Georgia-grown beets can be found at your local farmers market or grocery store beginning in April. This blog walks you through the process of cleaning, storing, and preparing fresh beets to get the most out of your purchase!  

Cleaning and Storing

Beets are a root vegetable. This means that the ones you buy will most likely have some soil left on them from when they were harvested. No worries! The best way to clean your beets is to run them under cold water, using a vegetable brush to remove any leftover dirt from the surface. [1] [2] Pat them dry after washing.  

It is important to remove the stems of beets to ensure they stay fresh. Before storing, trim the greens and stem to 1-2 inches above the beet. Do not trim the root end of the vegetable. [1] If you follow these steps, beets can be stored for several weeks in an airtight container in the refrigerator. [3] 

Beets can also be frozen or canned if you do not plan on using them right away. [1] Simply follow the directions above to clean and prepare them. Click here for specific steps on proper freezing and here for instructions from the National Center for Home Food Preservation on how to properly can and preserve beets.  

glove-covered hand pulling two beets out of the soil


There are so many ways to enjoy this colorful root vegetable. Some of our favorites are:  

  • Chop and place them in a plastic bag with a few tablespoons of olive oil with the seasoning of your choice. Next step: roast, grill, bake, steam, stir-fry… Try each of these to see which one results in your favorite flavor and texture combination! 
  • Thinly slice or chop fresh beets and add them as a salad topper.  
  • Frozen beets are a great addition to smoothies for a bright pink color! (see recipe below)  
  • Before you throw away the stems of the beets, don’t! These can be chopped and added to salads or stews for added flavor and nutrients.  

sliced beets on a wooden cutting board

Pineapple and Beet Smoothie Recipe

Beets are what give this smoothie such a bright and colorful appearance! This beverage has a whole cup of fruits and veggies per serving to promote healthy digestion and support a strong immune system. Click on the photo below to see the recipe.  

two mason jars filled with a brightly colored pineapple and beet smoothie

Check back throughout the year to learn more about preparing and storing your favorite fresh fruits and vegetables.  

Written by Darci Bell, RDN, LD | Edited by Leslie Davis, RDN, LD, CDCES, and the Nutrition Team   

Posted: April 10, 2023 

[1] Michigan State University Extension