Spiced Apple & Beet Slaw

by lydia on November 19, 2012

Fall really has so many amazing foods to offer, one of those is beets. For some reason, beets hold a special place in my heart. I grew up the daughter of a true New Englander, my dad’s family grew all their own food on a little farmette.  I love hearing the stories he tells about their root cellar with a dirt floor and the barrels and barrels of garden produce they had during the winter. One of his favorite fall foods is beets. I must have inherited his passion for beets as well because they just tickle me pink (actually more like a purple red….).

I’ve been making this spiced apple & beet slaw for a few years now and each fall I anticipate it with fervor. This year I had to tweak the recipe a bit to make it work as a true anaerobic ferment, since learning how this past year. It’s super simple to make and does not take long at all to ferment. I absolutely love the slight sweet crispness paired with just enough spice to really compliment the beets.  I am sharing this recipe just in time for Thanksgiving. I’ll be serving it as a condiment with our Thanksgiving feast!

Spiced Apple & Beet Slaw
Recipe type: Side Dish
  • 1 small bunch of beets, greens removed (preferably a week prior to fermenting)
  • 3 small to medium beets, peeled
  • 3 medium apples, any kind you like preferably a sweeter apple
  • Zest of 1 orange (optional)
  • 1-inch knob of ginger
  • Pinch of allspice
  • Pinch of cloves
  • 2 star anise (optional)
  • 5 grams of fine grind Himalayan Pink salt (5 grams if your mixture equals 4 cups)
  1. You will need a .75 liter Pickl-It (Depending on the size of your beets, you may need a 1-liter. Also go with 5 grams of salt for every 4 cups of loosely packed veggies before the salt is added).
  2. Shred the beets and apples. Grate the ginger on a microplane zester.
  3. In a small bowl toss this mixture with the spices and zest if using.
  4. Toss with the salt and let sit for about 20 - 30 minutes to allow the salt to pull moisture out of the beets to make a brine.
  5. Place the beet mixture into your Pickl-It, pressing down to keep the brine above the mixture.
  6. If using the star anise, add them in while packing your jar. You will simply remove them when you start to consume the slaw.
  7. Clamp the lid down and add water to the fill line in your airlock.
  8. Place in a dark cupboard and let ferment for 12-18 hours.
  9. Remove airlock, place in the plug-r and refrigerate.
  10. The slaw is ready to eat at this point but gets better if left to sit a few days.

After I remove the leaves, I leave about 1/2 inch of the stem intact. I grate the top of the beet as well when I make this recipe. The top contains the most nutrients in the beet, specifically betaine a nutrient helpful in fat digestion. See photo below.




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Heather Curran November 21, 2012 at 12:26 am

Hi there! I made this tonight! :) my second ferment in a pickl-it! So I am fairly new to this…and with a question. I used two larger beets and I couldn\’t get it to fit in a .5L. I put it in a 1L, and still had a bit left over. My issue is the salt…is 3 grams enough for the amount I had?

lydia November 21, 2012 at 6:20 am

You need 5 grams of salt for every 4 cups of veggies, so I’d say you should use that amount instead – you can go by that gauge. And I now realized I used a 3/4 liter jar – sorry about that! Editing now…….

Heather Curran November 21, 2012 at 9:08 am

Thank you! I already had it packed in the jar…I am hoping it still works! Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

Bonny December 7, 2012 at 2:16 pm

I don’t have one of those jars . . . .can I just use a mason jar?? sounds amazing

lydia December 18, 2013 at 11:30 am


If you use a mason jar this recipe won’t work.

lindsey May 9, 2014 at 5:36 am


This is the link to how to make your own pickl it jars if you live in the UK, like me, and can’t get one! I haven’t made one yet but am willing to give it a go!

lydia May 9, 2014 at 8:33 am

Hi Lindsey -these are not anaerobic jars though. They are still mason jars and mason jars were made to be fully sealed under pressure. I believe that they will ship the lids to the UK…..might be worth calling to ask. You could also look into the Boss Pickler (second choice) or try The Probiotic Jar.

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