should i peel beets


How to Prepare Beets

When you bring them home from the store, you need to prepare beets for storage unless you plan to cook with them right away. Properly stored beets will last longer and have better flavor.

1. Cut off beet greens, leaving at least 1 inch of stem attached.

2. Wrap lightly in paper towels, and store in a plastic zip-top bag in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

When you're ready to cook beets, remove them from the refrigerator, and gently scrub them with a vegetable brush to remove dirt and debris. After the beet is washed, you will prepare it according to how you plan to cook it.


Video Transcript, edited for clarity


Hey there, Sharon Peterson here with I am working with beets today so I thought I would show you how you peel them. You need to do this step for a variety of preserving projects or even if you are going to cook them for dinner.

If you are canning beets, dehydrating beets or i f you’re just cooking beets for dinner, this is how you peel them. I am actually going to be freeze drying these. And so that’s what my project is today.

(00:27)But I thought I would show you how you get them peeled. So let me turn my camera around and I can show you my sink area and what I have going on. Okay. So when I’m working with beets, I like to work down in my sink. Beets can be kind of messy and doing it this way makes it really easy cleanup.

(00:40)Plus it’s lower and it’s just easier to work when the pot is down in the sink like that.

How to Cook Beets for peeling.

So when you’re going to can or when you’re going to peel beets, whether it’s for canning or cooking or whatever project, you’re going to boil them. Now I prefer boiling. Some people will roast them and that works too.

You just need to make sure that the beet gets cooked because when it’s cooked, those skins peel right off. You can just rub them off with your thumbs. I have tried roasting, but it seems to me when I boil them, they just seem to peel easier.

They’re moister. And so that’s just my preference. You can do it either way. If you do roast them, make sure that you covered them so that you keep them nice and moist. Whether it’s with foil or in a pan with a lid or something like that.

(01:22)So after that step, once they are cooked, then you are going to go ahead and put them in a pot and you’re going to drain off the hot water. And that’s what I have right here. This is drained. And then I pour cold water on top of it and that stops the cooking, and cools the beats off so that they’re cool enough that you can handle.

They’re still warm, but you know, you can handle them. And then I have a strainer in this sink. Um, this is actually a section out of my juicer, which I will put a link to that down below. I use it for all kinds of stuff. It’s just a nice big strainer.

(02:04)This is where as I’m peeling, I’ll have the water running like that and that just helps to rinse the beet off and all the scraps go in here, but then the water can run out and go away. And then in here is where I put the beets that are peeled.

These are ready to either be chopped, put jars, put in the dehydrator. If you’re going to dehydrate them, slice them thin. Or just put ’em in a pan for supper today. I will be freeze drying these today. So let me go ahead and turn this around and I’ll peel a couple of beats for you and show you how it works. I can’t do this one handed.

(02:33)So when you turn around, these are the beats that are ready to be peeled. They’re still warm but they’re not hot enough that you can’t handle them.

(02:42)This is what they should look like when you take them out of the boiling water. When you rub them with something that skin should just peel right off like that. I don’t know if you can see that, but it just peels off right with your fingers.

So again, I’m working over my strainer here in the sink. I’d like to have just a little bit of water running over the beat like this and then I have a knife and I just cut the bottom off. Then I use my thumbs to wipe all that excess off, cut the tops off.

And then, that should all just peel right off. Now if you have a little bit of a stubborn spot, you just use your knife and cut through that. Um, this beet was probably sticking out at the top of the water or something cause that top didn’t quite get cooked enough to just peel right off.

(03:31)So there you go, that’s your prepped beet. This is ready to be cut up for whatever project, whether you’re canning or dehydrating, freeze drying, or if it’s going to cut it up and heat back up again and eat it for support.

(03:46)Let me try another one here. This one is really smaller one. Oh yeah. See that one just pulled right off with my hands. Trim off the top end and that one’s ready to go.

(04:02)Okay. I hope that was helpful. Learning how to cook beets is so super easy. You guys have a wonderful afternoon. Again, this is Sharon with We’ll talk to you later!

Home Canning VegetablesHow to Cook Beets

Page last updated: 8/21/2019.

Do You Need to Peel Beets Before Juicing? – A Complete

Jan 07, 2022 · Do You Need to Peel Beets Before Juicing? To peel or not to peel. Beets are root vegetables, which means they’re grown in the ground and, unsurprisingly, have an… Preparing beets for juicing. Before you toss your beets into your juicer and fire it up, there are a few things you… Helpful tips. …

Do you have to peel the skin off beets?

Some vegetables, like beets, do have bitter tasting skins. … While there are many vegetables you don’t need to peel, ones with very fibrous or tough skin should always be peeled, such as kabocha squash or celeriac. Nope, You Don’t Have to Peel Carrots, Beets, or Even Squash | Bon Appetit. Subscribe to our newsletter!

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Do you need to peel beets before cooking?

No. In fact, none of these methods require you to peel your beets before cooking. Beets are incredibly difficult to peel, so unless you plan to eat your beets raw, just leave the skin on.


Do You Peel Squases Before Juicing?

Squashes – like pumpkin, butternut, etc. – have peels that are much, much too hard for your juicer. Make sure to peel these off, but peel as little as possible (so you leave the part that is closest to the peel that is the darkest color of the flesh since this is where the most nutrients are, also to add richness).

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We’ve all heard the old saying—when life gives you lemons, make lemonade (or perhaps a nice citrus-infused juice blend). The problem is that it’s not always clear how many lemons you’ll need to whip up one of these refreshing decoctions. Juice quotients can also vary widely from fruit to fruit, further complicating what should be…

3 Tips for Peeling Beets

Beet skins can be tough, and beet juice can stain your hands and work surface. Consider these tips for a simple, clean peeling process:

  1. Use a paring knife. If parts of the beet skin are tough to peel off with your hands, use a small paring knife.
  2. Cover your hands. To prevent the beets from staining your hands red, you can wear latex gloves or use a paper towel to peel off the beet skin.
  3. Peel beets under cold water. Fill up a bowl with cold water after boiling the beets, and peel the beets under the water to prevent staining your hands.

To remove the red beet juice stains from your hands, spritz lemon juice on your hands and rub for ten seconds. Rinse your hands with soap and water. To remove red beet juice stains from the cutting board, scrub salt onto the cutting board, then rinse with soap and water.

How to Roast Beet Wedges

Cutting beets into quarters or wedges will speed up roasting time but still produce the intensely sweet flavor.

1. Dry cleaned beets with a towel to remove excess moisture. Trim remaining stems and remove taproot. Cut the beets into wedges or quarters. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper.

2. Pour the beet wedges onto a foil-lined baking sheet in a single layer. Roast at 400°F until fork-tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

3. Remove the beets from the oven and let cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Peel off the skin.

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How To Store Beets

Beets can last for about a month if stored properly – even longer if harvested from your own backyard.

The secret to keeping beets fresh longer is to cut off the tops before storing them. When cutting off the tops, leave about 1 – 2 inches of stem attached. You can save the greens as they are edible and taste amazing, especially when sautéed.

Beets can be left in a cool area for a couple of days, but the best way to store them is in the refrigerator, loosely wrapped, vacuum sealed or in a resealable storage bag (remove any excess air from the bag). Place the beets in the crisper drawer of the fridge.

Beets can be frozen but only after cooking.

2) Steam

Steaming involves heating the water in a closed ve

Steaming involves heating the water in a closed vessel until it becomes superheated vapor. The high temperature 100°C (212 °F) and pressure in the pot allow the beets to cook with ease using minimal water. I like this method because the nutrients stay in the vegetable, and not get lost in the water.

Do not allow the water to touch the steamer basket because you want the steam to be able to circulate under and around the beets as it cooks. The beets should be cooked until tender, and the skin easily releases from the peel, about 30 minutes depending on the size.

4) Cut and Roast

If you’re looking for a quicker roasting met

If you’re looking for a quicker roasting method that adds the most flavor, peeling and cutting the beets into 1/2 to 3/4-inch wedges is the way to go. The high temperatures in the oven at 204°C (400°F) encourages Maillard browning, creating deeper flavors for each slice.

If you’re cooking red and yellow beets, as shown above, I like to section off the vegetables with aluminum foil as a divider on the baking sheet. Because the beets are peeled, the red beets will lose some of its juice as it cooks; the foil partition will prevent the other vegetables from staining. This method takes about 25 to 30 minutes.

How To Cook Beets

These are the different ways to cook beets that we will explore in this post. Boiling, steaming, roasting whole beets, roasting cut up beets, microwaving and pressure cooking. Keep in mind that cooking times will vary depending on the size of the beets.

1. How to Boil Beets on the Stovetop

Boiling beets is one of the easiest ways to cook this hearty root to tender perfection. When boiling beets, you will notice that some of the beet’s color will leak into the cooking liquid. Some people suggest adding a splash of vinegar or lemon juice to prevent this and set the color. Although this helps, the color still seeps into the cooking liquid but not as much.

Pros: Foolproof and easy.Cons: Some of the color seeps into the cooking water.

How To Boil Beets:

  1. Clean and trim beet tops.
  2. Peeling beets is not necessary. The peel will come off very easily when the beets are cooked.
  3. Place the beets in a pot big enough to hold them comfortably. Add water to cover the beets by about 2 inches.
  4. Bring to a boil then, lower the heat and simmer until the beets are tender, about 30 to 45 minutes depending on the size. To check for doneness, pierce a beet with the tip of a knife, a skewer or fork. You should be able to pierce the root easily without much resistance.
  5. Remove the beets from the stove and place them under cold running water, until they are cool enough to handle.
  6. To peel the beets, rub a piece of paper towel all over the surface. The skin will come right off!

2. How to Steam Beets

You can steam beets whole (my preferred method) or cut into halves or quarters.

Pros: Steaming preserves nutrients that otherwise leak into the cooking water.Cons: You need a steamer basket. This of course is not a problem if you already have one.

How To Steam Fresh Beets:

  1. Clean and trim beet tops. You can steam beets whole or cut.
  2. Peeling beets is not necessary. The peel will come off very easily when the beets are cooked.
  3. Place the beets in a a steamer basket above 2-inches of water. Make sure the water doesn’t touch the beets for better circulation of heat.
  4. Bring to a boil and cover. Lower the heat and steam until the beets are tender, about 30 to 45 minutes depending on the size. Check for doneness by piercing the beet with the tip of a knife, a skewer or fork. You should be able to pierce the root easily without much resistance.
  5. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  6. To peel the beets, rub a piece of paper towel all over the surface. The skin will come right off!

3. How to Roast Beets Whole

Roasting beets is by far my favorite way to cook beets. It’s easy, my oven does all the work and roasting intensifies the flavor, sweetness and color of this hearty vegetable. Beets should be roasted at high temperature – 400 to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.

Pros: Roasting beets produce the tastiest, sweetest beets.Cons: Roasting whole beets in the oven takes a longer time than other methods.

How To Roast Beets:

  1. Preheat the oven.
  2. Clean, dry and cut off the tops close to the top of the beet. Don’t trim the root.
  3. Peeling is not necessary.
  4. Place your beets in a big piece of aluminum foil – big enough to create a sealed pouch.
  5. Coat the beets with olive oil and season them with salt and pepper (this step is optional but recommended as it flavors the beets).
  6. Wrap the beets with the aluminum foil (as if creating a pouch for the beets).
  7. Place the pouch on a baking sheet and roast for 40 to 60 minutes, depending on their size or until a small sharp knife can easily be inserted in the middle.
  8. Remove from the oven and carefully open the aluminum foil pouch (steam may come off). Set the beets aside to cool. 
  9. To peel the beets, rub a piece of paper towel all over the surface. The skin will come right off!

4. Roasting Beets Cut Up

Just like roasting beets whole, this method intensifies the beet’s natural flavor and sweetness.

Pros: Unbelievable flavor! You can season the beets to your taste with different spices and seasonings.Cons: Cut up roasted beets need to be peeled when raw.

How To Bake Beets Cut Up:

  1. Preheat the oven.
  2. Clean, dry and cut off the tops close to the top of the beet.
  3. Peel the beets and cut them into wedges.
  4. Place the beets on a sheet pan lined with foil or parchment paper.
  5. Drizzle with olive oil and season to taste.
  6. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes (depending on sizes) or until tender.
  7. Remove from the oven and serve.

5. How to Cook Beets in the Microwave

Cooking beets in the microwave is very similar to microwaving potatoes. Choose beets that are similar in size for even cooking.

Pros: It’s fast and easy.Cons: Depending on the microwave, size of the beets and timing, beets may be unevenly cooked or a bit dry on the surface.

How To Cook Beets In The Microwave:

  1. Choose beets that are even in size.
  2. Clean and cut off the tops close to the top of the beet.
  3. Prick each beet with a fork.
  4. Place the beets in a microwave safe dish and fill with water about 1/2 to 1 cup water. You want the water to cover about 1/4 of each beet.
  5. Cover with plastic wrap.
  6. Microwave for 5 minutes. Check for doneness.
  7. Remove from the microwave and rinse under cold running water to stop the cooking process.

6. Cooking Beets in a Pressure Cooker

Cooking beets in the Instant Pot/pressure cooker is easy and the beets don’t lose their nice texture or color.

Pros: Fast cooking. Good flavor.Cons: Cooking times vary depending on the beet’s size.

  1. You must choose beets that are even in size for best results.
  2. Clean beets and trim beet tops and roots.
  3. Peeling is not necessary.
  4. Measure the circumference of the beets to determine cooking times.
  5. Pour 1 cup of water into the instant pot.
  6. Place a trivet or steamer basket in the pot and place the beets on top.
  7. Close the lid, seal and cook on high pressure (check times below).
  8. Do a “Quick” release of pressure. Open the lid and remove beets.

Instant Pot Beets Cooking Times:

The cooking times below are for beets cooked at high pressure. After the cooking is done, do a quick release. These cooking times will result in soft beets. If you like your beets crisp, firm and crunchy reduce cooking times.

  • 5-inch diameter: 15 to 16 minutes
  • 6-inch diameter: 20 to 22 minutes
  • 7-inch diameter: 25 to 26 minutes
  • 8-inch diameter: 31to 32 minutes
  • 9-inch diameter: 35 to 37 minutes

Do you need to peel parsnips before roasting?

Mar 19, 2020 · Do you need to peel parsnips before roasting? Young, small parsnips don’t really need peeling – just scrub clean and serve whole. Older parsnips should be peeled very thinly with a peeler or sharp knife, then chopped into evenly sized chunks. If the central core is very fibrous, this should be cut away.