The combination of spices in this spicy beetroot salad recipe makes the earthy flavour of the beetroot really stand out. Served chilled from the refrigerator, it makes a welcome addition to your summer salad repertoire.
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The easiest beetroot salad
A summer barbeque just wouldn’t be the same without a dish of this spicy beetroot salad to accompany the grilled meat. I love the earthy flavour of beetroot which is enhanced by the addition of a sweet tangy glaze flavoured with ginger powder, mustard powder and ground allspice.
And it’s so easy to make. I normally use fresh beetroot and boil it in its skin for 15 minutes before slipping the skin off and slicing it. But there’s absolutely nothing to stop you from buying a pack of vacuum-packed pre-cooked beetroot and using that instead.
For added crunch, I like to add sliced red onions. There’s no need to cook the onions. The vinegar in the glaze softens the onions perfectly.
The glaze is made by boiling sugar and vinegar with the spices for 1 minute. This has the effect of not only dissolving the sugar, but also diffusing the flavour of the spices into the glaze.
The glaze gets poured over the beetroot and onions while the glaze is still hot so that it can infuse into the vegetables.
The flavour of this salad improves on standing, so I would recommend making it at least 4 hours before you need it, and leaving it in the fridge to chill. During this time you should stir it a few times to make sure the beetroot and onions are well covered with the glaze.
What you will need
To make this beetroot salad you will need a saucepan, a sharp knife and a chopping board. For serving and storing you will need a ceramic or glass bowl with a lid. Don’t store the beetroot in a metal dish or you run the risk of the vinegar reacting with the metal.
This recipe makes enough beetroot salad to serve 4 to 6 people as a side dish.
**You can get the complete list of ingredients and full instructions for making this salad on the printable recipe card at the end of this post**
Beetroot – you can use fresh beetroot and boil it yourself (see recipe instructions) or you can buy ready-cooked beetroot which is sold in vacuum packs in any large supermarket. The one thing I will say about using ready-cooked beetroot is that it is normally cooked without salt, and you need to be aware of this when adding seasoning.
Onions – I like to use red onions, but you can use white onions instead. You will need half as many onions by volume as sliced beetroot. The onions should be finely sliced.
Balsamic vinegar – in all the years I’ve been making this beetroot salad, I’ve found that balsamic vinegar gives the best taste. However, that said, you can substitute the balsamic with any fruity vinegar, such as sherry or cider vinegar.
Sugar – you can use granulated or caster sugar.
Mustard powder – adds a little heat.
Allspice powder – adds a slight touch of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and pepper.
Ginger powder – adds a slight tartness.
You won’t need a lot of the above three spices (one-quarter of a teaspoon of each is ample) but the addition of the spices really does add a lot to the flavour of the beetroot salad.
Salt – season to your own taste.
What to do
If you are using pre-cooked beetroot you can skip the first step, and just cut the beetroot into thin slices.
Chop the stems off the beetroot and boil them in a pan of lightly salted water for 15 minutes.
Allow them to cool and then remove the skins. The skin will peel off easily, but you may want to consider wearing a pair of latex gloves, as beetroot can stain your skin quite badly.
Cut the beetroot into one-eighths inch thick slices and arrange in layers with the sliced onion in a serving dish.
Place the balsamic vinegar, the sugar and the spices into a small saucepan and bring it to a boil, stirring continuously. This will allow the sugar to dissolve.
Allow it to boil for one minute (no longer or you run the risk of ending up with toffee)!
Remove the pan from the heat.
Pour the hot vinegar mixture over the beetroot and stir well to ensure that all the beetroot has been coated.
Taste for seasoning and add extra salt if needed.
Allow the beetroot to cool and then place it in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours to allow the flavours to develop.
Stir occasionally to re-coat the beetroot with the glaze.
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You can store this beetroot in a covered dish in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Yes, transfer the beetroot to sterilised jars and seal while still hot. Store in a cool dark place. Once opened store the jar in the refrigerator and use it within one week.
To sterilise jars in the oven:
Wash the jars and the lids in hot soapy water, rinse, but do not dry them.
Stand them on a baking tray while they’re still wet.
Place the tray of clean, wet jars and lids into a preheated oven at 180ºC / 350ºF for 15 mins.
To sterilise jars in the microwave:
Wash the jars and the lids in hot soapy water, rinse, but do not dry them.
Place them in the microwave whilst still wet.
Microwave on full power for 2 minutes
If the lids are made of metal DO NOT MICROWAVE. Instead, place the lids in a pot of boiling water and boil for 5 minutes.
I’ve never tried to freeze it (it always gets eaten too quickly 🙂 )
If you do try to freeze it, I’d love to know how it turns out.
Beetroots are rich in antioxidants and calcium, iron, magnesium, and fibre and they have a high concentration of vitamins A, C and B9 (folate).
Save for later
If you would like to make this spicy beetroot salad yourself, why not save the recipe to one of your Pinterest boards so you can find it easily. Just click on the image below.
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If you enjoyed this recipe you may like to try some of my other salad recipes:
- Copper penny salad
- Curried green beans
- Tomato and onion pasta salad
- Orzo pasta summer salad
- Creamy coleslaw with buttermilk dressing
Spicy beetroot salad
(Click the stars to rate this recipe)
- ¾ pound / 350 grams beetroot
- 1 medium red onion peeled and sliced
- ¼ cup / 60 ml balsamic vinegar
- ½ cup / 100 grams white sugar
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon mustard powder
- ¼ teaspoon allspice powder
- ½ teaspoon salt or to taste
- Chop the stems off the beetroot and boil them in a pan of lightly salted water for 15 minutes.Allow them to cool and then remove the skins.¾ pound / 350 grams beetroot, ½ teaspoon salt
- Cut the beetroot into one-eighths inch thick slices and arrange in layers with the sliced onion in a serving dish.1 medium red onion
- Place the balsamic vinegar, the sugar and the spices into a small saucepan and bring it to a boil, stirring continuously. This will allow the sugar to dissolve.Allow it to boil for one minute (no longer or you run the risk of ending up with toffee)!Remove the pan from the heat.¼ cup / 60 ml balsamic vinegar, ½ cup / 100 grams white sugar, ¼ teaspoon ground ginger, ¼ teaspoon mustard powder, ¼ teaspoon allspice powder
- Pour the hot vinegar mixture over the beetroot and stir well to ensure that all the beetroot has been coated.Taste for seasoning and add extra salt if needed.½ teaspoon salt
- Allow the beetroot to cool and then place it in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours to allow the flavours to develop. Stir occasionally to re-coat the beetroot with the glaze.
I am not a nutritionist. The nutrition information has been calculated using an on-line calculator, and is intended for information and guidance purposes only. If the nutrition information is important to you, you should consider calculating it yourself, using your preferred tool.
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