Mom's Easy Pickled Beets


  • 1 bunch beets - about 3-5 medium, stems and greens removed and reserved for future use if desired
  • 1 medium red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 5 or 6 black peppercorns
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup vinegar - apple cider or red wine or white wine
  • 1 cup reserved cooking liquid


  1. Scrub beets and place into a saucepan. Cover with water, bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer. Cook beets until tender but not mushy, about 20-40 minutes, depending on the size of the beets. Beets are done when a sharp paring knife pierces the center with little resistance. Reserve a cup of the cooking liquid. Drain the beets into a strainer or colander and rinse with cold water. When beets are cool enough to handle, peel them. The skin should rub off fairly easily but can stain your hands so you might prefer to wear gloves.
  2. Slice beets and place into a quart-size mason jar (with lid) alternating some sliced onions with the beets.
  3. Rinse and wipe the saucepan used to cook the beets and combine the bay leaf, cloves, peppercorns, sugar, salt, vinegar and reserved cooking liquid. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar and salt. Remove from heat and pour mixture into the jar with the sliced beets and onions. Allow to cool at room temperature, then cover with lid and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. Because they are pickled, they will remain fresh in the fridge for several weeks.
  4. Serve with sliced cucumber, tomatoes, kalamata olives and feta cheese with a sprinkle of oregano and some freshly chopped parsley for a quick and delicious Greek salad.


  • Salad
  • Side Dish
  • Vegetable
  • Dairy Free
  • Gluten Free
  • Quick and Easy
  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • MHealthy

Nutrition Information

Serving Size
about 1/2 cup pickled beets and onions
Total Fat (g)
Saturated Fat (g)
Sodium (mg)
Total Carbohydrates (g)
Dietary Fiber (g)
Protein (g)