drizzle olive oil over the beets, ensuring they are well coated, and fold up the foil or paper to create a sealed packet.

    4Place the packet on the baking sheet and roast in the oven until they are easily pierced with a fork, 45 to 55 minutes.

    5Allow the beets to cool in the packet at room temperature or, better yet, refrigerate until cold.

  • Pickle the Beets
  • 1Peel the beets and slice them into 1/4-inch thick pieces. If needed, use a vegetable peeler to help with the peeling.

    2Pack the sliced beets tightly into a clean jar and add the sliced onions.

    3Heat the vinegar, sugar, salt, clove, and allspice berry in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until simmering and the sugar dissolves.

    4Pour the hot liquid over the onions and beets, leaving a 1/8-inch gap between the pickle brine and the top of the jar.

    5Place the lid on the jar and tighten it until finger-tight. Let cool to room temperature.

    6Once cooled, fully tighten the lid and store the jar in the refrigerator. Initially, place the jar upside down in a bowl and flip it right-side up after a day or two.

    7Enjoy pickled beets as early as the next day. As long as the brine covers the beets and onions, they will last in the fridge for up to a month.

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • Allspice berries taste like a combination of cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg. We found whole allspice berries less common in the grocery spice aisle, but Chef Richard recommends buying a “pickling spice blend” instead. McCormick “Mixed Pickling Spice” contains allspice berries, which we purchased for this recipe.
  • The nutrition facts provided below are estimates.
Nutrition Per Serving Serving Size 1/6 of the jar / Calories 123 / Total Fat 3.7g / Saturated Fat 0.5g / Cholesterol 0mg / Sodium 268.5mg / Carbohydrate 20.1g / Dietary Fiber 3g / Total Sugars 15.8g / Protein 1.8g
AUTHOR:  Adam and Joanne Gallagher
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13 comments… Leave a Review
  • Ruth munson August 3, 2023, 1:54 pm

    I would love to make that recipe for 6 quarts rather than one quart. I’m not very good in math lol

    Reply
    • Joanne August 3, 2023, 4:10 pm

      Hi Ruth, You will need to multiply everything in the recipe by six, so you will need 24 medium beets, 9 tablespoons olive oil, for roasting, 1 ½ medium onions, sliced 1/4-inch thick, 24 tablespoons sugar, 7 ½ cups cider vinegar, 3 teaspoons fine sea salt, 6 whole cloves, 6 allspice berries.

      Reply
  • Siouxma August 2, 2023, 9:46 pm

    Thanks for this timely recipe. I just made some pickled beets today using canned beets. They are marinating in the fridge now, and I told myself that next time I will cook my own beets. Voila, here’s your recipe along with onions, too — Yummo!!!

    Reply
    • Adam August 3, 2023, 4:03 pm

      What great timing. Having the onions in there really adds to the flavor 🙂

      Reply
  • Patti H. August 2, 2023, 6:29 pm

    I am so excited to try your pickled beets recipe! I love beets, and they are so healthy. Your method of roasting the beets is such a time saver, too. Please share the oven temperature that you recommend for roasting them. Thank you for all your wonderful recipes! I make many of them often. My husband requests your coleslaw all the time! 😊

    Reply
    • Joanne August 3, 2023, 4:08 pm

      Hi Patti, We apologize! The oven temperature was missed in the instructions. We roast the beets in a 375°F (190°C) oven.

      Reply
  • Ian Slater July 30, 2023, 5:25 pm

    Hi there, Love the website and use many recipes from it. One question though if you don’t mind? In the pickled beet recipe you suggested using a pickled spice mix which I intend to do but there is no quantity suggested considering only one clove and one all berry is listed in the original. Please advise. Thank you for all your recipes. Best regards. Ian

    Reply
    • Adam July 30, 2023, 6:46 pm

      Hi Ian, we found whole allspice berries less common in the grocery spice aisle so we recommend buying a pickling spice blend instead if you can’t find allspice. McCormick Mixed Pickling Spice contains allspice berries, which we purchased for this recipe. You can use the spice blend for making other pickles. More recipes coming soon! 🙂

      Reply
      • Ian Slater August 4, 2023, 3:20 pm

        Hi Adam, Many thanks for your prompt reply, however you didn’t answer my question. I asked what quantity of the pickling spice mix would recommend to replace the allspice berries? I would think a teaspoon at the most. Many thanks and keep up the good work. Also best regards to Joanne

        Reply
        • Adam August 4, 2023, 4:34 pm

          The pickling spice isn’t to replace the allspice berries. The pickling spice contains allspice berries which can be harder to find by themselves in grocery stores. You can purchase the pickling spice and take out the allspice berries you need from the pickling spice mix. The good news is, you can then use the pickling spice for other recipes.

          Reply
          • Ian August 5, 2023, 4:18 am

            Thanks Adam

  • Julia Pomeroy July 26, 2023, 5:25 am

    Being English I could feel my hackles rising, pickled beetroot and picked onions are something we British have eaten for centuries and so I read the recipe ready to criticise! Ooops I am now wondering if there are any beetroot for sale in my local green grocers here in Cyprus as that sounds stupendous. I am now goinig to look at your pickled onion recipe.

    Reply
  • Gail July 25, 2023, 7:31 pm

    I appreciate your emphasis on tasty and healthy foods that are well-prepared..

    Reply

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