Learn how to freeze beets at the peak of freshness for use throughout the winter. This easy beet preserving method is one you'll use again and again.
It's that time of year! Harvest! The garden is bursting with beets and you literally don't think you could eat one more fresh beet.
Maybe it's not your garden. Maybe it's your mom's garden and you still are full of beets.
In my case, it's my mom, she keeps gifting me BUCKETS of beets. Instead of wasting them, I'm preserving them so that we have as close to fresh garden grown beets until next year!
This guide is dedicated to preserving the freshness.
Tips + tricks
No. 1 --> Pick fresh, firm beets that are heavy for their size and skip any beets that are soft or wiggly.
No. 2 --> Wear an apron, or at least take off your favourite casual grey sweatshirt. Ask me how I know! Ha (RIP sweater)
No. 3 --> Try to source locally grown fresh beets! Ask your friends with gardens, check the farmer's market, etc. Fresh beets are more flavorful than store bought in my experience.
- olive oil
How to make
- Preheat the oven to 400f and prepare a baking dish, I like to use my shallow, full size chafing pan, by drizzling olive oil on the bottom of the dish.
- Chop the greens off of the beets, leaving about an inch of the stems attached, the helps to eliminate the beets bleeding colour while cooking.
- Scrub the dirt and debris off your the beets, it doesn't have to be perfect, just get as much off at you can.
- Place the beets in your baking pan. Drizzle with more olive oil, and toss them to coat. Once all the beets have been coated in olive oil, salt and pepper them to taste.
- Cover the baking dish with heavy-duty tin foil or it's lid and place in the oven.
- Roast the beets at 400f for 1 - 1.5 hours. This will depend on the size of the beets. The beets are done when easily pierced with a fork.
- Remove the beets from the oven and allow them to cool in the baking pan until cool enough to handle.
- Once the beets cooled run them under cold water and rub the skin to remove.
- Cut or slice the roasted beets as desired.
- Bag the prepared beets in portions suitable for your family or recipe requirements. For us, this is 3 cup portions. I leave the tiny beets whole and place 5 in a bag for days I make my beet salad.
When ready to eat
Here's where the magic happens!
If your going to serve the beets cold:
- place the bag of beets on the counter to thaw for a couple of hours.
- thaw your bag of beets in the fridge overnight.
If you're going to serve the beets warm/hot:
- place them in a microwave-safe dish and heat in the microwave until they reach the desired temperature, stirring regularly.
- put the beets in a small baking dish covered with tin foil and pop them in the oven with the rest of your dinner to heat up.
- dump the beets into a pot with a steaming rack, add a small amount of water and steam the beets until they are the desired temperature.
I have talked a lot about our shallow full size chafing pans. They might be some of our most used cookware. I got mine at a restaurant supply store, but you can grab a chafing pan on Amazon.
Heavy duty tin foil
It's the bees knees. I cannot stand flimsy tin foil that tears as soon as you look at it. The heavy duty stuff stands up to repeatedly opening and checking dishes, and won't tear the second you wrap it around a corner.
This sounds kind of cheese, after all, any knife will cut. Yes, but the right knife for the job makes a huge difference. I have arthritis in my dominant hand, so any knife that can make it easier on me keeps me cooking! This vegetable cleaver is very similar to mine.
If you like my how tos, check these out!
📖 Printable Recipe
Use this simple recipe to freeze your fresh beets for use all winter long. This easy how-to guide will show you how to make, how to freeze and how to thaw your fresh garden beets.
- 10 - 15 beets
- 1/2 cup olive oil, divided
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
To prepare for freezing:
- Preheat the oven to 400f and prepare a baking dish by drizzling olive oil on the bottom of the dish, then set aside for now.
- Chop the greens off the beets, leaving approximately 1 inch of stems.
- Wash the dirt and debris off the beets.
- Place the beets in the prepared baking pan. Drizzle with more olive oil and toss the beets to coat. Once all the beets have been coated, salt and pepper them generously.
- Cover the baking dish with heavy duty tin foil and place in the oven.
- Roast the beets at 400f for 60-90 minutes, or longer, depending on the size of the beets. The beets are done roasting when they can be easily pierced with a fork.
- Allow the beets to cool in the baking dish until they are cool enough to handle.
- Run cold water and hold the beets under the cold water stream. Rub to peel the skins and stems off.
- Chop or slice the beets as desired.
- Bag the prepared beets in portions suitable for your family or recipes. Place the bags in the freezer until ready to use.
To prepare for eating:
- Remove the beets from the freezer and thaw as desired.
To eat cold: allow the beets to thaw at room temperature for a few hours, or in the fridge overnight.
To eat hot: heat the beets in the microwave in a microwave safe dish, or in a pot fitted with a steamer rack, or in a baking dish in the oven until the beets reach the desired temperature. Avoid overcooking the beets.
Frozen beets are great in the freezer for 6-9 months. You can stretch it to a year, but they may lose some of the flavour and freshness if not vacuum packaged.