Pickled Beets

Pickled Beets
Serve pickled beets chilled as a cold side dish, thicken the juice with cornstarch for Harvard Beets, or use them to make Red Beet Eggs, a Pennsylvania Dutch favorite. Use small whole beets or cut larger beets into wedges, 1" chunks, or 1/4" thick slices.
Pickled Red Beets

  • 6 quarts fresh red beets
  • 4 1/2 cups sugar
  • 4 cups cider vinegar ( 5 % acidity)
  • 1 tsp. canning salt (non-iodized salt)
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon (optional)

Preparation -
To cook the beets - Wash, rinse and drain until all traces of garden soil are removed. Use a small vegetable brush if needed. Peel larger beets that have a thick, tough skin. Place the beets in large stockpot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, cover and cook until fork tender, approximately 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from heat. Drain the beets, reserving the juice. The skin will slip right off the cooked beets. Slice or cut the beets, as desired, then set the beets aside. Pour the reserved beet juice back in the pot, stir in the remaining ingredients and cook on medium low heat for about 15 minutes, stirring frequently. Meanwhile, partially fill a boiling water bath canner with hot water; set aside.

Pack the cooked, small whole, cut, or sliced beets into 1 quart, wide mouth canning jars. Pour the hot beet juice mixture over the beets in the jars, leaving 1/4" headspace. Run a thin spatula or non-metallic utensil through each jar to remove air bubbles. Wipe the jar rims with a damp paper towel. Add the caps and bands. Place the filled jars on the rack in a water bath canner. The tops of the jars should be completely immersed... add additional hot water if needed. Process in a boiling water bath for 30 minutes.( Start timing as soon as the water begins to boil). Remove the jars from canner. Cool, test seals, label and store.

To serve as Harvard Beets, thicken the pickled beet juice with cornstarch. Pickled beets can also be served chilled, as side dish, or use them to make Red Beet Eggs, a popular Pennsylvania Dutch specialty..

Pickles and Relishes: From Apples to Zucchinis, 150 recipes for preserving the harvest
Make pickles and relishes as tasty as Grandmother used to make — in much less the time, with far less salt, and with no chemical additives. The recipes in this cookbook include freezer pickles that take less than a half hour to prepare, refrigerator pickles that require no canning, salt-free pickles for dieters, plus variations on many old favorites. It has tips to guarantee crisp pickles without alum and illustrated step-by-step pickling methods.

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