With just 10 minutes of prep and only 5 ingredients you can transform earthy beets into tangy tender slices of absolute goodness. These Simple Pickled Beets are gluten free, paleo-friendly and vegetarian and one of my absolute favorite summer side dishes! 

overhead of pickled beets in a bowl

I originally shared this recipe on August 1, 2014. I have updated the images and some of the text today.

Why We Love This Pickled Beets Recipe

These pickled beets are so good, it’s like standing at the counter, eating straight out of the bowl good. They’re are just about as well…. simple as you can make them. Just boil them, peel and slice them and then toss them in a super simple vinaigrette and you’re done!

They are delicious in their simplicity. Tangy, earthy and meltingly tender. And they will look absolutely stunning on your summer table next to all of your gorgeous grilled meat and summer salads.

If you are a beet lover, like me then you probably know that there are so many ways you can prepare and eat beets.  You can boil them and toss them into salads like the Spinach Salad with Maple Ranch Dressing and Bacon and Beets, Beets with Cranberries and Spiced Nuts or Beets with Tahini. They are also delicious just shredded and eaten raw like in my Layered Salad with Beets, Apple, Cheddar and Bacon. And don’t miss out on roasting them

Nutritional Benefits Of Beets

  • They are high in B-9 or folate which is vital for good emotional and mental health
  • Chocked full of Vitamin C which helps boost your immune system
  • Naturally occurring nitrates in beets may help lower blood pressure
  • Beets are a unique source of betaine, which is a nutrient that helps fight inflammation, protects internal organs and improves stamina
pickled beets in a wheck jar

Ingredient Notes For This Recipe

Beets:

When you purchase beets (or choose from your garden) look for those that are relatively the same size. This will help them cook at the same rate. 

Garlic:

To give this recipe flavor, I added in a clove of crushed garlic. The flavor of the garlic seeps into the dressing and adds lots of flavor without leaving big chunks of raw garlic in it. 

Vinegar:

I prefer to use red wine vinegar to make this recipe because the clean bright taste of it pairs well with the earthy beets. You can read more about vinegars here. Cider vinegar or white wine vinegar would be good substitutes. 

Step By Step Instructions For This Recipe

Cook, Peel and Slice The Beets

For a recipe like this, I find it is easiest and hands-off to boil them and then peel them.

  • Simply place the beets in a 3-quart saucepan and cover with cold water.
  • Then bring them to a boil over high heat.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer them gently until the beets are tender and a fork inserted into the beets comes out easily. This can take from 40 to 55 minutes, depending on the size of your beets.
  • Drain and cool beets until cool enough to handle.
  • To peel them, simply slip the skins off under cool running water. If there are any areas that are tough to peel, you can use a paring knife.
  • Then slice them into rounds. You can also cut them into a dice for a different look and texture. 

To Make The Dressing and Pickle The Beets

For the dressing: Whisk garlic, oil, vinegar and salt in a medium bowl.

To Marinate the Beets in the Dressing: Add the sliced beets to the dressing, and toss to coat. It is okay if they are still hot, this will help them absorb the pickling marinade.

To Get Great Flavor When You Pickle/Marinate The Beets: Cool beets completely in the dressing. Toss them occasionally as they cool to help the garlic flavor them evenly. Then just refrigerate or serve immediately.

pickled beets in a blue metal dish

More Pickled Recipes

Try these Pickled Carrots from a recent cookbook review. They are a little tangy and spicy too!

These Easy Pickled Red Onions are great on burgers or charcuterie boards.

FAQs and Tips

Can these be canned?

This recipe is meant to be enjoyed within a few days and is not designed to be canned as there is not enough liquid to cover the beets. Canning requires a precise ratio of acid and salt for safely preserving the food. This recipe is more of a “quick” pickle recipe!

Can the beets be roasted instead of boiling?

Yes! You can roast them whole, then peel and slice as directed.

Thanks so much for reading. If you are new here you may want to sign up for my free weekly email newsletter for healthy recipes delivered right to your inbox. Or follow me on Instagram. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review! It is very appreciated. Happy Cooking! ~Katie

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overhead of pickled beets in a bowl

Pickled Beets

  • Author: Katie Webster
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 cups 1x
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

Description

With just 10 minutes of prep and only 5 ingredients you can transform earthy beets into tangy tender slices of absolute goodness. These Simple Pickled Beets are a gluten free, paleo-friendly, vegetarian side dish that will make all of your Summer grilling dishes sing!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 pound beets, about 2 bunches greens removed, and trimmed
  • 1 large clove garlic, crushed and peeled
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • ¾ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  1. Place beets in a 3-quart saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the beets are tender and a fork inserted into the beets comes out easily, 40 to 55 minutes, depending on the size of the beets. Drain and cool beets until cool enough to handle.
  2. Whisk garlic, oil, vinegar and salt in a medium bowl. Peel and slice beets. Add to the dressing, and toss to coat. Cool beets completely in the dressing. Refrigerate or serve immediately.

Notes

To peel the beets, simply slip the skins off under cool running water. If there are any areas that are tough to peel, you can use a paring knife.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cup
  • Calories: 130
  • Sugar: 7 g
  • Sodium: 500 mg
  • Fat: 10 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 10 g
  • Fiber: 3 g
  • Protein: 2 g