Pickled Beets

Pickled Beets
Pickled Beets

As summer comes to an end, I begin planning for the winter. I fill my freezer with the tastes of summer that I want to enjoy throughout the chilly winter months.

Canning pickled beets is one such thing that just must happen. After all, we definitely need some on the Thanksgiving dinner table.

This is a very basic recipe. You can add extra or different spices if you like.

Another basic brine that I like to use follows this basic ratio:

  • 1 part water : 1 part vinegar : 1 part sugar + salt
  • For every 1 cup water, use 1/2 tsp salt
  • Add whatever spices you like

Pickled Beets

ServingsPrep TimeCook TimeDownload
4 500 pint jars30 minutes 30 minutes


  • You can use any type of beet you like with this recipe. I like to combine different types


  • 4 Cups (1000 ml) Prepared Beets
  • 1.5 Cups Sliced Onions
  • 2.5 Cups (625 ml) Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 Cups (400 g) Sugar
  • 1.5 Cups (375 ml) Water
  • 1 Tablespoon Mustard Seed
  • 1 Teaspoon each Salt and Cloves
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick (6 inch)


Before preparing your beets, get your canning jars ready.

  • Sterilize the jars in boiling water or the dishwasher with the “heated dry” setting.
  • Get the lids and rings ready by holding the lids in hot (not boiling) water. The lids do not need to be sterilized as they do not touch the food itself.
  • Get the canning water bath ready by filling with water and getting it boiling.

Preparing Beets

  1. Scrub beets well to remove dirt. Leave the root end and 1/2 inch of stem on beets.
  2. Boil beets until a knife inserts easily. Do not overcook though. The knife should feel a little resistance near the centre of the beet. Depending on the size, this could take up to 30 minutes. Check beets after 15 minutes and remove smaller ones once they are cooked.
  3. Remove cooked beets from water and allow to cool enough to handle.
  4. Wear gloves to remove skin, stem and root of each beet.
  5. Cut up each beet into desired shapes and sizes.
  6. Set aside and prepare brine.


  1. Combine Cider Vinegar, Sugar, Water, Mustard Seeds, Salt, Cloves, and Cinnamon Stick in a saucepan.
  2. Bring mixture to a boil and cook for 15 minutes.
  3. Strain out spices.
  4. Place a few onion pieces in the bottom of each jar.
  5. Fill jar with beets (do not fill to the top as you will need 1/2 inch headspace after brine is added. I like to fill to the bottom of the screw threads).
  6. Add brine to each jar.
  7. Using a rubber spatula or canning stick, remove any air in each jar by pushing the stick down the sides of each jar.
  8. Place lids and rings on each jar.
  9. Place jars in boiling water canner.
  10. Bring water in canner back to a boil and start processing timer (10 minutes).
  11. Once time is done, remove canner from heat and let jars remain in water for 5 minutes.
  12. Remove from pot and let sit, undisturbed for 24 hours.
  13. Jar lids will pop to signify the vacuum seal of each jar. If any jar lids do not pop and seal, place them in the fridge and use first.
  14. It takes a few days before the flavours fully develop.
  15. Remove rings and place jars in pantry for up to one year. I remove the rings so that a broken seal becomes obvious. If you are concerned that a jar is not sealed properly, do not use the contents. When in doubt, throw it out.

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