I like to have lots of veggies on hand throughout the year, and we love beets! Beets are excellent for our digestive health. Beets help the liver and gallbladder by thinning the bile, making it much easier to digest and assimilate healthy fats in our diet. Beets are rich in betaine, which is involved in and supports methylation. They are also a great starchy vegetable, containing 4 grams of fiber per serving.
These are “refrigerator pickled beets” rather than fermented in a brine. So there are different benefits. This recipe actually uses raw apple cider vinegar (ACV) and not cooked like most. ACV is excellent for getting our digestive juices flowing, so we can get more of the nutrients from our food. And while not fermented (fermented beets also have amazing benefits), this recipe is great for stocking up on veggies in the refrigerator to last a couple months throughout the winter. Or if you make a small batch, you can have a couple weeks of ready-to-eat vegetables in your refrigerator that can be added to salads or have as a quick side dish. And they taste amazing!
3 lb beets (4 large beets or 6-8 small ones)
1 1/2 cups of the raw Apple Cider Vinegar
1 1/2 cups of water
2-3 TBS maple syrup or honey (optional)
2 inches of fresh ginger, cut into coin-size slices
1-2 tsp grated orange zest
1 cinnamon stick or 2 teaspoons of cinnamon chips (chopped up cinnamon stick)
1 tsp whole cardamom (decorticated, i.e. outer pod removed)
1 tsp whole clove
1 tsp allspice berries
1/2 – 1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
Remove beet greens (the greens are great to saute’, and serve as a veggie side).
Leave skin on the beets and scrub them. Put beets in an instant pot on top of the steamer at the bottom. Place on Steam setting (for pressure steaming) with lid on for:
15 minutes for small/average sized beets
20-25 minutes for large beets
**Texture of cooked beets should be tender (better to be a bit firmer than softer, and remember they will continue to cook/soften a little while cooling).
Release steam naturally for about 5 minutes. Check beets for cooking completion. If they need more cooking, quickly lock lid in place and continue to let steam in residual steam for 5-10 more minutes, you should not need to turn the Instant Pot on again.
When cooking is complete, let beets cool and rub the skin off the beets (comes off easily once steamed).
Cut beets into small cubes or slices, and place in mason jars.
Mix all ingredients, and pour liquid over cooked beets. I often mix the other ingredients as the beets are cooking.
Refrigerate, and enjoy!!
Let them marinate for 24 hours in the refrigerator and they will reach full flavor.