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Fruit and Vegetable Guide

Photo of Beets


Summer, Autumn, Winter

Description: Beets are a root crop with round red or gold flesh. Beet leaves are also edible.

Selection: Choose beets with tops attached. Bunches with beets of similar size will cook more evenly. Very large beets are sometimes woody and tough; those that are about 2 inches in diameter are just right.

Storage and handling: Remove the leaves and treat them like other greens. Store beets in a plastic bag in the refrigerator crisper drawer for 2-3 weeks, or in a root cellar. Before eating, scrub with a brush, remove dangling roots and all but an inch or so of the tops.

Preparation: Boil for 20-30 minutes, drain, cool and peel. Microwave 1 pound of whole 2-inch beets by placing in covered dish with 1⁄4 cup water and cooking 10-11 minutes. Pressure-cook for 12-20 minutes, depending on size. Skins will slip off easily after cooking. Sauté peeled, shredded beets, covered, for 10 minutes.

Serving suggestions: Peel and shred raw beets for use in salads
(SIS, p. 245). Season cooked beets with butter and salt. Beets marry well with a sweet and sour flavor and are often pickled (SIS, p. 276).

Nutrients: Vitamin C, folate; potassium; fiber.

1 lb raw = 4 cups
1 lb cooked = 2 cups

The Fruit and Vegetable Guide is reproduced here with permission of Herald Press, publisher of Simply in Season.

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