Have you ever had a shawarma or falafel plate with those delicious purple pickles? They are actually pickled turnips and beets! In fact, they are fermented turnips and beets. This means that fermentation (not vinegar) was used to make the pickles.
The easiest Pickled turnips
Making fermented turnip pickles may seem a bit daunting if you’ve never fermented anything before. However, they are incredibly easy, reliable, and delicious. The perfect recipe for beginners!
- Fermenting means that there is no cooking involved. Just pack everything into a jar, leave it for a few days and you’re done!
- It’s a zero-waste condiment. All you need is a glass jar and fresh vegetables.
- While I love my fido jars, feel free to make these pickles in a leftover pasta sauce jar or whatever you have in your kitchen.
Serving Pickled turnips
We probably make a few quarts of pickled turnips each year. They are actually one of the few fermented vegetables that my husband, Brad, will actually make himself! That’s because they are so easy and delicious!
They are a perfect condiment for adding a bit of pizzazz to all sorts of dishes:
Honestly, a batch of pickled turnips never lasts long in our house!
Fermented and Pickled Turnips
Looking for a classic turnip pickle for shawarma or falafels? The secret is to make fermented turnip pickles! This quick, no-cook recipe is delicious and probiotic! It’s so easy and reliable that it’s perfect for first-time fermenters.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 10 minutes
- Yield: 2 cups 1x
- Category: Pickles
- Method: Fermented
- Cuisine: Middle Eastern
- Diet: Gluten Free
- 2 cups filtered water, to cover (chlorine-free)
- 1 1/2 tsp salt (non-iodized)
- 2 cups of turnips, sliced (about 6 small or 3 large)
- 1 small beet
- 1 clove of garlic, peeled
- 2 bay leaves
- It’s easiest to make these pickles in a quart-sized (1 L) jar. There will be a bit of extra room, but not everyone has a 3/4 L jar.
- Measure the salt and water into the bottom of the jar. Give it a good stir to dissolve the salt. It will take a bit of time to fully dissolve the salt, so start to prepare your vegetables, then give it another stir.
- Fresh young turnips and beets, don’t need to be peeled. Leaving the peel on is the best way to kick start the ferment. However, older beets and turnips should be peeled because the skin is tough.
- Thinly slice the turnips and beets. I like matchsticks, but thin semi-circles are just fine. Pack the vegetables, garlic, and bay into the jar.
- Turnips really like to float, so use a weight to keep the vegetables submerged. Cap with a lid that can handle fermentation, and allow to ferment somewhere cool and dark. (See notes for details).
- The pickled turnips are ready after 3 days. Once the pickles are opened, store them in the fridge and consume them within 1 month.
- If you have to peel your beets and pickles, I recommend using a starter culture to help the ferment go quickly. See the section above for more details.
- All that’s necessary for these pickles is to keep the vegetables below the liquid. Use a smaller jar or a well fitted-weight. Then cover the jar with a tea towel or a non-tightened lid. This ferment will bubble, so don’t use a tight-fitting lid unless it’s made for fermentation.
- These pickles can be left to ferment for up to a year. However, it’s important to use a sanitized jar with a gasket that is fitted to allow gas to escape. Personally, I like fido jars and pickle pipes.
Keywords: pink, turnip pickles, gyro, shawarma, falafel, Turkish, Greek, Lebanese, spring, summer, fall, probiotic, vegan
I love these. They are super quick to whip up, and I attest hard to screw up. I’ve had them ready in as short as 5 days, and had wonderful falafel plates.
Hello, is the beet for color or is it also needed to get the desired flavor? I don’t have any beets and was hoping to avoid a trip to grocery store.
Sorry for the slow reply. We’ve been camping. The beet is mostly for color, so feel free to skip it! Cheers, Emillie